I specialize in reviewing Print-On-Demand (POD) published books for my website and Midwest Book Review. Please query for a review by email to hgunther234@hotmail.com.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

PROSPERITY CONSCIOUSNESS by Chutisa and Steven Bowman

Leading Yourself to Money with Conscious Awareness
2021 Pine Lake Rd, Lincoln, NE
Genre: Self-Improvement
Rating: Typical for New-Age Consciousness books
ISBN: 9780595425969, $15.95, 150 pp.

Quoting from the back cover:

"Is it possible to unleash the power of your consciousness over money? According to authors Chutisa and Steven Bowman, the answer is a resounding ‘yes.’ With their revolutionary financial guide, Prosperity Consciousness, the Bowman’s explore how and why people obscure, diminish, contract, and cast a shadow on their prosperity consciousness. Once you understand these limitations, you can then destroy and undo the lies keeping you mired in financial insecurity.

"Unless your prosperity consciousness expands, your relationship with money will remain unchanged, trapping you at the same degree of limitation and financial mess. When you receive more money, your financial confusion will simply grow in proportion to the amount you obtain. Stop falling for "get rich quick" and anti-conscious money-making schemes, and focus on the Bowmans’ unique Access Energy for Transformation philosophy of living.

"This philosophy helps you change your viewpoint on money, prosperity, and abundance and provides you with tools, inspiration, and transformational processes you can use on your path to financial success. Ease the expansion of your prosperity consciousness, and set in motion a whole new way of being and living with awareness. Let go of your limitations and create a more abundant, prosperous, and joyful life!"

On the front cover above the title it states: "A First-of-a-Kind Financial Guide."

Hello . . . I don’t think so. If you’ve read any of the many books on finance and consciousness, you’ll immediately recognize this book for exactly what it is–one of the contemporary cons where the authors and publishers are the ones to experience financial prosperity when you purchase their new-age hype. The power of positive thinking and the law of attraction have been promoted for many years now...they’re nothing new. We all know that a positive attitude will enhance whatever we do.

The book is well organized and here’s a sample of chapter headings: 1) Money and Consciousness; 2) Money Is Not the Problem: The Problem Is Our Unwillingness to Receive; 3) Gifting and Receiving; 4) The Power of Gratitude; 5) Living In and As the Question; 6) Following the Energy; 7) Whatever You Would Like to Be, You Have to Be It Now, Right Up Front; 8) Being Out of Control, Out of Definition, and Out of Limitation; 9) Do What You Enjoy in Life; 10) Living on the Creative Edge; 11) Prosperity Consciousness Is a Choice; 12) What Else is Possible?

Considering the financial problems of the world at the moment, I would say that LifeMastery–the authors’ international organization dedicated to expanding consciousness in the workplace so that consciousness can spread throughout society and transform the world–is not the solution. Save your $15.95 or better yet, give so that you can receive. Spend your money on something fun or fattening, while at the same time adding your financial support to shoring up our ailing economy.

Kaye Trout - January 24, 2008

Wednesday, January 23, 2008


Babbling Books
New York, NY
Genre: Self-Help/Spiritual
Rating: Average
ISBN: 9780979860904, $14.95, 237 pp.

Quoting from the back cover:

"Feverish compliance with the law of attraction in the l980s left the author dead broke for 17 years and in a wheelchair by 2002, due to unanticipated medical conditions.

"When Rhonda Byrne’s The Secret muscled its way into the media in early 2007, the author’s unpleasant memories morphed into a passion to complete the book she started during her perilous law-of-attraction period. Over a 10-year span, the author had read 300 metaphysical books that inadvertently challenged The Secret’s core message: Just focus on what you want and it will quickly manifest.

"Burying the Secret was primarily inspired by Eastern thought, mysticism, and psychological matters as they relate to spirituality. The author learned about other elements at work, such as the laws governing cause and effect, transition, and suffering. She also discovered key influences on our soul’s development, such as learning lessons, voluntary acts of redemption, sacrifice, and free will.

"Burying the Secret indicts The Secret for its refusal to acknowledge that unanswered prayers are the norm and for its unfathomable premise: The law of attraction thrives as an independent force."

Personally, I’m glad someone has finally taken the time and energy to argue against law-of-attraction thinking. I, too, have known friends and acquaintances who bought into this contemporary con and then found themselves in serious financial trouble. We would all love to just ‘think’ about what we want–to be thin, rich, loved–and have it materialize. However, most of us know there is so much more involved than just the law of attraction to acquire what we desire in life. Of course, there’s nothing wrong with maintaining a positive, optimistic outlook on life. I believe the people who write ‘law-of-attraction’ books realize financial success because we buy their books.

Carol Rutter is an educated woman who has spent many hours reading and studying over 300 books and articles to find answers for her life. In Burying the Secret she tries to share her studies and thoughts with us from psychological to religious/metaphysical perspectives. The book is an organized collection of her research, plus her personal interpretations and current beliefs. As I said, Rutter is an intelligent, educated woman, and you may find her ramblings of some interest and inspiration.

