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Book Club Reading Lists

Brainerd Library Book Club 2019 Titles TBA

4th Wednesday of the Month, starting at 6:30 pm


Healthy Exchange Book Club 2019 Title List

                                       1st Wednesday of the month, starting at 6:30 pmhealthy-ex-logo

January 2, 2019
Gratitude Diaries by Janice Kaplan

On New Year’s Eve, journalist and former Parade editor in chief Janice Kaplan makes a promise to be grateful and look on the bright side of whatever happens. She realizes that how she feels over the next twelve months will have less to do with the events that occur than with her own attitude and perspective. Getting advice at every turn from psychologists, academics, doctors, and philosophers, she brings readers on a smart and witty journey to discover the value of appreciating what you have.

Relying on both amusing personal experiences and extensive research, Kaplan explores how gratitude can transform every aspect of life including marriage and friendship, money and ambition, and health and fitness. She learns how appreciating your spouse changes the neurons of your brain and why saying thanks helps CEOs succeed. Through extensive interviews with experts and lively conversations with real people, including celebrities like Matt Damon, Daniel Craig, and Jerry Seinfeld, Kaplan discovers the role of gratitude in everything from our sense of fulfillment to our children’s happiness.


February 6, 2019
What’s Gotten Into Us: Staying Healthy in a Toxic World by McKay Jenkins

Do you know what chemicals are in your shampoo? How about your cosmetics? Do you know what’s in the plastic water bottles you drink from, or the weed killer in your garage, or your children’s pajamas? If you’re like most of us, the answer is probably no. But you also probably figured that most of these products were safe, and that someone—the manufacturers, the government—was looking out for you. The truth might surprise you.

What’s Gotten Into Us? is much more than a wake-up call. It offers numerous practical ways for us to regain some control over our lives, to make our own personal worlds a little less toxic. Inside, you’ll find ideas to help you make informed decisions about the products you buy, and to disentangle yourself from unhealthy products you don’t need—so that you and your family can start living healthier lives now, and in the years to come. Because, as this book shows, what you don’t know can hurt you.

March 6, 2019
The Heart Speaks by Mimi Guarneri

In The Heart Speaks, Dr. Mimi Guarneri reveals groundbreaking new research that the heart is a multilayered, complex organ, possessing intelligence, memory, and decision-making abilities independent from the mind—and that healing the heart can have more to do with healing the mind and soul than we ever knew.

From childhood in a family riddled with heart disease to a medical career facing the pounding heartbeats of cardiac emergencies, Dr. Guarneri draws us into the intimate moments of life and death, and leads us on a riveting exploration of the heart’s many mysteries. Through her compelling memoir we see that it is only by knowing the whole heart—its mental, emotional, spiritual, and universal aspects—that we can truly heal.

April 3, 2019
The Alzheimer’s Solution by Dean & Ayesha Sherzai, MD

This much-needed revolutionary book reveals how the brain is a living universe, directly influenced by nutrition, exercise, stress, sleep, and engagement. In other words: what you feed it, how you treat it, when you challenge it, and the ways in which you allow it to rest. These factors are the pillars of the groundbreaking program you’ll find in these pages, which features a personalized assessment for evaluating risk, a five-part program for prevention and symptom-reversal, and day-by-day guides for optimizing cognitive function. You can prevent Alzheimer’s disease from affecting you, your family, friends, and loved ones. Even with a diagnosis, you can reverse cognitive decline and add vibrant years to your life. The future of your brain is finally within your control.

May 1, 2019
The Neuroscientist Who Lost Her Mind by Barbara K. Lipska

In January 2015, Barbara Lipska—a leading expert on the neuroscience of mental illness—was diagnosed with melanoma that had spread to her brain. Within months, her frontal lobe, the seat of cognition, began shutting down. She descended into madness, exhibiting dementia- and schizophrenia-like symptoms that terrified her family and coworkers. But miraculously, just as her doctors figured out what was happening, the immunotherapy they had prescribed began to work. Just eight weeks after her nightmare began, Lipska returned to normal. With one difference: she remembered her brush with madness with exquisite clarity.

June 5, 2019
The Four Tendencies by Gretchen Rubin

During her multibook investigation into understanding human nature, Gretchen Rubin realized that by asking the seemingly dry question “How do I respond to expectations?” we gain explosive self-knowledge. She discovered that based on their answer, people fit into Four Tendencies: Upholders, Questioners, Obligers, and Rebels. Our Tendency shapes every aspect of our behavior, so using this framework allows us to make better decisions, meet deadlines, suffer less stress, and engage more effectively.
With sharp insight, compelling research, and hilarious examples, The Four Tendencies will help you get happier, healthier, more productive, and more creative. It’s far easier to succeed when you know what works for you.


September 4, 2019
The Danger Within Us: America’s Untested, Unregulated Medical Device Industry and One Man’s Battle to Survive It by Jeanne Lenzer

In The Danger Within Us, award-winning journalist Jeanne Lenzer brings these horrifying statistics to life through the story of one working class man who, after his “cure” nearly kills him, ends up in a battle for justice against the medical establishment.
His crusade leads Lenzer on a journey through the dark underbelly of the medical device industry, a fascinating and disturbing world that hasn’t been written about before. What Lenzer exposes will shock readers: rampant corruption, elaborate cover-ups, shameless profiteering, and astonishing lack of oversight, all of which leads to dangerous devices (from artificial hips to pacemakers) going to market and into our bodies.


October 2, 2019
Sleep Smarter by Shawn Stevenson

When it comes to health, there is one criminally overlooked element: sleep. Good sleep helps you shed fat for good, stave off disease, stay productive, and improve virtually every function of your mind and body. That’s what Shawn Stevenson learned when a degenerative bone disease crushed his dream of becoming a professional athlete. Like many of us, he gave up on his health and his body, until he decided there must be a better way. Through better sleep and optimized nutrition, Stevenson not only healed his body but also achieved fitness and business goals he never thought possible.
In Sleep Smarter, Stevenson shares easy tips and tricks to discover the best sleep and best health of your life. With his 14-Day Sleep Makeover, you’ll learn how to create the ideal sleep sanctuary, how to hack sunlight to regulate your circadian rhythms, which clinically proven sleep nutrients and supplements you need, and stress-reduction exercises and fitness tips to keep you mentally and physically sharp.


November 6, 2019
Almost Everything  by Anne Lamott

“All truth is paradox,” Lamott writes, “and this turns out to be a reason for hope. If you arrive at a place in life that is miserable, it will change.” That is the time when we must pledge not to give up but “to do what Wendell Berry wrote: ‘Be joyful, though you have considered all the facts.'”
In this profound and funny book, Lamott calls for each of us to rediscover the nuggets of hope and wisdom that are buried within us that can make life sweeter than we ever imagined. Divided into short chapters that explore life’s essential truths, Almost Everything pinpoints these moments of insight as it shines an encouraging light forward.