Making a list,checking it twice: My Holiday Reading

I can’t stop thinking about Doris Lessing’s acceptance speech for the Nobel Prize in Literature. I’ve always prided myself on being a bookworm, but her words made me realise that recently I haven’t been reading very much aside from what I’ve needed to read for class. What’s more, since much of what I do involves being on the computer, my lack of reading has been replaced with far too much time with what Lessing calls, “the inanities of the internet”.

So in an effort to rectify my reading/internet balance, I’m making a list of holiday reading. During the Christmas break every time I feel tempted to turn on the computer, I shall read!

Here are the top five books on my list.

1) Acts of Faith: The Story of an American Muslim, the Struggle for a Soul of a Generation by Eboo Patel: I’ve heard excellent things about this book and just find Eboo Patel’s work intriguing in general. He is the director of the Interfaith Youth Core, (an international organization that builds respect among youth from different faith traditions by empowering them to work together to serve others) and a Rhodes Scholar.

2) Stumbling on Happiness by Daniel Gilbert: I saw this book recently when browsing for good books, and loved its dedication page and introduction. Both very very funny. And anything that has Malcolm Gladwell on the cover gets my vote.

3) The Dark Materials Trilogy by Philip Pullman: Because I read The Subtle Knife (Book Two) in my children’s literature class this term, and I really want to know how the trilogy starts and ends.

4) Forces for Good: The Six Practices of High-Impact Nonprofits:
I’m intensely interested right now in what makes an organization extremely effective, and what sorts of factors create work environments where people feel happy and that their contributions are valued.

5) The Elements of Style: Because a prof this term said anyone who wishes to be a serious writer must read this book, apply its principles and refer to it frequently.

I’m extremely interested to hear from terry readers: what have you been reading lately/hope to read soon that you’d recommend? I’d love to add to my list.

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Shagufta is a UBC Political Science graduate with a passion for interdisciplinary thinking, writing, travel, reading, tea, and interesting conversations. She hopes to combine all of these things in her life work someday. For now though, she studies social policy and planning at the University of Toronto and shares her adventures in and out of the classroom at