|"I try to switch between fiction and nonfiction to sort of cleanse my palate. Both stir my emotions and imagination, but in different ways. In fiction I look for two things in general: Gorgeous writing— even if a storyline is okay, if the writing is magnificent then the story can take on a new life. Unfortunately this doesn't go both ways. Uninspired writing is like an overcast day in Southern California. And second, a story that moves me to see myself and the world differently. My nonfiction reading is also for personal transformation. Reading for information only feels mundane, so I like to read nonfiction that has a strong narrative. I also like nonfiction that is challenging—not challenging with big words but with big concepts, particularly those that question assumptions."|
The latest from NYT bestselling author of The Invention of Wings, is thought-provoking historical fiction centered on Ana, the imagined wife of Jesus, their influence on each other, and ultimately her devotion to him even after his death and to the lessons she passes on to others thereafter.
Another NYT bestseller from historian / storyteller extraordinaire Erik Larson. This one a fascinating biography on Churchill and his time as the UK's prime minister during WWII, including little known revelations about his personal life and that of his family.
A gorgeous book that blends human tragedy with natural science. The result is a restoration of faith in the natural order of life, as imperfect as it may be, through vivid descriptions of the will to survive, the blessings of humbleness and the interconnectedness running through all of nature.
An exceptional book that dives into racism in ways that we rarely see by taking into account, as they say in war, the "collateral damage"—in this case an innocent family torn apart by the wrongful imprisonment of their loved one. Both a powerful literary drama about loss and redemption and an important civics lesson about inequality and injustice.
Both heartbreaking and restorative, this historical novel based on real-life events circa 1939 along the Mississippi River about kidnapping and trafficking children for adoption. This is a brave book in the sense that the author has taken on a grotesque subject and managed to portray the victims with the grace and dignity they deserve. In the end, hope triumphs over despair and humanitarianism over evil.
An accessible introduction to the science of animal emotions and what they teach us about ourselves. World-renowned primatologist Dr. de Waal once again reinforces that we share more in common with our primate cousins—apes, chimps, monkeys, bonobos, etc.—than many people would like to admit.
A brilliant book centered on the emerging field of behavioral economics written by a Nobel Prize Laureate in Economics, who remarkably is a trained psychologist not a financier. With accessible explanations and examples of how our minds play tricks on us, this is a must-read for anyone interested in the invisible forces behind making money, losing it; spending money and saving it.