Archive for the ‘Diet & Health’ Category

Jon Stewart Owns Pigs

Tuesday, April 7th, 2015

You may think of Jon Stewart as a city person, but on last night’s Daily Show, he reveals that he owns a couple of pigs, during an interview with Gene Baur, author of Living the Farm Sanctuary Life: The Ultimate Guide to Eating Mindfully, Living Longer, and Feeling Better Every Day, (Rodale, 4/7/15).

Stewart uttered the magic words, “It’s a terrific book … Get it!” causing it to jump to #68 on Amazon’s sales rankings.

Zuckerberg Surfs the Zeitgeist

Thursday, February 19th, 2015

9781555977207_2389fMark Zuckerberg is being credited by the Guardian with having “tapped into an area of growing social anxiety with his fourth book club choice.”

Announced yesterday, the title is On Immunity: An Inoculation, (Graywolf Press; HighBridge Audio) by Eula Biss, a book that looks into the fears about vaccination. It was picked as a best book of 2014 by several sources, including the New York Times Book Review‘s top ten. (our downloadable spreadsheet of all the 2014 nonfiction picks is here).

EXPECTING Controversy

Monday, August 12th, 2013

9781594204753As we predicted, Emily Oster’s claims in her forthcoming book,  Expecting Better: Why the Conventional Pregnancy Wisdom Is Wrong – and What You Really Need to Know (Penguin Press, 8/20; Blackstone Audio) is drawing controversy.

This morning, the book was featured on ABC’s Good Morning America. Senior Medical contributor, Jennifer Ashton, attacked Oster’s reasoning. She said “obstetricians and midwives all over the place are going to be doing damage control” over the assertion that a pregnant woman can have up to one drink a day. In fact, says, Ashton, one drink a day is “a lot for any woman, pregnant or not.”

The New York Post also weighs in on the subject.

More is coming. A live interview with the author is scheduled for Fox & Friends tomorrow.



Monday, April 15th, 2013

Glass SlipperStill at #1 on the NYT Hardcover Nonfiction Best Seller list after 4 weeks, Sheryl Sandberg’s book Lean In (Random House) urges women to seek egalitarian marriages. Promoting a different approach, 90’s pro volleyball star Gabrielle Reece appeared on NBC’s Today Show and Rock Center on Friday to say that she rescued her marriage to pro surfer Laird Hamilton by becoming “submissive.”

Her book, My Foot Is Too Big for the Glass Slipper, (S&S/Scribner), which also outlines Reese’s views on fitness and parenting, arrives tomorrow. It’s now at #53 on Amazon sales rankings. Holds are heavy on light ordering in several libraries.

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The FAST DIET Catches On

Monday, March 4th, 2013

It seems the U.S. isn’t the only country obsessed with quick-fix diets. In the U.K., the “Fast Diet” is the talk of the country, according to the New York Times. The book that started the craze has been #1 on Amazon UK since it came out in January. It’s poised to be a hit here as well. Libraries are showing holds on the U.S. edition, which arrived last week, and it is currently #1 on Amazon’s sales rankings.

Also called the 5:2 diet, it recommends two days of “fasting” (consuming just 500 calories) for every five of eating normally.

The Fast Diet
The FastDiet
Michael Mosley, Mimi Spencer
Retail Price  $24.00
Hardcover 224 pages
Publisher: S&S/Atria Books – (2013-02-26)
ISBN / EAN: 9781476734941, 1476734941

Get ready for more. The article notes that a “slew of fasting diet books” have come out in the U.K. in the recent weeks.


Wednesday, February 27th, 2013

Sugar Salt FatMaking the dramatic argument that the food industry has consciously hooked consumers on junk food, much as the tobacco industry hooked people on nicotine, Michael Moss, author of Salt Sugar Fat, (Random House; RH Audio; BOT)  appeared on NPR’s Fresh Air  yesterday. Among his many stunning anecdotes, he describes how food scientists developed the “bliss point,” the precise amount of sugar to make consumers want more, without crossing the line to overly sweet.

