AuthorTitleSubject AreaUsed?Date usedBrief DescriptionURL
Matt StollerGoliath: The 100-Year War Between Monopoly Power and DemocracyBusinessA startling look at how concentrated financial power and consumerism transformed American politics, resulting in the emergence of populism and authoritarianism, the fall of the Democratic Party—while also providing the steps needed to create a new democracy. And why technocrats typically don't have the answers.
Sarah Josepha HaleWoman's Record, Or, Sketches Of All Distinguished WomenHistory3/15/2022Woman's Record, Or, Sketches Of All Distinguished Women is a 900-page compendium of biographies of 2,500 eminent women since the beginning of recorded history, or, as Hale’s subtitle immodestly puts it, from “the Creation to A.D. 1853.” It was an immense undertaking and a serious work of scholarship, requiring three years of research into biblical studies, world history, classical literature and more.
Ron ChernowWashington: A LifeBiography2/22/2022A richly nuanced portrait of the father of our nation. With a breadth and depth matched by no other one-volume life of Washington, this crisply paced narrative carries the reader through his life. What we get is an astute and surprising portrait of a canny political genius who knew how to inspire people, and whose complexity and emotions are brought to the surface.
Dale CarnegieHow to Win Friends and Influence PeopleSelf improvement2/7/2022There's never an inopportune time to read (or reread) this business classic. Dale Carnegie highlights the small things that make a large difference in how we form relationships in our work. And while they apply to every sales situation, we can also adopt them for our personal lives as well.
James ClearAtomic HabitsPersonal development1/25/2022If you're having trouble changing your habits, the problem isn't you. The problem is your system. Bad habits repeat themselves again and again not because you don't want to change, but because you have the wrong system for change. Atomic Habits offers a proven framework for improving--every day. James Clear, one of the world's leading experts on habit formation, reveals practical strategies that will teach you exactly how to form good habits, break bad ones, and master the tiny behaviors that lead to remarkable results.
Daniel StashowerTeller of Tales: The Life of Sir Arthur Conan DoyleBiography1/7/2022This fresh, compelling biography examines the extraordinary life and strange contrasts of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, the struggling provincial doctor who became the most popular storyteller of his age. From his youthful exploits aboard a whaling ship to his often stormy friendships with such figures as Harry Houdini and George Bernard Shaw, Conan Doyle lived a life as gripping as one of his adventures. Exhaustively researched and elegantly written, Teller of Tales sets aside many myths and misconceptions to present a vivid portrait of the man behind the legend of Baker Street, with a particular emphasis on the Psychic Crusade that dominated his final years-the work that Conan Doyle himself felt to be "the most important thing in the world."
Gerard GustSecrets to Succession: The PIE Method to Transitioning Your Family BusinessBusiness12/17/2021Many owners of family businesses dream of passing the torch to their next generation, but only about thirty percent will realize that goal. In Secrets to Succession, family business owner Gerard Gust opens the door to reveal how he and his father dodged the grim statistics to make sure their company would survive the transition. The key was finding a way to lead, govern, and work together as the lines between parent and child, boss and employee, were blurred, stressed, and tested.
Mark FeldmeirA House Divided: Engaging Issues Through the Politics of CompassionPolitics12/10/2021In our current culture of conflict, Americans need a better way of relating to one another and responding to controversial issues; a way that transcends political partisanship and emphasizes universal care, mutual concern, and the flourishing of the common good. In A House Divided, Mark Feldmeir suggests that the solution to our political entrenchment is a shared commitment to practicing a politics of compassion; the motivating, unifying ideals of the gospel that insist that we work together for the benefit of the common good.
Daniel SaxThe Revenge of Analog: Real Things and Why They MatterBusiness12/3/2021It may seem that it flies in the face of our ever-growing digital world, but The Revenge of Analog: Real Things and Why They Matter examines growing evidence that people are newly recognizing certain strengths of analog — often learned because digital is dominating our lives. In our digital age, analog can be rejuvenating.
Strategy and the Fat Smoker: Doing What's Obvious But Not EasyBusiness11/19/2021We often know what we should be doing in both personal and professional life. We also know why we should be doing it and how to do it. Figuring all that out is not too difficult. What is very hard is actually doing what you know to be good for you in the long-run, in spite of short-run temptations. David Maister explores the fat smoker syndrome and how individuals, managers and organizations can overcome the temptations of the short-term and actually do what they already know is good for them.
Gore VidalCreation: A NovelFiction11/12/2021Creation: A Novel is a sweeping story of politics, war, philosophy, and adventure–in a restored edition, featuring never-before-published material from Gore Vidal’s original manuscript–Creation offers a captivating grand tour of the ancient world.
Anne LamottBird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and LifeJournalism11/5/2021Leadership, parenting, learning a new craft—it's all difficult and we could use inspiration along the way. How are we to cope with it? In Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life, author Anne Lamott recounts her brother leaving a major research project on birds to the night before it was due. He cries about the jam he's gotten himself into, wondering how he'll tackle the project. "Bird by bird," his father tells him. "Just take it bird by bird." Which you'll hear mentioned in S1 E2 of Ted Lasso if you pay attention.
Oliver BurkemanFour Thousand Weeks: Time Management for MortalsSelf-improvement10/29/2021The average human lifespan is absurdly, insultingly brief. Assuming you live to be eighty, you have just over four thousand weeks. Drawing on the insights of both ancient and contemporary philosophers, psychologists, and spiritual teachers, Oliver Burkeman delivers an entertaining, humorous, practical, and ultimately profound guide to time and time management. Rejecting the futile modern fixation on “getting everything done,” Four Thousand Weeks introduces readers to tools for constructing a meaningful life by embracing finitude, showing how many of the unhelpful ways we’ve come to think about time aren’t inescapable, unchanging truths, but choices we’ve made as individuals and as a society―and that we could do things differently.
Pete ButtigiegTrust: America's Best ChanceSociety10/22/2021In Trust, Pete Buttigieg demonstrates how trust will be essential in order to face the unique challenges of the decades ahead.
