Warning: These new books will keep you out of the pool, hiding under the beach umbrella and then up all night to finish.
Photo: Oprah.comGone Girl
By Gillian Flynn
"You could imagine the skull quite easily" is just the kind of sentiment you wish serial killers would keep to themselves. It's also one of the first things Nick Dunne--the handsome, smarmy, admittedly dishonest narrator of the opening chapter of Gillian Flynn's Gone Girl-tells us about "the finely shaped head" of his wife, Amy. Make that his missing wife, Amy, who just happens to disappear from their Missouri home on the morning of their fifth anniversary, fueling a small-town melodrama--complete with middling cops, fame-hungry neighbors, and cable-TV news crews--in her wake. As the story unfolds in precise and riveting prose, alternating between Nick's voice and Amy's diaries chronicling their relationship, it quickly becomes clear that theirs was not the happiest marriage, and that Nick, "a big fan of the lie of omission," is hiding
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Warning: These new books will keep you out of the pool, hiding under the beach umbrella and then up all night to finish.Read More »from 6 Page-Turners You'll Tear Through
Photo: ThinkstockBy Corrie PikulRead More »from Fun Facts that Bring the Olympics into Our Homes
During the 2010 winter Olympics, two Canadian friends of mine had the great fortune of scoring tickets to some of the events in Vancouver. They later emailed me about sitting close enough to Johnny Weir's family to make conversation, and about how they could practically feel the ice chips in Apolo Ohno's wake as he zoomed to victory in the speed-skating finals. Oh, Canadians! How I envied them! I'm sure I'll feel the same way about the Brits next month as I watch the London summer games...from my apartment far, far away in Brooklyn.
RELATED: Travel to the 2016 Olympic Bid Cities
Lucky for me, The National Institute of Standards and Technology has put together a neat list of Olympic Fast Facts that help make the games feel a little closer to home. For example, you know the balance beam on which gymnasts flip, run, tumble and leap? It's about the width of a novel--a paperback, no less--like those strewn all over my bedroom. And the 10 meter high dive platform?
Photo: ThinkstockBy Jenny Bailly
The Challenge: Your frizz-prone hair has a very delicate constitution. You have a lot of strands, but they're so thin that they can get stringy when you try to control them.
RELATED: July's Best Beauty Buys
The Best Cut: Scrupulously neat ends will help your hair look silky. Don't ever let a stylist use a razor or glide scissors down the hair shaft--these techniques fray your ends and encourage frizz. Wear your hair any length, but avoid bangs because you'll always have to blow them out to keep them sleek.
The Best Shampoo and Conditioner: Products that contain light moisturizing ingredients like panthenol and glycerin will smooth your frizz without weighing hair down. Lather up as often as necessary to keep your scalp free of natural oils.
RELATED: 7 Problem-Solving Hair Products
The Best Styling Regimen: Too much oil or silicone makes your hair lifeless, says
- Oprah.com | Healthy Living – Thu, Jul 19, 2012 12:35 PM EDT
By Dr. Mehmet Oz
The minute you quit, your body starts working to repair the damage caused by tobacco. Within 48 hours, your senses of smell and taste begin to recover. The next month, you may notice that your cough and shortness of breath are improving. And once you reach the ten-year mark, your risk of death from lung cancer will almost equal the risk of a lifelong nonsmoker.
How to atone: Because ex-smokers will have an increased risk of heart disease for 15 years, I recommend spending 20 to 30 minutes in a sauna once or twice a week. (Most fitness clubs have one.) Several studies have documented the effectiveness of sauna therapy for reducing blood pressure, and breathing the hot air can improve lung function.
RELATED: Break Your Bad Habits for Good
Baking in the Sun
One blistering burn during your childhood or adolescence more than doubles your risk of melanoma. But if caught early, skin cancer is usually treatable.
- Oprah.com | Shine Food – Mon, Jul 16, 2012 5:44 PM EDT
Photo: ThinkstockBy Lynn Andriani
Coffee: Ditch the Caribbean for the South Pacific
Jamaican Blue Mountain and Kona are some of the most well-known and high-priced coffees. Their fame helps them command a hefty sum (as much as $42 per pound for the former), but Jason Dominy, former chair of the Barista Guild of America, says beans from Papua New Guinea are often just as good--and much cheaper (about $12 a pound). In fact, many Papua New Guinea coffees are from plants that grew from the seedlings of Jamaican Blue Mountain.
Switch and save: $30 per pound
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Photo: ThinkstockDried Mushrooms: Choose a Different Variety That's Just as Useful
Dried mushrooms are a cook's secret weapon. They keep for months in your cupboard; when you need them, just plump them up in hot water, strain and cook (and the savory soaking liquid is as valuable as the mushrooms themselves, especially for risotto). The most popular are porcini and morel, but while porcini cost $8Read More »from 5 Overpriced Foods to Stop Buying (and What to Eat Instead)
- Oprah.com | Healthy Living – Thu, Jul 12, 2012 6:55 PM EDT
Photo: Mauricio AlejoBy Christie AschwandenRead More »from When Envy Strikes: How to Put Jealousy to Good Use
When I heard about my friend's book deal, I wanted to be happy for her--really, I did. Sharon (name has been changed) had spent months laboring over a heartfelt essay about her traumatic childhood, and the piece was published to wide acclaim. Now she had landed a contract to turn the story into a memoir for a sum so enormous it could buy my house twice. I should have been celebrating her success. Instead, I was busy hunting for reasons she didn't deserve it.
