By Marilynne Robinson
Recommended by Sally Adua of New Haven, CT. Sally is currently a PhD Candidate in Cancery Biology at Yale University.
Book, 247 pages
"The writing is beautiful, and the premise is bittersweet: an aging small-town preacher in Iowa records his everyday events, as well as his family’s history, for his young son. Through this novel and its very realistically human characters, Robinson convinced me of the value of religion more than four years at a Catholic college did. For a book where nothing really happens plot-wise, a lot happened for me as a reader: namely, a mind-opening towards both religion and the complexities of simple (for lack of a better word), small town living."
The Subtle Art of Not Giving A F*ck: A Counterintuitive Approach to Living a Good Life
By Mark Manson
Recommended by Cameron King of South Boston, MA. Cameron King is the Business Director at VoyEdge RX - a fitness & travel company, a lifelong learner, skydiver and active CrossFit athlete among other things.
Book, 224 pages
"I've been in the habit of rereading books from my past, and this is the third time I've read The Subtle Art....and it's having quite the effect on me this time around. The first two times I thought, 'Oh, what a funny sarcastic commentary about life and its trivialness...' but this time, I'm visibly seeing the habits and patterns of intrinsic motivation and why humans as a whole decide to get emotionally enveloped into things which are out of our control. The book itself is not about learning how to 'not care,' but instead has an emphasis on keeping our emotions grounded into the little things we can control in our lives and staying attuned to your path while avoiding the pitfalls of life as a whole.
The biggest takeaway from the book is realizing that action inspires action. Most people wait for inspiration to turn into motivation which can then be bankrolled into action, but indeed the way it works is this. A little bit of action inspires motivation which leads to inspiration and gives birth to more action."
Documentary/Netflix, 120 minutes
If you enjoyed AlphaGo from last month’s _consider, The Farthest offers a similar inside-baseball look at a group of engineers attempting to accomplish the impossible in a race against time. Unlike AlphaGo, the story of NASA’s quest to explore the outer depths of the universe spans over decades. The planets literally aligning in 1977 - an event that occurs every 175 years - presented NASA with a golden opportunity to send two spacecraft (Voyager I and II) to explore Jupiter, Saturn and more. The Farthest additionally explores humans’ relationship with space through the Golden Record, an audio disc placed on both spacecraft representing our best effort at the time to communicate with whatever lies beyond Earth. The Farthest is a spectacular look at the blend of science and culture that birthed the two spacecraft currently farthest from our home, which still send transmissions back to us today.
When Winter Never Ends: Ichiro Suzuki Profile
ESPN Article, 20 minutes
Statistically, it’s become clear that Ichiro Suzuki’s iconic major league baseball career is nearing the end. But how do you tell that to a man who knows no alternative to extreme discipline and an unparalleled devotion to improving his craft? Wright Thompson’s profile of a waning star explores the cost of greatness and the complicated psychology of letting go.