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Books to Make You Think

Books to Make You Think

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About the list

On 22 March 2021, this list of movies was drafted for you by Ashley Piszczatoski.

Reading is one of those pastimes that tends to stay with you for life. Sure, we might start reading children's books like Clifford The Big Red Dog, but as we get older, so too do the books we read. It starts with a simple book, then it progresses to young adult novels, biographies, and classics. Reading takes us out of our everyday lives and stresses, and diving
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Brain on Fire

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2012 | Susannah Cahalan

Rated by 2 people

A gripping memoir and medical suspense story about a young New York Post reporter’s struggle with a rare and terrifying disease, opening a new window into the fascinating world of brain science. One day in 2009, twenty-four-year-old Susannah Cahalan woke up alone in a strange hospital room, strapped to her bed, under guard, and unable to move or speak. A wristband marked her as a “flight risk,” and her medical records—chronicling a month-long hospital stay of which she had no memory at all—showed hallucinations, violence, and dangerous instability. Only weeks earlier, Susannah had been on the threshold of a new, adult life: a healthy, ambitious college grad a few months into her first serious relationship and a promising career as a cub reporter at a major New York newspaper. Who was the stranger who had taken over her body? What was happening to her mind? In this swift and breathtaking narrative, Susannah tells the astonishing true story of her inexplicable descent into madness and the brilliant, lifesaving diagnosis that nearly didn’t happen. A team of doctors would spend a month—and more than a million dollars—trying desperately to pin down a medical explanation for what had gone wrong. Meanwhile, as the days passed and her family, boyfriend, and friends helplessly stood watch by her bed, she began to move inexorably through psychosis into catatonia and, ultimately, toward death. Yet even as this period nearly tore her family apart, it offered an extraordinary testament to their faith in Susannah and their refusal to let her go. Then, at the last minute, celebrated neurologist Souhel Najjar joined her team and, with the help of a lucky, ingenious test, saved her life. He recognized the symptoms of a newly discovered autoimmune disorder in which the body attacks the brain, a disease now thought to be tied to both schizophrenia and autism, and perhaps the root of “demonic possessions” throughout history. Far more than simply a riveting read and a crackling medical mystery, Brain on Fire is the powerful account of one woman’s struggle to recapture her identity and to rediscover herself among the fragments left behind. Using all her considerable journalistic skills, and building from hospital records and surveillance video, interviews with family and friends, and excerpts from the deeply moving journal her father kept during her illness, Susannah pieces together the story of her “lost month” to write an unforgettable memoir about memory and identity, faith and love. It is an important, profoundly compelling tale of survival and perseverance that is destined to become a classic.

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Untamed

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2020 | Glennon Doyle

Rated by 23 people

#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER - Over two million copies sold! "Packed with incredible insight about what it means to be a woman today."--Reese Witherspoon (Reese's Book Club x Hello Sunshine Book Pick) In her most revealing and powerful memoir yet, the activist, speaker, bestselling author, and "patron saint of female empowerment" (People) explores the joy and peace we discover when we stop striving to meet others' expectations and start trusting the voice deep within us. NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY O: The Oprah Magazine - The Washington Post - Cosmopolitan - Marie Claire - Bloomberg - Parade - "Untamed will liberate women--emotionally, spiritually, and physically. It is phenomenal."--Elizabeth Gilbert, author of City of Girls and Eat Pray Love This is how you find yourself. There is a voice of longing inside each woman. We strive so mightily to be good: good partners, daughters, mothers, employees, and friends. We hope all this striving will make us feel alive. Instead, it leaves us feeling weary, stuck, overwhelmed, and underwhelmed. We look at our lives and wonder: Wasn't it all supposed to be more beautiful than this? We quickly silence that question, telling ourselves to be grateful, hiding our discontent--even from ourselves. For many years, Glennon Doyle denied her own discontent. Then, while speaking at a conference, she looked at a woman across the room and fell instantly in love. Three words flooded her mind: There She Is. At first, Glennon assumed these words came to her from on high. But she soon realized they had come to her from within. This was her own voice--the one she had buried beneath decades of numbing addictions, cultural conditioning, and institutional allegiances. This was the voice of the girl she had been before the world told her who to be. Glennon decided to quit abandoning herself and to instead abandon the world's expectations of her. She quit being good so she could be free. She quit pleasing and started living. Soulful and uproarious, forceful and tender, Untamed is both an intimate memoir and a galvanizing wake-up call. It is the story of how one woman learned that a responsible mother is not one who slowly dies for her children, but one who shows them how to fully live. It is the story of navigating divorce, forming a new blended family, and discovering that the brokenness or wholeness of a family depends not on its structure but on each member's ability to bring her full self to the table. And it is the story of how each of us can begin to trust ourselves enough to set boundaries, make peace with our bodies, honor our anger and heartbreak, and unleash our truest, wildest instincts so that we become women who can finally look at ourselves and say: There She Is. Untamed shows us how to be brave. As Glennon insists: The braver we are, the luckier we get.

