This page is a listing, in no particular order, of the non-fiction books we are considering. Suggest more by sending an e-mail to the webmaster.
12 Rules for Life by Jordan B. Peterson
What does everyone in the modern world need to know? Renowned psychologist Jordan B. Peterson’s answer to this most difficult of questions uniquely combines the hard-won truths of ancient tradition with the stunning revelations of cutting-edge scientific research. Humorous, surprising and informative, Dr. Peterson tells us why skateboarding boys and girls must be left alone, what terrible fate awaits those who criticize too easily, and why you should always pet a cat when you meet one on the street. What does the nervous system of the lowly lobster have to tell us about standing up straight (with our shoulders back) and about success in life? Why did ancient Egyptians worship the capacity to pay careful attention as the highest of gods? What dreadful paths do people tread when they become resentful, arrogant and vengeful? Dr. Peterson journeys broadly, discussing discipline, freedom, adventure and responsibility, distilling the world’s wisdom into 12 practical and profound rules for life. 12 Rules for Life shatters the modern commonplaces of science, faith and human nature, while transforming and ennobling the mind and spirit of its readers.
23 Pines copies; 400 pages
In The Saint and the Sultan, Paul Moses recovers Francis’ s message of peace through the largely forgotten story of his daring mission to end the crusades. In 1219, as the Fifth Crusade was being fought, Francis crossed enemy lines to gain an audience with Malik al-Kamil, the Sultan of Egypt. The two talked of war and peace and faith and when Francis returned home, he proposed that his Order of the Friars Minor live peaceably among the followers of Islam–a revolutionary call at a moment when Christendom pinned its hopes for converting Muslims on the battlefield.
1 copy in PINES, 302 pages
Living “Illegal”: The Human Face of Unauthorized Immigration by Marie Friedmann Marquardt, Philip J. Williams, Timothy J. Steigenga
Moving far beyond stock images and conventional explanations, Living “Illegal” challenges our assumptions about why immigrants come to the United States, where they settle, and how they have adapted to the often confusing patchwork of local immigration ordinances. This revealing narrative takes us into Southern churches (which have quietly emerged as the only organizations open to migrants), into the fields of Florida, onto the streets of major American cities during the historic immigrant rights marches of 2006, and back and forth across different national boundaries—from Brazil to Mexico and Guatemala.
3 copies in PINES, 328 pages
Sifting through centuries of mythmaking, Reza Aslan sheds new light on one of history’s most influential and enigmatic characters by examining Jesus through the lens of the tumultuous era in which he lived: first-century Palestine, an age awash in apocalyptic fervor. Scores of Jewish prophets, preachers, and would-be messiahs wandered through the Holy Land, bearing messages from God. This was the age of zealotry–a fervent nationalism that made resistance to the Roman occupation a sacred duty incumbent on all Jews. And few figures better exemplified this principle than the charismatic Galilean who defied both the imperial authorities and their allies in the Jewish religious hierarchy.
86 copies in PINES, 296 pp
Blink: The Power of Thinking without Thinking by Malcolm Gladwell
How do we think without thinking, seem to make choices in an instant — in the blink of an eye — that actually aren’t as simple as they seem? Why are some people brilliant decision makers, while others are consistently inept? Why do some people follow their instincts and win, while others end up stumbling into error? And why are the best decisions often those that are impossible to explain to others? Drawing on cutting-edge neuroscience and psychology, the author reveals that great decision makers aren’t those who process the most information or spend the most time deliberating, but those who have perfected the art of filtering the very few factors that matter from an overwhelming number of variables.
109 copies in PINES, 277 pages
Civilization: The West and the Rest by Niall Ferguson
Western civilization’s rise to global dominance is the single most important historical phenomenon of the past five centuries
How did the West overtake its Eastern rivals? And has the zenith of Western power now passed? Acclaimed historian Niall Ferguson argues that beginning in the fifteenth century, the West developed six powerful new concepts, or “killer applications”—competition, science, the rule of law, modern medicine, consumerism, and the work ethic—that the Rest lacked, allowing it to surge past all other competitors.
