Lorenzo is an amateur reader trying to go pro. He tends to read post-modern fiction (Pynchon, Vonnegut, Burroughs), or books on Buddhism, meditation, and spirituality. He's also a big fan of poets like Mary Oliver, William Carlos Williams, and Walt Whitman.
The content within is urgent and incendiary. Why do we obey authority? How can we resist unjust lawmakers? Whether it's political extremism, murderous police, or economic inequality, one thing is certain: disobedience is our political responsibility as citizens of an unjust world.
"Giving voice to the unheard, this collection of essays and poetry by trans, nonbinary, and gender-nonconforming Buddhists lucidly expound on concepts of identity, social justice, and embracing your truest self. Read this with an open heart."
"Peace is Every Step is not an empty metaphor. If we try, we can find peace daily in even the most mundane tasks. This book will help you see how."
"Slahi spent 14 years in Guantanamo Bay. No charges, no trial, all because he fit the profile and was at the wrong place at the wrong time. The previous edition was heavily censored (5 pages were entirely blacked-out). This one is uncensored, and now all the details of this man's unthinkable and unlawful imprisonment are public. Everyone should read this. Discover what our government is capable of."
"Feels like we live in a disconnected time. Debates quickly turn contentious, friends have become 'followers,' and hot takes are dished out at the expense of genuine conversation. Journalist Kate Murphy argues that not listening is at the root of a lot of our problems -- she interviews a wide array of people to get to the bottom of what makes a good listener and gives advice on how to become one (because odds are, you aren't!). Equally informative, helpful, and entertaining."
"In this collection of essays, Mary Oliver invites the reader to observe, explore, and fall in love with the natural world. My personal favorites are My Friend Walt Whitman, Sister Turtle, and Emerson: An Introduction. Read this by a frozen pond! Or in the woods! Or by a fireplace with a cup of hot cocoa!"
"Is this book technically a philosophical essay? Yes. But is it theoretical navel-gazing mumbo-jumbo? Heck no. French philosopher Charles Pepin cites everyone from Nietzsche to Madonna in his examination of self-confidence and his theory on how to improve it. This is the perfect book to start your 2020, no matter what your New Year's Resolution may be."
"Considering this takes place decades after Call Me By Your Name -- and the fact that there three different narrators -- this is hardly a genuine sequel. Still, Aciman's provocative language continues to captivate. Taking place across idyllic versions of Rome, Paris, and New England, Find Me will give devoted fans plenty to fall in love with all over again."
"Though it was originally published in 1951, "The Wisdom of Insecurity" feels like an incredibly contemporary and urgent book. Watts, using wisdom from Eastern philosophies, explains that "anxiety" comes from our inability to live in the present, and argues how we can be more mindful instead. This book is profound, wonderfully written, and downright life-changing."
"William Finnegan, a reporter, and contributor for The New Yorker, brings his keen eye for specificity and tone to his own life's story. Whether you are a surfer yourself or just a casual bystander, "Barbarian Days" paints a vivid picture of the surfer's life for all readers. Perfect for a summer read in the sun!"
Aside from his three novels, this collection contains all of Franz Kafka's stories, most of which were published after his death. Aside from classic "The Metamorphosis" and other widely-read stories such as "In the Penal Colony" and "A Hunger Artist," there are countless flash-fiction gems you may have never read before. If you're a Kafka fan, this is a great book to discover more of his mind-bending, philosophical musings!
Part essay, part memoir, entirely poetic. Perfect for the contemplative reader, or anyone who has questioned mainstream culture's expectations for a fulfilling life.
"A story of personal discovery, self-affirmation, and strength. Janet Mock is an iconic, inspirational figure just by being herself. Amazing storytelling by an amazing woman."
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"This slim short-story collection looks at the infamous world of fraternities with humanity and wit. The dark, uncomfortable parts are there of course, but what remains is an enjoyable, quick read full of sincerity, empathy, and humor."
"Let's get excited about Aristotle. Beresford's casual, plain-spoken translation will make it simple (and fun!). This foundational text of Western Philosophy is now easily digestible in a way that makes the quest for 'The Good Life' clearer, no college course required."
"Captivating, unflinching, original -- all while being rather culturally momentous. This novel (a debut, no less!) has literary punch and is impossible to put down: it rightfully has gotten wide acclaim from damn near everyone. The future looks bright for trans authors and mainstream publishing."
"Yes, I've staff pick'd The Great Gatsby. I know, you read/skipped it in high school; you loved/hated it. But since it's now in public domain (as I write this, news broke there's an animated movie in development), I figure it might be good to revisit the original. Classic, poetic, tragic, and (maybe) better than you remember."
"I've read my share, but no book on Buddhism has been as inspirational as this one. In recounting his rebellious and risky journey, Mingyur Rinpoche shows that even revered monks experience fear, anxiety, and uncertainty just like the rest of us. Moreover, and thankfully so, he shows us how to turn that fear into wakefulness."
"Powerful. Like, fully capable of changing your worldview (and the world at large). Radical self-love is the movement we all need and you'll see why."
"An exhilarating feast of language. The colors, textures, brushstrokes leap off the page, transporting you to Belgium, France, Italy... And within the whirlwind of aesthetics and lyricism is a coming of age story that is touching and heartfelt."
"A detective noir laced with marijuana set in late-60s LA. Whole lotta heart in there, too. But don't get lost in the details or the frequent, wild tangents. Groovy, man."
What is freedom? How can somebody, a body, achieve liberation? Laing investigates this -- exploring sex, politics, disease, violence, civil rights -- with empathy and a sharp eye.