What Books Next?

Books on my work surface this week

Friends! What’s on your bookshelf/nightstand/desk to read these days?

I am a creature of serial obsessions. I nurtured Sven to one year of life; the sourdough starter microbes are now well established and able to survive unattended for prolonged periods in the fridge. Bread baking/experimenting was great therapy, and now I’m ready to move on.

Similarly, I feel my romance novel binge tapering soon. I’ve devoured 56 audiobooks in 2 months, which is quite remarkable, no? What a fun diversion! Now I’m ready to stimulate my book brain in the usual way again. The library has grown exponentially and I’m undecided in what order to consume my volumes. Maybe you can help?

Have you read any of the books in the photo? Below I’ll share some articles I’ve read lately, and a list of books I’m considering over the winter break. If you’re familiar and/or have any comments/recommendations about these or anything that comes to mind, please share generously! Thank you in advance!


Indra’s Net — Recommended in the comments of a past post by friend Diane. A densely concise and intriguing validation of the interconnectedness of the universe, referencing The Holographic Universe by Michael Talbot and Hua-Yen Buddhism by Francis H. Cook.

Translating the Untranslatable, NPR — found while researching for the Grief Bacon post, which references In Other Words by linguist Christopher J Moore. Also check out this article, 23 Untranslatable Words to Help You Work Smarter. The words are mostly Scandanavian and Japanese, and I like almost all of them.

How I Learned the Art of Seduction — NYT essay by author and writing teacher Melissa Febos–hightly recommend! She describes first hand experience with sexism, misogyny, and capitalism through work in restaurants and as a professional dominatrix.

One Foot in the Present, One Foot in the Past: Understanding EMDR — NYT; an introduction to a relatively new therapy modality that has already helped many vetarans with PTSD. This, along with re-emerging evidence for the benefits of psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy (psilocybin, MDMA), makes me so hopeful that the people whose trauma has as yet exceeded the power of conventional therapies may soon have reliable access to effective remedies to ease their suffering. I have already binged Michael Pollan‘s How to Change Your Mind and This Is Your Mind On Plants, and watched the 4-part Netflix series at least twice.

What Unites Buddhism and Psychotherapy? — NYT book review of The Zen of Therapy by Mark Epstein, due out in January, 2023. “He seeks to uncover the fundamental wisdom both worldviews share, and to show, as a practical matter, how it might help us wriggle free from the places we get stuck on the road to fulfillment.”

Mental Health Should Be Available For All, Not a LuxuryScientific American. An excellent treatise on the crisis and models of effective care.


Yes, And… Daily Meditations, Richard Rohr

Golden: The Power of Silence in a World of Noise, Justin Zom

Chaos: Making a New Science, James Gleick

The Opposite of Woe: My Life in Beer and Politics, John Hickenlooper

Madly, Deeply: The Diaries of Alan Rickman, Alan Rickman, Emma Thompson

How Emotions Are Made: The Secret Life of the Brain, Lisa Feldman Barrett

Upstream: The Quest to Solve Problems Before They Happen, Dan Heath

What If? Serious Scientific Answers to Absurd Hypothetical Questions, Randall Munroe

The Light We Carry: Overcoming in Uncertain Times, Michelle Obama

4 thoughts on “What Books Next?

  1. You’ve probably already read these, but if not, I highly recommend them, Cathy:
    Four Thousand Weeks, Oliver Burkeman
    Unthinkable, Jamie Raskin
    How To Be Perfect, Michael Schur
    And, I know you tend to prefer nonfiction, but if you’re ever in the mood for fiction and if you haven’t already read it, Amor Towles’ A Gentleman in Moscow is the most perfect book I’ve read this millennium. It makes me happy just thinking about it.
    I’ll be interested to hear what you think of the intriguing books that are already on your list.

    Liked by 1 person

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