12 copies in PINES
Life Is So Good by George Dawson
What makes a happy person, a happy life? In this remarkable book, George Dawson, a 101-year-old man who learned to read when he was 98, reflects on the philosophy he learned from his father—a belief that “life is so good”—as he offers valuable lessons in living and a fresh, firsthand view of America during the twentieth century.
Born in 1898 in Marshall, Texas, the grandson of slaves, George Dawson tells how his father, despite hardships, always believed in seeing the richness in life and trained his children to do the same. As a boy, George had to go to work to help support the family, and so he did not attend school or learn to read; yet he describes how he learned to read the world and survive in it. “We make our own way,” he says. “Trouble is out there, but a person can leave it alone and just do the right thing. Then, if trouble still finds you, you’ve done the best you can.”
At ninety-eight, George decided to learn to read and enrolled in a literacy program, becoming a celebrated student. “Every morning I get up and I wonder what I might learn that day. You just never know.”
39+ copies, 260 pages
An astonishing, never-before-told story of the Second World War, based on newly declassified documents and exclusive interviews.
In 1944 the OSS set out to recover more than 500 airmen trapped behind enemy lines in Yugoslavia. Classified for over half a century for political reasons, the full account of this unforgettable story of loyalty, self-sacrifice, and bravery is now being told for the first time.
28 copies in PINES, 313 pages
American Theocracy by Kevin Phillips
An explosive examination of the coalition of forces that threatens the nation, from the bestselling author of American Dynasty. In his two most recent bestselling books, American Dynasty and Wealth and Democracy, Kevin Phillips established himself as a powerful critic of the political and economic forces that rule—and imperil—the United States, tracing the ever more alarming path of the emerging Republican majority’s rise to power. Now Phillips takes an uncompromising view of the current age of global overreach, fundamentalist religion, diminishing resources, and ballooning debt under the GOP majority. With an eye to the past and a searing vision of the future, Phillips confirms what too many Americans are still unwilling to admit about the depth of our misgovernment.
Many copies available in PINES
Devil in the Grove: Thurgood Marshall, the Groveland Boys, and the Dawn of a New America by Gilbert King (Harper)
PINES – 27 copies
A richly detailed chronicle of racial injustice in the Florida town of Groveland in 1949, involving four black men falsely accused of rape and drawing a civil rights crusader, and eventual Supreme Court justice, into the legal battle.
The Dragons of Eden: Speculations on the Evolution of Human Intelligence by Carl Sagan
PINES – 33 copies
Dr. Carl Sagan takes us on a great reading adventure, offering his vivid and startling insight into the brain of man and beast, the origin of human intelligence, the function of our most haunting legends–and their amazing links to recent discoveries. “A history of the human brain from the big bang, fifteen billion years ago, to the day before yesterday…It’s a delight.”
Ideas and Opinions by Albert Einstein
The most definitive collection of Albert Einstein’s popular writings, gathered under the supervision of Einstein himself. The selections range from his earliest days as a theoretical physicist to his death in 1955; from such subjects as relativity, nuclear war or peace, and religion and science, to human rights, economics, and government.
The Glass Castle is a remarkable memoir of resilience and redemption, and a revelatory look into a family at once deeply dysfunctional and uniquely vibrant. When sober, Jeannette’s brilliant and charismatic father captured his children’s imagination, teaching them physics, geology, and how to embrace life fearlessly. But when he drank, he was dishonest and destructive. Her mother was a free spirit who abhorred the idea of domesticity and didn’t want the responsibility of raising a family.
The Walls children learned to take care of themselves. They fed, clothed, and protected one another, and eventually found their way to New York. Their parents followed them, choosing to be homeless even as their children prospered.
The Glass Castle is truly astonishing–a memoir permeated by the intense love of a peculiar but loyal family.