Now Reading

If we’re talking about #management, I’m likely to ask if you watch The Walking Dead, or if you’ve read The Age of Innocence.  Here’s How I Read About #Management. tl;dr:  whatever literature or media I’m consuming may wind up in a workplace discussion.  Also, there’s a lot of crappy content out there.

When I read something really, really good — and here I mean, true and useful in practice — it might wind up on my #management syllabus.

This reading list is broad, and updated on a rolling basis.  To see how this all fits together, to the extent that it does:  please join my monthly newsletter!

January, 2018

  • My Side of the Mountain, by Jean Craighead George (library) – re-reading this YA classic
  • Into the Wild, by Jon Krakauer (library) – re-reading

November, 2017

  • The Encore Career Handbook: How to Make a Living and a Difference in the Second Half of Life, by Marci Alboher (library)
  • Future Home of the Living God, by Louise Erdrich (library)
  • A Simple Act of Gratitude: How Learning to Say Thank You Changed My Life, by John Kralik (library)
  • Too Fat, Too Slutty, Too Loud:  The Rise and Reign of the Unruly Woman, by Anne Helen Petersen (library)

October, 2017

  • The Clockwork Dynasty, by Daniel H. Wilson (library)
  • The Best Kind of People, by Zoe Whittall (library)
  • Earthseed:  The Parable of the Sower and the Parable of the Talents, by Octavia Butler (library)
  • North of Boston, by Elizabeth Elo (library)
  • Priceless:  The Myth of Fair Value (and How to Take Advantage of It) by William Poundstone (library)
  • Be Fierce:  Stop Harassment and Take Your Power Back, by Gretchen Carlson (galley)
  • Nomadland:  Surviving America in the 21st Century, by Jessica Bruder (library)

September, 2017

  • The Perfect Stranger, by Megan Miranda (library)
  • All the Missing Girls, by Megan Miranda (library)
  • Electric Arches, by Eve Ewing (library)
  • Fifty-five, Unemployed, and Faking Normal: Your Guide to a Better Life,* by Elizabeth White (library)
  • Falling Upward:  A Spirituality for the Two Halves of Life, by Richard Rohr (library)
  • Great on the Job:  What to Say, How to Say It.  The Secrets of Getting Ahead, by Jodi Glickman (library)
  • E is for Evidence, by Sue Grafton (library)
  • Sulfur Springs, by William Kent Krueger (library)
  • Tropic of Kansas, by Christopher Brown (library)
  • Men Without Work:  America’s Invisible Crisis*, by Nicholas Eberstadt (library)

*Read these two consecutively, chilling

August, 2017

  • Grace Period:  A Memoir in Pieces, by Kelly Baker (Amazon — I don’t find a library link for it on WorldCat, weird?)
  • “D” is for Deadbeat, by Sue Grafton (library)
  • The Peripheral, by William Gibson (library)
  • Against Empathy: The Case for Rational Compassion, by Paul Bloom  (library)
  • Miss Manners Minds your Business, by Judith Martin; Nicholas Ivor Martin (library)
  • Hamilton, the Revolution: Being the Complete Libretto of the Broadway Musical, with a True Account of its Creation, and Concise Remarks on Hip-hop, the Power of Stories, and the New America, by Jeremy McCarter; Lin-Manuel Miranda (library)

July, 2017

  • Hunger:  A Memoir of (My) Body, by Roxane Gay (library)
  • Camino Island, by John Grisham (library)
  • The Force, by Don Winslow (library)
  • C is for Corpse, by Sue Grafton (library)
  • B is for Burglar, by Sue Grafton (library)
  • A is for Alibi, by Sue Grafton (library)
  • Savages, by Don Winslow (library)
  • The Dawn Patrol, by Don Winslow (library)
  • Way Down on the High Lonely, by Don Winslow (library)
  • The Trail to Buddha’s Mirror, by Don Winslow (library)
  • Sea Power:  the History and Geopolitics of the World’s Oceans, by James Stavridis (library)
  • Out of Bounds, Val McDermid (library)
  • Make Your Bed:  Little Things That Can Change Your Life, by William McRaven (library)
  • You Are A Badass: How to Stop Doubting Your Greatness and Start Living an Awesome Life. (eAudiobook), by Jen Sincero (library)
  • The Fact of a Body: a Murder and a Memoir, by Alexandria Marzano-Lesnevich (library)
  • Then We Came to the End, by Joshua Ferris (library)*
  • Formative Years in Business: A Long-Term AT&T Study of Managerial Lives (library)
  • A Cool Breeze on the Underground, by Don Winslow (library)