Trust is essential to the foundation of America’s democracy, asserts Pete Buttigieg, the former presidential candidate and South Bend mayor. Yet, in a century warped by terrorism, financial collapse, Trumpist populism, systemic racism, and now a global pandemic, trust has been squandered, sacrificed, abused, stolen, or never properly built in the first place. And now, more so than ever before, Americans must work side by side to reckon with the monumental challenges posed by our present moment.
Margot BloomsteinTrustworthy: How the Smartest Brands Beat Cynicism and Bridge the Trust GapBusiness10/22/2021Cynicism is cheap. Hope takes work. Trust bridges the distance between them—and today, it’s in short supply. Sales cycles are slower, citizens are stumbling, and so much marketing is a waste of time and money. That’s where Trustworthy fits in. Balancing inspiration and tactics in a bold vision for the future, it introduces you to the brands that are doing the work and an actionable framework to make it your own. You’ll find example after example of how companies and civic organizations are renewing the bonds of trust with customers and citizens alike. Don’t expect cheatsheets; if you’re a marketer, designer, or writer, you already have the tools you need to answer the call. Instead, you’ll find inspiring case studies and a compelling three-part framework to help you make the case to your boss, clients, and colleagues and be the change you want to see in the industry—and society at large.
Len Herstein Be Vigilant! Strategies to Stop Complacency, Improve Performance, and Safeguard SuccessBusiness10/15/2021When you're used to winning and achieving, overconfidence and faulty logic can blind you to potential dangers up ahead. Complacency costs money, causes slip ups, and creates critical mistakes that will put your company, your brand, and your teams at risk. The greater the success, the greater the risk of a complacent mindset. Anybody with something to protect should read Be Vigilant! now to get the tools you need to fight complacency at work and at home.
Eric Cline
1177 BC: The Year Civilization Collapsed.
History10/8/2021In 1177 B.C., marauding groups known only as the “Sea Peoples” invaded Egypt. The pharaoh’s army and navy managed to defeat them, but the victory so weakened Egypt that it soon slid into decline, as did most of the surrounding civilizations. After centuries of brilliance, the civilized world of the Bronze Age came to an abrupt and cataclysmic end. Kingdoms fell like dominoes over the course of just a few decades. No more Minoans or Mycenaeans. No more Trojans, Hittites, or Babylonians. The thriving economy and cultures of the late second millennium B.C., which had stretched from Greece to Egypt and Mesopotamia, suddenly ceased to exist, along with writing systems, technology, and monumental architecture. How did it happen? This is what Eric Cline investigates in 1177 BC: The Year Civilization Collapsed.
Nathan TanThe Forgetful Gentleman: Thirty Ways to Turn Good Intentions into ActionEttiquette10/1/2021The modern man has good intentions—all he lacks are the tools to turn them into gentlemanly action. This illustrated reference guide instructs and informs readers on the subtle art of being a contemporary gentleman by incorporating both traditional and modern practices, bringing the classic idea of gentlemanliness forward into the 21st century.
Antonio DimasioDescartes' Error: Emotion, Reason, and the Human BrainPsychology9/25/2021Since Descartes famously proclaimed, “I think, therefore I am,” science has often overlooked emotions as the source of a person’s true being. Even modern neuroscience has tended, until recently, to concentrate on the cognitive aspects of brain function, disregarding emotions. Antonio Damasio challenges traditional ideas about the connection between emotions and rationality in Descartes’ Error: Emotion, Reason, and the Human Brain. In this wondrously engaging book, Damasio takes the reader on a journey of scientific discovery through a series of case studies, demonstrating what many of us have long suspected: emotions are not a luxury, they are essential to rational thinking and to normal social behavior.
WSJThe Facebook FilesEthics9/17/2021Facebook Inc. knows, in acute detail, that its platforms are riddled with flaws that cause harm, often in ways only the company fully understands. That is the central finding of a Wall Street Journal series, based on a review of internal Facebook documents, including research reports, online employee discussions and drafts of presentations to senior management.
John BarryThe Great Influenza: The Story of the Deadliest Pandemic in HistoryHistory9/10/2021So the final lesson of 1918, a simple one yet one most difficult to execute, is that those who occupy positions of authority must lessen the panic that can alienate all within a society. Society cannot function if it is every man for himself. By definition, civilization cannot survive that. Those in authority must retain the public’s trust. The way to do that is to distort nothing, to put the best face on nothing, to try to manipulate no one. Lincoln said that first, and best. A leader must make whatever horror exists concrete. Only then will people be able to break it apart.
David DenbyGreat Books: My Adventures with Homer, Rousseau, Woolf, and Other Indestructible Writers of the Western WorldMemoir9/3/2021At the age of 48, writer and film critic David Denby returned to Columbia University and re-enrolled in two core courses in Western civilization to confront the literary and philosophical masterpieces -- the "great books" -- that are now at the heart of the culture wars. In Great Books, he leads us on a glorious tour, a rediscovery and celebration of such authors as Homer and Boccaccio, Locke and Nietzsche. Conrad and Woolf. The resulting personal odyssey is an engaging blend of self-discovery, cultural commentary, reporting, criticism, and autobiography -- an inspiration for anyone in love with the written word.
James CarseFinite and Infinite GamesPsychology8/27/2021If life is a game, how do you play it? The answer will have a huge impact on your choices, your satisfaction, and how you achieve success. In Finite and Infinite Games, James Carse, the Director of Religious Studies at New York University, explores the difference between approaching life as a game with an end, or a game that goes on forever. According to Carse, playing to win isn’t nearly as satisfying as playing to keep the game going.
Mary BeardConfronting the ClassicsHistory8/20/2021In Confronting the Classics, Mary Beard, drawing on thirty years of teaching and writing about Greek and Roman history, provides a panoramic portrait of the classical world, a book in which we encounter not only Cleopatra and Alexander the Great, Julius Caesar and Hannibal, but also the common people―the millions of inhabitants of the Roman Empire, the slaves, soldiers, and women. How did they live? Where did they go if their marriage was in trouble or if they were broke? Or, perhaps just as important, how did they clean their teeth?
