Books That Rock

All Titles May Be Clicked On and Purchased From Amazon


July’s People by: Nadine Gordimer

Gordimer’s Nobel Prize Profile

If you haven’t read Gordimer yet, you’ll want to soon. July’s people is an exploration of what happens when apartheid forces people to examine who they really are deep down inside.


Into Thin Air by Jon Krakauer

Krakauer’s Writing Site

The book about the 1996 perilous Everest climb that left many people dead and others scarred for life. I wanted to go climb mountains after this because the book grabbed me. I truly felt the emotion of the families and listened to the advice gained by those who lived to tell their harrowing tale.


Into The Wild by Jon Krakauer

Take a journey on the wild side with Krakauer as he follows wistful Chris McCandless and his path to find himself. Some part of you will want to go along with Chris, although you’ll see through his mistakes and probably wish you could have helped him.


Nothing To Envy by: Barbara Demick

Not many books have grabbed my attention like this one. If you’ve ever wondered what it was like to be inside the walls of North Korea, you want to read this book.


Waiting For the Barbarians by: J.M. Coetzee

Coetzee’s Nobel Prize Site

If you’ve ever wondered if those you encounter every day are truly barbaric, then read this novel. The real barbarians are not who you think they are.


Mountains Beyond Mountains by: Tracy Kidder

This book will make you feel what it’s like to be in Haiti, one of the poorest countries in the world. The medical miracles performed with few supplies and the struggle to get medical supplies to those who need them most.


Breath, Eyes, Memory by: Edwidge Danticat

Writers of the Caribbean Site

Never forget that the way you treat people lasts a lifetime. Danticat is one of the world’s best writers and if you haven’t read her yet, this is the one to read first.


Super Rich by: Russell Simmons

I heard about the zen-like book Simmons wrote and I wondered what a rap music mogul would have to say about advice. It’s less about the money and much more about how to make crucial changes in one’s life, especially in the way one thinks about things.

The Lives of Ants by: Laurent Keller & Elisabeth Gordon

I discovered this book at the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History in Washington, D.C. It is fascinating how ants organize and accomplish more per microgram than perhaps any other creature on earth. There’s no question this book delivers on ants and their talents.


An Invisible Thread by: Laura Schroff

An absolutely wonderful story of a business executive that notices an 11-year old young man on the street and makes the commitment to care for him. The commitment lasts years and they’re still close today. Not to be missed.

Always By My Side by: Jim Nantz

Sportscaster Jim Nantz has written a personal and touching story about his own father. It should make everyone reconsider how they’ll feel when their parents reach those last few months of life.


People of the Book by: Geraldine Brooks

Geraldine Brooks Official Site

The story of the Sarajevo Haggadah and its origins. Wars over thousands of years have impacted the document, yet it survives and passes its toughest challenge yet in this compelling work of fiction.

Cosmic Jackpot: Why Our Universe Is Just Right For Life by: Paul Davies

A scientific telling of the birth of our universe. Interesting space/time continuum concepts including string theory.


Water For Elephants by: Sara Gruen

Gruen’s Official Page

Main character Jacob Jankowski’s journey with the circus. During the novel, you’ll be immersed in the circus and finding pity with several characters who are tragically doomed.


The Brief, Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by: Junot Diaz

Junot Diaz Home

Oscar, ghetto nerd from New Jersey, takes on his constantly moving imagination, his neighborhood, and the world (well, the world at least in his mind). If you haven’t read Junot Diaz, one of the world’s best young(er) writers, you’ve been missing out.


Tinkers by: Paul Harding

Pulitzer Profile For Tinkers

A younger man reunites with his father who won’t make it much longer. He expects little, but actually recovers himself in only the way nature could assist.


Freak The Mighty by: Rodman Philbrick

Mr. Philbrick’s Site

I first read this book in my classes 12 years ago and I still love going back through it. Mismatched in every way, yet great friends forever, Kevin and Max inhabit their world in their own way.


Happiness: A Philosopher’s Guide by: Frederic Lenoir

Ever wonder if greater happiness is out there for you? This book will set out a path to explain where happiness exists, where it doesn’t, and where you might find it if you look.


Four Fish by Paul Greenberg

Paul Greenberg Official Site

The world really is running out of fish and the gene pool is highly corrupt. Greenberg discusses four main fish that people eat and the impact people are having on the environment. If you thought global warming was bad….


Shadows on the Gulf by: Rowan Jacobsen

Rowan Jacobsen’s Offical Site

When big oil meets wetlands, it’s not a good scenario. Jacobsen profiles the results of the BP oil spill on Gulf wetlands, oyster beds, the livelihoods of those who make their living from the land. After you read this, you’ll wish BP’s fine was higher than it actually was.


Stronger by: Jeff Bauman

Jeff Bauman’s Site

You don’t know you know Jeff Bauman, but you do. He’s the guy who owned the artery being pinched by the man in the cowboy hat at the Boston Marathon bombing. I say no more — this is Bauman’s story in his words.


Driven by: Donald Driver

Driver’s Official Site

One of the best receivers ever for the Packers, Driver tells us his story from start to finish. The story was full of both potholes and glory and Driver wants us to know it all.

Go Long by: Jerry Rice

Jerry Rice Official Site

Once you read about this famous receiver’s life, you’ll be ready to go out and work. I’m not sure working harder is possible, but please try!


The Blue Sweater by: Jacqueline Novogratz

Acumen, Novogratz’ Company

How to tackle global poverty? Novogratz takes it on here.


From Beirut To Jerusalem by: Thomas Friedman

Thomas Friedman Official Site

Friedman’s journeys in the Middle East are both threatening and enlightening. I learned much about this area from this book.

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