What We’re Reading this Summer

by Meagan Bromley
June 6, 2011

At long last, summer is finally here. And while things don’t necessarily slow down for us here at the Cooney Center, we still think of summer’s longer days as a time to tackle some new books – titles we’ve been meaning to read for awhile, perhaps, or have been recommended by friends and colleagues. We often ask each other what we’re reading, so we thought we’d share our most current lists with you!

Our book lists range from popular bestsellers and thought-provoking non-fiction titles to recent work by leaders in media and ed tech. (Along with a few guilty pleasure reads, of course.) Tina Fey’s Bossypants seems to be the most popular book around the office, while many plan to read Ellen Galinsky’s Mind in the Making, as well as the latest books by Steven Johnson and Sherry Turkle.

What are you reading this summer, and why?

To quote the Digital Youth Project, we too will find ourselves “Hanging Out, Messing Around, and Geeking Out” as we go through our reading lists this summer. Here are some of the highlights:

Bossypants by Tina Fey – Lori Takeuchi used to totally relate to Liz Lemon on 30 Rock, but now after reading the memoir, sees that Fey is nowhere near as pathetic as Lemon in real life and, in fact, even funnier.

The Help by Kathryn Stockett

Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Baby, which Carly Shuler thinks should be called “Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Mommy”

The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth SteinCaitlin Skopac is checking out this title that reportedly has “everything” – love, tragedy, danger, anda dog who speaks

Super Sad True Love Story by Gary Shteyngart

A Game of Thrones by George R.R Marti

The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest by Steig Larsson – Lili Toutonaus is looking forward to this read, so that she can finish the trilogy  

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling

A Visit from the Goon Squad by Jennifer Egan – Gabrielle Cayton-Hodges plans to get lost in tales of the punk rock scene from the late sixties to the present day and into the near future

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

Mind in the Making by Ellen Galinsky – this book made the #1 choice on many people’s serious lists, and Catherine Jhee even checked out (and highly recommends!) the first installment of the video book (vook) version.

Where Good Ideas Come From by Steven Johnson Ingrid Ericsson was especially welcoming of this book because it suggests that innovation is both highly messy as well as highly social. While Meagan Bromley has trusted Steven Johnson ever since he convinced her that “Everything Bad is Good for You.”

Tell to Win by Peter Guber – Michael Levine is excited for this read after hearing the author recently speak at the Center’s Forum!

Alone Together: Why We Expect More from Technology and Less from Each Other by Sherry Turkle (a well-known commentator on technology who, as of late, has become more skeptical about technology’s social affordances)  

Education Nation by Milton Chen

Reality is Broken by Jane McGonigal – after she’s finished, Pam Abrams will have to report back on “Why Games Make Us Better and How They Can Change the World

The Innovator’s Dilemma by Clayton Christensen

Cinderella ate My Daughter by Peggy OrensteinGood luck to Becky Herr-Stephenson as she reads through “Dispatches from the Frontlines of the New Girlie-Girl Culture” – hopefully she’ll make it back intact

Growing up with Technology: Young Children Learning in a Digital World  by Lydia Plowman, Christine Stephen and Joanna McPake

Moonwalking with Einstein by Joshua Foer – Catherine Jhee wants to read this book, because Foer’s investigation into the science of memory sounds absolutely fascinating, and she’s hoping to pick up some good tips on remembering more!


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