Number the Stars, by Lois Lowry

Find in catalogThis book is about a girl and her Jewish best friend growing up in Denmark during the German occupation in the early 1940s. It’s also about the Resistance movement that helped many Jewish people escape to Sweden to avoid being relocated to concentration camps. I believe this is a great book for children to introduce them to learning about the Holocaust and World War II. I also think adults will find this book to be good and a quick read. One of my favorite parts was the afterward at the end because the author explained how she included the stories of real people who lived there during that time. I haven’t read this book in a long time, and I found it in my box of other books I had in storage. It was well worth the read.

Smart Money Smart Kids: Raising the next generation to win with money, by Dave Ramsey and Rachel Cruze

Find in catalogI’ve heard of Dave Ramsey’s books through friends, and this was my first one. Although I do not have children right now, I was curious to see what his thoughts are on raising kids to be money-smart. He offers a thorough teaching plan for parents who have kids of all ages and how parents can lead by example. Some of his methods are what my parents used with me and my siblings, and they worked. I recommend this book to anyone rasing children or grandchildren and want advice on how to teach them how to use money wisely.

Callings: The Purpose and Passion of Work, by David Islay

Find in catalog“Callings: The Purpose and Passion of Work” is a another StoryCorps book I read this summer. It’s a collections of transcribed short interviews of people talking about jobs and careers. This book was a quick read. It had a variety of touching stories that showed people’s commitment to their occupations. I recommend this book to people who like to learn about people’s lives, and who like to read short stories.

Views from Our Shoes: Growing Up with a Brother or Sister with Special Needs, edited by Donald Meyer

Find in CatalogThis book is a collection of short entries from children who have a sibling who has special needs, such as autism, Down syndrome, ADD, PDD, cerebral palsy, and others that I had never heard of before. I picked out this book because I have a sister who has autism. I wish I would have read this when I was younger because I would have learned that other kids my age were going through the same experiences and emotions. I recommend this book to anyone. It is a quick read, and you will learn a lot about how kids live with a sibling who has special needs and what their advice is for siblings, parents, and other people.

Listening is an act of love : a celebration of American life from the StoryCorps Project, edited by David Isay

Find in catalogI’ve always been a fan of StoryCorps, which I first heard on NPR years ago. The StoryCorps Project records audio interviews of people, gives them a copy, and keeps another to be archived in the Library of Congress. “Listening is an act of love : a celebration of American life from the StoryCorps Project” is a collection of some of those interviews. I like these books because they are short stories that draw you in. They cover a wide range of topics and age groups. It’s hard to put this book down.

The Boys in the Boat: Nine Americans and Their Epic Quest for Gold at the 1936 Berlin Olympics, by Daniel James Brown

Find in catalogI recently finished reading “The Boys in the Boat: Nine Americans and Their Epic Quest for Gold at the 1936 Berlin Olympics” by Daniel James Brown. It’s about the nine men’s crew members from the University of Washington who won the Gold Medal in the 1936 Summer Olympics in Berlin, Germany. This was the first time I’ve read some sort of sports book, and I thought it was excellent. The author when into detail about some of the young men’s lives growing up in the Pacific Northwest before and during the Great Depression, and how they came to be part of the team. I think the history he gave about the team, as well as what was happening in Germany during that time, gave great perspective about what the challenges were during that time period. I would recommend this book to anyone who likes history, sports and learning about life in the Puget Sound. I can’t wait to watch the U.S. crew team in this summer’s Olympics!

The Lion, The Witch and The Wardobe by C.S. Lewis

The Lion, The Witch, and the WardrobeAlthough this is a book that many adults read as children, for me, this was my first time.

This is the second book in The Chronicles of Narnia. I really enjoyed reading it because by knowing the story from seeing two versions of the movie, it was a quick read. I also like the author’s writing style because it’s very imaginative.

I recommend this book to anyone who is looking for a nice, somewhat short story to read, even if it’s to your kids, and for anyone who wants to read the entire series.

Reviewed by Laura

The Magician’s Nephew by C.S. Lewis

The Magician's NephewMany people are familiar with the book The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe and land of Narnia, but this book explains how the wardrobe and Narnia came to be. This is the first book in The Chronicles of Narnia.

I usually read non-fiction books, so when it came time to read fiction, I thought it was finally time for me to read this series. Even though this is a children’s book, I still found it worthwhile to finally read as an adult. I liked the author’s writing style because it was very easy for me to imagine what was going on in the story.

If you’re looking for a good series to read, whether you’re young or young at heart, consider reading this book.

Reviewed by Laura



Raising the Bar: Integrity and Passion in Life and Business, The Story of Clif Bar & Co. by Gary Erickson

Raising the BarThis story is about how a man saw a need and filled that need.

Gary Erickson, the founder of Clif Bar, tells how a long bike ride in his 30s led him to create the iconic, organic energy bars and other related products when there was really only one on the market at that time.

I loved reading his short stories throughout the book about his mountain biking trips and other excursions he took with friends and how the lessons he learned from those trips apply to how he runs his business.

It’s great to read about how some businesses owners, like Gary, stay true to their passions in their business instead of conforming to practices that compromise their values.

I recommend this book for anyone, especially businesses owners, outdoor enthusiasts and organic foodies.

Reviewed by Laura

Producer: Lessons Shared from 30 Years in Television by Wendy Walker

ProducerI really enjoyed reading this book because I work behind the scenes in the television industry and I identified with some of the same experiences the author, Wendy Walker went through.

In this book, Walker names the chapters after lessons she’s learned. These include lessons like “freaking out is not an option” and “everything happens for a reason.”

As the senior executive producer of Larry King Live, Walker illustrates these lessons with anecdotes about the famous people she’s met and worked with and the challenges she’s faced at her fast-paced job.

I also liked reading about her career path from college, to working at a clothing store, to working for the Kennedy family, and beyond.

I recommend this book for anyone who likes to read about interesting people and places and wants to learn lessons in the process.

Reviewed by Laura