The Book of Joy

The  Book of Joy Book Cover

Nobel Peace Prize winners, His Holiness the Dalai Lama and Archbishop Desmond Tutu have survived more than fifty years of exile and the soul-crushing violence of oppression. Despite their hardships—or, as they would say, because of them—they are two of the most joyful people on the planet. In April 2015, Archbishop Tutu traveled to the Dalai Lama's home in Dharamsala, India, to celebrate His Holiness's eightieth birthday and to create what they hoped would be a gift for others. They looked back on their long lives to answer a single burning question: How do we find joy in the face of life's inevitable suffering? They traded intimate stories, teased each other continually, and shared their spiritual practices. We are privileged to listen as they explore the Nature of True Joy and confront each of the Obstacles of Joy—from fear, stress, and anger to grief, illness, and death. They then offer us the Eight Pillars of Joy, which provide the foundation for lasting happiness. This is truly one of those books that can change your life.

The Martian

The Martian Book Cover

My husband and I took this book on CD with us on our honeymoon road-tripping through Alaska and, let me tell you, it was so gripping we didn't want to leave our car. On our honeymoon. In Alaska. This book on CD was (almost) as good as Alaska!

Working Stiff: Two Years, 262 Bodies, and the Making of a Medical Examiner

Working Stiff: Two Years, 262 Bodies, and the Making of a Medical Examiner Book Cover

The content of this book will certainly not be for everyone. However, it will not disappoint. The book follows Judy Melinek's journey as a Medical Examiner, along with her husband T.J. Mitchell, who followed her around the country and became a stay-at-home Dad, supporting her every step of the way. In heartbreaking detail, Dr. Melinek explains what it was like being a Medical Examiner in New York City on September 11th, 2001. Her story is extremely impactful and sheds light on the unseen and often unknown struggles that come with being a Forensic Pathologist. With a sprinkle of dark humor, this is an insightful book you won’t soon forget.

Being Elmo

Being Elmo Book Cover

This documentary is a beautiful insight to the wonderful world of Sesame Street and puppeteering. Beautifully done and really enjoyable.

Nimona

Nimona Book Cover

One of my favorite graphic novels. Is Nimona a villain or a heroin? Read to find out…

The Scorpio Races

The Scorpio Races Book Cover

It happens at the start of every November: the Scorpio Races. Riders attempt to keep hold of their water horses long enough to make it to the finish line. Some riders live. Others die. At age nineteen, Sean Kendrick is the returning champion. He is a young man of few words, and if he has any fears, he keeps them buried deep where no one else can see them. Puck Connolly is different. She never meant to ride in the Scorpio Races, but fate hasn’t given her much of a chance. So she enters the competition — the first girl ever to do so. She is in no way prepared for what is going to happen.

August: Osage County

August: Osage County Book Cover

Meryl Streep and Julia Roberts are outstanding as mother and daughter in this story about family dynamics, dysfunction and addiction in the rural US. The drama is enthralling, bordering on disturbing, and the performances are unforgettable.

Flipped

Flipped Book Cover

Julianna likes Bryce, but Bryce doesn't like Julianna. Six years pass. Julianna stops liking Bryce. And—wait for it—Bryce now likes Julianna. Each chapter switches off between Julianna and Bryce which allows us to understand the story as it develops from their different perspectives. This is a very quick read that is amusing, sweet, heart-warming, and fun.

Woman in Gold

Woman in Gold Book Cover

WOMAN IN GOLD is the remarkable true story of a woman who overcame great odds with the help of an improbably young lawyer, and righted a wrong that had stood for decades. Sixty years after fleeing Vienna during World War II, Maria Altmann (Helen Mirren), an elderly Jewish woman, begins a journey to reclaim family possessions seized by the Nazis. She embarks upon a major battle which takes them all the way to the heart of the Austrian establishment and the U.S. Supreme Court. Among the possessions is Gustav Klimt’s famous painting, Portrait of Adele Bloch Bauer I, a portrait of her beloved Aunt Adele, which has become a national treasure: an Austrian Mona Lisa.

Salt to the Sea

Salt to the Sea Book Cover

9,400 people died, the largest loss of life in a single ship sinking in history! This story is unimaginable. It's gripping. It's haunting. It's about survival and the relationships that unfold during trauma.