Book Reviews

Reviews by alpha_andy_omega

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A Field Guide to Happiness

Mar 25, 2015

alpha_andy_omega

Beautifully written, with a lot of heart. This is a very insightful and interesting book. The author's adventures in Bhutan are gripping. I found myself thinking, several times throughout my day, on different lessons she encountered on her journey. The culture clash she went through, was easy to identify with, but I wonder if I could've handled it as well. I knew nothing about the country or people of Bhutan going into this book. The day to day and the religious traditions of the Buddhist culture is extremely interesting. Linda Leaming has a great writing style, and a wonderful way of telling a story. A Field Guide to Happiness is a a lot of fun. It's thought provoking and inspiring. I was fortunate to receive a review copy from Hay House, I wasn't financially compensated in any way, and this review represents my honest assessment of the book. I highly recommend it.
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The Motivation Manifesto

Jan 28, 2015

alpha_andy_omega

Personal power and self mastery are terms that have been bandied about in self-help books for decades, but author Brendon Burchard does a great job of putting a face on those concepts, and making them accessible to everyone. As a person who is already driven and motivated to some extent, I was going to skip this book, but I'm glad I didn't. Mr. Burchard has a poetic, stylish voice, but he also goes for the jugular. He doesn't waste time or pull punches. He asks the tough questions, and reminds the reader often that we are personally responsible for our success or failure. The 9 Declarations are inspiring and fascinating. Each is given a thorough study with practical examples included. The journaling suggestions in this book can bring clarity and a sense of possibility to many different kinds of challenges. If true freedom and personal development appeal to you, then you'll get a lot out of The Motivation Manifesto. I was given a review copy of this book by the publisher, Hay House Inc., I was not financially compensated in any way and the opinion expressed is my honest assessment of the product.
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How to Roll Like Chris P. Bacon

Jan 07, 2015

alpha_andy_omega

There's nothing you can criticize or not love about this children's book. Great ideas, cool art, bright colors, but best of all it empowers kids. Positive thinking, self-reliance and acceptance, taking care of others; all are spoken of in a fun, interesting way. What my son enjoyed most was the detail in the art. Because of the many animals that live with Chris and Len, there's a lot going on, a lot you don't notice right away. So it makes the book fun to just sit with awhile and bond with your kid. If you liked the first Chris P. Bacon book, this is a no-brainer, you'll love this one too. I was hesitant to admit that I'm so left brain oriented, that after reading and reviewing the first Chris P. Bacon book, I totally missed the fact that his name is a pun. Doh! However, learning to not take yourself too seriously is one of the lessons the new book teaches. Great lesson for a kid of any age. I received a free, review copy of the book from Hay House. I wasn't financially compensated in any way, and the opinion expressed in this review is my honest assessment.
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Make Your Own Rules Diet

Dec 13, 2014

alpha_andy_omega

I really like Tara Stiles' approach in Make Your Own Rules Diet. Like many of the new health and fitness books coming out, this one takes a more realistic approach than the books that came out ten or twenty years ago. The books that suggested you change everything and try to stick to a ridiculously, demanding diet and exercise regime for the rest of your life. Tara does a great job of breaking down the rules of the world, and teaching how you can get to know your own rules, or what you need to do to get where you want to be physically, emotionally, and spiritually. There are plenty of strategies in the book to help you get on track, but ultimately this book is about inspiring you to make your own way. Nobody can walk your path for you, so why not make your own rules. I found the parts of the book where the author opens up about her own struggles to be inspiring. The photos and artwork make it a unique meditative book you'll want to read through many times. If you're on the fence about reading this book, you can find Tara Stiles on youtube. Check out her videos and get a better understanding of one of the coolest yoga and health teachers on the planet today. I received a review copy of this book from Hay House publishing for review purposes. I was not paid for my review, and my opinion is my honest assessment.
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Walking Home

Dec 02, 2014

alpha_andy_omega

Sonia Choquette expresses a level of authenticity that is almost scary. This book really made me look at my own life, into those dark places on the path easily ignored. in Walking Home, the author takes you on her personal journey of things falling apart to forgiveness and healing. The physical portion of her pilgrimage consisted of an intense 34 day hike across Spain, but the tough, inspiring part is the inner journey. This isn't a New Age book, or a Catholic book. Walking Home is a book about confronting ones humanity, healing the heart and all its issues. It's about getting down to what's real on a heart level, rather than interpreting life through an established paradigm. If you've enjoyed any of the author's previous books, you'll love this one, and if this is your first read of her work, I think, you'll come away from it changed for the better. There's a beautiful magic to this tale. I received a free copy of this book for review purposes. I wasn't paid for my review, it is my honest assessment of the book.
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Loving Yourself to Great Health