Nathaniel PhilbrickIn the Heart of the Sea: The Tragedy of the Whaleship EssexHistory8/13/2021In 1820, the whaleship Essex was rammed and sunk by an angry sperm whale, leaving the desperate crew to drift for more than ninety days in three tiny boats. In the Heart of the Sea by Nathaniel Philbrick was based on a long-lost written account by cabin boy Thomas Nickerson and the published account of first mate Owen Chase, along with vivid details about the Nantucket whaling tradition. They reveal the chilling facts of the infamous maritime disaster that was the basis for Moby-Dick.
Marcel ProustIn Search of Lost Time7/30/2021In Search of Lost Time by Marcel Proust follows the narrator's recollections of childhood and experiences into adulthood in the late 19th century and early 20th century high society France, while reflecting on the loss of time and lack of meaning in the world. It is a classic that is also known by its first translated title Remembrance of Things Past.
SenecaHow to Die: An Ancient Guide to the End of LifePhilosophy7/23/2021Over the course of his career, Seneca returned again and again to the topic of death. He contemplated the universality of death; its importance as life’s final and most defining rite of passage; its part in purely natural cycles and processes; and its ability to liberate us, by freeing souls from bodies or, in the case of suicide, to give us an escape from pain, from the degradation of enslavement, or from cruel kings and tyrants who might otherwise destroy our moral integrity. Timeless wisdom on death and dying from the celebrated Stoic philosopher Seneca in How to Die: An Ancient Guide to the End of Life
John BridgesAs a Gentleman Would Say: Responses to Life's Important (And Sometimes Awkward) SituationsEttiquette7/16/2021This easily accessible book focuses on those moments when knowing exactly what to say is an absolutely necessary challenge. From the light-hearted "how to react when someone turns you down for a date" or "what to say when you notice someone's fly is open" to the more serious "what to say to a co-worker who has had a miscarriage or to a friend who has suffered the sudden death of a parent," As A Gentleman Would Say differs from other etiquette books in that it not only offers suggestions for the correct thing to say in more than 100 social situations-it also gives examples of the wrong thing to say.
Jennifer JacquetIs Shame Necessary?: New Uses for an Old ToolPolicy7/16/2021Is Shame Necessary?: New Uses for an Old Tool explores how one of society’s oldest tools can be used to promote large-scale political change and social reform. Urgent and illuminating, Jennifer Jacquet's book offers an entirely new understanding of how shame, when applied in the right way and at the right time, has the capacity to keep us from failing our planet and, ultimately, from failing ourselves.
Madeline L'EngleA Wrinkle In TimeYoung Adult7/9/2021A Wrinkle in Time is an iconic novel that continues to inspire millions of fans around the world. Madeleine L’Engle won a Newbery Medal for this young adult novel about time travel, adventure, and the ultimate battle between good and evil.
David AmerlandIntentional: How To Live, Love, Work and Play MeaningfullyPsychology7/2/2021Intentional: How to Live, Love, Work, and Play Meaningfully by David Amerland is a gameplan. It helps us connect the pieces of our mind to the pieces of our life. It shows us how to map what we feel to what has caused those feelings. It helps us understand what affects us and what effects it has on us. It makes it possible for us to determine what we want, why we want it and what we need to do to get it.
Carla JohnsonRE:Think Innovation: How the World’s Most Prolific Innovators Come Up with Great Ideas that Deliver Extraordinary OutcomesInnovation6/25/2021RE:Think Innovation answers the question of how to tie individual competence with innovation techniques to direct corporate outcomes. Within its pages, Carla Johnson shows how to create a unified, idea-driven employee base that delivers more ideas in a shorter amount of time. Ultimately, this is the path that makes organizations genuinely nimble, passionate, innovative powerhouses that deliver extraordinary outcomes for sustained periods of time.
Carey LohrenzSpan of Control: What To Do When You're Under Pressure, Overwhelmed, And Ready To Get What You Really WantLeadership6/18/2021In Span of Control, Carey Lohrenz walks us through the fundamentals of surviving and succeeding during times of crisis. Weaving together eye-opening science, gripping personal stories, insightful interviews, prescriptive advice, and a high-octane dose of encouragement and practicality, Span of Control helps leaders recognize how to focus on what matters most, formulate a plan for success, and communicate what’s possible.
Dan SullivanWho Not How: The Formula to Achieve Bigger Goals Through Accelerating TeamworkCollaboration6/11/2021When we want something done, we've been trained to ask ourselves: "How can I do this?" Well, there is a better question to ask. One that unlocks a whole new world of ease and accomplishment. Expert coach Dan Sullivan knows the question we should ask instead: "Who can do this for me?" In Who Not How: The Formula to Achieve Bigger Goals Through Accelerating Teamwork, he helps you focus on the nearly infinite and endless connections between yourself and other people as well as the limitless transformation possible through those connections.
Minter DialYou Lead: How Being Yourself Makes You a Better LeaderLeadership6/4/2021Minter Dial shows readers how embracing your whole self at work encourages people to also be themselves, seek true fulfilment at work and merge the personal and professional to become true examples of what you stand for. You Lead is a call to arms to leaders to stop pretending to be who they are not, and play on their uniqueness and strengths, to allow people to do the same and develop a culture of authenticity and purpose.
Thibaut MeurisseMaster Your Emotions: A Practical Guide to Overcome Negativity and Better Manage Your FeelingsPatience5/28/2021Thibaut Meurisse was an introvert whose shyness kept him from getting the results in life he wanted. Understanding how negative feelings and emotions work is the first step. Then we must learn how to reprogram those emotions and turn them around. In Master Your Emotions: A Practical Guide to Overcome Negativity and Better Manager Your Feelings, he provides 31 simple coping strategies, how to make your emotions work for you, a downloadable workbook, and more.
