A Better You 

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"The Female Brain"

by Louann Brizendine

Morgan Road Books, $24.95

Men may have larger brains than women, but women have the same number of brain cells, just more densely packed. Men use about 7,000 words per day, while women use around 20,000. Women think about sex approximately once every couple of days, while men think about sex once a minute. These sorts of factoids, and many more, are what make "The Female Brain" so very interesting.

Brizendine, a pioneer in the field of brain research, explains how our brains work and change when we hit puberty, fall in love, get pregnant, raise babies and become menopausal. This fascinating and highly readable look into the mysterious world of hormones, chemistry, PMS and "mommy brain" is a must-have for women and an invaluable gift to the men who love them.

"How to Improve Your Marriage Without Talking

About It: Finding Love Beyond Words"

by Patricia Love and Steven Stosny

Broadway Books, $23.95

We all know that saying "We need to talk" goes over in a relationship about as well as a stink bomb in church. We also know that a question that can elicit a heart-to-heart with a girlfriend is at risk of receiving a grunt from our man. But do we know how to invoke the passions of our hubbies and ourselves without uttering a word?

The answer is not just sex, although that's good too. Therapists Patricia Love and Steve Stosny claim that not only is talking about our marriages not helpful, it can actually be harmful. Discover the worst things that a woman can do to a man and vice versa, what makes us fight and how to implement solutions that don't involve a sex change. Though this book is admittedly most enlightening to heterosexual married couples who fall within their expected gender roles, it's one of the only marriage guides that deliver the goods.

"Our Lady of Weight Loss:

Miraculous and Motivational Musings From the Patron Saint of Permanent Fat Removal"

by Janice Taylor

Viking Studio, $19.95

This is the only book about weight loss that hasn't made me want to run screaming for a chocolate éclair. The problem with most weight-loss books is that they're serious and boring and seem about as fun as diving face-first into a cement pit. How can you get motivated when your so-called inspiration is a snooze-fest?

Taylor has solved this problem with a funny, artsy-craftsy book replete with true confessions, taste-good recipes, craft projects and photos of the wacky art she made to honor french fries and chocolate bars instead of eating them. Taylor's M.O. is this: If you want to eat when you're not hungry, do something else, preferably something you love. And if you slip up and accidentally eat an entire coconut-cream pie, it's OK. Forgive yourself and move on.

Other Great Fall Reads:

"The Big Turnoff: Confessions of a TV-Addicted Mom Trying to Raise a TV-Free Kid"
by Ellen Currey-Wilson

"The Joy of Doing Things Badly: A Girl's Guide to Love, Life and Foolish Bravery"

by Veronica Chambers



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