Archive for the ‘Recommendations’ category

YOUR SCORE an insider’s secrets to understanding, controlling, and protecting your CREDIT SCORE

April 6th, 2018

your scoreA healthy credit score is essential for a healthy financial life.  But despite its importance, the precise mechanism used to determine our credit scores continue to be shrouded in mystery.  With this revelatory new guide, YOUR SCORE, written by Anthony Davenport, is a consumer-friendly road map for understanding & navigating the secretive world of consumer credit.

Drawing on the real stories of his own firm’s high-profile clients, as well as the stories of middle-class Americans, Mr. Davenport reveals where your credit score comes from, how to improve, maintain, or rescue it, and how to avoid the hidden credit pitfalls that can ensnare even the most careful consumer.

Your Score is a detailed yet accessible manual designed to help you take control of your credit score, understand how to play the game, and gain an insider’s perspective on how to navigate all the important financial decisions in your life.

183 pp.

GPL: 332.743

IRRESISTIBLE The Rise of Addictive Technology & The Business of Keeping Us Hooked by ADAM ALTER

March 20th, 2018

irresistibleWelcome to the age of behavioral addiction—an age in which half of the American population is addicted to at least one behavior.  We obsess over our emails & Facebook feeds; we binge on TV episodes.  Half of us would rather suffer a broken bone than a broken phone.  Millennial kids spend so much time in front of screens that they struggle to interact with real, live humans.

In this revolutionary book, Adam Alter, a professor of psychology and marketing at New York University, tracks the rise of behavioral addiction, and explains why so many of today’s products are irresistible.  The companies that design these products tweak them over time until they become almost impossible to resist.

By reverse-engineering behavioral addiction, Alter explains how we can harness addictive products for the good—to improve how we communicate with each other, spend & save our money, & set boundaries between work & play—& how we mitigate their most damaging effects on our well-being, & the health & happiness of our children.

GPL: 302.23 Alter

BECOMING US: A Family Grows With America 1900-1925 by Serene Hackel

March 10th, 2018

serene hackelBecoming Us is Serene Hackel’s debut novel.  It is drawn from the true stories her mother told Serene about the experiences of her grandparents, her mother  and her siblings; grounded in established historical fact.

At age eighteen, orphan Minnie Margolis was sent from her native Poland to Vienna, Austria, a city where she had no connections.  After literally bumping into the man who would one day become her husband, Minnie’s Search for roots drew her to the United States as a shy immigrant who sought to embrace American values, politics, and freedom.

Told in Minnie’s voice as well as that of her husband and oldest daughter, this compelling story follows one family as they move from the old world to the new, experiencing all the cultural forces that swept them along in this whirlwind of change.

 

GPL:  F Hackel

FEBRUARY: BLACK HISTORY MONTH (First Black Pilot)

February 28th, 2018

The first African American Female pilot was named Bessie Coleman.  Born in Atlanta, Texas in 1892, Bessie Coleman grew up in a world of harsh poverty, discrimination & segregation.  She moved to Chicago at 23 to seek her fortune, but found little opportunity there as well.  Wild tales of flying exploits from returning WWI soldiers first inspired her to explore aviation, but she faced a double stigma in that dream being both African American & a woman.

She set her sights on France in order to reach her dreams & began studying French.  In 1920, Coleman crossed the ocean with all of her savings & the financial support of Robert Abbott, one of the first African American millionaires.  Over the next seven months, she learned to fly & in June of 1921, the Federation Aeronautique Internationale awarded her an international pilot’s license.  Wildly celebrated upon her return to the United States, reporters turned out in droves to greet her.

Coleman performed at numerous airshows over the next five years, performing heart-thrilling stunts, encouraging other African Americans to pursue flying, & refusing to perform where Blacks were not admitted.  When she tragically died in a plane accident in 1926, famous writer & equal rights advocate Ida B. Wells presided over her funeral.  An editorial in the “Dallas Express” stated:  “There is a reason to believe that the general public not completely sense the size of her contribution to the achievements of the race as such.”

FEBRUARY: BLACK HISTORY MONTH (Cowboys)

February 26th, 2018

One in four cowboys was Black, despite the stories told in popular books & movies.  In fact, it’s believed that the real “Lone Ranger” was inspired by an African American man named Bass Reeves.  Reeves had been born a slave but escaped West during the Civil War where he lived in what was then known as Indian Territory.  He eventually became a Deputy U.S. Marshal, was a master of disguise, an expert marksman, had a Native American companion, & rode a silver horse.  His story was not unique however.

In the 19th century, the Wild West drew enslaved Blacks with the hope of freedom and wages.  When the Civil War ended, freedmen came West with the hope of a better life where the demand for skilled labor was high.  These African Americans made up at least a quarter of the legendary cowboys who lived dangerous lives, facing weather, rattlesnakes, & outlaws while they slept under the stars driving cattle herds to market.

While there was little formal segregation in frontier towns & a great deal of personal freedom, Black cowboys were often expected to do more of the work & the roughest jobs compared to their white counterparts.  Loyalty did develop between the cowboys on a drive, but the Black cowboys were typically responsible for breaking the horses & being the ones to cross flooded streams during cattle drives.  In fact, it is believed that the term “cowboy” originated as a derogatory term used to describe Black “cowhands”.