Book Review: Can’t Hurt Me: Master Your Mind and Defy the Odds by David Goggins

I read Can’t Hurt Me as part of the 12 Months of Reading Goodness challenge. February is the month to let a loved one pick a book for you to read and so I asked my husband to do that. When you ask a self-help book junkie to pick your next read, chances are you’ll be reading a self-help book, which is what happened to me. I designed the challenge to help people get out of their reading comfort zone, and this is certainly something I wouldn’t have chosen for myself, so it worked in that respect. Continue reading

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Book Review: Educated by Tara Westover

This is a book that lived up to its hype. Educated has graced numerous bestseller lists, was a finalist for several awards, and made the rounds through endless book clubs and it’s easy to see why. Tara Westover’s memoir about her childhood as a Mormon survivalist would probably be gripping enough as its own story. But the second chapter of her life, in which the self-educated author attends both Cambridge and Harvard, is equally astounding. Continue reading

Book Review: The Library Book, by Susan Orlean

There is a lot to like about The Library Book. Author Susan Orlean chronicles the 1986 fire that devastated the Los Angeles Central Library, at the same time using it as a vehicle to explore the history of the library, the mission and future of libraries in general, and share her own poignant history and relationship with libraries. Continue reading

Book Review: Factfulness: Ten Reasons We’re Wrong About the World – and Why Things Are Better Than You Think, by Hans Rosling

The title of this book says it all. This is a fact based look at the world, and the facts show that, on the whole, the world is improving in most key areas, including education, income and life expectancy. Written by a gifted storyteller and accomplished scientist, Factfulness is a powerful antidote to people’s tendency to think that the sky is perpetually falling. Continue reading

“American Fire: Love, Arson and Life in a Vanishing Land”, by Monica Hesse

Sad, strange events are brought to life in Monica Hesse’s “American Fire”. Hesse takes what would probably be just an average true crime story and elevates it to something more by providing social, economic and historic context. The result is a very interesting and sometimes sympathetic look at a crime wave that shook a small Virginia community. Continue reading