Summer is officially over. As fall looms, my wish list is bombarding me with the season’s most-anticipated literary heavyweights.
This fall will have you sticking to your reader 24/7 – whether you’re the local bookstore frequenter or the one practically glued to your Kindle.
With the likes of bestselling authors Malcolm Gladwell (“Blink”, “Outliers”, “The Tipping Point”, “What the Dogs Saw”), Elizabeth Gilbert (“Eat, Pray, Love”, “Committed”), Mitch Albom (“Tuesdays with Morrie”, “The Five People You Meet in Heaven”, “The Time Keeper”), and Dave Eggers (“What is the What”, “Zeitoun”, “A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius”), I’m filling my nightstand with to-reads that the publishing world has been buzzing about.
Looking back in my schooldays, I fed my chick-lit addiction with heavy doses of dreams to live out the fiction.
Eventually, they become a reality. Now I have the most loving boyfriend in the world.
Growing up in the information-age, I slowly began to love science and anything of nature, mostly because I’m fascinated by the factual accounts that will lead me to ultimate truths, ultimate realities that apply for me and for everyone else. So it might come as no surprise that I fill my cupboard with three times as much nonfiction as my fiction books.
Despite the change, I still flip through the crafted fantasies just for the heck of it. Sometimes they open doors and challenge the limits of your imagination.
Without further ado, here are my 10 literary picks for you fellow bookworms to enjoy through the season:
1. Man Repeller: Seeking Love, Finding Overalls
by Leandra Medine
What it’s about: Think full-length jumpsuits, fringed boots, and shoulder pads: Women today find that dressing in fashion-forward items often sends men running to the hills. Despite her endless ordeals, the 23-year-old voice of famed fashion blog The Man Repeller navigates through the sartorial substance with her signature sass, numerous punch lines, and a cutting wit.
2. Knocking On Heaven’s Door
by Katy Butler
What it’s about: This might be the closest thing you can pick up for a guide on “how to die”. Modern medicine paves its way through technological breakthroughs that aims to maximize longevity, but most of us overdo it. Before we know it, we might be arriving the end of life at the risk of our own terms. Building on the concept of ‘slow medicine’ explored in her New York Times Magazine story, “Good Deaths”, award-winning journalist visits the intersection between pain – the natural, and suffering – the self-inflicted, of living as she meditates on the uneventful deaths of her parents.
3. David and Goliath: Underdogs, Misfits, and the Art of Battling Giants
by Malcolm Gladwell
What it’s about: By now, avid Gladwell readers would expect anything observed through his keen eyes is sure to provoke our minds. It’s easy to see how he got his inspiration for his fifth book, “David and Goliath”, as we look back through his previous bestsellers, particularly from his research on successful people in “Outliers”. Starting off his discourse retelling the classic victory of little David over the monstrous Goliath, Gladwell challenges his readers to probe the hidden advantages of being the belittled one and examine closely the dynamics of every adversity that comes our way. Having drawn upon multiple stories from the courses of history, politics, modern scientific findings, and other areas of living, Gladwell’s latest page-turner is said to shed new light on experiencing setbacks, uncovering “the hidden rules that shape the balance between the weak and the mighty, the powerful and the dispossessed.”
4. The Many Lives of Miss K: Toto Koopman – Model, Muse, Spy
by Jean-Noël Liaut & Denise Raab Jacobs
What it’s about: Twentieth-century European scene evokes a distinctive memory of the nonconforming model-turned-spy Catharina “Toto” Koopman (1908-1991), an iconic and inspiring beauty who lived a series of tragic and surprising events. Forever led under her free spirit, multi-hat-wearing Toto, who owed her exotic looks to her Dutch father and Indonesian mother, was described as “fiercely protective of her independence, was sought after by so many but ultimately known by very few,” mysteriously gliding through the worlds of fashion, art, politics in the quest to follow her many passions, namely archaeology, with tremendous audacity and poise. Noted for her collaboration with the Allies during the Second War, “she was a living mystery, at the same time as she was a social animal,” says co-author Jean-Noel Liaut on his subject to Stylezza. “Toto was full of interesting contradictions. She embraced tradition while also rejecting it.”
