SOURCE: Cognosco Learning Publishers

Cognosco Learning Publishers

November 19, 2010 23:53 ET

What Is One Thing Teens Want More Than an iPad?

Teens Are Starving for Cognosco Learning's New Book, "Brain Snacks for Teens on the Go! 50 Smart Ideas to Turbo-Charge Your Life," Written for Teens, by a Teen

BOSTON, MA--(Marketwire - November 19, 2010) - In 2009 Americans spent more than $11 billion on self-improvement products; the average American clearly believes he has room to grow. "Brain Snacks for Teens on the Go! 50 Smart Ideas to Turbo-Charge Your Life" by Alex Southmayd, a 12th grade student at Groton School in Groton, Massachusetts, has just entered the fight vying for a piece of this large pie. At the tender age of 17, the author finds himself fighting behemoth brands such as "Chicken Soup for the Teenage Soul" and "The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens" by Sean Covey (who actually gives "Brain Snacks for Teens on the Go!" two thumbs up). As it turns out, he fares quite well.

Compared with titles like "Women are Crazy, Men Are Stupid," Southmayd's book is understated, avoiding both aggressive Maureen Dowd-like sassiness and spiritual-healer earnestness. The author is not selling any revelations or divinely inspired epiphanies. He collects useful wisdom and helpful tips -- the aforementioned Brain Snacks -- and unassumingly shares them with the world. The book's humble premise sets it apart from the solipsism of "The Secret" and other life-changing books; as the author himself acknowledges, he is "turbo-charging," not remodeling, the reader's life.

The book's hook is simple: "Written for teens, by a teen," and the author stays true to his promise. He understands the wide variety of "teen issues" and jumps around covering all of them, from time management to acne, from improving SAT scores (Southmayd nearly has perfect SAT scores himself) to how drugs and alcohol damage the teenage brain. Luckily, he never falls into self-seriousness, thereby never losing his connection with the reader.

Each pithy Brain Snack brings together a variety of sources, from "[his] Headmaster at Groton School, Mr. Commons" to the AMA, in order to illustrate a greater point. The author's eclecticism ultimately sets "Brain Snacks" apart as an authentic book.

The book is direct and well-documented. Southmayd offers a rich picture of all of his influences, creating a readable product.

"Brain Snacks for Teens on the Go!" will certainly make a great holiday gift for any teenager, it can be found at and

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