A young man, Igor, adopts as his mother a middle aged woman, Sylvia, after meeting her in a café, each having come from the nearby cemetery. He had been visiting his mother’s grave; she, her son’s. In taking it upon himself to investigate the death of Sylvia’s son, Igor soon finds himself confronting racists. Sylvia is black; Igor is white. The deeper he delves, the more intricately embroiled he becomes and the more he becomes the focus of a police investigation himself.
Alongside the surface interplay of the characters, Igor remains preoccupied with an inquiry into the nature of existence. Within the field of human activity, notions of ‘good and bad’ and ‘pleasure and pain’ are perhaps bound to prevail, but the essence of existence must precede such differentiation. The presence of suffering in the world should not be taken as proof that the world cannot be perfect. A photograph consisting only of black or only of white would probably seem pretty boring. A world consisting only of good or only of bad would perhaps be comparable to such a photograph. Each extreme acquires its significance by being in juxtaposition with its opposite. Happiness does not result from the elimination of suffering; rather, happiness may ensue when the realm of pleasure and pain has been transcended.
One aspect of the title, Black & White, relates to issues of race. Another aspect relates to Igor’s ability in violent situations to interpret matters in black and white terms. However, it is as a general phrase covering all dualities that the title derives its primary import. The use of the ampersand character in the title imitates its usage by photographers when referring to ‘black & white’ images, and is intended to denote a synthesis of the individual terms into a unitary whole.
The book includes some brief passages depicting scenes of polyamorous sex (pleasure) and homicidal violence (pain).
Joana is a conservative, controlling woman who expected much more from marriage; Maria is trying to get back on her feet after being dumped just before her wedding; Filipe hides his broken heart in failed relationships. Is this as good as it gets when you’re thirty something? That’s what these three friends from college times will find out during a dysfunctional dinner party. Because life is not always how we dreamed it would be.
Jessa Allen knew she was plain and average. Yes, she was brainy and successful in her career as a senior writer for the popular Lifestyle by Design magazine, but she wasn’t a raving beauty who easily attracted hunky, gorgeous men like Rob Granger even if her well-meaning friends wanted her to believe she was. So when Rob asked her out, she was shocked. A seriously handsome man who had magnetism she couldn’t seem to escape wanted her. That wasn’t something that happened everyday.
Rob Granger was instantly attracted to Jessa Allen. She wasn’t the usual type he went for but there was something alluring about her that drew him like a moth to a flame. But he was a self-confessed playboy who had absolutely no plans to be tied down by any woman. He valued his freedom, first and foremost and his expanding business was the only thing he was committed to. But he was intent on satisfying his intense desire for Jessa.
They both didn’t want to fight their physical attraction for each other. But Jessa found herself falling for the man who could not promise her tomorrow. And Rob was set on only having a short fling with Jessa especially when they lived in different states – he in Melbourne and she in Sydney.
Could Jessa trust herself not to fall apart when the time came to let Rob go? And could Rob ever find freedom in what he considered as a prison to be avoided at all cost?
“What’s Behind Your Belly Button?” explains what your gut feelings are actually capable of telling you about your inner instinctive needs, how to listen to the voice of your gut, and how to use both of your brains—head and gut—to work together for your optimal health and well-being. Although numerous books and articles have recently talked about the gut instincts as valuable in giving us useful hunches in the decision-making process, “What’s Behind Your Belly Button?” goes much further and explains how gut feelings not only have a psychological intelligence of their own, but are also understandably rational in their functioning and reflect in their own voice how well the two instinctive human needs of acceptance and of control of one’s own responses in our lives are being met.
Since Dr. Michael Gershon, M.D., published in 1999 his revolutionary medical findings that demonstrated that the gut has an intelligence of its own and called it the “Second Brain”, people have been examining their guts with growing interest in trying to understand their gut feelings. “What’s Behind YOur Belly Button?” answers the questions many people have of the second brain and the ENS in a new Gut Psychology, and explore how to use both your head and gut brains to work together for a healthy life. It is written in a narrative style that allows for the reader to understand the experience within themselves of having two brains and it makes thinking of the human being with these two brains become truly understandable for the first time.
While the authors make this material easy to understand, the psychological explanations of gut intelligence and instincts in this book are comprehensive, well-researched, and based upon clinical studies with hundreds people by the two authors. Utilizing the research of Dr. Gershon, the work of Dr. Lise Eliot who charts the development of children from conception through the first five years of life, recent research of their own in the Psychology Department at Sonoma State University, and their vast clinical experience in career counseling and psychometry, the two authors of What’s Behind Your Belly Button have presented an interpretation of recent medical research into a new revolutionary understanding of gut instincts and a more accurate behavioral understanding of the Self and human nature than has previously been available.
