Category Archives: Book Recommendations

5 Powerful Books to Improve Your Life


Quiz time: Can you name Newton’s first law of motion?

No? (Don’t feel bad, I had to look it up, too.)

Newton declared, “Every object in a state of uniform motion tends to remain in that state of motion unless an external force is applied to it.”

In other words, if you are flying in the International Space Station and toss an apple out the window (come on, use your imagination), it will keep going in that same direction forever, unless something stops it (like a planet, gravity or alien life form).

Although Newton was talking about physics, little did he know he was also describing life.

People tend to move in the same direction as they always have unless some external force is applied. I don’t know about you, but I don’t want my life to be lived in a straight line. I want to change, to improve, to…

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From Post-Punk to Piketty: Summer Reading Recommendations from Policy Professors

The Public Policy & Governance Review

Alexandra Steindorff

With the school year coming to an end, I put out a call to University of Toronto’s School of Public Policy and Governance faculty asking them to share some reading suggestions for the summer. The response was enthusiastic and, as there were no guidelines or rules to follow, professors responded with single titles or more ambitious lists. Not surprisingly, the list compiled is long, challenging at times (it was inevitable that someone would recommend Thomas Piketty’s Capital in the 21st Century) and diverse, with a rich mixture of fiction, non-fiction, and even some film recommendations. Collectively, the titles assembled provide intellectual stimulation, while also showcasing the SPPG faculty’s love of reading. If you need some inspiration for your summer reading list, or if you just want to know what books are on the respective night tables of SPPG faculty, read on!

Pam Bryant:arrival city

Doug Saunders,  Arrival…

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Miyazaki Recommends


(via falling-inlove-with-books🙂

Hayao Miyazaki’s 50 Recommended Books:

1. « The Little Prince – Antoine de Saint-Exupéry (1943)

2. « Il Romanzo di Cipollino – Gianni Rodari (1956)

3. « The Rose and the Ring – William Makepeace Thackeray (1854)

4. « The Little Bookroom- Eleanor Farjeon (1955)

5. « The Three Musketeers – Alexandre Dumas (1844)

6. The Secret Garden -Frances Eliza Hodgson Burnett (1909)

7.  The Treasure of the Nibelungs – G.Schalk (1953)

8.  Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland – Lewis Carroll (1865)

9.  The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes – Arthur Ignatius Conan Doyle (1891)

10. A Norwegian Farm » Marie Hamsun (1933)

11. Конёк-горбунок – Пётр Па́влович Ершо́в (1834)

12. Souvenirs entomologiques – Jean-Henri Casimir Fabre (1879-1907)

13. Toui Mukashi no Fushigina Hanashi-Nihon Reiiki – Tsutomu Minakami (1995)

14. Иван-дурак – Leo Tolstoy (1885)

15. Eagle of the Ninth -Rosemary Sutcliff (1954)

16. Winnie-the-Pooh – A. A. Milne (1926)

17. Les Princes du Vent – Michel-Aime Baudouy (1956)

18. When Marnie Was There – Joan G Robinson (1967)

19. The Long Winter – Laura Ingalls Wilder (1940)

20. The Wind in the Willows – Kenneth Grahame (1908)

21. The Ship That Flew -Hilda Lewis (1939)

22. Flambards – Kathleen Wendy Peyton (1967)

23. Tom’s Midnight Garden – Ann Philippa Pearce (1958)

24. The Adventures of Tom Sawyer – Mark Twain (1876)

25. Chumon no Ooi Ryouriten – Kenji Miyazawa (1924)

26. Heidi – Johanna Spyri (1888)

27. Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea – Jules Verne (1870)

28. The Borrowers- Mary Norton (1952)

29. Devatero pohádek – Karel Čapek  (1931)

30. Swallows and Amazons – Arthur Ransome (1930)

31. The Flying Classroom – Erich Kästner (1933)

32.  Robinson Crusoe – Daniel Defoe (1719)

33. Treasure Island- Robert Louis Stevenson (1883)

34.  Двена́дцать ме́сяцев – Samuil Marshak (1943)