Rick Hanson, Ph.D.Resilient: How to Grow an Unshakable Core of Calm, Strength, and HappinessResilience5/21/2021These days it’s hard to count on the world outside. So it’s vital to grow strengths inside like grit, gratitude, and compassion—the key to resilience, and to lasting well-being in a changing world. Resilient: How to Grow an Unshakable Core of Calm, Strength, and Happiness by Rick Hanson, Ph.D., is a practical guide is full of concrete suggestions, experiential practices, personal examples, and insights into the brain. It includes effective ways to interact with others and to repair and deepen important relationships.
Tom PetersExcellence Now: Extreme HumanismLeadership5/14/2021Tom Peters is a New York Times bestselling author and business speaker. His previous 18 books have been cornerstones of management lessons from business schools to boardrooms. With Excellence Now: Extreme Humanism, Tom sets an even higher bar. Tom's bold insights are based on decades of research and on-the-ground, steely observations. Fans will once again find themselves immersed in a rich world of people-first wisdom.
John MaedaThe Laws of SimplicitySimplicity5/7/2021Finally, we're learning that simplicity equals sanity. But sometimes we find ourselves caught up in the simplicity paradox: we want something that's simple and easy to use, but also does all the complex things we might ever want it to do. In The Laws of Simplicity, John Maeda offers ten laws for balancing simplicity and complexity in business, technology, and design—guidelines for needing less and actually getting more.
Humor, Seriously: Why Humor Is a Secret Weapon in Business and Life Humor4/30/2021There exists a mistaken belief in today’s corporate world: that we have to be serious all the time in order to be taken seriously. But the research tells a different story: that humor can be one of the most powerful tools we have for accomplishing serious things. Studies show that humor makes us appear more competent and confident, strengthens relationships, unlocks creativity, and boosts our resilience during difficult times. In Humor, Seriously: Why Humor Is a Secret Weapon in Business and Life, authors Jennifer Aaker and Naomi Bagdonas draw on findings by behavioral scientists, world-class comedians, and inspiring business leaders to reveal how humor works and—more important—how you can use more of it, better.
Tom MorrisPlato's Lemonade Stand: Stirring Change into Something GreatLeadership4/23/2021We’ve all heard the old adage: When life hands you lemons, make lemonade. But no one ever says how. Finally, with the inspiration of Plato and the help of many other great philosophers, Tom Morris has figured it out and here gives us a recipe we all can use in Plato's Lemonade Stand: Stirring Change into Something Great. Tom blends powerful insights with great stories and good fun to illuminate the path of wise living in the face of challenge and change. Along the way, he shows us how to move with wisdom from difficulty to delight in everything we do.
Barry Schwartz and Kenneth SharpePractical Wisdom: The Right Way to Do the Right ThingPhilosophy4/23/2021In their provocative new book, Barry Schwartz and Kenneth Sharpe explore the insights essential to leading satisfying lives. Encouraging individuals to focus on their own personal intelligence and integrity rather than simply navigating the rules and incentives established by others, Practical Wisdom: The Right Way to Do the Right Thing outlines how to identify and cultivate our own innate wisdom in our daily lives.
Rebecca SolnitHope in the Dark: Untold Histories, Wild PossibilitiesFuture4/16/2021Drawing on her decades of activism and a wide reading of environmental, cultural, and political history, Rebecca Solnit argues that radicals have a long, neglected history of transformative victories, that the positive consequences of our acts are not always immediately seen, directly knowable, or even measurable, and that pessimism and despair rest on an unwarranted confidence about what is going to happen next.
David MurrayAn Effort to Understand: Hearing One Another (and Ourselves) in a Nation Cracked in HalfCommunication4/9/2021Guided by an ear for the lessons of history, An Effort to Understand shows that the personal and political gulfs between us are small compared to our common desire to connect. American discord is nothing new, but we have a chance at trust, peace, and solidarity if we make an effort to speak more honestly and listen to understand.
SenecaOn the Shortness of LifeClassics4/2/2021Nature gives man enough time to do what is really important and the individual must allot it properly. In general, time can be best used in the study of philosophy, according to Seneca. This essay has been carefully adapted into a contemporary form to allow for easy reading.
Kevin WilliamsIrrational Kindness: The Crazy Pursuit of an Extraordinary LifeSelf improvement3/25/2021Irrational Kindness can serve as a harmonious reminder that one's hopes and dreams do not have to be derailed―not by their fears, their pasts, or by people who make them feel like they have to know everything to be successful, or even just to get started. Throughout its pages, Kevin Williams provides the inspiration everyone needs to favor understanding over being understood and prioritize kindness―toward themselves as well as others―over everything.
Michael J. SandelThe Tyranny of Merit: What’s Become of the Common Good?Philosophy3/19/2021These are dangerous times for democracy. We live in an age of winners and losers, where the odds are stacked in favor of the already fortunate. Stalled social mobility and entrenched inequality give the lie to the American credo that "you can make it if you try". The consequence is a brew of anger and frustration that has fueled populist protest and extreme polarization, and led to deep distrust of both government and our fellow citizens--leaving us morally unprepared to face the profound challenges of our time.
Raymond M. Kethledge & Michael S. ErwinLead Yourself FirstLeadership3/12/2021Throughout history, leaders have used solitude as a matter of course. Martin Luther King found moral courage while sitting alone at his kitchen table one night during the Montgomery bus boycott. Jane Goodall used her intuition in the jungles of central Africa while learning how to approach chimps. Solitude is a state of mind, a space where you can focus on your own thoughts without distraction, with a power to bring mind and soul together in clear-eyed conviction. To find solitude today, a leader must make a conscious effort. This book explains why the effort is worthwhile and how to make it.
Ron ChernowHouse of Morgan: An American Banking Dynasty and the Rise of Modern FinanceFinance3/5/2021The House of Morgan is the most ambitious history ever written about American finance. It is a rich, panoramic story of four generations of Morgans and the powerful, secretive firms they spawned, ones that would transform the modern financial world. Tracing the trajectory of J. P. Morgan’s empire from its obscure beginnings in Victorian London to the financial crisis of 1987, acclaimed author Ron Chernow paints a fascinating portrait of the family’s private saga and the rarefied world of the American and British elite in which they moved. A masterpiece of financial history, The House of Morgan is a compelling account of a remarkable institution and the men who ran it, and an essential book for understanding the money and power behind the major historical events of the last 150 years.