Nov 20, 2014

alpha_andy_omega

For decades, Louise Hay has been walking her talk, and empowering others to find their way to healthier, stronger bodies, minds, and lives. In her latest book Loving Yourself to Great Health, she brings the ideas and experiences of two more incredibly inspiring ladies. Ahlea Khadro and Heather Dane are a wealth of information and practical knowledge that can help you in ways you may not have ever considered. This is an important book. As a fitness professional I usually burn through diet books in two or three sittings. This book is so much more than a diet book though. This is nutrition taken to the next level. I found myself having to sit with some of the concepts for a few days, not that I was having trouble understanding them, but rather I was blown away by their powerful simplicity and effectiveness. This book could change everything for you. Another thing I was happy to see, is that there are no hidden agendas or skewing of data to promote one way of eating over another (i.e. 'you must eat vegan because...' or 'paleo is the only way because...'). Taking responsibility for your health is a big step, and the approach in this book is to make gradual improvements rather than drastic, difficult to follow sudden changes. I honestly can't say enough good things about Loving Yourself to Great Health. I was given a free copy of this book, by the publisher, Hay House Inc. I wasn't paid or compensated in any way for my review or opinion.
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E Cubed

Nov 01, 2014

alpha_andy_omega

I love Pam Grout's book E-Cubed. She is an extremely talented writer. I found myself lol'ing several times, a truly enjoyable read. However the thing that sets this book apart from others is the energy experiments. I learned a lot from the nine assignments. I found out some things about my own personal mental state that were rather eye-opening. If you believe in the power of positive thinking and that our minds manifest, on some level, our reality; then this book is for you. Of course, healthy skepticism can be helpful, but opening up to these ideas and just diving into them for a few days at a time could prove to be a, dare I say it, a mystical experience. I received this book free, for review purposes from Hay House Inc., and I was not compensated for my review or coerced into my opinion, it is my honest assessment of the product.
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Don't Die with Your Music Still in You

Sep 18, 2014

alpha_andy_omega

If you've been following the work of Dr. Wayne Dyer, you will love this book. His daughter Serena has written beautifully about what it was like to grow up with parents who have "weird" ideas. The stories from her childhood are insightful and interesting. For a young woman, she writes with great wisdom and clarity. Each chapter of the book echos Dr. Dyer's classic 10 Secrets to Success and Inner Peace. Very significant since that book was originally written for the benefit of his children. What I found most interesting in Don't Die with Your Music Still in You is the idea that those who believe that our thoughts effect our reality have to really be certain we're walking our talk, because there's going to be those times where things get tough and we really need to tune into our "weird" ideas. As a parent I found this book extremely helpful and inspiring, and I hope to see Serena write more in the future. I received this book for review purposes from Hay House, I was in no way financially compensated for my opinion, it is my own honest assessment of this product.
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The Power of No

Aug 26, 2014

alpha_andy_omega

There is an admirable level of honesty the authors bring to this book. I would highly recommend it to anyone who is suffering from depression or high levels of stress. A caregiver type of person, who is always taking on more and more responsibility without taking care of themselves would also greatly benefit from reading The Power of No. Besides the lessons from author's personal experience, this book offers many powerful insights and several helpful tools for quieting the mind and getting to what is really important to you and your goals in life. Ultimately The Power of No, is not really about the things you say "no" to, but rather about defining what you're allowing and giving up trying to control (and obsess over) the things that are out of your control. The Power of No is a great read, and I take offense to the amazon reviewers who gave it a negative review without bothering to read the whole book. I was given a free review copy of this book by Hay House Publishing, I was not financially compensated in any way, and the opinions expressed herein are my own personal opinions which I reached after reading the entire book, like a responsible reviewer.





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Mind Calm

Aug 19, 2014

alpha_andy_omega

I've read several books on the subject of meditation, and this is one of the best. The author does a great job of making deep meditative states understandable and accessible without getting too wordy or guru-ish. If you'd like to learn meditation, but find you just can't quiet your mind, then this is the book you're looking for. I'd also recommend it to anyone who has been meditating for awhile, and would like to explore new techniques. I, personally, found the chapters on stillness and putting things in context to be the most profound and helpful. Sandy Newbigging has created a great system in Mind Calm, and you can't help but be changed by this book.

I was given a copy of Mind Calm by the kind folks at Hay House Publishing for review purposes. I was not paid for my opinion, and it is my honest assessment of the work.