35. Tistou les pouces verts – Maurice Druon (1957)

36. The man who planted the welsh onions –  Kim Soun (1953)

37. Strange Stories from a Chinese Studio – Pu Songling (1740)

38. The Voyages of Doctor Dolittle – Hugh John Lofting (1922)

39. Journey to the West – Wú Chéng’ēn (1500~?)

40. Little Lord Fauntleroy – Frances Eliza Hodgson Burnett (1886)

41. From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler -Elaine Lobl Konigsburg (1968)

42. Alla vi barn i Bullerbyn – Astrid Lindgren (1947)

43. The Hobbit, or There and Back Again » J.R.R. Tolkien (1937)

44. A Wizard of Earthsea -Ursula K. Le Guin (1968)

45. The Little White Horse -Elizabeth Goudge (1946)

46. Bylo nas pet- Karel Polacek (1969)

47. City Neighbor: The Story of Jane Addams – Clara Ingram Judson (1951)

48. The Radium Woman – Eleanor Doorly (1939)

49.  The Otterbury Incident – Cecil Day-Lewis (1948)

50. Hans Brinker or The Silver Skates -Mary Mapes Dodge (1865)

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The Top Fantasy Books To Get Any Beginner Interested In The Genre | Huffington Post


The fantasy genre can be daunting — magic, creatures, and unpronounceable names can seem, well, a bit weird to people who haven’t read those kinds of books before. However, as millions upon millions of fans know, there’s something to be said for the escapism and sense of wonder that a fantastical novel can provide.

There’s also the question of size to consider. One glance at hefty high-fantasy series like Lord of the Rings (approximately 1,200 pages altogether) and Game of Thrones (4,228 pages and counting) can intimidate even the most avid of readers. But rest assured, not all fantasy novels are as massive and terrifying.

Whether you’re new to fantasy, or even new to reading for pleasure, there is always a point A from which to start. In this hypothetical scenario, consider “Game of Thrones” point D.

Here are some fantasy trilogies, series and standalone novels that can get you…

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9 Books that can change your life


  1. The Giver by Lois Lowry


This book takes us into Jonas’ world, where there is no pain and everything is controlled. Until he turns 12, which is when he learns that there is pain, and fear, and passion, and emotions that he’s never experienced before.

Ultimately, this book has the gift of reminding you that life is pain, but that is what makes life so wonderful. We make choices that may be the wrong ones, but they give our life purpose.

  1. The Fault in our stars by John Green


Warning: This book will make you weep and weep, until there’s no more weeping left to do and all you’re left with are the characters, story, and beautiful language that will inevitably inspire you to live life and really enjoy every moment.

  1. Life of Pi by Yann Martel


Much as the book cover suggests, there’s a tiger, and this is the…

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Writing the Rails


We are, without a doubt, a culture of lists.

There are Bestseller lists, Bucket Lists, Shit Lists and Grocery Lists.  Get on the internet and you’ll find lists of the Top Ten Foods to Avoid,  Eight Ways to Find Happiness, Seven Ways to Get More Sex (none of which work, by the way) and so on.

Lists are everywhere, and my favorite lists generally have to do with books.  Not long ago the List Ten Books That Somehow Impacted Your Life challenge went viral on Facebook and now, this time of year, you can find lists of the scariest and/or creepiest books to read during this scariest of seasons.

So if you haven’t seen any of those lists, I thought I would direct you towards a couple here in this post.   Perhaps you’ve read some (or most) of the books on these lists. There are always books you forget about reading…

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Huffington Post Article: Novels for Every Personality Type

Here is a quick snippet of the snippet of the article:

“Recommending books is a tricky business. One person’s trashy romance novel is another person’s treasure. Of course, a little background on a person’s reading preferences can come in handy, but sometimes deciphering tastes can seem like an arbitrary and headache-inducing task. Still, we’re willing to bet that like-minded people enjoy similar stories — That’s where Myers-Briggs comes in.”

To see the book recommendations as well as the rest of the article, please click here:

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It's A Small Film World, After All!

Salinger (2013)_0


An unprecedented look inside the private world of J.D. Salinger, the reclusive author of The Catcher in the Rye.

Why It’s A Staff Pick:

Forget what you know about JD Salinger, no matter how much or how little you know about him, for a moment. Even if you’ve never read his work, like myself, if you know at least a thing or two about literature history you should know somethings about him. You’d know that he was highly reclusive for the majority of his life, that he wrote one of the most controversial yet critically praised novels of all time (“Catcher in the Rye”), and you’d probably know that his main character from “Catcher” Holden Caulfield’s quote-unquote unique ideals inspired Mark David Chapman to assassinate John Lennon. This movie is included in my Staff Picks list because if you don’t know much or anything about Salinger and want to…

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