Recommended Reads – Week 49
Gandhi: The Years That Changed the World (1914 – 1948). The second and concluding volume of the magisterial biography that began with the acclaimed, Gandhi Before India: the definitive portrait of the life and work of one of the most abidingly influential–and controversial–men in world history.
This volume opens with Mohandas Gandhi’s arrival in Bombay in January 1915 and takes us through his epic struggles over the next three decades: to deliver India from British rule, to forge harmonious relations between India’s Hindu and Muslim populations, to end the pernicious Hindu practice of untouchability, and to develop India’s economic and moral self-reliance. We see how in each of these campaigns, Gandhi adapted methods of nonviolence–strikes, marches, fasts–that successfully challenged British authority, religious orthodoxy, social customs, and would influence non-violent, revolutionary movements throughout the world. In reconstructing Gandhi’s life and work, Ramachandra Guha has drawn on sixty different archival collections, the most significant among them, a previously unavailable collection of papers belonging to Gandhi himself. Using this wealth of material, Guha creates a portrait of Gandhi and of those closest to him–family, friends, political and social leaders–that illuminates the complexity inside his thinking, his motives, his actions and their outcomes as he engaged with every important aspect of social and public life in the India of his time
Unsheltered by Barbara Kingsolver
The New York Times bestselling author of Flight Behavior, The Lacuna, and The Poisonwood Bible and recipient of numerous literary awards—including the National Humanities Medal, the Dayton Literary Peace Prize, and the Orange Prize—returns with a timely novel that interweaves past and present to explore the human capacity for resiliency and compassion in times of great upheaval.
How could two hardworking people do everything right in life, a woman asks, and end up destitute? Willa Knox and her husband followed all the rules as responsible parents and professionals, and have nothing to show for it but debts and an inherited brick house that is falling apart. The magazine where Willa worked has folded; the college where her husband had tenure has closed. Their dubious shelter is also the only option for a disabled father-in-law and an exasperating, free-spirited daughter. When the family’s one success story, an Ivy-educated son, is uprooted by tragedy he seems likely to join them, with dark complications of his own.
In another time, a troubled husband and public servant asks, How can a man tell the truth, and be reviled for it? A science teacher with a passion for honest investigation, Thatcher Greenwood finds himself under siege: his employer forbids him to speak of the exciting work just published by Charles Darwin. His young bride and social-climbing mother-in-law bristle at the risk of scandal, and dismiss his worries that their elegant house is unsound. In a village ostensibly founded as a benevolent Utopia, Thatcher wants only to honor his duties, but his friendships with a woman scientist and a renegade newspaper editor threaten to draw him into a vendetta with the town’s powerful men.
Unsheltered is the compulsively readable story of two families, in two centuries, who live at the corner of Sixth and Plum in Vineland, New Jersey, navigating what seems to be the end of the world as they know it. With history as their tantalizing canvas, these characters paint a startlingly relevant portrait of life in precarious times when the foundations of the past have failed to prepare us for the future.
The Spy and the Traitor: The Greatest Espionage Story of the Cold War by Ben Macintyre
The celebrated author of Double Cross and Rogue Heroes returns with his greatest spy story yet, a thrilling Americans-era tale of Oleg Gordievsky, the Russian whose secret work helped hasten the end of the Cold War.
If anyone could be considered a Russian counterpart to the infamous British double-agent Kim Philby, it was Oleg Gordievsky. The son of two KGB agents and the product of the best Soviet institutions, the savvy, sophisticated Gordievsky grew to see his nation’s communism as both criminal and philistine. He took his first posting for Russian intelligence in 1968 and eventually became the Soviet Union’s top man in London, but from 1973 on he was secretly working for MI6. For nearly a decade, as the Cold War reached its twilight, Gordievsky helped the West turn the tables on the KGB, exposing Russian spies and helping to foil countless intelligence plots, as the Soviet leadership grew increasingly paranoid at the United States’s nuclear first-strike capabilities and brought the world closer to the brink of war. Desperate to keep the circle of trust close, MI6 never revealed Gordievsky’s name to its counterparts in the CIA, which in turn grew obsessed with figuring out the identity of Britain’s obviously top-level source. Their obsession ultimately doomed Gordievsky: the CIA officer assigned to identify him was none other than Aldrich Ames, the man who would become infamous for secretly spying for the Soviets.
Unfolding the delicious three-way gamesmanship between America, Britain, and the Soviet Union, and culminating in the gripping cinematic beat-by-beat of Gordievsky’s nail-biting escape from Moscow in 1985, Ben Macintyre’s latest may be his best yet. Like the greatest novels of John le Carré, it brings readers deep into a world of treachery and betrayal, where the lines bleed between the personal and the professional, and one man’s hatred of communism had the power to change the future of nations.
What colour is your parachute? By Richard N Bolles
The world’s most popular job-search book is updated for 2019, tailoring Richard Bolles’s long-trusted guidance with up-to-the-minute information and advice for today’s job-hunters and career-changers.
In today’s complex job-market, the time-tested advice of What Color Is Your Parachute? is needed more than ever. Recent grads facing a changing economic landscape, workers laid off mid-career, and people searching for an inspiring work-life change all look to career guru Richard N. Bolles for support, encouragement, and advice on which job-hunt strategies work—and which don’t. This revised edition combines classic elements like the famed Flower Exercise with updated tips on social media and search tactics. Bolles demystifies the entire job-search process, from writing resumes to interviewing to networking, expertly guiding job-hunters toward their dream job.
Talent Is Never Enough: Discover the Choices That Will Take You Beyond Your by John C Maxwell
New York Times best-selling author Dr. John C. Maxwell has a message for you, and for today’s corporate culture fixated on talent above all else: TALENT IS NEVER ENOUGH.
People everywhere are proving him right. Read the headlines, watch the highlights, or just step out your front door: Some talented people reach their full potential, while others self-destruct or remain trapped in mediocrity. What makes the difference? Maxwell, the go-to guru for business professionals across the globe, insists that the choices people make-not merely the skills they inherit-propel them onto greatness. Among other truths, successful people know that:
- Belief lifts your talent.
- Initiative activates your talent.
- Focus directs your talent.
- Preparation positions your talent.
- Practice sharpens your talent.
- Perseverance sustains your talent.
- Character protects your talent. . . . and more!!
It’s what you add to your talent that makes the greatest difference. With authentic examples and time-tested wisdom, Maxwell shares thirteen attributes you need to maximize your potential and live the life of your dreams.
You can have talent alone and fall short of your potential. Or you can have talent plus, and really stand out.