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Publisher's Summary

Don't worry about family dinner.
Let your kids pick their punishments.
Ditch the sex talk.
Cancel date night.
These are just a few of the surprising innovations in this bold first-of-its-kind playbook for today's families. Best-selling author and New York Times family columnist Bruce Feiler found himself squeezed between caring for aging parents and raising his children. So he set out on a three-year journey to find the smartest solutions and the most cutting-edge research about families. Instead of the usual family "experts", he sought out the most creative minds - from Silicon Valley to the set of Modern Family, from the country's top negotiators to the Green Berets - and asked them what team-building exercises and problem-solving techniques they use with their families. Feiler then tested these ideas with his wife and kids. The result is a fun, original look at how families can draw closer together, complete with 200 never-before-seen best practices.
Feiler's life-changing discoveries include a radical plan to reshape your family in 20 minutes a week, Warren Buffett's guide for setting an allowance, and the Harvard handbook for resolving conflict. The Secrets of Happy Families is a timely, counterintuitive book that answers the questions countless parents are asking: How do we manage the chaos of our lives? How do we teach our kids values? How do we make our family happier?
Written in a charming, accessible style, The Secrets of Happy Families is smart, funny, and fresh, and will forever change how your family lives every day.
©2013 Bruce Feiler (P)2013 HarperCollins Publishers
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Amazon Customer on 02-28-13

Well worth reading, even if you can't do it all!

Any additional comments?

This is a practical guide to things that work for families. It is not a 'therapist' type guide, where research has been done...kind of book. Just what works for real people, in real & imperfect lives. I liked that, because that describes the kind of families I know.

I think he does a nice job discussing what makes these methods work, and how the families benefit. Also, he does point out how his wife is not impressed by his 'ideas' and often is not a willing participant, but then finds the methods draw the couple, as well as the family, together. Really, it is all about doing things together, making everyone feel they are an important part of a team, that really matters.

It is an easy listen as an audio, nice & simple pdf comes with it, and if you just put a few of the ideas into place, as I have done so far, you will likely see instant success. And what could matter more than greater happiness at home!

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8 of 8 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By Kevin on 05-31-13

Very Enjoyable

I looked up the author's previous books before spending a credit on this one. I must say, I was worried that this book would be too preachy because some of Feiler's other publications had strong religious themes. It was not preachy at all. Listening to this book was more like having a casual conversation with a friend about family life. The author pulled ideas from various sources, including business men, military leaders, coaches, and his own family experiences and presented them as short stories and lessons. Every lesson won't apply to every family but I think the book was well written and researched and it was worth listening to.

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6 of 6 people found this review helpful

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