*summer reading about work

June, 2017

*summer reading about work

May, 2017

  • American War, by Omar El Akkad (library)
  • The Assistants, by Camille Perri (library)*
  • Originals:  How Non-Conformists Move the World, by Adam Grant (library)
  • Marathon, by Brian Freeman (library)
  • The Manager’s Legal Handbook, by Lisa Guerin (library)**
  • The Employer’s Legal Handbook, by Fred Steingold (library)**
  • Employment Law:  The Essential HR Desk Reference, by Lisa Guerin (library)**
  • Your Rights in the Workplace:  An Employee’s Guide to Fair Treatment by Barbara Kate Repa  (library)**
  • Do What You Love And Other Lies About Success and Happiness, by Miya Tokumitsu (library)
  • American Hookup:  The New Culture of Sex on Campus, by Lisa Wade (library)
  • The Manager’s Path:  A Guide for Tech Leaders Navigating Growth and Change, by Camille Fournier (library)

*summer reading about work

**reference books; I did not read them from cover-to-cover.

April, 2017

  • The Ocean at the End of the Lane, by Neil Gaiman (library)
  • See You in the Cosmos, by Jack Cheng (library)
  • Startup, by Dorree Shafrir (library)*
  • Liars’ Club, by Mary Karr (library)
  • A Deadly Thaw, by Sarah Ward (library)
  • In Bitter Chill, by Sarah Ward (library)
  • Steal Like an Artist, by Austin Kleon (library)
  • Show Your Work!: 10 Ways to Share Your Creativity and Get Discovered, by Austin Kleon (library)

*Disclosure:  I received a free review copy; it’s also one of my summer reading recommendations, about work

March, 2017

  • The Fever, by Megan Abbott (library)
  • Dare Me, by Megan Abbott (library)
  • Sister Outsider:  Essays and Speeches, by Audre Lorde, audio version read by Robin Eller (Library)
  • Lower Ed:  The Troubling Rise of For-Profit Colleges in the New Economy, by Tressie McMillan Cottom (Library)

February, 2017

  • Silence of the Lambs, by Thomas Harris (Library)
  • Outline, by Rachel Cusk (Library)
  • Transit, by Rachel Cusk (Library)
  • Shift by Hugh Howey (Library)
  • Dietland, by Sarai Walker (Library)

January, 2017

  • Dust, by Hugh Howey (Library)
  • Idaho:  a novel, by Emily Ruskovich (Library)
  • Feminist Fight Club : an Office Survival Manual (for a Sexist Workplace), by Jessica Bennett, Saskia Wariner, Hilary Fitzgerald Campbell (Library)
  • The War of Art:  Winning The Inner Creative Battle**, by Steven Pressfield (Audio – Library) (Book – Library)
  • The Artist’s Way:  25th Anniversary edition**, by Julia Cameron (Library)
  • Out on the Wire:  The Storytelling Secrets of the New Masters of Radio, by Jessica Abel (Library)
  • Becoming Wise:  An Inquiry Into the Mystery and Art of Living, by Krista Tippett (Audio – Library)
  • Changeology:  5 Steps to Realizing your Goals and Resolutions, by John C Norcross, Kristin Loberg, Jonathon Norcross (Library)
  • Wool, by Hugh Howey (Library)


December, 2016

  • Much of my reading time for rest of this year will be finishing — or formally giving up on — some books I’ve half-read.  Or so I say on December 1; there’s always the lure of the new!
  • The Three-Body Problem, by Cixin Liu (Library) (Amazon)
  • Written in the Stars, Aisha Saeed (Library) (Amazon)
  • Homecoming (podcast)
  • The Mothers:  A Novel, by Brit Bennett (Library) (Amazon)

November, 2016

October, 2016

  • Time Travel: A History, by James Gleick (Library) (Amazon)
  • Never Can Say Goodbye:  Writers on Their Unshakeable Love for New York, Sari Botton, editor (Library) (Amazon)
  • The Handmaid’s Tale, by Margaret Atwood (Library) (Amazon) (I actually re-read a yellowing 1980s Fawcett Crest paperback I had on a shelf at home)

