Suggested One Read: The Secret Life of the Grown-up Brain

Book cover for The Secret Life of the Grown-up Brain by Barbara StrauchGood news! The middle-aged mind is more flexible and capable than previously thought. The nominator of Barbara Strauch’s “The Secret Life of the Grown-up Brain: The Surprising Talents of the Middle-aged Mind” simply states that this highly readable and well-researched book is “perfect for ages 20-100.”

Science writer Strauch explores the latest findings that demonstrate, through the use of technology such as brain scans, that the brain reorganizes and improves many important functions in middle-age. By detailing exactly the normal, healthy brain functions over time, Strauch also explains how its optimal processes can be maintained.

Older is better! How refreshing!

Want more reading recommendations? See other books nominated for One Read 2013.

Suggested One Read: The Cat’s Table

Book cover for The Cat's Table by Michael OndaatjeWe received two nominations for “The Cat’s Table” by Michael Ondaatje. One nominator shared her writing group’s fondness for this “beautiful and poetic” novel: “Universally, they loved the book, language and fascinating storyline.”

Ondaatje, author of the critically acclaimed “The English Patient,” tells the story of 11-year-old Colombo who boards a ship bound for England in the early 1950s. Looking back from adulthood, the narrator relates a tale about the magical, often forbidden, discoveries of childhood and a lifelong journey that begins unexpectedly with a sea voyage. Another nominator wrote, “There is much to discuss in this book: coming-of-age, loss of innocence, childhood experiences and their effects on an adult’s identity. Plus, an ocean journey!”

See other readers’ nominations for One Read 2013.

Suggested One Read: How to Read the Air

Book cover for How to Read the Air by Dinaw MengestuCritically acclaimed author Dinaw Mengestu describes the immigrant experience in hauntingly lovely prose in “How to Read the Air,” our next One Read nomination. This is the story of Jonas, who leaves behind his marriage and job in New York to recreate his mother and father’s road trip taken 30 years previously. Along the way he weaves together a family history that will take him from the war-torn Ethiopia of his parents’ youth to his life in the America of today.

Our nominator writes, “In gorgeous language, Mengestu explores the disintegration of relationships, the effects of abuse, the difficulties of immigration and the loss of one’s culture.”

Thank you to everyone who suggested books to be considered for the 2013 One Read program. As the reading panel begins its work, we will continue to highlight nominated titles so you can learn what others in the community are reading and discussing.

Thank You For Your Suggestions!

The Daniel Boone Regional Library has completed taking suggestions from the public for what one book the community should read in 2013. The One Read Reading Panel is working to narrow that list down to two or three titles for a public vote. On Monday, April 8 we will reveal the finalists, and you will have through April 26 to vote for your favorite. We will announce the winner on Monday, May 20.

In the meantime, we invite you to take a look at the nominated titles we’re highlighting to learn what others in the community are reading and discussing. Thank you to everyone who nominated a book!

Suggested One Read: Wild

Book cover for Wild by Cheryl StrayedOne of the first nominations we received this year was for the New York Times bestseller “Wild” by Cheryl Strayed. Ultimately, we heard from several readers who thought this memoir would make a great community-wide read.

One nominator writes, “Strayed’s memoir about the monumental wilderness test she put herself through after the death of her beloved mother is a riveting read that has the quality of a literary novel.” Another local reader calls the book “an inspiring read that will appeal to a variety of readers – folks who’ve lost a parent or struggled through a marriage, as well as outdoor enthusiasts. There’s something for everyone.”

Want to know what other books people in your community are discussing? See other readers’ nominations for One Read 2013!