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52 of 55 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This Is a Must Read for Anyone With Angst About Their Brain Functions, April 20, 2010
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This review is from: The Secret Life of the Grown-up Brain: The Surprising Talents of the Middle-Aged Mind (Hardcover)
I first heard about this book when the author, Barbara Strauch, was interviewed on NPR a few days ago. It might have been Diane Rehm. Or was it Terry Gross? Maybe All Things Considered, the one hosted by Neil--oops, Neil who? After all I've only been listening for years now.
Okay, my point is made. I think I no longer have a middle-aged brain/mind ('m almost 69). But when I read this book, I certainly found myself there and happily so, saying to myself that this could easily be about the early elderly-mind brain. Okay, so I admit that I failed on the math problem (page 12), but I would have failed that decades ago. I simply don't think that way. But verbally, hey, I'm fine. And when I teach my writing class at a local college, I can rattle off all types of information, putting those young minds to shame. But for the moment I still cannot remember the name of that host of All Things Considered. But that is now okay. And why? Because I read this wonderful, very readable book. As soon as I post this, it will come to me. But someone once wrote, "What's in a name?..." And, yes, I know who that someone is!
I probably would not be much concerned about the issue of forgetfulness except my domestic partner of many years is and undoubtedly with good reasons since his mother was the victim of Alzheimer's. He is certain he is well on the way himself. And now I am eager to hand this book over to him and ask if maybe he might be well within the norm, especially since we are both at a very high end of middle-age (that is called denial since we are at the low end of elderly-aged mind according to Ms. Strauch). There is plenty of research for those interested in "the facts." But it is not loaded on; instead it comes in bite-size portions along with the more personal stories that I easily related to. "Where did I put my glasses?" "What was it I needed to get to add to the salad here in the produce department?" "And what is Neil's last name? A? B? Oh, well, later."
I highly recommend this book, one I suspect I will be giving to others. I predict that groups of people will be reading this together and sharing their own insights, hopefully not focusing so much upon "senior moments" as upon why the middle-aged brain is actually a very functional organism, quite possibly in better shape than younger brains!
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Showing 1-6 of 6 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Apr 20, 2010 1:02:57 PM PDT
Robin says:
I am still laughing over this review. Thanks for sharing!

Posted on Apr 20, 2010 1:11:17 PM PDT
Tried n True says:
At last--thank you for sharing your personal insight about this book. I first heard about the book in NPR's interview with Barbara and was very pleased at how everything said were things I've always believed. I have turned blue in the face encouraging friends not to be content with a "lazy brain" and the lazy life style they choose to wallow in. I honor the gift of life by learning something new everyday, no matter how small a knowledge, it is still one thing more than yesterday. I wish I can convince my friends to read this book; I know they won't as they prefer to be no smarter than yesterday and just the same tomorrow. Thank you for the bit of insight.

Posted on Apr 21, 2010 8:26:51 PM PDT
D. Owen says:
[Customers don't think this post adds to the discussion. Show post anyway. Show all unhelpful posts.]

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 22, 2010 2:29:46 AM PDT
C. E. Selby says:
Three of my friends are now reading the book and discussing it with me via the Internet. It is fun sharing some of our TOTs as well as other "brainy" things.

Posted on May 11, 2010 12:49:57 PM PDT
Neal Conan

Posted on Mar 30, 2014 7:36:14 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Mar 30, 2014 7:37:53 AM PDT
The interview you hear, Eric, was probably on NPR's "Fresh Air". I just an search on the Internet and came across this link to the interview. :)
http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=125902095

By the way, this book is now available both for the Kindle and in AudioBook form from Audible.
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Location: Miami Beach, FL

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