Norman Ollestad: Crazy for the Storm: A Memoir of Survival
I really loved this book. Ollestad lost his father at a young age, but his Dad never wasted a moment in loving him and pushing him to be the best he could be. While it was tough for the young Ollestad to take, ultimately that push is what saved his life when the plane he was in with his father crashed into the side of a mountain.
Matthew B. Crawford: Shop Class as Soulcraft: An Inquiry Into the Value of Work
It's hard to argue with Crawford, but this can be a somewhat cynical ride that ultimately may leave the average information worker feeling a bit down.
Christopher McDougall: Born to Run: A Hidden Tribe, Superathletes, and the Greatest Race the World Has Never Seen
Quite frankly this could be the best book I've read in the last 3 months. It inspired me to get up and go running, and if you don't feel the same way after reading it you're probably already dead.
Malcolm Gladwell: Outliers: The Story of Success
I've read a lot of books about people trying to reach success, Gladwell uses his unique ability to look from a different angle at how success happens. You won't regret reading it.
Greg Mortenson: Three Cups of Tea: One Man's Mission to Promote Peace . . . One School at a Time
Mortenson has to be one of the most inspirational but least known people of our times. His story is one that will be told over and over again, how it's truly possible for one person to make a real difference.
Michael Lewis: The Blind Side: Evolution of a Game
Lewis has started to turn telling unlikely sports stories into an art form. So much so that this book seemed almost too slick. But that doesn't make it any less inspirational and heart-warming.
Nando Parrado: Miracle in the Andes: 72 Days on the Mountain and My Long Trek Home
Even if you have read "Alive" or seen the movie don't miss reading Parrado's breathtaking memoir of his survival on the mountain and since returning home. He lost both his sister and mother in the accident and his views on the preciousness of life and what pulled him through this horrendous ordeal is inspirational.
Malcolm Gladwell: What the Dog Saw: And Other Adventures
A collection of good stories from Gladwell, well worth picking up if you enjoyed his other books.
Bob Parks: Makers: All Kinds of People Making Amazing Things In Garages, Basements, and Backyards.
Just as much fun as the magazine. Highly recommended.
Jonathan Mahler: Ladies and Gentlemen, the Bronx Is Burning: 1977, Baseball, Politics, and the Battle for the Soul of a City
History of 1977 in New York City. I liked this although it's very ambitious in it's breadth. Is there any doubt that New York is the greatest city on earth? (****)