The book is excerpted as the cover story for this week’s New York Times Magazine (the author is a NYT reporter who won a Pulitzer for reporting on E. coli in beef), as “The Extraordinary Science of Addictive Junk Food.“

It is currently at #3 on Amazon’s sales rankings; libraries are showing heavy holds on modest orders.

Mediterranean Diet Books Soar

Tuesday, February 26th, 2013

Mediterranean diet 9781118067789  cover-65

Reports on a new study that supports the health benefits of the Mediterranean diet caused several titles to rise on Amazon’s sales rankings. Stories appeared in multiple news sources, including the New York Times, USA Today and on TV.

Hearing Loss and Dementia

Wednesday, February 13th, 2013

Shouting Won't HelpStudies indicate that hearing loss is likely to be a pecursor of dementia, reports the NYT‘s Katherine Bouton in the newspaper’s popular “Well” column.

The news is particularly alarming to Bouton, who has a strong connection to the issue. Her book, arriving next week, Shouting Won’t Help: Why I-And 50 Million Other Americans-Can’t Hear You (Macmillan/FSG/Sarah Crichton) is about her own hearing loss. In an audio interview on the “Well” site, she explains that she wrote the book to help others understand what serious hearing loss is like (it’s very different from just wearing earmuffs).  Kirkus calls it a “poignant, enlightening memoir.”

The Skinny On Getting Skinny

Wednesday, July 11th, 2012

The Today Show took a skeptical look at a new diet book that just arrived in the US after becoming a big success in the UK. Six Weeks to OMG: Get Skinnier Than All Your Friends by Vince Fulton (yes, it’s a pseudonym) was covered in two segments, each featuring a bathtub.

The hosts of the segments sounded unconvinced by the author’s recommendations, but a significant number of viewers felt otherwise. The book jumped into the Amazon Top Fifty, rising from #5,012 to #44. Library holds, however, are very light.

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Wednesday, February 8th, 2012

William J. Broad’s article, “How Yoga Can Wreck your Body,” published in the New York Times on Jan. 5 brought protests from the yoga community .

Broad appeared on Fresh Air yesterday to talk about his less sensationally-titled new book, The Science of Yoga, which looks at both the risks and rewards of the practice.

Libraries are showing heavy holds on modest orders.

The Science of Yoga: The Risks and the Rewards
William J Broad
Retail Price: $26.00
Hardcover: 336 pages
Publisher: Simon & Schuster – (2012-02-07)
ISBN / EAN: 1451641427 / 9781451641424

Broad emphasizes the advantages of yoga in the book’s trailer:


Saturday, February 4th, 2012

David Angus’ book, The End of Illness, hardly needs more attention. It’s been at #1 on the NYT Hardcover Advice & Misc. best seller list for the last two weeks. Several features on ABC News in mid-January, sent it to the top ten on Amazon for a week. It settled back down in to the 100’s, and shot back up again, after Jon Stewart issued the magic words during his talk with the author on The Daily Show, “The book is phenomenal. For anyone who is up at night, looking at WebMD…you should get this.”

(UPDATE: some health web sites, including, have criticized some of Dr. Angus’ recommendations).

Libraries are showing heavy holds in most areas.


The End of Illness
David B. Agus
Retail Price: $26.00
Hardcover: 352 pages
Publisher: S&S/Free Press – (2012-01-17)
ISBN / EAN: 1451610173 / 9781451610178

S&S Audio

Rachel Ray Sends Book Up the Charts

Wednesday, July 27th, 2011

After the author’s appearance on the Rachel Ray Show yesterday, Syndrome W: A Woman’s Guide to Reversing Weight Gain, by Harriette R. Mogul, rose to #18 on Amazon’s sales rankings.

Syndrome W: A Woman’s Guide to Reversing Midlife Weight Gain
Harriette R. Mogul
Retail Price: $16.95
Paperback: 280 pages
Publisher: M.Evans & Company – (2010-07-25)
ISBN / EAN: 1590771613 / 9781590771617

Oprah’s Vegan Challenge

Monday, January 31st, 2011

Expect an increase in interest in books about veganism. Beginning Tuesday, Oprah and 378 of her staff go vegan for a week. Michael Pollan and Kathy Freston will be featured on the show.

