Ever feel like your doctor is from Mars and you’re from Venus? Barbara Korsch, MD, and Caroline Harding have joined forces to write a how-to that bridges the sometimes-lonely light years between those planets.

The team manages to sympathize without coddling you in your fight against the big, bad docs. With true-to-life examples of how a straightforward check-up can turn into tangled power struggles, Korsch and Harding offer advice on making the most out of a visit to your doctors. By placing responsibility on both sides, the authors put the power back into your hands.

So if your doc has lately seemed more Jack Kevorkian than Marcus Welby and that leaves you feeling like the Frankenstein monster, bring two copies to the waiting room. One to pass the time; the other to pass on to him.