Kaye Trout - January 23, 2008

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

WATTS ON THIRD by Nick Rafter

Lluminia Press
PO Box 772246, Coral Springs, FL
Genre: Fiction/Short Story
Rating: Fair
ISBN: 9781595269171, $9.95, 57 pp.

Quoting from the back cover:

"It’s Friday evening, and it’s happy hour at Watts on Third Avenue. A group of college graduates meet to enjoy some time together and cheer up a friend who has had a rough time since graduation. Two best friends since childhood come to have dinner and drinks and to scope out potential mates. Three co-workers from a nearby office reminisce about their youth while killing time at the bar.

"They’re all strangers when they arrive. They come to Watts for different reasons, but they’re about to discover their paths aren’t as far apart as they might have thought."

I liked the title and cover of the book, was disappointed by the shallowness of the story and writing style, found four editing errors, and wondered why the author took the time. It’s ‘just’ a short story (57 pages) with no meaningful message other than capturing a moment of time in the lives of the characters. Would I recommend that you spend $9.95 for Watts on Third? I don’t think so. I do suggest that the author have it re-edited and possibly include the story in a collection of short stories.

Kaye Trout - January 22, 2008

Monday, January 21, 2008

HOW TO BE A CREATIVE GENIUS (in five minutes or less) by Gary Unger

Sherian Publishing
2700 Braselton Highway, Dacula, GA
Genre: Humor
Rating: Poor
ISBN: 0979567629, $14.99, 114 pp.

This little book is divided into 8 chapters: Genius Introduction, Genius Mentality, Genius Dress, Genius Work Flow, Genius Health, Genius Excuses, Genius Advertising and Genius Spice of Life. Gary Unger includes 2, 3 or 4 remarks on a page, such as: Be vegetarian, Watch only two TV shows, Listen to only one FM radio station, Never watch the news, Be anti-religion, Do drugs. In addition to these curt suggestions, he provides some "De Facto" information, scattered here and there.

I think this little book was meant to be funny, but I personally did not find that so. I felt it was a waste of time, effort, money and paper, and for the asking price of $14.99, it’s an insult to the American consumer. Please, save your money for something more entertaining and informative.

Kaye Trout, January 21, 2008

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

F.A.T. BALANCE DIET - 10 Steps to Weight Loss Freedom by Kevin J. Jones

Fitness Lifestyle, LLC
United States of America
Genre: Health and Fitness
Rating: Good
ISBN: 13:9780976899839, $15.95, 256 pp.

Quoting from the back cover:

"Do you want a LASTING weight loss solution? F.A.T. Balance is for you!

Effective–Lose pounds and inches with a simple life management tool
Flexible–Works with any lifestyle, diet, or exercise program
Fun–Helps you succeed with more joy and less stress

1. Gina-Get Motivated; 2. Rachel-Reject Fantasies; 3. Eric-Embrace Laws; 4. Tracy-Take Charge; 5. Cathy-Commit; 6. Isabel-Improve Diet; 7. Iris-Increase Activity; 8. Faith-Follow FAT Balance; 9. Eddie-Enjoy; 10. Mary-Maintain."

F.A.T. Balance Diet is a new book on the market to help us lose weight. It tells us all the things we already know but can’t seem to follow...most likely because we prefer sweets to self-discipline. The humor and cartoon characters make this particular diet book an upbeat, fun read while conveying its message. Does it tell us anything new? Not to me, but perhaps its presentation will appeal to you, and that’s all that really matters. It is divided into ten chapters with personal names to represent the subject matter as indicated above, plus fifty easy recipes. If you’re looking for an upbeat, well-organized diet, this may be the one for you.

Kaye Trout - January 15, 2008

Wednesday, January 09, 2008


The Correlation between Age and Political Philosophy
by Ron Lipsman
2021 Pine Lake Rd, Lincoln, NE
Genre: Political Science
Rating: Very Good
ISBN: 9780595463206, $20.95, 275 pp.

Quoting from the back cover:

"Professor Lipsman

-argues for a correlation between age and political philosophy, which asserts that young people tend to gravitate toward liberalism while older people are usually more comfortable with conservatism; and that, additionally, among the people who change their political preference over time, more go from liberal to conservative than vice versa; and finally, he assesses the strengths of these trends;
-examines the most interesting counter-examples to these trends–namely, premature conservative and aging liberals–and explains what motivates them;
-presents a history of the liberal/conservative divide in America and then augments it with an assessment of its current status as well as a prediction of its future."

Liberal Hearts and Conservative Brains is a well-written, well-edited, very interesting political science book, with a personal touch. This book can help you determine more clearly just where you stand on all the important issues. Does age have an influence on your political beliefs? Read this book and see if you agree with Ron Lipsman.

Kaye Trout - January 9, 2008