Category Archives: Books

The Delegation Book Fund

Please “Like & Share” my fundraising campaign for The Delegation Book Fund !!!

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Posted by on May 19, 2017 in Books, Writing


Reviewing My “40 Things” 15 Years Later (9 of 40)

“Time, Money, and Energy are important resources to help you achieve your goals.”

 “Don’t waste precious resources (time, money, energy) guessing at what might work for your customers.” ~ Michael Dell, Direct From Dell: Strategies That Revolutionized an Industry

I admired Michael Dell, his company, and computers. I bought and read his biography when it was released in 1999.  I became a Dell shareholder and exclusively purchased Dell desktops and laptops.

I wrote the above quote on an index card.  It reminded me of what the rabbi said at my brother’s bar mitzvah.  He said some people give their time to help others, some people give their money to help others, and both are equal gifts.

40 Things I Learned During First Year After CLL Diagnosis

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Posted by on March 29, 2015 in Books, Writing


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Reviewing My “40 Things” 15 Years Later (6 of 40)

“The Interlibrary Loan Program is too slow to be useful.”

I love libraries!  I’m thankful for the Interlibrary Loan Program which has enabled me to read numerous otherwise unobtainable books. However, when your life is on the line – and time is of the essence – and you need answers and information yesterday to make decisions tomorrow— a few weeks may as well be forever.  The Internet is the fastest and most effective route to information (Blogs, eBooks, overnight and same-day delivery, etc.).

40 Things I Learned During First Year After CLL Diagnosis


Posted by on March 28, 2015 in Books, CLL, Macrobiotics, Writing


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Dying to Have a Baby: A True Story

Check out this book on Goodreads: Dying to Have a Baby: A True Story

I just learned about this book today.  It is about the 2001 medical malpractice trial of Dr. Jerome Check, a world renowned reproductive endocrinologist and fertility specialist.

In 1986, I was a patient of Dr. Check.  My son was stillborn at nearly 8 months.  I am sure that my first husband and both of our families would find this book interesting and enlightening.

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Posted by on March 21, 2015 in Books, Genealogy, Writing


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In Defense of Food & Human Rights

Why don’t you live at your sister’s house? I did — twice — about three months each time. One of many reasons is that I will not live in a house commanded by a former Air Force Drill Sergeant where reading In Defense of Food: An Eater’s Manifesto is taboo. Seriously.


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Reviewing My “40 Things” List 15 Years Later

“Life is short.” 

“Eat dessert first.”

This doesn’t mean eat a pint of mint chocolate chip Rice Dream frozen dessert for breakfast nor does it mean to literally eat dessert as the first course of a meal.  It means do whatever is most important to you, what you really want, first… because you might not get the chance.

“Draw your lines.  Take your stands.  Be prepared to walk alone.”

It’s your life and you alone are responsible for your own health.  Other people may try to persuade you or steer you in a different direction ~ even with the best intentions ~ even those who love you.  Only you can decide how you will live and what you will or will not accept or allow.  People may call you crazy.  They may say you have a death wish.  That is their opinion, not facts or your truth.  Be prepared to walk alone.  Other people may waste your time while you are racing against the clock.

“Dispose of clutter.”  

Get rid of it.  All of it.  Read Clutter’s Last Stand.

“Get organized.” 

Create a plan.

40 Things I Learned During First Year After CLL Diagnosis

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Posted by on March 11, 2015 in Books, CLL, Macrobiotics, Writing



Reading Reference Books

When I was growing up, I frequently read the dictionary. I didn’t start at the beginning, nor did I read it cover-to-cover, but I’d open to a random page and read about each word — its spelling, pronunciation, origin, history, antonyms, synonyms, variations, definitions, and usage. When bored with the dictionary, I read The World Book Encyclopedia — random subjects. Occasionally, I’d read The Field Guide to Trees. When desperate, I read The Yellow Pages.

I have a penchant for reference books in general. I once purchased The Dictionary of Imaginary Places but still haven’t read it. I may have read Roget’s Thesaurus from front to back. If I were to begin acquiring books for my home library, I’d begin with reference books of interest to me such as the Oxford English Dictionary that contains complete histories and usages of each word; Thoreau’s journals; and others.

©2011 by JoAnn Brown

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Posted by on February 25, 2015 in Books, Writing


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Book Review: “In Memory’s Kitchen: A Legacy From The Women Of Terezin”

Photo Credit: “Small Fortress, Terezin, Czech Republic” © Emmanuel Dylan, Some Rights Reserved

In the book Eat My Words: Reading Women’s Lives Through the Cookbooks They Wrote, Janet Theophano wrote about In Memory’s Kitchen: “A group of Jewish women who were inmates in the Theresienstadt concentration camp in Czechoslovakia dreamed of home and family and a way of life that was being extinguished. The women wrote their memories of food into a cookbook that took over fifty years to reach publication in 1996.”

While starving and facing death, these women wrote their memories of food. Within an hour, I borrowed and began reading this book from the University of Iowa Library.

In Memory’s Kitchen exemplifies the power of imagination and memory on our ability to cope when suffering and confronting atrocities and the endurance of the human spirit.

Michael Berenbaum, Director of the United States Holocaust Research Institute, wrote in the Foreword: “It is a flight of the imagination back to an earlier time when food was available, when women had homes and kitchens and could provide a meal for their children.” He also noted: “15,000 children were sent to the camp, by the war’s end only 100 of them were alive.”

I don’t intend to cook any of the recipes, but they were interesting to read. Some contain ingredients that I found surprising like brains and goose fat. I would like to learn what type of rolls some recipes list as an ingredient.

A short bibliography, plus a biographical sketch of the cookbook’s author, Wilhelmina (Mina) Pachter, and some poems and letters she wrote, are included.

JoAnn Grasso’s Reviews > In Memory’s Kitchen: A Legacy from the Women of Terezin


Posted by on January 17, 2013 in Books


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Macrobiotic Strict Healing Phase: 3 Books

There is a difference between the standard macrobiotic diet and the initial strict healing phase diet! I didn’t fully understand this at first and wasted time, money, and energy acquiring food items that I wasn’t healthy enough to eat.

The following two books contain sections about Leukemia:

THE CANCER PREVENTION DIET, REVISED AND UPDATED EDITION: The Macrobiotic Approach to Preventing and Relieving Cancer by Michio Kushi and Alex Jack

The Macrobiotic Path to Total Health: A Complete Guide to Naturally Preventing and Relieving More Than 200 Chronic Conditions and Disorders by Michio Kushi and Alex Jack


This book explains the macrobiotic diet strict healing phase:

The Cure is in the Kitchen: A Guide to Healthy Eating by Sherry A. Rogers, MD (Foreword by Michio Kushi)


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Posted by on January 7, 2013 in Books, CLL, Macrobiotics


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