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27 October 2010 36,270 views 11 Comments Tags: , , , , ,


Many of us are starting our Holiday Book-Gifting lists! I am making my own list and adding to it daily. And, I am checking in with my Circle of Trust.

What are you reading? What books do want to give? What books would like to receive this year?

We’re creating a “CIRCLE OF TRUST HOLIDAY BOOK LIST.” Join us and add your favorites to the list…

Put book titles – with any personal notes on why you loved the book – in the Comment Section. We’ll publish the entire list and updates as a Feature you can email to family and friends; share on your Facebook page and Twitter.

And, if you have website – you can reprint it there.

Because laughter is so important to all of us here, several friends have already suggested “GROWING UP LAUGHING,” by Marlo Thomas.

Marlo’s new book is a memoir that debuted on The New York Times bestseller list this week and inspired her new website. It is a community – a place for an on-going conversation with Marlo and friends – women like you and me!

Take a look:

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  • marci alboher said:

    Not to be superficial here, but can say how much I like that photo of you!

    Now onto the matter at hand — holiday books.

    I just gave this book to two family members — a cousin and her daughter – “What I Know About Success: Letters from Extraordinary Women to Their Younger Selves,” edited by Ellyn Spragins. The book was sent to me by the publisher to review and I have to admit I haven’t yet read it, but skimming through the contributors list and seeing a list as varied as Lisa Stone, Co-Founder of Blogher, C. Vivian Stringer, coach of the women’s basketball team at Rutgers, and Nancy Brinker, founder of the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure, has me eager to dip in.

    I’ve also been recommending Half the Sky, by Nick Kristoff and Sheryl Wudunn to everyone I know. That book convinced me that supporting women and girls around the world has to be the most important issue of our day. And the book succeeds in opening our eyes through beautiful– and even uplifting — storytelling.

    For those in need of an escape, I think I’ll be giving The Hunger Games trilogy. I’m not usually drawn to young adult fiction or fantasy, but I read the first one on a train to Boston and instantly downloaded the second to for my iPad. Next time I need to clear my head, I’m hitting #2 in that series.

  • Eileen Williams said:

    Ever since I learned about her latest book, I’ve been eager to read “Growing Up Laughing” by Marlo Thomas. She has been a cultural leader in a number of ways and, as you noted, we can’t underestimate the importance of laughter–especially as women over fifty. I also want to make certain to get and give copies of “What I Know about Success” and “Half the Sky.” Thank you, Marci, for your recommendations.

    A couple of books I’d like to add to the list are “No Excuses: 9 Ways Women Can Change How We Think About Power” by Gloria Feldt and “City of Tranquil Light” by Bo Caldwell. I was fortunate to interview both of these authors on my radio show and am totally impressed with their work.

    Gloria’s book is a call to arms for women to come to terms with power, use it in a way that suits our sensibilities, and take advantage of the extraordinay opportunity this time provides us to advance the cause for all women. Gloria’s message is multi-faceted but I resonated most with the piece about transforming the definition of power from “power-over” to “power-to.”

    Bo writes a spellbinding novel based on the lives of her grandparents who were missionaries in China. The book incorporates intrigue, violence, great faith, and selfless service to the poorest of the poor. But, most of all, it’s a story of deep and abiding love–the kind that’s simple, straightforward, and elegant. I read the last several pages with tears in my eyes so it will make for the perfect gift for your friends on the romantic side.

  • Karin Lippert said:

    I’ve just read three wonderful novels…ROOM, by Emma Donoghue, about a boy and his mom and the “endless wonders” of their imagination! They live in a room – they are captives! Dark and funny, scary and warm – described as “a celebration of resilience.” I would agree.

    And, because I am drawn to books about resilience, I have to recommend TO THE END OF THE LAND, by David Grossman. It will be at the top of my fiction list for this holiday and many more! It is a brilliant book by the award-winning and anti-war Israeli novelist. He has captured his female character so well, I have to believe that he and his wife Michal share a rare and special intimacy. Again, there are mother and son relationships that are complex, but it is also the story of a family, men, war and the story of a country.

    THE READER by Bernard Schlink was personal and moving for me. I am of the same generation as Schlink – and suffer from some of the same pain and guilt of our generation. HOMECOMING (in paperback) resonated for me across the decades and miles – miles traveled by family to America and by my father at the end of the war from Russia back to Hamburg.

    When I want to laugh out loud and peek inside the magic of comedy created by Marlo Thomas with friends – I will open GROWING UP LAUGHING! Like her previous bestsellers, this book delivers a special brand of “Marlo Thomas” honesty, humor and wisdom.

    Congratulations to all.
    And, to all a great holiday season!

  • CN said:

    Just wanted to add a couple of books that I love.

    On Beauty by Zadie Smith – truly one of the best books I have read in a while and am very quick to recommend it to anyone.

