Your halls are nicely decked. So are all the railings and risers to each floor. Cabinetry is decked, the doorway looks fabulous, and even the deck is decked. You feel like you’ve been… yeah, well, just rest now, and fa la la la la while you read “Christmas: A Biography” by Judith Flanders to…

Your holiday shopping list is almost finished. Everything’s bought and wrapped except the gift you’re giving to the furriest member of your family. That’s the easy gift, though, because you know what your dog likes. He knows what you like, too: snuggling together with a good book. So why not…

Your seating chart has been made. Very carefully. Uncle Tim doesn’t get along with Aunt Sally, so they can’t sit together. Cousin Jeff is old enough for the adult table now. You’re tempted to put Grandpa at the kids table and there’s a moratorium on politics. So before you sit down this holi…

Alakazam. Watch closely and see before — poof — the hidden object is gone. Abracadabra, it reappears right in front of you. You know it’s all an illusion. The hand really is quicker than the eye but, as in the new novel “The Trick” by Emanuel Bergmann, the spell might take several decades.

A lot goes into building a great kid. It takes a solid foundation. A straight frame with ground-floor rules. You put up walls where appropriate, locks where needed, you create doors to the world and windows of opportunity. Do it right, as in the new book “Supernormal: The Untold Story of Adv…

The woman in the cubicle next to yours is a real piece of work. No tidbit is too small for gossiping. Unsolicited advice is her expertise, and she seems to think complaints are in her job description. Ugh, she’s so hard to work with but be aware. As you’ll see in the new book “It’s All Relat…

Once upon a time, your heart was broken. It was ripped out of your chest, stomped flat, shattered into a thousand pieces. Romance, you decided then, was something you didn’t want anyway. Love is for dreamers and optimists. Love, you were sure, is for suckers. Or, as in the new book “The Rule…