True Books | Book Review | Chicago Reader

True Books 

How to study, by Ron Fry (Career Press, $9.99).

Synopsis: Author of Ace Any Test, Get Organized, Improve Your Memory, and other worthy tomes not only guides the academic investigations of students of all ages, but sows the seeds of learning for generations of scholars to come.

Representative Quote: "Use the television as a baby sitter. While many of you will have a problem with this--it's one that I and my 8-year-old deal with weekly, if not daily--it may be the lesser of two evils."

Noteworthy Flaw: "What can you do to increase your scores on true-false tests? First of all, be more inclined to guess if you have to. After all, I encouraged you to guess on a multiple-choice test....So, unless you are being penalized for guessing, guess away!"

How to Hire a Nanny, by Elaine S. Pelletier (Andre & Lanier, $9.95).

Synopsis: Working mom Pelletier offers "the first, comprehensive resource" designed to help parents select just the right person to entrust with the care of their children.

Representative Quote: "Take a picture of your new nanny. It is fun for your child, but more importantly, it is additional information about her which could be helpful in some unforeseen future circumstance."

Noteworthy Flaw: Real-life, practical guide insists all parents must follow 13-step tax program, including filing of government forms SS-4, I-9, W-2, W-3, W-4, 940, and 942. "You must become an Employer as defined by the state and federal governments..."

How to be a hostage and live, by Captain Frank A. Bolz Jr. (Lyle Stuart Incorporated, $5.95).

Synopsis: You could be taken hostage any moment--on a plane, on a bus, even during a routine trip to the bank or grocery store. Learning these reassuring techniques could--perhaps even will--save your life.

Representative Quote: "Maintain your self-respect, even as difficult as it may seem. With some psychotic kidnappers and terrorists, pleading for mercy will only encourage annoyance or perhaps more sadistic treatment."

Noteworthy Flaw: Irreversible, forward-flowing nature of time makes it difficult to know exactly when one should familiarize oneself with Bolz's book.

Art accompanying story in printed newspaper (not available in this archive): Covers of the true books: How to Study; How to Hire a Nanny; How to Be a Hostage and Live.

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