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Book Reviews

Most Recent Story

Why Humans Need Surprise

By Jill Suttie | April 24, 2015

A new book argues that surprise, whether good or bad, is critical for bringing vitality to our lives.

 
  

Past Stories

Yale University Press, 2015, 192 pages

Why Does Altruism Exist?

By Jill Suttie | April 15, 2015

A new book argues that it is group needs, not individual intention and virtue, that drives altruism.

 
Viking, 2015, 261 pages

How Touch Shapes Emotion

By Jill Suttie | March 31, 2015

A new book explores the science of touch, and finds that it is inextricably linked to how we feel and communicate.

 
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2015, 296 pages.

How Meditation Can Change Business

By Jill Suttie | March 17, 2015

A new book argues that mindfulness promises to transform workplaces from the inside out.

 
Harvard Business Review, 2015, 247 pages

Stopping the Distraction Epidemic

By Jill Suttie | March 13, 2015

A new book explains why we get so distracted at work—and how we can become more focused and productive.

 
Perigree, 2014, 352 pages

What Makes a Great Workplace?

By Jill Suttie | February 25, 2015

A new book applies science to figuring out how to build a place where people actually look forward to work.

 
2015, Ballantine Books, 320 pages

How Christine Carter Got Her Groove Back

By Jill Suttie | February 6, 2015

A new book by long-time Greater Good contributor Christine Carter provides tips for finding balance in your life.

 
R2014, Current, 219 pages

Can Positive Thinking Really Make Dreams Come True?

By Jill Suttie | December 17, 2014

A new book says we can't ask more of our fantasies than they can give us.

 
Read Roman Krznaric's essay, Six Habits of Highly Empathic People.

Our Favorite Books of 2014

By Jill Suttie, Jeremy Adam Smith | December 8, 2014

Greater Good's editors pick the most thought-provoking, important, or useful nonfiction books published this year on the science of a meaningful life.

 
Perigee Trade, 2014, 272 pages

Why Empathy Matters

By Jill Suttie | November 21, 2014

A new book argues that empathy can be a radical force for social change.

 

The Teenage Opportunity

By Diana Divecha | October 28, 2014

A new book argues that America’s approach to raising adolescents is a mix of misunderstanding and contradiction.

 
Routledge, 2014. 243 pages.

What is a Good Life?

By Jill Suttie | October 1, 2014

A new book explores what we know and don’t yet know about human nature and the role of the environment in shaping our moral character.

 
Joshua Wolf Shenk

The Social Artist

By Jill Suttie | September 23, 2014

A new book argues that creativity can be—and often is—a social endeavor, rather than the work of a lone genius.

 

Can Suffering Lead to Success?

By Jill Suttie | September 3, 2014

A new book explores when trauma triggers growth—and when it doesn't.

 
DeCapo Press, 2014, 268 pages

Taking on the Myth of the Spoiled Child

By Jill Suttie | August 14, 2014

A new book questions claims that today's kids are more spoiled and narcissistic than previous generations.

 

Why Won’t Your Teen Talk To You?

By Jill Suttie | July 30, 2014

A new book explains the many reasons why teens seem to shut down, even when they especially need parental support.

 

How to Cultivate Well-Being in Teachers and Students

By Jill Suttie | July 21, 2014

A new book argues that there is something simple we can do to close achievement gaps: teach mindfulness in schools.

 

Making Mindfulness Part of Therapy

By Jill Suttie | June 23, 2014

A new book explores when and how therapists can incorporate moment-to-moment, non-judgmental attention into their practice.

 
New Harbinger, 2014, 199 pages

How Parents Can Keep Their Cool

By Jill Suttie | June 3, 2014

Two new books tackle the problem of raising difficult kids, offering solutions that are both more compassionate and successful than harsh discipline.

 
Basic Books, 2014, 230 pages

Why Do We Laugh?

By Jill Suttie | May 28, 2014

A new book explains what humor is, how things become funny, and why evolution gave us laughter.

 
Hudson Street Press, 266 pages, 2014

What’s the Truth about Trust?

By Jill Suttie | May 21, 2014

A new book says that trustworthiness is a moving target, dependent on our moods, circumstances, and competing needs.

 
Templeton Press, 2014, 264 pages

How to Make Grateful Kids

By Jill Suttie | April 15, 2014

A new book argues that parents can foster gratitude in kids—but it takes effort and time.

 
The Experiment,  2014, 243 pages

Does Nature Select for Nice?

By Joseph Ferrell | March 26, 2014

A new book argues that selflessness, not selfishness, creates more genetic success.

 

How Your Teen Can Thrive Online

By Diana Divecha | March 18, 2014

Two new books look at how the Internet is affecting teens—and what adults can do to help foster a healthy online life for kids.

 
Knopf, 2014, 242 pages

When Empathy Fails

By Jill Suttie | March 4, 2014

Humans brains are very attuned to what others are thinking, feeling, and planning—but a new book explores when our “mindreading” powers can lead us astray.

 

When is Parenting All Joy and No Fun?

By Jill Suttie | February 20, 2014

A new book explores why contemporary parenthood can be so stressful—and at the same time so meaningful.

 
Tarcher, 2014, 336 pages

A Journey into the Teenage Brain

By Diana Divecha | January 27, 2014

Daniel Siegel's new book reveals the "power and purpose" of the adolescent brain.

 

Six Books We Overlooked in 2013

By Jill Suttie, Jeremy Adam Smith | January 7, 2014

Good books about the science of meaningful life that we wish we had reviewed last year!

 
Basic Books, 2013, 268 pages

What if You Can Judge a Book by its Cover?

By Jill Suttie | December 27, 2013

A new book explores the mind’s powers of split-second social observation.

 
To learn more, read this Q&A with Daniel Goleman about Focus in Greater Good!

Our Favorite Books of 2013

By Jill Suttie, Jeremy Adam Smith, Jason Marsh | December 16, 2013

Greater Good's editors pick the most thought-provoking, important, or useful nonfiction books published this year on the science of a meaningful life.

 
Crown, 2013, 288 pages

The Moralist in the Crib

By Diana Divecha | December 11, 2013

Are children blank slates or selfish monsters? A new book draws on decades of research to argue that we are born with a bias toward goodness.

 

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Most...

  
  • How to Help Teens Find Purpose

    April 16, 2015

    Teens are naturally driven to seek new experiences—and that may be the key to helping them develop a sense of purpose in life.

  • Can Music Help Keep Memory Alive?

    April 21, 2015

    A conversation with the makers of Alive Inside, a new documentary about how music is helping people with dementia.

  • How to Help a Narcissist to Forgive

    April 14, 2015

    Narcissists struggle to forgive people for even minor transgressions. But a new study points the way forward.

  

Greater Good Events

How Compassion Creates Resilience, with Kelly McGonigal
International House, UC Berkeley campus
May 20, 2015


How Compassion Creates Resilience, with Kelly McGonigal

A book event for The Upside of Stress


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Book of the Week

The Path to Purpose By William Damon Looks at how children are hampered in their search for meaning, and how concerned adults can help them find it.

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"It is a great good and a great gift, this Greater Good. I bow to you for your efforts to bring these uplifting and illuminating expressions of humanity, grounded in good science, to the attention of us all."  
Jon Kabat-Zinn

Best-selling author and founder of the Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction program

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