September, 2016

  • How to Be a Person in the World:  Ask Polly’s Guide Through the Paradoxes of Modern Life, by Heather Havrilesky (Library) (Amazon)
  • Out on a Wire, Jessica Abel’s excellent podcast series on stories.
  • Talking from 9 to 5: how women’s and men’s conversational styles affect who gets heard, who gets credit, and what gets done at work, by Deborah Tannen.  (Library) (Amazon)

August, 2016

  • First, Break all the Rules, What the World’s Greatest Managers Do Differently, by Gallup Press, Marcus Buckingham  (Library) (Amazon) (NB: I’m reading the library version, via NYPL; it’s is an earlier version than the Kindle edition.)
  • Surrender, New York, by Caleb Carr (Library) (Amazon)
  • Missing, Presumed, by Susie Steiner (NYPL) (Amazon)
  • Hillbilly Elegy:  A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis, by J.D. Vance  (NYPL) (Amazon)
  • The Happiness Project:  Or, Why I Spent a Year Trying to Sing in the Morning, Clean My Closets, Fight Right, Read Aristotle, and Generally Have More Fun
    by Gretchen Rubin (NYPL) (Amazon)
  • Thanks for the Feedback:  The Science and Art of Receiving Feedback Well, by Douglas Stone and Sheila Heen (NYPL) (Amazon)
  • The 8th Habit:  From Effectiveness to Greatness, by Stephen R. Covey (NYPL) (Amazon)

July, 2016

June, 2016

  • The Zombies Are Coming!  The Realities of the Zombie Apocalypse in American Culture, by Kelly J. Baker (Amazon)
  • Rashomon, Akira Kurosawa (NYPL) (Amazon)
  • Disrupted, by Dan Lyons (NYPL) (Amazon)
  • Lafayette in the Somewhat United States, by Sarah Vowell (NYPL) (Amazon)
  • Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance, by Angela Duckworth (NYPL) (Amazon)

May, 2016

April, 2016

  • Consequence:  a Memoir, by Eric Fair (NYPL) (Amazon)
  • The Turnaround Kid: What I Learned Rescuing America’s Most Troubled Companies, by Steve Miller (NYPL) (Amazon)
  • Managing Oneself, by Peter Drucker (audio) (NYPL) (Amazon)
  • Managing Oneself, by Peter Drucker  (article, HBR, requires subscription)
  • Bright-sided: How the Relentless Promotion of Positive Thinking Has Undermined America, Barbara Ehrenreich  (NYPL) (Amazon) (h/t Casey Gollan)

March, 2016

  • Black Cloud, directed by Ricky Schroder (Amazon, DVD) (stream on YouTube)
  • Coach, Michael Lewis (audio) (NYPL) (Amazon)
  • Coach, Michael Lewis (ebook) (NYPL) (Amazon)
  • The Man Who Loved Books Too Much: The True Story of a Thief, a Detective, and a World of Literary Obsession, Allison Hoover Bartlett. (NYPL) (Amazon)
  • Eat the Document, by Dana Spiotta (NYPL) (Amazon)
  • Everyday Bias:  Identifying and Navigating Unconscious Judgments in our Daily Lives, by Howard Ross  (NYPL) (Amazon) (h/t Jeremy Sierra and this list)
  • Ashley Milne-Tyte’s podcast The Broad Experience. Episodes 19, 24, 42, 52 and 77, came up when Ashley and I talked about “expertise.”  Audio of this conversation will be available to my newsletter subscribers on March 5!

