Books of Interest Part IV: 2020 Fall Reading Recommendations
For the past few years, we have curated a list of our employees’ favorite reads. We are back again with Part Four of our Books of Interest. So if you are looking to be captivated by a story or have already binged your way through your streaming watch list, here is a list of nine books that our employees found interesting to share with you. To check out even more book recommendations, here are parts one, two, and three of our Books of Interest blog posts: Part One, Part Two, and Part Three.
Maybe in Another Life by Taylor Jenkins Reid
Have you ever wondered if your life would have gone a different way if you chose another path? This book follows the life of Hannah a young woman whose life depends on one decision of staying out with friends or going home. The twist is you get to see each decision play out and how that could change your entire life. This novel perfectly allows for fate and free will to overlap into a beautiful conclusion.
– Recommended by: Sophia L.
Welcome To Temptation by Jennifer Crusie
The pandemic has made going to the bookstore and library impossible so I decided to reread some of the books I own. I wanted something light and funny. Since going away on vacation is out of the question, I wanted a beach read that would whisk me away to somewhere exotic. I wound up in Temptation, Ohio, and could not be happier. Welcome to Temptation by Jennifer Crusie has a little bit of mystery, a little bit of romance, and a whole lot of laughs. The main character, Sophie, is trying to walk the straight and narrow, but her family is kind of crooked. Sophie came to Temptation, Ohio to help her sister make a movie. Now she’s making trouble for the town council, in love with the mayor, and involved with a murder.
Sheltering in place just got a lot more fun.
– Recommended by: Liz J.
Bad Blood by John Carreyrou
How does a Silicon Valley startup become valued at over $1 billion on nothing more than unfulfilled promises and smoke screens? Bad Blood dives into the deceitful history of Theranos and its rise to fame despite never delivering on the technological advances the company was formed to create.
– Recommended by: Zach P.
Making Things Right by Ole Thorstensen
This is a great little book by a Norwegian master carpenter just describing his thoughts and documenting one of his jobs in Oslo. At its core, it’s a love letter to the trade that he has spent so many years devoted to. It talks about the feelings of accomplishment, annoyances of competing against others who will sacrifice quality, working as part of a crew. While not all of us share the same trade as Ole, we can take his book and apply a lot of his thoughts to our own world and draw parallels. It is a quick and easy read and recommended for anyone who takes pride in what they do as a profession.
– Recommended by: Keith A.
November 9 by Colleen Hoover
“It took four years for me to finally fall completely in love with him. It only took four pages to stop.”
Fallon meets Ben, an aspiring novelist, the day before her scheduled cross-country move. Their untimely attraction leads them to spend Fallon’s last day in L.A. together and her eventful life becomes the creative inspiration Ben has always sought for his novel. Before Fallon leaves for NYC, they make a promise to continue to meet on the same day each year – November 9 – without any additional contact. No texts, no calls, no emails. This works out well, until one day Fallon becomes unsure if Ben has been telling her the truth or fabricating a perfect reality for the sake of the ultimate plot twist.
Hoover does a wonderful job pacing this love story born of tragedy and gives us time to get to know these characters slowly and organically while simultaneously allowing us to come up with a few different scenarios in our head on how the truth will be revealed.
– Recommended by: Jennifer W.
Extreme Ownership: How U.S Navy Seals Lead and Win, by Jocko Willink and Leif Babin
This book, written by retired Navy Seal officer Jocko Willink, and former Navy Seal officer Leif Babin, is a manual on how to be an effective leader who leads his team to win. Both of the authors write about leadership strategies they learned while fighting in the Iraq war and how those strategies apply to life and business. The main theme that runs throughout the book is ownership, in order for your team to win, you, as the leader or subordinate, need to take ownership of everything your team does. If your team misses a deadline, it’s your fault. If a subordinate doesn’t perform a task correctly it’s your fault. If a worker doesn’t understand the bigger picture or why he is doing a certain task, it’s your fault, because as the leader it’s your responsibility to ensure all of these things are understood and executed correctly. When you fail as a leader, you need to have humility, admit you did something wrong and make a plan to fix it. I found this book to be a better read on management and leadership than the two business classes I had to take in college.
– Recommended by: Micah H.
Tender Grace by Jackina Stark
Audrey Easton awakes at three in the morning and gets up to retrieve her husband, Tom, from the recliner where he has fallen asleep watching a ball game. But when she enters the living room and looks at his gentle face in the soft lamplight, she knows their time together is over. Grief attacks her until all she can think about is how much she wants her old life back. Determined to find healing, she embarks on a journey to the one place Tom and she always intended to visit but never did. Along the way, she discovers, through shared experiences with friends old and new, the meaning of the “tender graces” God provides each and every day.
– Recommended by: Linda C.
The Accidental President: Harry S. Truman and the Four Months that Changed the World by A. J. Baime
This 2017 book begins with the sudden death of Franklin Roosevelt on April 12, 1945, and suddenly thrusts Vice President Harry Truman into the Oval Office and is immediately faced with decisions that change the course of history. The book recounts Truman’s very simple beginnings in Independence, Missouri through his time as the junior senator from Missouri to the surprise appointment as Roosevelt’s running mate in the 1944 presidential election. In the first 120 days of his presidency he deals with the end of the war in Europe, the start of the cold war in Eastern Europe and Asia, the birth of the United Nations, and the decision on how to end the war with Japan; whether to use the ultimate weapon that will kill 100,000s of Japanese citizen in a flash and set the world on a brand new course or send an estimated 500,000 American fighting men to their deaths on an invasion of the Japanese homeland that could extend the war for several more years.
Although a historical account of the spring and summer of 1945, this 464-page book reads like a novel and is hard to put down. Don’t be afraid of the length because a good portion of the book is the bibliography and notes sighting the author’s sources. This book gave me a much greater respect for our 33rd President.
– Recommended by: Pat O.
Love, Medicine & Miracles by Bernie S. Siegel
The title of the book I am recommending is Love, Medicine & Miracles by Bernie S. Siegel. Dr. Siegel, or Bernie as he likes his patients to address him, explains the importance of the relationship between the physician and the patient and the effect it has on the success of their treatment. He also explores why some very ill patients” will themselves to live” despite the odds are against them.
– Recommended by: Mary G.