Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Who's On Top: Nonfiction

Top 5 Nonfiction:
Hardcover :
1. Lean In, by Sheryl Sandberg with Nell Scovell
2. Happy, Happy, Happy, by Phil Robertson with Mark Schlabach
3. Let's Explore Diabetes With Owls, by David Sedaris
4. Unbroken, by Laura Hillenbrand
5. I Wear The Black Hat, by Chuck Klosterman
#Spotlight: 
I Wear The Black Hat
by Chuck Klosterman 

Chuck Klosterman has walked into the darkness. As a boy, he related to the cultural figures who represented goodness—but as an adult, he found himself unconsciously aligning with their enemies. This was not because he necessarily liked what they were doing; it was because they were doing it on purpose (and they were doing it better). They wanted to be evil. And what, exactly, was that supposed to mean? When we classify someone as a bad person, what are we really saying (and why are we so obsessed with saying it)? How does the culture of deliberate malevolence operate? 

In I Wear the Black Hat, Klosterman questions the modern understanding of villainy. What was so Machiavellian about Machiavelli? Why don’t we see Bernhard Goetz the same way we see Batman? Who is more worthy of our vitriol—Bill Clinton or Don Henley? What was O. J. Simpson’s second-worst decision? And why is Klosterman still haunted by some kid he knew for one week in 1985?

Masterfully blending cultural analysis with self-interrogation and imaginative hypotheticals, I Wear the Black Hat delivers perceptive observations on the complexity of the antihero (seemingly the only kind of hero America still creates). I Wear the Black Hat is a rare example of serious criticism that’s instantly accessible and really, really funny. Klosterman continues to be the only writer doing whatever it is he’s doing.

Paperback:
1. Proof Of Heaven, by Eben Alexander
2. Wild, by Cheryl Strayed
3. Outliers, by Malcolm Gladwell
4. Unbreakable, by Jenni Rivera with Marissa Mateo
5. The Glass Castle, by Jeannette Walls
#Spotlight: 
How Children Succeed 
by Paul Tough 

Why do some children succeed while others fail?

The story we usually tell about childhood and success is the one about intelligence: Success comes to those who score highest on tests, from preschool admissions to SATs.

But in "How Children Succeed," Paul Tough argues for a very different understanding of what makes a successful child. Drawing on groundbreaking research in neuroscience, economics, and psychology, Tough shows that the qualities that matter most have less to do with IQ and more to do with character: skills like grit, curiosity, conscientiousness, and optimism.

"How Children Succeed" introduces us to a new generation of scientists and educators who are radically changing our understanding of how children develop character, how they learn to think, and how they overcome adversity. It tells the personal stories of young people struggling to say on the right side of the line between success and failure. And it argues for a new way of thinking about how best to steer an individual child – or a whole generation of children – toward a successful future.

This provocative and profoundly hopeful book will not only inspire and engage readers; it will also change our understanding of childhood itself.

E-Book:
1. Proof Of Heaven, by Eben Alexander
2. Lean In, by Sheryl Sandberg with Nell Scovell
3. A Thousand Days In Tuscany, by Marlena De Blasi
4. Bossypants, by Tina Fey
5. Unbreakable, by Jenni Rivera with Marissa Mateo
#Spotlight:
A Thousand Days In Tuscany
by Marlena De Blasi

They had met and married on perilously short acquaintance, she an American chef and food writer, he a Venetian banker. Now they were taking another audacious leap, unstitching their ties with exquisite Venice to live in a roughly renovated stable in Tuscany.

Once again, it was love at first sight. Love for the timeless countryside and the ancient village of San Casciano dei Bagni, for the local vintage and the magnificent cooking, for the Tuscan sky and the friendly church bells. Love especially for old Barlozzo, the village mago, who escorts the newcomers to Tuscany’s seasonal festivals; gives them roasted country bread drizzled with just-pressed olive oil; invites them to gather chestnuts, harvest grapes, hunt truffles; and teaches them to caress the simple pleasures of each precious day. It’s Barlozzo who guides them across the minefields of village history and into the warm and fiercely beating heart of love itself.

A Thousand Days in Tuscany is set in one of the most beautiful places on earth–and tucked into its fragrant corners are luscious recipes (including one for the only true bruschetta) directly from the author’s private collection.

Disclaimer: All blurbs come from Goodreads.com, all list come from NYTimes.com.

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