25 Women to Read Before You Die

Special Offers see all

Enter to WIN a $100 Credit

Subscribe to PowellsBooks.news
for a chance to win.
Privacy Policy

Visit our stores

Customer Comments

david shapiro has commented on (8) products.

I Shall Wear Midnight by Terry Pratchett
I Shall Wear Midnight

david shapiro, January 1, 2011

Pratchett continues to entertain us masterfully. Accepting his illness, he tells a story that makes me content to take my leave of a favorite character, Tiffany Aching.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No

The World in Six Songs: How the Musical Brain Created Human Nature
The World in Six Songs: How the Musical Brain Created Human Nature

david shapiro, March 1, 2009

A fascinating book. I would give it a 4 or a 5, except for one fact: I know that I cannot trust the fascinating (purported) facts it reveals.

Dr. Levitin is a legitimate scientist, and an honest-to-god music authority. Anything he reports out of his experience in the industry or his own lab research I am happy to take on faith, and the same is true when he reports what he has read in peer-reviewed journals. However, I think a rabbi friend may have pulled his leg without subsequently owning up to the fact, or he may have misheard a rabbi and not adequately confirmed his impression. Levitin states, without either documentation or reservation, that many rabbis or Jewish scholars perform feats of memorization that simply are implausible. While plausibility and implausibility prove nothing, I made a modest attempt to confirm or falsify the claim; the indication was that his statement is quite invalid.

Subsequently, I checked Levitin's errata site; nothing on this claim. I tried to upload a comment, but was blocked. This is not an area I deal with professionally; consequently, I don't need a documented conclusion.

So. . . nothing final, but enough to provisionally convince me not to put overmuch faith in the documentation Levitin's charming essay uses to support his theses. This one disappointment does not indicate the undocumented sources for statements in other areas were unreliable, but it does raise doubt that I would not have had, given his obvious expertise as a music industry figure and as head of the McGill research team.

Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(1 of 2 readers found this comment helpful)

Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association by American Psychological Association
Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association

david shapiro, August 29, 2008

This 2001 fifth edition IS the current edition.
APA sells it to members and affiliates for $28, not $24, and certainly not $20. (They offer a free pdf of errata.)
It may be called the APA Manual, and published by them, but it is relied upon by more organizations than the APA.
Visit www.apa.org for more information.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(7 of 11 readers found this comment helpful)

previous6-8 of 8
  • back to top


Powell's City of Books is an independent bookstore in Portland, Oregon, that fills a whole city block with more than a million new, used, and out of print books. Shop those shelves — plus literally millions more books, DVDs, and gifts — here at Powells.com.