Make Your Brain Smarter: Increase Your Brain’s Creativity, Energy, and Focus

Sandra Bond Chapman, with Shelly Kirkland. Free Press, $26 (320p) ISBN 978-1-4516-6547-5
Everyone wishes they were a little smarter, and this book suggests that our biological makeup may be even more conducive to expanding intelligence than we might’ve imagined. The title’s emphasis on the brain is apt: Chapman’s discussion is often focused on neurology and exercising the brain—specifically the frontal lobe—to perform more effectively. Overall, Chapman, a distinguished professor at the University of Texas, advocates for disciplined, deliberate attention, as opposed to the multitasking with which we have become detrimentally accustomed in an age oversaturated with information. Practical tips and tasks are provided, and key points are conveniently highlighted throughout and recapitulated at the end of each chapter in a “Know Brainers” section. Some of Chapman’s claims are overly simplistic (within her larger discussion of smarts across lifespan, the “finders and the seekers” label she ascribes to 26–45-year-olds seems at once too reductive and too exclusive), and her continual use of office examples raises the question of whether the book has implications beyond the work place. Nevertheless, Chapman’s broader idea—that smarts come with consistent practice—and her pragmatic “brain health plan” are intriguing. Agents: Jan Miller Rich and Nena Madonia, Dupre/Miller & Associates. (Jan.)
Reviewed on: 12/03/2012
Release date: 01/01/2013
Paperback - 285 pages - 978-1-4516-6548-2
Open Ebook - 288 pages - 978-1-4516-6549-9
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