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Martine’s Must-Reads for October 2021


     1 –   How to Avoid a Clarity Disaster By Bill Gates

Bill Gates has spent a decade investigating the causes and effects of climate change. With the help of experts in the fields of physics, chemistry, biology, engineering, political science, and finance, he has focused on what must be done in order to stop the planet’s slide to certain environmental disaster. In this book, he not only explains why we need to work toward net-zero emissions of greenhouse gases, but also details what we need to do to achieve this profoundly important goal. 

He gives us a clear-eyed description of the challenges we face. Drawing on his understanding of innovation and what it takes to get new ideas into the market, he describes the areas in which technology is already helping to reduce emissions, where and how the current technology can be made to function more effectively, where breakthrough technologies are needed, and who is working on these essential innovations. Finally, he lays out a concrete, practical plan for achieving the goal of zero emissions—suggesting not only policies that governments should adopt, but what we as individuals can do to keep our government, our employers, and ourselves accountable in this crucial enterprise. 

As Bill Gates makes clear, achieving zero emissions will not be simple or easy to do, but if we follow the plan he sets out here, it is a goal firmly within our reach.

Recommended by AAFSW Art & Bookfair Chair Anne Kauzlarich

2- The Regency Years By Robert Morrison 

The Victorians are often credited with ushering in our current era, yet the seeds of change were planted during the earlier Regency period (1811–1820) when the profligate Prince of Wales—the future king George IV—succeeded his father. Around the Prince Regent surged a society of contrasts: evangelicalism and hedonism, elegance and brutality, exuberance and despair. Capturing the Napoleonic Wars, the rise of artists—the Shelleys, Austen, Keats, Byron, Turner—scientists and inventors—Stevenson, Davy, Faraday—and a cast of dissident journalists, military leaders, and fashionistas, Robert Morrison captivatingly illuminates the ways this period shaped the modern world.

3- War on Peace By Ronan Farrow

US foreign policy is undergoing a dire transformation, forever changing America’s place in the world. Institutions of diplomacy and development are bleeding out after deep budget cuts; the diplomats who make America’s deals and protect its citizens around the world are walking out in droves. Offices across the State Department sit empty, while abroad the military-industrial complex has assumed the work once undertaken by peacemakers. We’re becoming a nation that shoots first and asks questions later.

In an astonishing journey from the corridors of power in Washington, DC, to some of the most remote and dangerous places on earthAfghanistan, Somalia, and North Korea among themacclaimed investigative journalist Ronan Farrow illuminates one of the most consequential and poorly understood changes in American history. His firsthand experience as a former State Department official affords a personal look at some of the last standard bearers of traditional statecraft, including Richard Holbrooke, who made peace in Bosnia and died while trying to do so in Afghanistan.

Drawing on recently unearthed documents, and richly informed by rare interviews with whistle-blowers, a warlord, and policymakersincluding every living former secretary of state from Henry Kissinger to Hillary Clinton to Rex Tillersonand now updated with revealing firsthand accounts from inside Donald Trump’s confrontations with diplomats during his impeachment and candid testimonials from officials in Joe Biden’s inner circle, War on Peace makes a powerful case for an endangered profession. Diplomacy, Farrow argues, has declined after decades of political cowardice, shortsightedness, and outright malicebut it may just offer America a way out of a world at war.

Recommended by a friend.

4- The Silent Patient By Alex Michaelides

Alicia Berenson’s life is seemingly perfect. A famous painter married to an in-demand fashion photographer, she lives in a grand house with big windows overlooking a park in one of London’s most desirable areas. One evening her husband Gabriel returns home late from a fashion shoot, and Alicia shoots him five times in the face, and then never speaks another word. Alicia’s refusal to talk, or give any kind of explanation, turns a domestic tragedy into something far grander, a mystery that captures the public imagination and casts Alicia into notoriety. The price of her art skyrockets, and she, the silent patient, is hidden away from the tabloids and spotlight at the Grove, a secure forensic unit in North London. Theo Faber is a criminal psychotherapist who has waited a long time for the opportunity to work with Alicia. His determination to get her to talk and unravel the mystery of why she shot her husband takes him down a twisting path into his own motivations—a search for the truth that threatens to consume him….

Recommended by Lisa  (GPS )

5- Trick or Treat Joke Book For Kids and Family: Halloween Laugh-Out-Loud Book for Kids – Spooky Jokes for Boys and Ghouls

Just in time for Halloween!