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MICHAEL ROIZEN & MEHMET OZ/You Raising Your Child: People think that what separates us from the animals is the opposable thumb. Actually, it seem like animals know how to care for their young instinctually. In our era, from Dr. Spock forward, there's always been someone there for the young mom to tell her which end is up. The young pop too, but it seems like he's there less and less for this to matter. The latest entry in this pair of pop docs series helps today's parent cruise over the speed bumps life has to offer with a little less upheaval. Nice common sense stuff that covers as much ground as you can in 5 discs. And it's all in plain talk as well. A nice addition for those willing to admit a helping hand never hurts.

CHARLES STANLEY/Surviving in an Angry World: A pop Baptist preacher steps up with his latest offering telling you it's time to chill out. It's not the politics that keeps me from listening to talk radio, it's all these angry people spouting off in a torrent of shit. Turning off the radio seems like the only control I have against what a fucked up world it is. At least I don't have to be assaulted in my headphones. Unfortunately, the people that need to hear this the most won't be listening, but others seeking enlightenment may want to listen to this and follow the steps in reverse order to ward off the evil spirits. Applying biblical lessons to road rage and more, Stanley talks common sense real good. Hopefully, his message will be heard.

RICHARD PAUL EVANS (read by Michelle Pawk)/Promise Me: Best selling inspirational fiction author puts his moves to "It's a Wonderful Life" and comes in with a copyrightable update on mysterious strangers that know all about you on a lousy Christmas Eve when your whole life is falling apart. A solid storyteller with a smart reader at the mic, this is a winter version of a beach book that hits all the right emotional notes.

SAM HARRIS/The Moral Landscape: Culture wars move to a whole new front in the wake of Stephen Hawking "proving" there is no existence of God and Harris posits that science should be used to replace subdivided values to make life better. Sure to be inflammatory in come circles, this isn't quite the same as calling Galileo a heretic, but it opens a can of worms in a station where the train has left for most people. Since everything on the table here is theoretical anyway, this is fodder for the debate club kids that still love to argue about anything and everything. Hey, the Glee kids aren't the only nerds running the table these days.

JEANNETTE WALLS/Glass Castle: And you think you come from a fucked up, dysfunctional family? Walls memoir of her roustabout raising sounds like something that should have taken place in the 1800s when this country had limitless frontiers and the wildcats to roam it. Instead, it's an affectionate look back at the people who raised her and what they did and didn't do. Now, for everyone that is still blaming their parents for how their own life turned out and like to point out that compared to their life, the crucifixion was just Jesus having a bad day, they won't get this on their own so you know what to get them for the next gift giving milestone. Y'know what I mean?

BARNEY STINSON (read by Neil Patrick Harris)/The Playbook: A spin off from the TV show "How I Met Your Mother", it looks like we've finally arrived at the point where an openly gay man can play a ladies man and the public accepts it. A tongue in cheek pick up guide, this is a nice roll off project whether laughs continue in the spirit of the show. Certainly fans will get it, right after they pick up the full season DVD.

SCOTT WESTERFELD (read by Alan Cumming)/Behemoth: Here's some grandly, nutty kid lit. With masked identities, monsters and other fantasy stuff, this second edition of the Leviathan trilogy runs the gamut of stuff that'll keep kids into fantasy interested. It's an easy bet to think this will be another best seller.

TUCKER MAX/Assholes Finish First: Gonzo has anew name and it's Tucker Max. He may turn out to be a one trick pony, when you can line up with other one trick ponies like Ruth's Chris or Brooks Brothers, that's not a bad thing. Since skeeving chicks is a journey and not a conclusion since there will always be new skeeves and new chicks, Max turns up the ante now that he can add money and fame to the mix. Nuts stuff from the new generation.

Volume 33/Number 328
September 26, 2010
830 W. Route 22 #144
Lake Zurich, IL., 60047
CHRIS SPECTOR, Editor and Publisher
Copyright 2010 Midwest Record

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