Today is National Read A Book Day! So we asked our bloggers to tell us what their favorite book is and if they would recommend it to our lovely readers. Here is what everyone came up with:
Gary Boucher, Spirituality Blogger
My feeling as a lifelong lover of books is that if you truly are one, you can’t pick just one! One of my professors in college liked to ask incoming freshmen students to name the books that had “changed their lives”; and that’s a little easier, since it’s a list. And I wouldn’t have to sort between fiction, non-fiction, poetry, science, spirituality, etc. But since I have to name just one book, I’m going to say Hermann Hesse’s Siddhartha. (I apologize to all of the other great writers who have moved me over the years.) Why that one? There are so many reasons. Here are a few of them: It’s simple, beautiful, lyrical writing. The way that a Western writer perceives and captures the essence of someone who is arguably the greatest spiritual figure of the Eastern world, and bridges those worlds. The even-handed way it treats both material and spiritual concerns. The lessons it provides for any young person who is sensitive and intelligent and full of questions growing up, who can’t just accept the status quo, like the title character. The book served that purpose for me when I first read it in high school, as it did for a generation of young people. And the way it holds up through repeated readings, as great literature can do. I recommend it to anyone at any age who is wrestling with those kinds of questions, and especially to those considering the relationship between religion and spirituality. Siddhartha is a profound meditation on all of that. Enjoy!
Alexandra Nyman, Editor in Chief
One book that always provides me with comfort whenever I am missing home is “The Coalwood Way” by Homer Hickam. “The Coalwood Way” Is Homer’s second memoir of three and it describes his youth and journey to becoming a NASA engineer. Like myself, Homer grew up in a small town and had huge dreams. Since his youth, he did everything he could to achieve his dreams. Homer’s story always served as a reminder that no matter how difficult things may seem in my life, as long as I held onto my goals, I would be able to come out on the other end of them.
Nicole Arzt, Sobriety Specialist
As a therapist, I read self-help books like it’s my job (pun intended), but Radical Forgiveness by Colin Tipping has dramatically changed the way I understand myself, others, and the world around me. This book outlines how to transcend uncomfortable emotions like fear and hatred into ones that mirror love, gratitude, and acceptance. This book challenges what you think you know about ‘letting go’ and introduces a radical process for overflowing healing.
Randi Newton, Interview Specialist
It’s difficult for me to pick just one book and author. I immediately think of Neil Strauss. He’s written something that nearly any age demographic can enjoy. He has interviewed rock stars and how to survive the end of the world, and about how to improve relationships with others, most importantly-oneself. He could write about brewing a pot of coffee and make it sound like the most fascinating experience. I enjoyed THE TRUTH which was recently released over the summer. In addition to being an amazing author, Neil Strauss has integrity and compassion for others.
Deiona Monroe, Self-Love/ Self-Care and Healthy Eats Guide
One of the things that I have been needing to address in my life is my financial intelligence and stability. Not knowing how to work with money and not having a real understanding of it really began messing with me physically, emotionally and mentally. Though I didn’t like talking about the M-word, I knew it was something that I needed to address or it would continue to harm me. So, luckily I discovered Suze Orman. Within her book The Money Book for the Young, Fabulous and Broke, Orman takes the frightening and confusing topics the surround money and transform them into a reading that is not only educational, but relatable. She effectively and efficiently broke down and explained information on things I never heard of or needed more information about. The book covers:
- Credit score and all things related to it.
- Credit cards: the good, the bad and the benefits.
- Career advice.
- Student loans.
- How to save.
- How to invest.
- How to get a car.
- How to get a home.
- Insurance and family.
What I love most is that Orman doesn’t just cover these topics, but she provides specific scenarios and situations that are extremely realistic to the life of a young adult, trying to get life started and understand money much more; when reading this, I felt as though Orman pulled out a microscope on my life. The book comes with extra tips and a glossary of all the terms she uses, just to give the reader even further clarification on the subjects discussed. Overall, if you are on the journey of financial intelligence and stability—such as myself—please pick up a copy.
Mark Nyman, Short Stories and Poetry Guru
My favorite book is a bit of a behemoth in the literary world, and I wouldn’t recommend it unless you are looking for a challenge—a very rewarding challenge. James Joyce’s Ulysses has stuck with me ever since I took my first senior seminar on it during my years as an undergraduate. The novel has a simple plot: the day in the life of Leopold Bloom, an advertiser, and Stephen Daedalus, a young poet. The whole novel takes place over the course of one day. The challenge comes from Joyce’s complex writing style and his experimentation with various literary techniques. Underneath the experimentation and puzzle work of the novel is a story about history, home, family, and love. It’s an extraordinary read with something different to find each time you read.
Cara Davis, Fitness and Wellness Blogger
“The best books …. are the ones that tell you what you already know”
- George Orwell 1984
1984 by George Orwell is not only #1 on my reading list, but it is also a novel that has changed the way I look at life. 1984 was written for analytical readers and seekers of truth. The book sheds light into social and political issues. It leaves you questioning the truth of the world, your authenticity, and what it really means to be human.
We hope these book selections will inspire you to pick up a book today in honor of National Read a Book Day! Let us know what your favorite book is in the comments below!