cover image Be (Extra)Ordinary: Ten Ways to Become Your Own Hero

Be (Extra)Ordinary: Ten Ways to Become Your Own Hero

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta. KiCam Projects, $12.95 trade paper (128p) ISBN 978-1-73354-622-5

Journalist Christiano-Mistretta (On the Guest List) coaches readers on how to become heroes— people who will support their own dreams, bring themselves enjoyment, and give others a reason to want to be with them—in this slender, meandering guide. The author walks readers through 10 steps focused on being “YOUnique,” including being dedicated to oneself, being generous, and maintaining balance. Christiano-Mistretta writes of being bullied while growing up and explains how the experience kept her from feeling confident, and that only in her 30s was she able to recover from the trauma. She also has many suggestions for ways readers “can be generous without spending a dime,” such as smiling when entering rooms, hugging more often, offering words of endearment, and performing small unheralded acts of kindness, like leaving inspirational notes. While Christiano-Mistretta’s welcoming tone holds appeal, her wide spectrum of advice and quick swings—tips on bullying that seem directed at high schoolers are followed by career lessons from her life as a music journalist—can be whiplash-inducing. Despite the book’s lack of a clear audience, readers of self-help may be won over by Christiano-Mistretta’s positivity and intuitive advice. (Oct.)