FAT! SO? BECAUSE YOU DON’T HAVE TO APOLOGIZE FOR YOUR SIZE!, by Marilyn Wann (Ten Speed Press, $12.95).

Synopsis: Fat can be wonderful if you shrug off all the negative stereotypes promoted by the $40 billion diet industry. Health risks are unproven. There is no need to resist weight gain.

Representative quote: “When I weighed 160 pounds, I thought I was too fat for words. Then I went up to 200 pounds….I realize that this numbers game is no different from the flat-world theory: We set weight horizons beyond which we expect to fall off the face of the earth.”

Noteworthy flaw: Lists 20 reasons why you should, in addition to becoming really fat, dye your hair hot pink. Number four is “Because Dennis Rodman isn’t the only cool rebel on the planet.”

Scentsational Weight Loss, by Alan R. Hirsch, MD (Fireside, $10).

Synopsis: The director of Chicago’s Smell and Taste Research Foundation explains how to train yourself to resist hunger pangs by using “odor devices” that discharge smells into your nose. Having a “smell buddy” helps.

Representative quote: “Cindy and Alice lost weight rapidly. They used the odor devices regularly and often–up to two hundred fifty sniffs a day….Both used them in the car on the way to work, in restrooms, and then again at home.”

Noteworthy flaw: Presents the system as helpful to the casual dieter, though the average person in the study was nearly 90 pounds overweight.

The Executive Mystic: Intuitive Tools for Cultivating the Winning Edge in Business, by Barrie Dolnick (HarperBusiness, $12).

Synopsis: The author of Simple Spells for Success expounds further on how to get ahead in the workplace through informed use of crystals, herbs, colors, and witchcraft.

Representative quote: “Sit alone, if you can, taking deep, relaxed breaths. Sigh as you exhale. Your sound releases the blockages and obstacles around your air element. As you inhale, your lungs expand with clarity. Feel lighter and breezier as you continue. Continue for sixty seconds.”

Noteworthy flaw: Or until you pass out.

Art accompanying story in printed newspaper (not available in this archive): book covers.