By David DiSalvo
Prometheus Books, $19.00, 288 pages

Here is a comprehensive overview of the latest in psychology and neuroscience developments, backed by experiments conducted on each point. In What Makes Your Brain Happy and Why You Should Do the Opposite, author David DiSalvo explains that the human brain has evolved primarily to scan for and assess threats to our safety and comfort. The brain is happiest when it feels no threat, but that’s not always possible and sometimes not even desirable. For example, suppose you have a stressful job to go to each day which often leaves you with a headache. Your brain will think of all sorts of reasons to stay home and just “fly on autopilot.” We can foresee the results of that. And when it comes to the newest understanding of how memory works, the reader will likely be astounded. Our memory is not nearly as accurate as we perceive it to be. As the author explores the “whys” behind our psychological and social behavior, we find good information simply collected into this book. If the reader has the interest to stick with the intricacies of the discussion, this really well-written book is highly recommended.

Reviewed by Rosalie West