Donna HicksLeading with Dignity: How to Create a Culture That Brings Out the Best in PeopleDignity2/26/2021This landmark book from an expert in dignity studies explores the essential but underrecognized role of dignity as part of good leadership. Most people know very little about dignity, the author has found, and when leaders fail to respect the dignity of others, conflict and distrust ensue. Hicks highlights three components of leading with dignity: what one must know in order to honor dignity and avoid violating it; what one must do to lead with dignity; and how one can create a culture of dignity in any organization, whether corporate, religious, governmental, healthcare, or beyond.
Leo DamroschThe Club: Johnson, Boswell, and the Friends Who Shaped an AgeHistory2/19/2021In 1763, the painter Joshua Reynolds proposed to his friend Samuel Johnson that they invite a few friends to join them every Friday at the Turk’s Head Tavern in London to dine, drink, and talk until midnight. Eventually the group came to include among its members Edmund Burke, Adam Smith, Edward Gibbon, and James Boswell. It was known simply as “the Club.” In The Club: Johnson, Boswell, and the Friends Who Shaped an Age, Leo Damrosch conjures up the precarious, exciting, and often brutal world of late eighteenth-century Britain. This is the story of an extraordinary group of people whose ideas helped to shape their age, and our own.
Kelly Leonard and Tom YortonYes, And: How Improvisation Reverses "No, But" Thinking and Improves Creativity and Collaboration--Lessons from The Second CityLeadership2/12/2021The rules for leadership and teamwork have changed, and the skills that got professionals ahead a generation ago don’t work anymore. Now The Second City provides a new toolkit individuals and organizations can use to thrive in a world increasingly shaped by speed, social communication, and decentralization. Based on eight principles of improvisation, Yes, And helps to develop these skills and foster them in high-potential leaders and their teams
Eugene McCarraherThe Enchantments of Mammon: How Capitalism Became the Religion of ModernitySociety2/5/2021Since Max Weber, capitalism has been understood as part of the “disenchantment” of the world, stripping material objects and social relations of their mystery and sacredness. Ignoring the motive force of the spirit, capitalism rejects the awe-inspiring divine for the economics of supply and demand. The Enchantments of Mammon challenges this conventional view. Author Eugene McCarraher argues that capital is full of sacrament, whether or not it is acknowledged. Informed by cultural history and theology as well as economics, management theory, and marketing, he posits that capitalism has hijacked and redirected our intrinsic longing for divinity―and urges us to break its hold on our souls.
Erica BennerBe Like a Fox: Machiavelli in His WorldHistory1/29/2021In Be Like the Fox, Erica Benner sets the record straight: far from the ruthless “Machiavellian” henchman that people think he was, Machiavelli emerges here as a profound ethical thinker who fought to uphold high moral standards and restore the democratic freedoms of his beloved Florence
Caleb BinghamThe Columbian Orator: Containing a Variety of Original and Selected Pieces, Together With Rules, Calculated to Improve Youth and Others in the Ornamental and Useful Art of EloquenceOratory1/22/2021The Columbian Orator presents 84 selections, most of which are notable examples of oratory on such subjects as nationalism, religious faith, individual liberty, freedom, and slavery, including pieces by Washington, Franklin, Milton, Socrates, and Cicero, as well as heroic poetry and dramatic dialogues. Augmenting these is an essay on effective public speaking which influenced Abraham Lincoln as a young politician. As America experiences a resurgence of interest in the art of debating and oratory, The Columbian Orator--whether as historical artifact or contemporary guidebook--is one of those rare books to be valued for what it meant in its own time, and for how its ideas have endured. Above all, this book is a remarkable compilation of Enlightenment era thought and language that has stood the test of time.
David NeiwertRed Pill, Blue Pill: How to Counteract the Conspiracy Theories That Are Killing UsSociety1/15/2021Conspiracy theories are killing us. Once confined to the fringes of society, this worldview now has adherents numbering in the millions -- extending right into the White House. Red Pill, Blue Pill is a disturbing look at this alt-right threat to our democratic institutions that offers guidance for counteracting the personal toll this destructive mindset can have on relationships and families.
Lewis H. LaphamThe Age of Folly: America Abandons Its DemocracyHistory1/13/2021In twenty-five years of imperial adventure, America has laid waste to its principles of democracy. The self-glorifying march of folly steps off at the end of the Cold War, in an era when delusions of omnipotence allowed the market to climb to virtual heights, while society was divided between the selfish and frightened rich and the increasingly debt-ridden and angry poor. The new millennium saw the democratic election of an American president nullified by the Supreme Court, and the pretender launching a wasteful, vainglorious and never-ending war on terror, doomed to end in defeat and the loss of America’s prestige abroad.

All this culminates in the sunset swamp of the 2016 election—a farce dominated by Donald Trump, a self-glorifying photo-op bursting star-spangled bombast in air. This spectacle would be familiar to Aristotle, whose portrayal of the “prosperous fool” describes a class of people who “consider themselves worthy to hold public office, for they already have the things that give them a claim to office.”
Preet BhararaDoing JusticeLaw1/8/2021By the one-time federal prosecutor for the Southern District of New York, Doing Justice is an important overview of the way our justice system works, and why the rule of law is essential to our society. Using case histories, personal experiences and his own inviting writing and teaching style, Preet Bharara shows the thought process we need to best achieve truth and justice in our daily lives and within our society.
Edward BalleisenFraud: An American History from Barnum to MadoffHistory12/19/2020In America, fraud has always been a key feature of business, and the national worship of entrepreneurial freedom complicates the task of distinguishing salesmanship from deceit. In Fraud: An American HIstory from Barnum to Madoff, Edward Balleisen traces the history of fraud in America. By tracing how Americans have struggled to foster a vibrant economy without encouraging a corrosive level of cheating, Fraud reminds us that American capitalism rests on an uneasy foundation of social trust.