This book is recommended for anyone looking for a hopeful view of humankind and a method for getting in touch with gut instincts to reduce stress, cope with fear and anxiety, deal with health issues and make efforts to stay healthy, and to increase optimal problem-solving and life-decision making abilities. It is a book that would be useful for general audience readers as a self-help book, as well as for scholars of psychology, education, neurology, medicine, and business organizational leadership interested in the well-being of healthy decision-making and the human condition. It is also suggested for parents and teachers who would like to increase the intuitive intelligence of both themselves and their children .
Hannelore Riker is a grad student with a dry sense of humor, a pathetic dating life, and little patience for grade-grubbing undergrads. She does her best to keep from falling for a guy who always seems ready with a witty remark, and she learns to deal with eccentric professors who play by their own set of rules.
Some reviews for Hannelore Takes Note:
“[L]ike talking to a girlfriend…lovely in [parts], funny everywhere else.”
“[I]t was compelling, the characters were imaginative.”
“I really enjoyed this book and was laughing out loud at some of the antics…”
“The author did a really great job of writing with a snarky wit…The characters were well developed…”
Beneath the peaceful exterior of the leafy town of Tall Tree, the brutal baby gangster underworld is simmering to a hard boil. Squeezy the Cheeks, undisputed leader of the long ruling North Wood crew, is facing the toughest challenge of his career: his archnemesis Harry the Rash, who rules the Poopypants Gang with an iron rattle, is making a play for Squeezy’s territory. Mama’s Boy, the freshest recruit into Squeezy’s mob of infant thugs, is unwittingly thrust into the middle of the massive heist Squeezy must pull off to keep himself and his crew in their seat of power. Everything is at stake for the North Wood Gang. But can Mama’s Boy keep it together to make the score, or will the mysterious redhead he encounters at Story Time distract him at his most important hour? Join Mama’s Boy as he journeys into the dark underbelly of the baby hoodlum wars and is forced to change his worldview forever.
Sunspots follows the healing journey of a young woman thrown into the horror of losing a spouse. It is a story of loss and redemption and the ghosts that haunt our lives and our houses. A love story, a romance, and a mystery of sorts, Sunspots, is above all an exploration into the psyche and emotional arc of the MC and it follows no formula.
“One can never be, and should never be, smug about life,” says Aurora Goldberg. An aspiring New York actress who has never realized her dreams, Aurora keeps herself afloat by doing odd temp jobs where her rich fantasy life helps her get through the day. Aurora sees the world through the lens of characters in literature and film and these fictionalizations are woven into her interpretation of reality. On one of her temp assignments she meets Jake Stein, a man who could “charm the skin off a snake” and she decides to follow her destiny as his wife in Austin, Texas. But Jake’s sudden death after two short years disintegrates her world and Aurora must reevaluate her life and let go of a love that has become an obsession.
Sunspots takes the reader on a journey of high emotion as Aurora uncovers Jake’s secret life and her own internal conflicts as she matures to self-awareness. Narrated by Aurora, the novel’s tone vacillates from irreverent humor to solemnity as she relates her previous life with Jake and her present challenges. The title refers to the solar maximum which became the backdrop for Aurora’s conception when her hippy parents went to Canada to observe the Aurora Borealis. In name and in spirit, Aurora is connected to the observable and unobservable energy around us.
With the help of friends, family, and the ghost of Viola Parker (her home’s original owner), Aurora accepts her fate and the secrets revealed about Jake’s true character. She realizes that in this life she will finally break the cycle of pain caused by her love for this man, Jake Stein, through the centuries.
Embedded in the novel is the question of the afterlife and paranormal events abound. The incidents are left vague enough so the reader is not certain if they are external events witnessed by Aurora or exist only in her own mind. My approach to the extraordinary has always been with keen interest and skepticism. Just as we cannot see unaided that at the quantum level solid objects consist of vast spaces and swirling particles, so too, we define our human existence with only our limited five senses, three dimensional orientation, and our perceived space/time continuum. So then, what can one say with any certainty is reality?
Dean Jacobs is one of Milwaukee’s hottest eligible bachelors and in no mood to settle down, until she comes along. Evy, however, is focused on opening a new dessert bar with her sister but Dean won’t take no for an answer. She finally gives in to the want in her gut and – much to her surprise – discovers he isn’t the player she thought he was. Just when things turn into a fairytale sent from above, Dean’s past comes back to haunt him. The only question is: will it make them stronger, or rip them apart?