Showing posts with label Book Review. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Book Review. Show all posts

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Making Babies: The Definitive Guide to Improving Your Fertility and Reproductive Health by Jason Jackson N.D. ~A LaMothe Book Review

Some books that come to me in the mail don't hold much of a surprise for me. They are just what they seem, at least if you judge the book by it's cover. Making Babies: The Definitive guide to improving Your Fertility and Reproductive Health by Jason Jackson N.D. certainly has a lot more to offer then I expected. To start, Jason Jackson runs a successful Natural Medicine practice from Brisbane, Australia. He has lectured and consulted extensively on numerous health topics throughout Australia and overseas. Mr Jackson specializes in reproductive health and infertility and is recognized as one of Australia's leading Naturopaths in this area and is an authority in the field of Clinical Nutrition and Herbal Medicine.

The introduction is what really captured my attention: "Over the thousands of years that humans have been able to reproduce, it has been only the last fifty years or so in the industrialized world, with its nutrient-depleted foods, genetically engineered agriculture, chemical processing, drugs, radiation and pollution, that we are now observing massive impacts on our ability to bear offspring, particularly in affluent Western societies." The last fifty years?

With chapters on Male and Female Reproductive Overviews, Preparing for Conception, Stress and Fertility, and yes, Medically Assisted Reproductive Technology (which is considered 'Plan C') I found that Jason Jackson was very adept at covering everything that one would need to know to do just that, Make Babies.

What I was really happy about were the detailed black and white photos depicting not only the human anatomy but also of fibroids, PCOS, IVF Procedure and quite a few more that add value to each chapter.

I recommend Making Babies The Definitive Guide to Improving Your Fertility and Reproductive Health by Jason Jackson N.D. for your office to be used as an infertility/fertility resource guide.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Sexism in America: Alive, Well, And RUNING OUR FUTURE by Barbra J. Berg, Ph.D.: A LaMothe Book Review

I received Sexism in America: Alive, Well, And RUNING OUR FUTURE by Barbra J. Berg, Ph.D. before Christmas for review and honestly didn’t see how it would change anything about me or the way I see my daughter’s rights, her peers, my mother’s upbringing or our political past, present or future. We teach equality in our home already. My husband does laundry and dishes, I mow the lawn, and we work together on projects like cleaning out the garage or planning a party. Row vs Wade is alive and well…what did I need to know? Boy was I wrong on all counts! Sexism in America is well written, well researched and pages 325-412 documents everything Barbara Berg writes about in previous chapters regarding women’s rights in the 20th century.

Sexism in America reveals both the cultural and structural sexism that prevails despite previous victories, taking readers, like me, through a comprehensive exposé of the battles women still face in order to achieve true equity.

• The incredible disparities in cost of women’s health insurance versus men’s, the revamped war on reproductive freedom, and why the US is considered 31st in world gender equity

• The rise of infant mortality rates, teen pregnancy, heart disease and diabetes in women, as well as sexually transmitted infections among adolescent girls

• The rampant workplace discrimination that women, especially mothers face, and the wage gap between men & women that begins immediately after college and grows over time

• The pervasive sexism in popular culture beginning with male characters dominating 85% of speaking parts in G-rated children’s movies to increasingly violent and accessible internet pornography

What was also incredible to me were some of the comments made by doctors, politicians and leaders whom we (once) trusted to care about the rights and health of women in America.

• Regarding Birth Control “We will never give over the control of our numbers to the women, themselves. What? Let them control the future of the human race?” (Male physician talking with Margaret Sanger)

• Regarding Miscarriage “There are two types of habitual miscarries: the basically immature woman or the frustrated independent woman.” (1977 medical text book)

• Child Care “Child care threatens family stability by encouraging women to work and encouraging a communal approach to childrearing.” (President Nixon)

• Equal Rights (Falwell) wanted to “bury Equal Rights Amendment once and for all in a deep, dark grave.”

Yes, there is PLENTY more to make your blood boil that happened in the PAST but it’s the future we need to worry about. Chapters on Clinton, Bush and comments on Obama are all included as well as what girls are facing now….body image, education, and career opportunities all still not equal to boys/men. Did you know of the hidden provision in Bush’s No Child Left Behind Act of 2002 REQUIRES all public schools to provide the military with personal data on their students including birthdates, social security numbers, e-mail addresses, phone numbers and grade point averages? Equipped with this information, recruiters can bypass parents and contact the students directly.

If I didn’t say it before, Sexism in America: Alive, Well, And RUNING OUR FUTURE by Barbra J. Berg, Ph.D. needs to be put on your MUST READ list. Once you do I will be very interested to hear your comments!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

A LaMothe Book Review: The White Horse King, The Life of Alfred the Great

The White Horse King, The Life of Alfred the Great was a historical non-fiction account of pre-Britain Anglo-Saxon ruling family in the 800’s during the time of invading Danish “Norsemen” or Vikings from present day Sweden, Holland and Norway. Author Benjamin Merkle used his research to provide detailed descriptions of ruling class and peasant farmer challenges to survive not only the toil of land into harvest bounty to last the winter but to defend, defeat and eradicate invaders in longboats. This historical account accurately reveals the weaknesses of geography, infrastructure and practices of the period, how the Vikings took advantage of all of them, and how one defeated ruler in exile used his wits and wisdom to outwit, mobilize locals, raise and army and navy, inspire, educate and lead his country from a collection of conquered near-extinct city-states and regions into a single unified Britain within two generations.

This incredible story is not only engaging because it is true and Merkle supplies photographs, a handy chronology at the front and a map; but also because anyone with Anglo heritage or a natural instinct to root for the picked-on underdog can identify with the messages of the power of faith and perseverance, the values of courage and leadership and the tenacity of defending your homeland so common in human history.

The writing style is replete with many dates, locations and names but woven into the drama with enough detail and a few photographs from his solid research that it becomes clear, with a mental picture of their daily life and times that you cannot get in a school history book. When you can visualize the characters akin to a novel, this pagan verses Christian history becomes interesting, alive and engaging, and very easy to read.

Personally, I could quite easily identify with the paternal and protective instincts of the main “characters” in this real life drama of 11 hundred years ago. I found myself shocked that I had no recollection of hearing about Alfred the Great from elementary school history but did remember those nasty conquering Vikings that are more often glorified (sorry Minnesota football fans). I will let the sociologists explain why pirates are idolized…

One thing I did enjoy from the book very much was learning about the roots of our street layouts, the need for a national army and navy, the bravery of a king that locked arms with his men in a life-of-death shield wall, even the first required government literacy program. Other uniting principles originating with King Alfred during his 28-year reign were books in the local language, a strong currency and simplified common laws. What I discovered about myself was that my ancestors in Europe had a very hard life, must have lived through this terrible time and passed onto me in my genes a strong spark of survival that I can call upon if I ever need it. If you enjoy those misfits-become champions sports stories you will love this epic.

I can say that I did finish wanting to read more about the next generation of Alfred’s children and their further success, more about life in the other European countries impacted by the Vikings, and maybe even what it was like to be part of the Viking culture as a trained brigand to leave his home and family expecting to return laden with gold only to find a dug-in band of farmers that refused to budge. I found nothing to dislike about the book and would like to see it unfold as an epic movie or mini-series, even a Discovery show with many more photographs. I easily recommend this book to others who enjoy history and dramatic biographies, those who have traveled to Great Britain or have ancestry from the region, or anyone who likes a great story.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

by Roland LaMothe