2012 Reading Guide
Ruhlman’s Chef Trilogy

Ruhlman’s Chef Trilogy

In The Making of a Chef, journalist Ruhlman enrolls at the Culinary Institute of America to discover how top-tier chefs are trained. In The Soul of a Chef, Ruhlman studies what makes a chef great, observing the Master Chef exam at the Culinary Institute of America and profiling successful celebrity chefs Michael Symon at Lola and Thomas Keller at The French Laundry. In The Reach of a Chef, Ruhlman explores the paradox of every profession: get good enough at what you do, and soon you’ll be managing the work instead of doing it yourself.

Ruhlman excels at injecting a sense of drama into his food writing: he draws strong characters and is able to turn something as simple as preparing a classic sauce into a dramatic event.

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Harry Potter Series

Harry Potter Series

Orphaned Harry Potter has no idea how famous he is until he turns 11 and receives his invitation to attend Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, opening up a whole world of magic and muggles, potions and spells, friends and enemies. The series is now available in ebook form--which makes it a lot easier to take a whole boxed set on vacation. Starting June 19, Amazon Prime members can borrow Harry Potter books for free from the Kindle lending library, (though borrowing is limited to one book a month at this time).

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The Chronicles of Narnia

The Chronicles of Narnia

In this classic series, 4 british children discover that a wardrobe in their London home opens into a magical world called Narnia, where animals talk, magic is real, and the evil White Witch duels the fierce lion Aslan. The Narnia books are loved by young and old alike. Age 7 and up. Older C. S. Lewis fans should check out his Space Trilogy, which is better suited for older teens and adults.

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The Phantom Tollbooth

The Phantom Tollbooth

I probably wasn't old enough to appreciate this instant classic when I first read it as a child, but that didn't stop me. (Thank goodness.) 10-year-old Milo comes home from school one day to find a tollbooth sitting in his bedroom. Since he doesn’t have anything better to do, he pays the toll and drives through–and embarks on a strange journey into a fanciful world where he encounters all sorts of strange characters. A satisfying and delightfully nerdy book that will engage both kids and adults, albeit on different levels.

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Holes

Holes

This is such a fun story, no matter your age. Stanley Yelnats is a boy with a history of bad luck–all brought on by his "no-good-dirty-rotten-pig-stealing-great-great-grandfather." Yelnats ends up at Camp Green Lake—a juvenile detention center, where there is no lake--and has to dig a giant hole every day in the hot sun. The boys soon discover there may be more to this hole-digging business than punishment. Age 8 and up.

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The Search for Delicious

The Search for Delicious

From the author of Tuck Everlasting. Twelve-year-old Gaylen sets off to poll the kingdom about which food should stand for “delicious” in the new dictionary, but his simple quest soon reveals civil war is brewing. This is a sweet tale of a boy, his father-figure, a mermaid, and a dictionary, full of magic and mystery. Age 8 and up.

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Dare Dream Do

Dare Dream Do

$9.99$0.99

Part inspiration, part action-plan, popular Harvard Business Review blogger Johnson encourages women to consider shaking up their life, to dream about new possibilities and discover their purpose in life, and to create and implement a plan to bring those dreams to life. Dare Dream Do shines for its rich storytelling and practical advice.

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Drop Dead Healthy: One Man’s Humble Quest for Bodily Perfection

Drop Dead Healthy: One Man’s Humble Quest for Bodily Perfection

$11.99$3.99

First Jacobs spent a year following the Bible as literally as possible (The Year of Living Biblically) and then he read the Encyclopedia Brittanica from cover to cover (The Know-It-All). The genre is called stunt journalism, and Jacobs is good at it. In Drop Dead Healthy, he sets out to become the world’s healthiest man, consulting experts of all stripes, test-driving the conventional wisdom on health and fitness, and exploring a lot of crazy new stuff, too.

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Calico Joe

Calico Joe

Grisham departs from the law to weave a story about rookie baseball player Joe Castle of Calico Rock, Arkansas, who’s called up to the Cubs in 1973 and thrills fans with an astonishing rookie season that breaks all the records--until it comes to a sudden end. This story is nothing like John Grisham’s legal thrillers: Calico Joe is short and straightforward, exploring relationships and redemption--all centered around the game of baseball.

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Gone Girl

Gone Girl

$9.99$2.99Audiobook: 12.99 (Whispersync)

This novel is a first-rate psychological thriller. Amy Dunne disappears on the morning of her 5th wedding anniversary, and of course her husband Nick is a prime suspect. Soon every couple in their small North Carolina town is wondering how well they really know the one they love.

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Anne Of Green Gables Series

Anne Of Green Gables Series

Marilla and Matthew Cuthbert of Prince Edward Island, Canada decide to adopt an orphaned boy to help them on their farm. Their messenger mistakenly delivers a girl to Green Gables instead—an 11-year-old feisty redhead named Anne Shirley. The series follows Anne from her childhood at Green Gables until she is a mother herself; the later books are about her children’s adventures more than they are about Anne. Age 9 and up.

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168 Hours: You Have More Time Than You Think

168 Hours: You Have More Time Than You Think

$13.99$4.99Audiobook: 7.49 (Whispersync)

Vanderkam's no-nonsense, no-excuses approach to time management just might convince you that you actually have time to accomplish anything you really want to do, when you focus on your core competencies and stop frittering away your time. To get the most out of this book you must do the time diary exercise.

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Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption

Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption

$11.99$2.99Audiobook: 12.99 (Whispersync)

Unbroken tells the true story of Louis Zamperini, an Olympic athlete turned World War II bombardier. Hillenbrand has called Zamp’s life “almost incomprehensibly dramatic,” and she masterfully unfurls his story, which begins with his plane failing and crashing into the Pacific during a routine search mission. (After you finish, pick up Hillenbrand’s previous biography Seabiscuit, which is about so much more than a racehorse.)

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Hope Heals: A True Story of Overwhelming Loss and Overcoming Love

Hope Heals: A True Story of Overwhelming Loss and Overcoming Love

$9.99$1.99Audiobook: 11.49 (Whispersync)

From Joni Earickson Tada: "The book you hold in your hands is so powerful, for if awful things happen to you, you now have a guide . . . Hope Heals may well be your most treasured companion through great trial and pain . . . Do not assume you’ve "heard it all before." Theirs is a story so raw, visceral, and impossibly real that you can’t help but identify."

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