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The Remembering Process

Jul 22, 2014

alpha_andy_omega

The Remembering Process by Daniel Barrett and Joe Vitale is a cool and interesting book. The authors take turns sharing and teaching, so you get to benefit from learning the Remembering Process from two unique personalities and perspectives. There is a lot of great stuff here, but the process itself is what's most memorable. It's an active meditation and if you have a good imagination you can use this technique to create some pretty amazing stuff. I've been experimenting with it, and love it. There is a question and answer section, as well as many testimonials in the back of the book that are very helpful. One thing I particularly like about The Remembering Process is how the authors speak on the value of letting it flow rather than forcing. Trying to do this when you're not in the mood could leave you frustrated. You're going to get the most out of it when you're in the right mindset. This book illustrates, very well, that meditative techniques aren't a chore belonging only to the self-disciplined, they can be fun, powerful, and productive. And they should be. I recommend this book to anyone who is ready to set some big goals, and make some serious change while having some good fun. I was given a free copy of this book, by the good folks at Hay House Publishing. I wasn't financially compensated for this review, and the opinion expressed is soley mine based on my personal view of the material.
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Good-bye Bumps!

Jun 13, 2014

alpha_andy_omega

The folks at Hay House were nice enough to send me a copy of Dr. Wayne Dyer's new book he wrote with his daughter Saje. It's called "Good-bye Bumps: Talking to What's Bugging You." I was not paid for my review, opinions expressed are all my own. I read this book to my five year old son. He seemed to enjoy it, and get a lot out of the subject matter. I'm interested in seeing if he applies what he learned, pretty confident he will. The artwork is great, it's interesting and colorful without being too girly for boys to tune out. The story is about how when Saje Dyer was 5 years old she had some facial bumps that caused her some embarassment and pain. Her father gave her an idea. She could try talking to what it was that was bothering her, and disempower its hold on her. It's heady stuff for a five year old, but it's presented well, and easily understood if given a chance. My son was helped a lot by the list at the end, where the little girl reiterates the idea with bullet points on a chalkboard. Great book, great ideas that can change ones perspective and change the lives of some great kids.
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The Third Rule of Ten

Apr 07, 2014

alpha_andy_omega

The Third Rule of Ten is even more exciting than the first two Tenzing Norbu novels. Once again the ex-Tibetan monk/private investigator is in way over his head, and has to rely on everything he's got including some old friends. There are great unexpected twists and turns, that of course you come to expect in a great mystery story. Ten's characterization is so well crafted, he's almost impossible not to like. We can all identify with his self criticism, and his desire to do the right thing while often doing the opposite and having to look deep and find self forgiveness. All three novels have been action-packed, but this one takes the cake. The plot is also hard to second guess. It would make a fantastic movie. I think Jet Li is the obvious choice to play Ten. I hope somebody in Hollywood is working on that. What's great about The Third Rule of Ten is the underlying story; it's about accepting our human frailties and doing the best you can. There are many times when the most enlightened of us are going to screw up, but you just dust yourself off, and try again. This case is definitely Ten's most interesting, but I can't really say too much about it without giving away spoilers. If you enjoyed the first two books, you will certainly love this one. I received a copy of this book for free for review purposes, from the nice folks at Hay House Publishing. The opinion expressed in this review is my own, honest assessment.
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Kiss Your Fights Good-Bye

Feb 13, 2014

alpha_andy_omega

Dr. Jamie Turndorf has written a fascinating guide to improving your relationship. Her sense of humor, and candor, also make this a refreshing look at a well worn subject. There are many concepts in this book that have never occurred to me. This book isn't just relationship advice with solutions offered, it gets into biochemical as well as psychological reasons a man and woman can love each other devotedly, yet still battle it out in the heat of the moment. Frankly, there were some examples offered that I was glad to have read about rather than experienced personally. Whether you're newly engaged, or been a couple for years there is a lot of wisdom you can take away from Kiss Your Fights Goodbye. I was not financially compensated for this post. I received the book from Hay House for review purposes. The opinions are completely my own based on my experience.
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Love Has Forgotten No One

Feb 05, 2014

alpha_andy_omega

That said, in the beginning of Love Has Forgotten No One, I thought this was going to be my first 1 star review. However, I stayed with it, and by the end, if not completely convinced, I was fascinated. Gary Renard has an interesting story to tell, as well as some unique, tough lessons to teach. This book will have the most appeal to folks who study A Course In Miracles, as the author is a teacher of that material. However he seems to be doing much more than just echoing ACIM lessons. Reading channeled material can be distracting, and really asks a lot of some of us. But if you can get past all that and focus on the message you may find yourself as intrigued as I was. The author has a good sense of humor, and does a good job of presenting some interesting ways of looking at enlightenment.

I received this book for free from Hay House, for review purposes. I wasn't financially compensated, and this is my honest opinion of this work.

