January is traditionally a time to start afresh and put into action all those plans, dreams and aspirations. And how best to implement those visions than by taking inspiration from authors around the world? From heartwarming novels to pioneering non-fiction, here are the books that we’ll be reading to keep us motivated and on track throughout the year ahead…
The Intention Experiment: Use Your Thoughts to Change to World
By Lynne McTaggart
Ever wondered if your intentions, prayers or wishes have a real, calculable effect on the world? Here, from Lynne McTaggart, groundbreaking author of ‘The Field’, comes riveting accounts of scientific investigations and real case histories with evidence that we are all connected and our intentions can be harnessed as a collective force for good.
The Everything Store: Jeff Bezos and the Age of Amazon
By Brad Stone
Though Amazon.com started off delivering books through the mail, its visionary founder, Jeff Bezos, was never content with being just a bookseller. He wanted Amazon to become ‘the everything store’, offering limitless selection and seductive convenience at disruptively low prices. So he developed a corporate culture of relentless ambition and secrecy that’s never been cracked. Until now…
Shoe Dog: A Memoir by the Creator of NIKE
By Phil Knight
Simon & Schuster UK
Knight, the man behind the swoosh, has always remained a mystery but now, for the first time, he tells his story. Candid, humble, wry and gutsy, he begins with his crossroads moment when at 24 he decided to start his own business. He details the many risks and daunting setbacks that stood between him and his dream – along with his early triumphs.
By Sam Harris
Four Elephants Press
Best-selling author and neuroscientist Sam Harris argues that we can radically simplify our lives and improve society by merely telling the truth in situations where others often lie. He focuses on “white” lies – those lies we tell for the purpose of sparing people discomfort – for these are the lies that most often tempt us. And they tend to be the only lies that good people tell while imagining that they are being good in the process.
Good to Great
By Jim Collins
Random House Business
Collins uncovers the underlying variables that enable any type of organization to make the leap from good to great while other organizations remain only good. Rigorously supported by evidence after a five-year research project, his findings are surprising – at times even shocking – to the modern mind. Good to Great achieves a rare distinction: a management book full of vital ideas that reads as well as a fast-paced novel.
Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance
By Angela Duckworth
Why do naturally talented people frequently fail to reach their potential while other far less gifted individuals go on to achieve amazing things? MacArthur Genius Award-winning psychologist Angela Duckworth shares fascinating new revelations about who succeeds in life and why. Based on her cutting-edge research, she shows how many people achieve remarkable things not just by relying on innate natural talent, but by practising what she calls ‘grit’.
Prisoners of Geography: Ten Maps That Tell You Everything You Need to Know About Global Politics
By Tim Marshall
Elliott & Thompson Limited
If you’ve ever wondered why Putin is so obsessed with Crimea, why the USA was destined to become a global superpower, or why China’s power base continues to expand ever outwards, then this is the book for you. The Sunday Times international bestseller looks at the past, present and future to offer an essential insight into one of the major factors that determines world history.
The Art of Rivalry: Four Friendships, Betrayals, and Breakthroughs in Modern Art
By Sebastian Smee
This is a story about rivalry among artists. Not the kind of rivalry that grows out of hatred and dislike, but rather, rivalry that emerges from admiration, friendship, love. The kind of rivalry that existed between Degas and Manet, Picasso and Matisse, Pollock and de Kooning, and Freud and Bacon. These were some of the most famous and creative relationships in the history of art, driving each individual to heights of creativity and inspiration – and provoking them to despair, jealousy and betrayal.
Hero of the Empire: The Making of Winston Churchill
By Candice Millard
The gripping true story of one dramatic and emblematic year in the early life of Winston Churchill. Candice Millard tells a magnificent tale of bravery, savagery and chance encounters with a cast of historical characters – including Rudyard Kipling, Lord Kitchener and Gandhi – with whom he would later share the world stage, and gives us an unexpected perspective on one of the iconic figures in our history.
The Rolling Stones All The Songs: The Story Behind Every Track
By Phillippe Margotin
Black Dog & Leventhal
Since 1963, The Rolling Stones have been recording and touring, selling more than 200 million records worldwide. While much is known about this iconic group, few books provide a comprehensive history of their time in the studio. Here, the origin of their 378 released songs are described along with details from the recording studio, what instruments were used, and behind-the-scenes stories of the great artists who contributed to their tracks.
Small Great Things: A Novel
By Jodi Picoult
Set in a Connecticut, the parents are white supremacists and don’t want Ruth – a labor and delivery nurse with more than twenty years’ experience, who is African American – to touch their child. The hospital complies with their request, but the next day, the baby goes into cardiac distress while Ruth is alone in the nursery. Does she obey orders or does she intervene? With richly layered characters and a gripping moral dilemma that will lead readers to question everything they know about privilege, power, and race, this is a real page-turner.
By Charles Palliser
An extraordinary modern novel in the Victorian tradition, Charles Palliser has created something extraordinary. This is a plot within a plot within a plot of family secrets, mysterious clues, low-born birth, high-reaching immorality, and, always, always the fog-enshrouded, enigmatic character of 19th century – London itself. This is a book that you won’t want to put down.
The Challenger Customer: Selling to Hidden Influencer Who Can Multiply Your Results
By Brent Adamson
Four years ago, the bestselling authors of The Challenger Sale overturned decades of conventional wisdom with a bold new approach to sales. Now their latest research reveals something even more surprising: Being a Challenger seller isn’t enough. Unveiling research-based tools that will help distinguish the “Talkers” from the “Mobilizers” in any organisation, this book also provides a blueprint for finding them, engaging with them, and equipping them to effectively challenge their own organization.
Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action
By Simon Sinek
Drawing inspiration from people like Martin Luther King Jr., Steve Jobs, and the Wright Brothers, Start with Why shows that the leaders who’ve had the greatest influence in the world all think, act, and communicate the same way – and it’s the opposite of what everyone else does. Sinek provides a framework upon which organizations can be built, movements can be led, and people can be inspired. And it all starts with ‘why’.
32 Yolks: From My Mother’s Table to Working the line
By Eric Ripert
A tender and richly told story of how one of our greatest living chefs found himself – and his home – in the kitchen. When an eccentric local chef took him under his wing, an eleven-year-old Ripert realized that food was more than just an escape, it was his calling. That passion carried him through the drudgery of culinary school and into the high-pressure world of Paris’s most elite restaurants.
Aftermath: A Granddaughter’s Story of Legacy, Healing & Hope
By Allison Nazarian
Allie Girl Publishing
The first-of-its-kind memoir by a “3G,” or grandchild of Holocaust survivors, this is a powerful story about being born into a history that never goes away. Allison Nazarian grew up in the Washington, DC, suburbs, living a comfortable American life while at the same time being surrounded by stories of Auschwitz, of lost family members, of destroyed dreams and of miracles.