"Books are the quietest and most constant of friends,
and the most patient of teachers."
-- Charles W. Eliot
We often think about summer reading being the latest pot-boiler or bodice-ripper but some of the following recommendations are for non-fiction books and some aren't exactly light reading. One new recommendation that came my way last week was M.J. Ryan's Trusting Yourself: How to Stop Feeling Overwhelmed and Live More Happily with Less Effort. If you like the title, you'll love the book ... and the format which is a series of short readings designed for our overwhelmed world. Read this book and learn what's right with you ... and maybe even learn to say "no" to the legions of choices and time demands that face you every day.
While we're on books, the opening quote set off a flood of memories about what I've learned from books. Specific things such as the quantum physics Naina Redhu mentions below and principles and values that come from fiction and non-fiction books. It's clear that I would not be the person I am if it weren't for hundreds of books. It is a good time to say thanks to all those sung and unsung authors.
A question for us might be: What book influenced most your life? Please add your comments below.
I'm reading the best book on leadership that I have ever read. It's called Inspire! What Great Leaders Do by Lance Secretan. It talks about leaders as being servants to employees rather than "managing" employees. He says that by allowing employees to fit their purpose, calling, and cause into their work, they become inspired, which will translate into better customer service and will increase the bottom line. He cites examples of companies that have experiecned turnarounds based on what he calls "higher ground leadership".
And that's just one small part of what he talks about. Basically, his recommendations puts the humanity back into corporate work. I think it should be required reading!
From Cheney, Brian [Brian.Cheney@kaisertwd.com]
The First American: the Life and Times of Benjamin Franklin by HW Brands -- easily the best biography I've ever read
The Elegant Universe by Brian Greene -- very readable text on the (relatively) current state of physics, string theory, etc.
Eat, Drink, and be Healthy - the Harvard Medical School Guide to Healthy Eating by Walter Willett -- readable, detailed, based on studies of thousands
Eats, Shoots, and Leaves: The Zero Tolerance Approach to Punctuation by Lynne Truss -- light, humorous, entertaining...punctuationophiles, unite!
From Gene Spencer [firstname.lastname@example.org]
I found The Art of Possibility: Transforming Professional and Personal Life to be a wonderful book for a "summer read". The messages and stories that have been woven together by Rosamund Stone Zander and her husband Benjamin Zander (conductor of the Boston Philharmonic Orchestra) delighted, inspired and energized me. Each chapter opened a new door to the world for me.
From Corey R. Turnbull [email@example.com]
I'm about half way through The Ecology of Commerceby Paul Hawkin. I am increasingly interested in issues of sustainability in commerce, industry, and daily life and this book is a good reminder
of why. I reccommend it to anyone who cares about the environment, and especially anyone who doesn't :)
From Naina Redhu [firstname.lastname@example.org]
I am already done with The Da Vinci Code - excellent - I read it in one go. Also read Angels and Demons by Dan Brown and next on line are Deception Point and Digital Fortress. Although Dan Brown gets a little disappointing - predictable actually - if you've read Da Vinci Code before the others, nonetheless all these books are great as far as gaining knowledge is concerned. I had no clue whatsoever about "anti-matter" and "particle accelarators" before I read Angels and Demons and now I can say "I know what you're talking about!"!