    This is Where I Leave You by Jonathan Tropper – a funny/ moving novel about a family coming together to sit shiva for seven days.

  • Martha Allen said:

    Some of the books I’ve enjoyed recently and would recommend have to do with Buddhist philosophy, such as “The Wise Heart” by Jack Kornfield, “Seeking the Heart of Wisdom: The Path of Insight Meditation” by Joseph Goldstein and Jack Kornfield, and “Radical Acceptance” by Tara Brach. Similarly, I’ve found very valuable ideas in “Nonviolent Communication” by Marshall B. Rosenberg. These books have led to listening to Podcasts from these authors, further deepening my understanding of the ideas and approaches. I’ve been stimulated by these perspectives and have been putting the ideas into practice in my life, with good results.

    I also have enjoyed reading very different kinds of books, such as “The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks” by Rebecca Skloot, “Fireweed: A Political Autobiography” by Gerda Lerner, “Unbowed” by Wangari Maathai, “Spies for Hire: The Secret World of Intelligence Outsourcing” by Tim Shorrock, “In the Realm of Hungry Ghosts: Close Encounters with Addiction” by Gabor Mate, and “Escape” by Carolyn Jessop. Gabor Mate’s book, for instance, shows insights that can change the way one views addiction and how we deal with it. The Skloot, Shorrock and Jessop books, in particular, stay with you long after you’ve read them because of the issues they raise.

  • Gabrielle said:

    One of my favorite reads this year has been “The Art of Racing in the Rain” by Garth Stein. It is a beautifully told story from a very unique perspective. A great read! I have also read and re-read “the Middle Place” and “Lift” by Kelly Corrigan. I have recommended those books to so many friends and also given them as well received gifts. Happy reading to all this holiday season!

  • Karin Lippert said:

    Hi – I also love “The Middle Place” and “Lift.” She has the most warm and wonderful voice as a writer. You feel like you are right in there with her and her family. Loved the relationship with her Dad and her husband!!!

  • Laviza Shariff said:

    I am a big time foodie…I enjoy cooking and poring over recipes, deconstructing them and figuring out how I can add my own twist.
    Some people collect coins, stamps, dolls etc… but I collect cookbooks and recipes!

    I enjoy sharing my globally inspired recipes on my “foodie fan page” on Facebook –
    everyone is welcome to join, just search for “Eclectic Gourmet”

    Now, on to my cookbook recommendations:

    1) South Beach Diet – I needed to lose the “last 5 -6 pounds” that we all can’t seem to get rid of, and I have to say that although the first 2 weeks were difficult, overall the varied recipes and Dr. Agatson’s guidance were excellent, and you won’t feel too deprived!!

    2) Ina Garten’s “Back to Basics” – The Barefoot Contessa has written many cookbooks, and I am sure they are all great, but I just happened to see this one at BJ’s so I picked it up.

    3)Madhur Jaffrey’s “At Home with Madhur Jaffrey: Simple, Delectable Dishes from India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Sri Lanka” – again, this renowned author and actress has written many cookbooks, and this is the latest and greatest.

    4) Sfoglia Cookbook –
    Beautifully presented pasta dishes….simple but unusual, out-of-the-ordinary recipes, written by the chef of Sfoglia Restaurant in NYC.

    5) Essential New York times Cookbook – this is a great compilation of the most noteworthy recipes published by the paper since it started covering food in the 1850s. One of the most requested recipes is the plum torte which I oftentimes make ( my version of the recipe is on Eclectic Gourmet)

    Ok, that’s all for now (will add more later if I see anything good) Happy Cooking and Happy Holidays, and be sure to check out my Eclectic Gourmet facebook page!

  • Carole said:

    I’d like to submit:

    Smart Women Don’t Retire—They Break Free:
    From Working Full-Time to Living Full-Time
    The Transition Network and Gail Rentsch

    It’s been called “A practical and inspiring guide to reinventing what’s next.”

    Women are different from most men when it comes to dealing with how we approach our next step. This book speaks to women’s special needs as we explore new possibilities and prepare for change.

    The book shows you how to create new and exciting work and volunteer opportunities and how to discover new outlets for your creativity and passion, with stories drawn from a community of women who are grappling with these and other compelling questions.

    It’s a practical guide that will help and inspire you to find your way.

  • Joanne Edgar said:

    I’m giving “And the Pursuit of Happiness,” a totally quirky, illustrated history of the U.S. by Maira Kalman. Her drawings and text take you on a journey where you visit everyone from Susan B. Anthony to Ruth Ginsberg. Totally delightful.

  • Karin Lippert said:

    Hi – I love Maira Kalman’s drawings. I saw that piece on the NY Times website a while ago…and wanted to Bookmark it and forgot! Great to know it is available in the bookstores.

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