Friday, October 02, 2009

Title: The World's Easiest Astronomy Book

Author: Hitoshi Nakagawa

Publisher: One Peace Books

ISBN: 978-0-9785084-4-9

Genre: Non-Fiction / Popular Science / Astronomy

Presentation: Paper Back

The book certainly lives up to it's title. It is simple to read and holds the reader's interest well. It is a small book and can be read while waiting for a flight or while travelling to the office etc.

You may find it useful when your children or grandchildren come to you with questions about space, solar system, moon and stars etc. Of course it is a good gift for giving to children to read at their own pace.

It is well printed and is strongly recommended to individual homes and schools.

The author is a Japanese Aerospace Development Specialist turned high school teacher. The reviewer is a physicist with interests in many fields including astronomy.
Title: Overpower Pain

Sub-title: Strength-Training Program that Stops Pain without Drugs or Surgery

Author: Mitchell T. Yass, PT

Publisher: Sentient Publications

ISBN: 978-1-59181-075-9

Genre: Non-Fiction / Health

The author is a physiotherapist (physical therapist) and personal trainer. He has helped thousands of patients avoid unnecessary surgery and drugs through strength training. In this book (and through several articles and lectures) he shares his approach to pain relief by physical therapy, strength training (of muscles).

The book is well illustrated with photographs of various exercises that he recommends to overcome specific problems.

When I had a fall in 2006 I was unable to put my weight on my left leg and had to be hospitalised for about 10 days. After x-ray tests established that there was no fracture and after drugs helped with the initial pain management, I had the benefit of seeing first hand how a good physiotherapist can help in rebuilding the range of muscle movements through exercises of the affected muscles. When I was reading this book, I could thus relate very well with the explanations of the author in Chapter

The approach is quite technical at places and some readers may not be able to follow the same but the main part of the book in Chapter 5 that covers the work out sessions (and which is well illustrated) will certainly hold the attention well.

In any case, it is imperative that any such exercise program should be taken up after a thorough evaluation by a physiotherapist (physical therapist) and a qualified training instructor.

The book is a welcome addition to the growing literature on pain management. Readers of this review may also check out

"The Journey to a pain relief - A hands on guide to breakthroughs in pain treatment" by Phyllis Berger

( and

"Painfree 1-2-3" by Dr. Teitelbaum (it disucsses many approaches to pain management).

Contents of the book:



Chapter 1 - Weight Lifting isn't just for Bodybuilders

Chapter 2 - Be Safe, Be Effective, and gain Muscle Strength

Chapter 3 - What it means when you are in pain

The Neck, The Lower Back, The Shoulder, The Elbow, The Wrist, The Hip, The Knee, The Ankle, The Foot are covered in separate sections

Chapter 4 - The golden rules of weight training

Chapter 5 - Enough talk - Let's get to work

Under this he covers The Chest, The Abdominal Group, The Back, Upper Back, Lower Back, Entire Back, Biceps, Forearms, The Thigh, The Calf, The Shoulders, The Triceps

Chapter 6 - Stretch, Don't Strain

Chapter 7 - A workout schedule that works for you




Appendix A

Appendix B


About the Author

Title: The Hunt for Planet X

Sub-Title: New Worlds and the Fate of Pluto

Author: Govert Schilling

Publisher: Copernicus Books (An Imprint of Springer Science + Business

ISBN: 978-0-387-77804-4

Genre: Non-Fiction / Popular Science / Astronomy

Presentation - Hard Cover with dust jacket

This book is an excellent, highly readable account of the discovery of trans-Saturnian Planets of our Solar System, especially Pluto and the Planet X. X stands for ten as well as unknown. When Pluto was discovered in 1930, it was not the tenth planet but was the mysterious unknown planet that was theorized to exist based on the orbital fluctuations of Uranus (Neptune was discovered earlier but even after taking into account its effects, Uranus had orbital fluctuations suggesting the existence of one or more planets beyond). Later observations showed that Pluto was not alone but was a member of a group of bodies collectively named Kuiper Belt. In 2006, Pluto was demoted as a regular Planet, in the face of opposition from many astronomers. You should read the book to know more about all the debate and the factors that weighed with the astronomers.

The science and the human drama (the fierce competition, the national pride, the hunger for credit etc.) have been nicely brought out by Govert and the illustrations and photographs add a lot of value to the book.

I have no hesitation in recommending this book strongly to all lovers of science in general and astronomy in particular.

Govert Schilling is an internationally acclaimed freelance writer on astronomy from Netherlands.

The reviewer is a physicist and a metallurgist, with interests in astronomy and other sciences. He is an author and editor besides being an avid reader and reviewer of books.