James LoewenLies My Teachers Told Me: Everything Your American History Textbook Got WrongHistory12/11/2020In Lies My Teacher Told Me, James W. Loewen brings history alive in all its complexity and ambiguity. Beginning with pre-Columbian history and ranging over characters and events as diverse as Reconstruction, Helen Keller, the first Thanksgiving, the My Lai massacre, 9/11, and the Iraq War, Loewen offers an eye-opening critique of existing textbooks, and a wonderful retelling of American history as it should—and could—be taught to American students.
Jan Zlotnick23 Things I Wish I Could Ask My Mom and Dad TodayLife12/4/2020My friend Jan Zlotnick has written 23 Questions I Wish I Could Ask My Mom and Dad Today which is unlike any self-help book on grief and loss. It's reflective and can be used as a guide to help you talk to and explore memories with the people who are still with you. If your parents are still alive, it's a gift to help you capture some of those moments with them; if they're not, it's a chance to reflect on how they raised you and what you might be able to discern from thinking about these questions.
Anna TomasinoMusic and CultureCulture11/20/2020Part of the “Longman Topics” reader series, Music and Culture explores social and cultural issues through music—its personalities, business aspects, diversity, and the sounds themselves—and is intended to promote critical thinking and writing through its accessible, balanced variety of reading selections.
Frank PartnoyWait: The Art and Science of DelayPsychology11/13/2020n this counterintuitive and insightful work, author Frank Partnoy weaves together findings from hundreds of scientific studies and interviews with wide-ranging experts to craft a picture of effective decision-making that runs counter to our brutally fast-paced world. Even as technology exerts new pressures to speed up our lives, it turns out that the choices we make––unconsciously and consciously, in time frames varying from milliseconds to years––benefit profoundly from delay. As this winning and provocative book reveals, taking control of time and slowing down our responses yields better results in almost every arena of life … even when time seems to be of the essence.
Maria RossThe Empathy Edge: Harnessing the Value of Compassion as an Engine for SuccessBusiness11/6/2020Being empathetic at work means seeing the situation from another’s perspective, and using that vantage point to shape your leadership style, workplace culture, and branding strategy. Pairing her knowledge as a branding expert with proven research and fascinating stories from executives, change-makers and community leaders, Maria Ross reveals exactly how empathy makes brands and organizations stronger and more successful.
Peter BernsteinAgainst the Gods: The Remarkable Story of RiskHistory10/30/2020In this unique exploration of the role of risk in our society, Peter Bernstein argues that the notion of bringing risk under control is one of the central ideas that distinguishes modern times from the distant past. Against the Gods chronicles the remarkable intellectual adventure that liberated humanity from oracles and soothsayers by means of the powerful tools of risk management that are available to us today.
John C. MaxwellFail Forward: Turning Mistakes into Stepping Stones for SuccessSelf improvement10/23/2020The difference between average people and achieving people is their perception of and response to failure. Most people are never prepared to deal with failure. In Fail Forward: Turning Mistakes into Stepping Stones for Success, John C. Maxwell says that if you are like him, coming out of school, you feared it, misunderstood it, and ran away from it. But Maxwell has learned to make failure his friend, and he can teach you to do the same.
Ken KrimsteinThe Three Escapes of Hannah Arendt: A Tyranny of TruthComedy10/16/2020Compassionate and enlightening, playful and page-turning, New Yorker cartoonist Ken Krimstein's The Three Escapes of Hannah Arendt is a strikingly illustrated portrait of a complex, controversial, deeply flawed, and irrefutably courageous woman whose intelligence and "virulent truth telling" led her to breathtaking insights into the human condition, and whose experience continues to shine a light on how to live as an individual and a public citizen in troubled times.
Marilyn GistThe Extraordinary Power of Leader HumilityHumility10/9/2020On the most fundamental level, leaders must bring divergent groups together and forge a consensus on a path forward. But what makes that possible? Humility--a deep regard for the dignity of others--is the key. Leadership is a relationship, and humility is the foundation for all healthy relationships. Leader humility can increase engagement and retention. It inspires and motivates. Gist offers a model of leader humility derived from three questions people ask of their leaders: Who are you? Where are we going? Do you see me? She explores each of these questions in depth, as well as the six key qualities of leader humility: a balanced ego, integrity, a compelling vision, ethical strategies, generous inclusion, and a developmental focus.
Dr. Harry D. CohenBe the Sun, Not the SaltLeadership10/2/2020Be the Sun, Not the Salt puts the heliotropic effect, the tendency of living organisms to turn toward the sun, into human terms. Are you like the Sun on leaves of the plant, providing nourishment, encouraging growth and drawing people toward you? Or are you like salt on the plant's roots, causing others to wither, becoming less than they could be? Perhaps a bit of both? Be the Sun, Not the Salt will help you identify your behavior while providing common sense suggestions to improve your everyday relationships and encounters.
Doris Kearns GoodwinTeam of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham LincolnHistory9/25/2020Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln by Doris Kearns Goodwin is a multiple biography. William H. Seward, Salmon P. Chase, Edward Bates, and Abraham Lincoln all sought the Republican nomination for president in 1860. When Lincoln was selected, his opponents were disappointed and angry. But he won because he possessed an extraordinary ability to put himself in the place of other men, to experience what they were feeling, to understand their motives and desires. It was this capacity that enabled Lincoln as president to bring his disgruntled opponents together, create the most unusual cabinet in history, and marshal their talents to the task of preserving the Union and winning the war.
Ryan HolidayThe Obstacle Is the Way: The Timeless Art of Turning Trials into TriumphSelf improvement9/18/2020Based on Stoic philosophy. Stoics focus on the things they can control, let go of everything else, and turn every new obstacle into an opportunity to get better, stronger, tougher. As Marcus Aurelius put it nearly 2000 years ago: “The impediment to action advances action. What stands in the way becomes the way.”