Freston’s latest book comes out tomorrow.

Veganist: Lose Weight, Get Healthy, Change the World
Kathy Freston
Retail Price: $25.00
Hardcover: 304 pages
Publisher: Weinstein Books – (2011-02-01)
ISBN / EAN: 1602861331 / 9781602861336

Possible Breakout by Prison Librarian

Friday, October 15th, 2010

A recent Earlyword Galley Chat favorite goes on sale next week: Running the BooksAvi Steinberg‘s memoir of his adventures as a prison librarian and writing instructor in Boston, after graduating from Harvard.  As we’ve mentioned, he published an amusing essay in the New York Times magazine last week, which should help the book get more attention in other media.

PW called the memoir “captivating…. Steinberg writes a stylish prose that blends deadpan wit with an acute moral seriousness. The result is a fine portrait of prison life and the thwarted humanity that courses through it.”

Running the Books: The Adventures of an Accidental Prison Librarian
Avi Steinberg
Retail Price: $26.00
Hardcover: 416 pages
Publisher: Nan A. Talese – (2010-10-19)
ISBN / EAN: 0385529090 / 9780385529099

Other Notable Nonfiction On Sale Next Week

Skinny Bitch: Ultimate Everyday Cookbook: Crazy Delicious Recipes that Are Good to the Earth and Great for Your Bod by Kim Barnouin (Running Press), more vegan dishes.

Final Verdict: What Really Happened in the Rosenberg Case by Walter Schneir (Melville House) contends that Ethel Rosenberg was not a Soviet spy and challenges enduring myths surrounding the case. The New York Times Book Review compares it favorably to another recent book on the Rosenberg case by Allen M. Hornblum.

My Thoughts Be Bloody: The Bitter Rivalry Between Edwin and John Wilkes Booth That Led to an American Tragedy by Nora Titone (S&S) hinges on its portrait of the Booth family. Kirkus declares that “though some historical detail seems more tangential than pertinent, the multiple portraits display hidden facets of all the Booths.”

The Man Who Invented the Computer: The Biography of John Atanasoff, Digital Pioneer by Jane Smiley is a biography of the brilliant but mostly forgotten physicist who created a protype for the computer. Kirkus raves, “As in her novels, the author displays a talent for keeping a dozen fully realized characters on stage…. Smiley takes science history and injects it with a touch of noir and an exciting clash of vanities.”


Forge by Laurie Halse Anderson, about a runaway slave who joins the Continental Army at Valley Forge during the winter of 1777-78, is the second installment in the author’s American Revolutionary trilogy, following the National Book Award finalist Chains. Kirkus praises its “vivid setting, believable characters both good and despicable and a clear portrayal of the moral ambiguity of the Revolutionary age. Not only can this sequel stand alone, for many readers it will be one of the best novels they have ever read.”

Prostate Snatchers

Wednesday, September 1st, 2010

We can’t help but cringe at the title of a new book that criticizes current treatments for prostate cancer; Invasion of the Prostate Snatchers.

It’s been rising on Amazons sales rankings (currently at #207, from #28,021 yesterday), based on coverage in the New York Times Well Column on Monday. The book’s authors point out that only 1 man in 48 is saved by prostate surgery; the others would be better off if it was treated as a chronic condition.

The NYT columnist finds the book’s arguments persuasive, even though he happens to be one of the 48 who was saved by surgery, which uncovered the fact that his cancer was more advanced than his doctors had originally thought.

Invasion of the Prostate Snatchers: No More Unnecessary Biopsies, Radical Treatment or Loss of Sexual Potency
Mark Scholz M.D., Ralph Blum
Retail Price: $24.95
Hardcover: 320 pages
Publisher: Other Press – (2010-08-24)
ISBN / EAN: 1590513428 / 9781590513422