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One Mind

Jan 08, 2014

alpha_andy_omega

This is a thought provoking book. Written by a medical doctor, it's a scientific look at spiritual subjects which are more and more crossing over into the world of physical proof via the experimentation of quantum physicists. You may not be completely convinced by all the anecdotes or evidence, but it will definitely make you think. Larry Dossey M.D. makes some brilliant points. He does a good job of providing several ways of looking at issues such as the Near Death Experience, our connections with animals, and Remote Viewing to name a few. The documented evidence regarding Remote Viewing is some of the must convincing in the entire book. Whether we are all connected to a universal mind or not, the human mind seems to be the final frontier, and it continues to get more interesting as time goes on. I'm grateful to the publisher for providing me with a review copy. I was not financially compensated for this post. I received the book from Hay House for review purposes. The opinions are completely my own based on my experience.
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Power Words

Dec 20, 2013

alpha_andy_omega

As someone fascinated by the subject of etymology and the field of NLP (Neuro Linguistic Programing)this book was a no-brainer. This book also fits nicely with the works of Louise Hay and Esther and Jerry Hick's teachings of Abraham. Author Sharon Anne Klinger does a great job of expressing the raw power that our words can have on our subconscious, and the almost magical effect the energy of our spoken and unspoken words have on our lives. This is a self help book, that is going to give you tools you can use immediately. Before finishing this book, you'll find yourself empowered with techniques that will change your world. The subject of "trigger words" alone make Power Words: Igniting Your Life with Lightning Force worth reading. Another invaluable tactic Sharon Anne Klinger teaches, is how to use the energy of words in making decisions. She walks you through several different ways to do this. Overall this really is a fantastic book. I'm grateful to the publisher for providing me with a review copy. I was not financially compensated for this post. I received the book from Hay House for review purposes. The opinions are completely my own based on my experience.
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Play Your Bigger Game

Dec 18, 2013

alpha_andy_omega

Rick Tamlyn's Play Your Bigger Game is a 5 star read. You don't have to be one of those highly motivated types with huge dreams and goals to benefit from this book. There's a lot of good information here. I love the idea that our lives are "all made up." We're all in the process of creating our life moment by moment, so the Bigger Game concept is designed to help aid in focusing and creating what we want our life to look like. The game board is presented as a tic tac toe grid, with nine squares containing concepts such as "Hunger", "Compelling Purpose", "Assess"... Each game square is explored in its own chapter. What I like about the game board is that it's open ended. It's a guide, but one that puts all the decision making into the user's hands. I also like that it's set up for positive thought and action rather than a win/lose scenario. The author does a good job of explaining the Bigger Game, while offering many inspiring examples of folks who have successfully used these ideas to their advantage. As a small business owner, I found several concepts, in Playing Your Bigger Game, that I can put into practice immediately.

I was not financially compensated for this post. I received the book from Hay House for review purposes. The opinions are completely my own based on my experience.

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Chris P. Bacon

Dec 16, 2013

alpha_andy_omega

I just finished reading Chris P. Bacon My Life So Far... to my five year old son. At first he wasn't too sure about it. He's into Ninjago and other action heroes these days. So I brought up the youtube video that shows the little piglet learning to walk using the wheels his veterinarian caretaker fashioned for him. (Chris was born without the use of his hind legs.) Halfway through the video, my son was ready, and wanted me to read him the book. The story held his attention. He was fascinated by the colorful artwork, and is sleeping with the book now. Older children will probably enjoy this book as well. It's a cute, fun story with bright, beautifully illustrated pictures. It also has a nice message, in that it shows young kids how a disability doesn't have to stop you from moving forward in life, you just adjust your approach and think positive.

I was not financially compensated for this post. I received the book from Hay House for review purposes. The opinions are completely my own based on my experience.

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The Pillars of Health

Nov 29, 2013

alpha_andy_omega

In The Pillars of Health author John Pierre offers a holistic approach to health and wellness. The four pillars supporting a healthy lifestyle offered are: nutrition, mind, movement, and compassion. This book is a fairly good starting place for someone new to these ideas. If you want to make a positive change in your life, but are unsure about where to start, this book could serve as a great road map. There are many useful ideas that can be integrated into your daily routine. I personally, found the author's inflexible vegan stance in the nutrition section a little off-putting. Not that I doubt the health benefits of such a nutritional choice, but no convincing scientific evidence is offered, just opinion. The pillar of mind, is the most interesting part of the book. A lot of good info, and personal experience working with the elderly make that portion of The Pillars of Health a good read. The section on movement was great, particularly helpful if you're job entails a lot of sitting. There are some nice and easy moves to get your blood flowing, and keep your muscles flexible and healthy. The final pillar of health is compassion, and this is where the book gets a little preachy. The author spends a good portion of each section on a fault finding expose of modern life and its foibles. After spending so much time finger-pointing, the section on compassion just comes off as a kind of ironic. But that said, there are still enough positive aspects that make this book worth reading. I received this book free for review purposes from Hay House. I was not paid for my opinion, it is mine alone.
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