5. Focus: The Hidden Driver of Excellence
by Daniel Goleman
What it’s about: In today’s pervasive use of communication technologies, attention is scarce. We have all the distractions we need around us to demotivate us and shorten our spans. With “Focus”, pioneering author and psychologist on emotional intelligence Daniel Goleman returns to the increasingly limited resource and suggests that our laser-sharp focus is the essence of high performance. Backed by multiple case studies, Goleman provides a variety of practical ways we can sharpen our saws, such as meditation and the harness of positive emotions, to truly excel at work and in life.
6. Eat Move Sleep: How Small Changes Lead to Big Changes
by Tom Rath
What it’s about: From the bestselling author of “StrengthsFinder 2.0” and “Wellbeing: The Five Essential Elements” comes a well-rounded piece that promises to change how we think, feel, and act everyday. Gathering an array of information that tells how we eat, move, and sleep have deep-seated impacts on us and our immediate decision-making process, Rath’s comprehensive guidebook might just be the only reference you’ll ever need to make a difference in your life – starting with making better choices in the little things.
7. The Rosie Project
by Graeme Simsion
What it’s about: In his debut novel, Australian IT consultant-turned-writer Graeme Simsion tells the hilarious and endearing tale of Don Tillman, a middle-aged professor of genetics, who sets out to find the love of his life. He began naively with “The Wife Project” – a 16-page questionnaire strictly designed to identify the most accurate criterions for his future wife, until everything changed when he met the Rosie, who he deemed as a “non-compatible” at first. Armed with her own quest to find her biological father, the pair made friends as the DNA expert immerses himself into “The Father Project” to help Rosie, only to find that the art of love will never be realized even with the most sophisticated scientific approach.
8. The Circle
by Dave Eggers
What it’s about: The tech world has been buzzing over McSweeney’s and 826 Valencia founder Dave Eggers and his upcoming technothriller for its implications to the modern state of the web and how the most powerful internet company (Goo-ahem-gle) may just be plotting evil plans. Described as “heart-racing novel of suspense, raising questions about memory, history, privacy, democracy, and the limits of human knowledge,” the book addresses the ongoing controversies over privacy with the tech empire’s universal operating system, which links users’ personal information across all existing accounts and platforms, “resulting in one online identity and a new age of civility and transparency”.
9. The Signature of All Things
by Elizabeth Gilbert
What it’s about: Densely researched and an epic product of ambition, “Eat, Pray, Love” author Elizabeth Gilbert goes back to the craft of novel after twelve years of endeavoring her nonfiction bestsellers. In the book, Gilbert delves into the fundamental human thirst for knowledge by taking readers back to the height of the Enlightened 19th-century era, through the eyes of a young and brilliant botanist, Alma Whittaker. Ahead of her time, she was challenged with all she’s ever known when she met and fell in love with an artist named Ambrose Pike. An intersection of the author’s passion for science, art, travel, Gilbert’s latest opus draws an unforgettable heroine who’s willing to go across lengths of the world while singlehandedly driven by her deep curiosity for the signature of all things, one who realizes she is a maker of history, and markedly described as “a woman of the Enlightened Age who stands defiantly on the cusp of the modern.”
10. The First Phone Call From Heaven
by Mitch Albom
What it’s about: How would you react if one day you receive a phone call from the afterlife? That’s exactly what happens in a small-town Coldwater on Lake Michigan, where citizens answer calls from deceased souls and simply can’t tell the distinction between a miracle and a hoax. Whether you believe it or not, the internationally-acclaimed author of “Tuesdays with Morrie” and “The Five People You Meet In Heaven” is back with moving (and haunted) characters, on love and its boundless powers, and the principles of faith.
So. Which one of these releases has your inner bookworm taken a liking in? Share your reads for fall in the comments section below!