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Small Great Things

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2016 | Jodi Picoult

Rated by 5 people

A woman is caught in a gripping moral dilemma that resonates far beyond her place in time and history in #1 New York Times bestseller Jodi Picoult's latest novel. A young woman and her husband, admitted to hospital to have a baby, request that their nurse be reassigned--they are white supremacists and don't want Ruth, who is black, to touch their baby. The hospital complies, but the baby later goes into cardiac distress when Ruth is on duty. She hesitates before rushing in to perform CPR. When her indecision ends in tragedy, Ruth finds herself on trial, represented by a white public defender who warns against bringing race into the courtroom. As the two come to develop a truer understanding of each other's lives, they begin to doubt the beliefs they each hold most dear. Praise for Small Great Things “I couldn’t put it down. Her best yet!”—New York Times bestselling author Alice Hoffman   “A compelling, can’t-put-it-down drama with a trademark [Jodi] Picoult twist.”—Good Housekeeping   “It’s Jodi Picoult, the prime provider of literary soul food. This riveting drama is sure to be supremely satisfying and a bravely thought-provoking tale on the dangers of prejudice.”—Redbook   “Jodi Picoult is never afraid to take on hot topics, and in Small Great Things, she tackles race and discrimination in a way that will grab hold of you and refuse to let you go. . . . This page-turner is perfect for book clubs.”—Popsugar

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She Rides Shotgun

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2017 | Jordan Harper

Rated by 1 people

'Striking...visceral, violent and utterly compelling, it nevertheless shines with humanity' Daily Mail 'Burns bright and fast' Peter Swanson, author of Sunday Times bestseller Her Every Fear A GRITTY, PROPULSIVE DEBUT ABOUT A FATHER, A DAUGHTER, AND THE HARDEST LESSONS IN LIFE... 'If nowhere was safe for her, then the only place he could let her be was with him' Meet Polly: eleven years old and smart beyond her years. But she's a loner, always on the outside, until she is unexpectedly reunited with her father. Meet Nate: fresh out of jail and driving a stolen car, Nate takes Polly from the safety of her quiet existence into a world of robbery, violence and the constant threat of death. And he does it to save her life. A Lesson in Violence is a gripping and emotionally wrenching novel that upends even our most long-held expectations about heroes, villains and victims. Nate takes Polly to save her life, but in the end it may very well be Polly who saves him. 'This fast-paced and gritty page turner explores the ways in which love can both brutalize and redeem us' Amy Engel, author of The Roanoke Girls 'Urgent and beautiful. The writing is as sharp as broken glass but it's the characters who will stay with you, bloody hearts pinned on their sleeves and struggling for redemption and towards each other' Lauren Beukes, author of The Shining Girls 'One of the best debuts I've ever read' Simon Toyne, author of Sunday Times bestseller Solomon Creed 'The language is searing, the action relentless, the beauty wrenched from ugliness truly astounding' Robin Wasserman, author of Girls on Fire 'An extremely impressive debut' Peter Swanson, author of Sunday Times bestseller The Kind Worth Killing 'Darkly irresistible...in Polly McClusky, the eleven-year-old girl at the heart of his , Jordan Harper gives us a hero for our times' Megan Abbott

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