Envy can be an ugly emotion. A study published in the journal Science showed that it actually activates a region of the brain involved in processing physical pain. No wonder people go to such lengths to ignore or deny the emotion. Yet it's nearly impossible to dodge, because envy is an inevitable consequence of the comparisons we seem programmed to make.
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Researchers have found that when you put a group of strangers in a room, they start to assess each other almost
- Oprah.com | Book Club – Wed, Jul 11, 2012 6:09 PM EDT
The truth-filled books to turn to when your mind is full of confused, not-so-helpful thoughts.Read More »from You're Not Alone: 4 Memoirs to Get You Through Hard Times
Photo: Courtesy of DuttonThe Situation: "He lied, he's cheated, and it's over. Now what do I do?"
The Book: Split: A Memoir of Divorce
By Suzanne Finnamore
272 pages; Dutton
Everybody who gets divorced ought to write a memoir about it, as Suzanne Finnamore has done in Split (Dutton), as a service to the rest of us struggling to unravel the mysteries of marriage.
Finnamore's story opens with a bang: her husband downing two martinis and announcing that he's leaving her and their toddler and their stylish house in wealthy Marin County, California.
He swears there is no other woman, though, naturally, there is.
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He's a liar and a smoothy--we all know the type--and he never deepens into a full-blown personality in Finnamore's story. Split is not a thoughtful autopsy of a marriage; it's impassioned and immediate, concerned only with its narrator's swinging moods
Photo: Courtesy of Zumba Fitness, LLCAqua Zumba
Try it if you like:
The Latin-dance-inspired fitness craze known as Zumba.
Water provides 12 to 14 times the resistance of exercising on land, so even simple moves (like high kicks or tossing a beach ball while treading in the deep end) are more challenging.
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I love to dance...after two or three cocktails. But while I'm far too self-conscious to shake my groove thing in Zumba, I was drawn to Aqua Zumba because the grooving happens underwater, where no one can see. My first class made me feel as if I were 7 years old again. Imagine a pool party complete with foam noodles, splashing, even hooting and hollering--set to reggae and calypso. We probably seemed silly to the lifeguard, but kids don't worry about seeming silly, and by the time we were riding noodles across the pool, neither did I. (zumba.com)
Fun scale: 8/10
-Catherine DiBenedetto, articles editor
- Oprah.com | Green – Wed, Jul 11, 2012 3:11 PM EDT
By: Kate RockwoodPhoto: Courtesy of Potting Shed CreationsRead More »from Green in 27 Seconds: Plant an Herb Garden Anywhere
From the brittle orchid on my desk to the wilted blooms in my last backyard, I've never met a plant I couldn't kill. (True story: I once watered a little potted shrub for nearly two weeks before realizing it was fake.)
RELATED: 10 Tips for New Gardeners
But on a recent grocery trip, I looked into my cart to admire my bounty of summer herbs and saw...a lot of plastic. It seemed each sprig of mint and leaf of basil was wrapped in its own little slip of bad-for-the-planet packaging.
RELATED: 10 Tips for Green Gardening
That grocery store moment was a gentle reminder that growing your own herbs can save both money and the eco-impact of shipping and shelving all that basil, mint, and chives. The hydroponic herb planters from Potting Shed Creations seem particularly forgiving. Made from recycled wine bottles, the planters come pre-filled and are slim enough to soak up sun on a windowsill.
RELATED: 25 Ingredients and Recipes to Keep You Moving
When the organic herbs are
Photo: Gregor Halenda6 stellar lotions (and one streak-preventing balm) give you perfectly glowy, sun-kissed skin.Read More »from Bronze Stars: The 6 Best New Self-Tanners
Counter-clockwise from top:
Glycolic and lactic acids in Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare Alpha Beta Glow Pad for Body ($45 for eight pads; dgskincare.com) exfoliate to create smooth, soft skin so the DHA (the chemical in self-tanners that darkens skin) colors evenly. One deeply saturated pad is enough for your entire body.
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Start using Sephora Moisturizing Bronzing Body Lotion ($16; sephora.com) a few days before a summer wedding or poolside barbecue. The nongreasy cream moisturizes with glycerin while slowly building a beautiful bronze tone.
One allover sweep of Kate Somerville Somerville 360° Face Self Tanning Pads ($48 for 12 pads; katesomerville.com) is enough to provide your complexion with an immediate glow (courtesy of mica particles) and, in two to four hours, a hint of tint.
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