With Best Intentions

parents should brace themselves before reading this latest book on bringing up children. Sensitive types won't be far into Raising an Optimistic Child (McGraw-Hill; 239 pages) before the fear hits that they've messed up their kids. Husband-and-wife authors Bob Murray and Alicia Fortinberry don't dismiss the role genes play in shaping us. But they focus on the ways parenting can set up a child for a lifetime of joy or misery. "Bad parenting" is a phrase they're not afraid to use, and to their minds it encompasses much more than blatant offenses like physical and sexual abuse. Did you place your...

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