February, 2016

  • The Heart Goes Last, by Margaret Atwood  (NYPL) (Amazon)
  • Sick in the Head: Conversations About Life and Comedy, by Judd Apatow (NYPL) (Amazon)
  • Girl Through Glass:  A Novel, by Sari Wilson (NYPL) (Amazon)
  • The Fog of War [videorecording]:  Eleven Lessons from the Life of Robert S. McNamara, produced/directed by Errol Morris (NYPL) (Amazon) (recommended by Gary Chou)
  • The Unknown Known, directed by Errol Morris (NYPL) (Amazon)
  • Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear (audiobook), by Elizabeth Gilbert (NYPL) (Amazon)
  • How Buildings Learn: What Happens After They’re Built, by Stewart Brand (NYPL) (Amazon)  (Recommended by Jason Li)
  • Citizen:  An American Lyric, by Claudia Rankine (NYPL) (Amazon)
  • The Children Act, by Ian McEwan (NYPL) (Amazon)
  • Forgive and Remember: Managing Medical Failure, 2d edition, by Charles L. Bosk (Library) (Amazon)
  • Deep Work:  Rules for Focused Success in a Distracted World, by Cal Newport (NYPL) (Amazon)

January, 2016

  • The Rabbit Back Literature Society, by Pasi Ilmari Jääskeläinen; translated from the Finnish by Lola M. Rogers (NYPL) (Amazon)
  • What I Talk About When I Talk About Running: a Memoir, by Haruki Murakami; translated from the Japanese by Philip Gabriel (NYPL) (Amazon) (Recommended by Alex Li.)
  • Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail, (audiobook) by Cheryl Strayed (NYPL) (Amazon) (Gah, the Kindle ebook has highlights with Oprah’s comments.  A Visit From The Goon Squad comes to mind.   Save us.)
  • The Girl on the Train:  a Novel, by Paula Hawkins (NYPL) (Amazon)
  • The Passage: a Novel, by Justin Cronin (NYPL) (Amazon) (h/t Jeremy Sierra)
  • The Twelve:  a Novel, by Justin Cronin (NYPL) (Amazon) (h/t Jeremy Sierra)
  • The Children’s Crusade: A Novel, by Ann Packer (NYPL) (Amazon)
  • Not That Kind of Girl:  A Young Woman Tells You What She’s “Learned,” by Lena Dunham.  (NYPL) (Amazon)
  • Jerry Useem’s Atlantic “back catalogue” (Atlantic)
  • The Half has Never Been Told: Slavery and the Making of American Capitalism, by Edward E. Baptist (NYPL) (Amazon)

December, 2015

  • Mother Night, by Kurt Vonnegut (NYPL) (Amazon)
  • Between the World and Me, by Ta-Nehisi Coates (NYPL) (Amazon)
  • The Dead Zone, by Stephen King (NYPL) (Amazon)
  • Mindwise: How we Understand What Others Think, Believe, Feel, and Want, by Nicholas Epley (NYPL) (Amazon)
  • Destined to lead : executive coaching and lessons for leadership development, by Karol M. Wasylyshyn. (NYPL) (Amazon)
  • Becoming an Exceptional Executive Coach: Use Your Knowledge, Experience, and Intuition to Help Leaders Excel, by Michael Frisch, Robert Lee, Karen L. Metzger, Jeremy Robinson, Judy Rosemarin (Amazon) (Not currently available at the NYPL)
  • The Whites : a novel, by Richard Price writing as Harry Brandt (NYPL) (Amazon)
  • Make Me: A Jack Reacher Novel, by Lee Child (NYPL) (Amazon)

November, 2015

  • The Grownup, by Gillian Flynn.  (NYPL) (Amazon)
  • The Art of Asking: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Let People Help, by Amanda Palmer (audio recording) (NYPL) (Amazon)
  • Keywords: A Vocabulary of Culture and Society, by Raymond Williams (NYPL – onsite use) (Amazon)
  • New Keywords: A Revised Vocabulary of Culture and Society, by Tony Bennett, Lawrence Grossberg, Meaghan Morris (NYPL – onsite use) (Amazon)
  • The One-Straw Revolution:  An Introduction to Natural Farming, by Masanobu Fukuoka (NYPL) (Amazon)  (Thanks to my unnamed client for the recommendation.)
  • The Lucifer Effect: Understanding How Good People Turn Evil, by Philip Zimbardo  (NYPL) (Amazon)
  • The life-changing magic of tidying up: the Japanese art of decluttering and organizing, by Marie Kondo.  (NYPL) (Amazon)
  • In July, I decided to read every one of Lee Childs’ Jack Reacher books before year end.   I’m on target.  Currently on book 19:  Personal.  (NYPL) (Amazon)

The NYPL has an amazing ebook and audiobook catalog.  If you’re a New Yorker, you can read much of what I’ve read here — from your sofa, for free.  Tip the NYPL here!