My review of Jeff Wilser's non-fiction book The Good News About What's Bad For You...The Bad News About What's Good For You first appeared in Shelf Awareness for Readers. I am posting it here today with their permission.
First line: "Eat more bacon."
Red meat, alcohol, stress, video games, the news bills them all as terrible, sometimes even life-threatening. But Jeff Wilser, author of The Maxims of Manhood, digs further into the information on all these vices and more. The Good News About What's Bad for You looks beyond the titillating headlines to the big picture, then scales that image down to a couple of pages per topic, highlighting the overall results in layman's terms. The outcomes aren't necessarily as alarm-worthy as the press might want readers to believe.
Turn the book over and Wilser sets his sights on The Bad News About What's Good for You. Conversely, kale, juice cleanses, retirement and yoga may not be all they're cracked up to be.
Using a conversational tone ripe with plenty of humor, Wilser encourages readers to feel less guilt, consider the relative risk versus the absolute risk--if something increases risk 500% but the risk is initially only 0.000001, chances are still minuscule it will ever happen--and beware the trap of alarming titles used for the sole purpose of shock.
The Good News About What's Bad for You...The Bad News About What's Good for You will require an open mind. Even Wilser has a tendency to express skepticism at research contradicting his own beliefs. But the over-arching theme of moderation is vital and Wilser's delivery is comically entertaining.
The short segments keep the book moving swiftly and the collective information is fascinating. Studies are still out, but it's probably safe to say this book is good for us all.
The Good News About What's Bad For You...The Bad News About What's Good For You is available in hardcover (ISBN: 9781250063809) from Flatiron Books.