Unvarnished: A Gimlet-Eyed Look at Life Behind the BarMemoir9/11/2020Unvarnished: A Gimlet-Eyed Look at Life Behind the Bar goes behind the scenes of The Varnish, the first important craft cocktail bar in Los Angeles, by its founder Eric Alperin and fellow bartender and veteran writer Deborah Stoll. The foundation of The Varnish’s success was attention to hospitality and an abiding belief in the nobility of service. The authors push back against the prevailing notion that working in the service industry is something people do because they failed at another career.
Joan DidionThe Year of Magical ThinkingGrief9/4/2020The Year of Magical Thinking by Joan Didion chronicles her first year coping with the sudden loss of her husband, John Gregory Dunne. It is considered the holy grail of grief books: it's raw, personal, and captures the experience of grief up close. While not a self-help text, the memoir format provides a powerful tool for those who are grieving.
W.H. MurrayThe Evidence of Things Not SeenBiography8/28/2020The Evidence of Things Not Seen is the autobiography of remarkable mountaineer, writer and environmentalist W.H. Murray. Murray's relationship with the outdoors was shaped as much by his time on the mountains as away from them. His early Scottish climbs were brought to a halt by the Second World War, which saw him spend three years as a Nazi prisoner of war. These years were devoted to not only to philosophical study, but also to writing his classic Mountaineering in Scotland not once, but twice, on toilet paper.
Jamil ZakiThe War for Kindness: Building Empathy in a Fractured WorldPsychology8/19/2020In The War for Kindness: Building Empathy in a Fractured World, Stanford pscychology professor Jamil Zaki shares cutting-edge research showing that empathy is not a fixed trait—something we’re born with or not—but rather a skill that can be strengthened through effort. He also tells the stories of people who embody this new perspective, fighting for kindness in the most difficult of circumstances.
Clifton Fadiman and John S. MajorThe New Lifetime Reading PlanClassics8/12/2020The New Lifetime Reading Plan provides readers with brief, informative and entertaining introductions to more than 130 classics of world literature. From Homer to Hawthorne, Plato to Pascal, and Shakespeare to Solzhenitsyn, the great writers of Western civilization can be found in its pages. In addition, this new edition offers a much broader representation of women authors, such as Charlotte Bront%, Emily Dickinson and Edith Wharton, as well as non-Western writers such as Confucius, Sun-Tzu, Chinua Achebe, Mishima Yukio and many others.
Will & Ariel DurantThe Lessons of HistoryHistory8/5/2020The Lessons of History is the result of a lifetime of research from Pulitzer Prize–winning historians Will and Ariel Durant. With their accessible compendium of philosophy and social progress, the Durants take us on a journey through history, exploring the possibilities and limitations of humanity over time. Juxtaposing the great lives, ideas, and accomplishments with cycles of war and conquest, the Durants reveal the towering themes of history and give meaning to our own.
Lisa Orbé-Austin & Richard Orbé-AustinOwn Your Greatness: Overcome Impostor Syndrome, Beat Self-Doubt, and Succeed in LifeSelf improvement7/29/2020Own Your Greatness: Overcome Impostor Syndrome, Beat Self-Doubt, and Succeed in Life will give you all the tools you need to recognize and overcome the impostor syndrome that is holding you back. Packed full of research- and therapy-backed exercises, prompts, and activities, this interactive workbook will help you: - Identify the root causes of your impostor syndrome- Recognize your natural skills and strengths- Gain the confidence to lead- Speak up for yourself- Feel comfortable receiving and giving praise
Kirk SavageStanding Soldiers, Kneeling Slaves: Race, War, and Monument in Nineteenth-Century AmericaHistory7/15/2020Standing Soldiers, Kneeling Slaves explores how the history of slavery and its violent end was told in public spaces―specifically in the sculptural monuments that came to dominate streets, parks, and town squares in nineteenth-century America. Looking at monuments built and unbuilt, Kirk Savage shows how the greatest era of monument building in American history took place amid struggles over race, gender, and collective memory.
Andy AndrewsThe Little Things: Why You Really Should Sweat the Small StuffSelf improvement7/8/2020Have you ever wondered why we spend so much time and energy thinking about the big challenges in our lives when all the evidence proves it’s actually the little things that change everything? In The Little Things: Why You Should Sweat the Small Stuff, Andy Andrews proves that it is in concentrating on the smaller things that we add value and margin.
DKArt That Changed the World: Transformative Art Movements and the Paintings That Inspired ThemArt History7/1/2020The very best of world art from cave paintings to Neoexpressionism. Iconic must-see works, such as Leonardo da Vinci’s Last Supper and Monet’s Waterlilies and less familiar artists and genres from all parts of the globe. Art That Changed the World covers the full sweep of world art, including the Ming era in China, and Japanese, Hindu, and Indigenous Australian art. It analyses recurring themes such as love and religion, explaining key genres from Romanesque to Conceptual art.
Anne LamottBird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and LifeJournalism6/24/2020Leadership, parenting, learning a new craft—it's all difficult. How are we to cope with it? In Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life, Maria Konnikova's favorite book on writing, author Anne Lamott recounts her brother leaving a major research project on birds to the night before it was due. He cries about the jam he's gotten himself into, wondering how he'll tackle the project. "Bird by bird," his father tells him. "Just take it bird by bird."
Leonard J. Marcus, Eric J. McNulty, Joseph M. Henderson, Barry C. DunnYou're It: Crisis, Change, and How to Lead When It Matters MostLeadership6/17/2020In You're It, the faculty of the National Preparedness Leadership Initiative at Harvard University takes you to the front lines of some of the toughest decisions facing our nation's leaders-from how to mobilize during a hurricane or in the aftermath of a bombing to halting a raging pandemic. They also take readers through the tough decision-making inside the world's largest companies, hottest startups, and leading nonprofits.
