Made Out of Stars
Meera Lee Patel
Meera Lee Patel’s guided journals, including Start Where You Are, have helped an abundance of readers better understand themselves and make connections with others. Made Out of Stars focuses on finding a better sense of self and discovering our unique qualities—a useful and inspiring journey.
That Doesn't Mean What You Think It Means
Ross Petras and Kathryn Petras
When presented in the right light, there’s something deeply entertaining about the way language can be misused and misunderstood. In That Doesn’t Mean What You Think It Means, Ross Petras and Kathryn Petras explore 150 of the words people most often misuse—and delve into their complex histories for clues as to why. Give it to a coworker who won’t construe it as a snarky comment on their emails.
The Travelling Cat Chronicles
Who doesn’t love a good story about cats? In The Travelling Cat Chronicles, which has captivated readers around the world, Hiro Arikawa tells the story of a distinctive cat named Nana, who travels across Japan with his owner, and in doing so, gives the reader a powerful sense of the landscape and human connection.
Wall of Orchids
The New York Botanical Garden
The exhibits and plants that can be found at The New York Botanical Garden have a rich history and regularly dazzle visitors and locals alike. Wall of Orchids collects 20 prints of orchid paintings—immersing readers in the natural world while venturing into art history as well. Perfect for sprucing up someone’s empty cubicle.
Ellen Ruppel Shell
The nature of work has changed dramatically over the past few decades, inspiring a sense of instability and concerns about how subsequent changes will affect, well, everyone. In Ellen Ruppel Shell’s book The Job, she focuses on notable workplaces and explores the larger factors affecting our relationships to the work we do.
There’s something deeply compelling about a great cookbook—both the lovingly designed interiors and the prospect of being able to make great food from the recipes within. Bestia takes its cues from the acclaimed Los Angeles restaurant of the same name, offering up the way to make a host of Italian-influenced dishes and desserts.
Dare to Lead
In her earlier books, Brené Brown explored questions around subjects like courage and vulnerability, delving into both their emotional and scientific sides. In Dare to Lead, she applies the same approach to the questions surrounding leadership, probing how leaders can act in a more daring and courageous manner—and what we can all learn from them.
Over the years, Haruki Murakami has amassed a sizable international following for his distinctive, often mind-bending narratives. His latest novel, Killing Commendatore, tells the story of a painter whose discovery of a hidden work of art sets him on a path involving World War II, metaphysical beings, and the nature of creativity.
Michael Poore’s acclaimed novel Reincarnation Blues takes an unexpected foray into the metaphysical, creating a bold take on the nature of mortality as it goes. At the center of this novel is a man who’s used up nearly all of his 10,000 chances at life—and who has a distinctly unique relationship with Death.
Tell the Machine Goodnight
In the tradition of the best science fiction, Katie Williams’s novel Tell the Machine Goodnight uses futuristic technology to explore an essential human question: specifically, that of the roles happiness and unhappiness play in our lives. Williams explores this question through the parallel stories of a mother and son, each with very different opinions on the subject.
Finding the right book for your coworker can be a dilemma, whether it’s for someone you regularly eat lunch with or someone whose name you randomly drew in a gift exchange. There are a number of recent books sure to appeal to coworkers for a number of reasons—from the subject to the author to the setting. Whether you’re buying something for a long-standing colleague or someone new to the team, here are a few suggestions.
Editor: Eliza Smith; Featured Image: Matt McCarty