James BaldwinThe Fire Next TimeEssay6/10/2020It's shocking how little has changed between the races in this country in the last 60 years, when James Baldwin published The Fire Next Time, a coolly impassioned plea to "end the racial nightmare." A national bestseller when it first appeared in 1963, the book galvanized the nation, gave passionate voice to the emerging civil rights movement—and still lights the way to understanding race in America today.
Mike RoweThe Way I Heard ItHistory5/27/2020The Way I Heard It by Mike Rowe consists of thirty-five mysteries “for the curious mind with a short attention span.” Every one is a trueish tale about someone you know, filled with facts that you don’t. Movie stars, presidents, bloody do-gooders, and villains—they’re all here, waiting to shake your hand, hoping you’ll remember them. Mike is the natural successor to Paul Harvey, delivering each story in his signature blend of charm, wit, and ingenuity, their stories are part of a larger mosaic—a memoir full of surprising revelations, sharp observations, and intimate, behind-the-scenes moments drawn from Mike’s own remarkable life and career.
Laura Gassner OttingLimitless: How to Ignore Everybody, Carve Your Own Path and Live Your Best LifeSelf improvement5/20/2020Limitless: How to Ignore Everybody, Carve Your Own Path, and Live Your Best Life by Laura Gassner Otting is the permission slip you've needed to get yourself unstuck. It provides insight on how to break free of others' expectations of success and to focus on what makes you tick, to redefine success.
Bonus: I'm included as a case study.
Thomas BulfinchBulfinch's MythologyHistory5/13/2020Bulfinch’s Mythology offers approachable accounts of ancient legends in a compilation of the works of Thomas Bulfinch, banker and Latinist. This volume includes all three of Bulfinch’s original titles: The Age of Fable, The Age of Chivalry, and The Legends of Charlemagne. “Our work is not for the learned, nor for the theologian, nor for the philosopher, but for the reader of English literature...who wishes to comprehend the allusions so frequently made by public speakers, lecturers, essayists, and poets, and those which occur in polite conversation.”
Kim ScottRadical CandorManagement5/6/2020
Vincent Price and Mary PriceA Treasury of Great Recipes: 50th Anniversary EditionCookbook4/29/2020"Good cooking is where you find it," according to the authors of this unique collection, whose international smorgasbord ranges from the haute cuisine of Europe's finest restaurants to the juicy hot dogs at Dodger Stadium. In perhaps the first celebrity cookbook, famed actor Vincent Price and his wife, Mary, present mouthwatering recipes from around the world in simplified, unpretentious forms that anyone can make and enjoy. Selected from London's The Ivy, Madrid's Palace Hotel, New York's Sardi's, and other legendary establishments, the recipes are accompanied by witty commentaries, with garish color photos that capture 1965 as if in aspic.
David McCullough1776History4/22/2020Based on extensive research in both American and British archives, 1776 is a powerful drama written with extraordinary narrative vitality. It is the story of Americans in the ranks, men of every shape, size, and color, farmers, schoolteachers, shoemakers, no-accounts, and mere boys turned soldiers. And it is the story of the King’s men, the British commander, William Howe, and his highly disciplined redcoats who looked on their rebel foes with contempt and fought with a valor too little known.
Fred RogersDear Mister Rogers, Does It Ever Rain in Your Neighborhood?: Letters to Mister RogersLife4/17/2020Every question that a child or parent asks is important, and no one understood that better than Fred Rogers, the iconic television neighbor who visited our homes for decades. In this moving collection of letters to him and his replies, he encourages parents and teachers to cherish the questions and comments that come from children and crafts caring, thoughtful responses to them. With deep sensitivity and sincerity, he addresses real-life issues in chapters arranged by theme: his life, Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood, feelings and fears, family relationships, and even grief. Drawing on a lifetime of studying and considering healthy child development, this unique gathering of correspondence offers a timeless guide to childhood as well as parenting.
Benjamin FranklinPoor Richard's AlmanackBiography4/15/2020
Bruce FellerLife is in the Transitions: Mastering Change at Any AgeLife4/8/2020Our old stories, with their predictable plot points along linear paths, no longer hold true. The idea that we’ll have one job, one relationship, one source of happiness is hopelessly outdated. Yet many people feel overwhelmed by this change. Life is in the Transitions introduces the fresh, pressing vision of the nonlinear life, in which personal disruptions and lifequakes are becoming more plentiful, nontraditional life shapes are becoming the norm, and each of us has the opportunity to write our own story. Drawing on an extraordinary trove of insights, Feiler offers a powerful, new transition toolkit with original strategies for coping with the difficult, painful, or unsettling times of life.
Yuval Noah HarariHomo Deus: A Brief History of TomorrowCulture4/1/2020Predicting the profound changes we will undergo as technology becomes increasingly intertwined in our lives and bodies. What will replace famine, plague, and war at the top of the human agenda? As the self-made gods of planet earth, what destinies will we set ourselves, and which quests will we undertake? Homo Deus explores the projects, dreams and nightmares that will shape the twenty-first century—from overcoming death to creating artificial life. It asks the fundamental questions: Where do we go from here? And how will we protect this fragile world from our own destructive powers? This is the next stage of evolution.
Daniel StashowerTeller of Tales: The Life of Arthur Conan DoyleBiography3/25/2020The Life of Arthur Conan Doyle by Daniel Stashower examines the struggling provincial doctor who became the most popular storyteller of his age. From his youthful exploits aboard a whaling ship to his often stormy friendships with such figures as Harry Houdini and George Bernard Shaw, Conan Doyle lived a life as gripping as one of his adventures.
Dan HeathUpstream: The Quest to Solve Problems Before The HappenBusiness3/18/2020So often in life, we get stuck in a cycle of response. We put out fires. We deal with emergencies. We stay downstream, handling one problem after another, but we never make our way upstream to fix the systems that caused the problems. Upstream probes the psychological forces that push us downstream—including “problem blindness,” which can leave us oblivious to serious problems in our midst. And Heath introduces us to the thinkers who have overcome these obstacles and scored massive victories by switching to an upstream mindset.