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An early start: What non-fiction book shall we read in May, June & July? 
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 An early start: What non-fiction book shall we read in May, June & July?
Let's get a jump start on the non-fiction book selection process for our May, June and July 2014 book.

Please read our very simple rules:

1. Only make suggestions in this thread if you're an active member with at least 10 real posts on our forums.

2. Only make suggestions in this thread if you fully intend to participate in the book discussion if your book suggestion wins.

3. If you're an author or publisher suggesting your book or your client's book please say so very clearly in your post AND follow rules #1 and #2 above.

4. Provide the title, author name, a link to where we can read more, and ideally some extra words about WHY you are making your book suggestion.

5. After making your suggestion read every other suggestion and leave feedback on the books you like and would consider reading and discussing. If you see book suggestions you don't like or that don't seem worthy of discussion no comment is necessary. The lack of positive feedback on a book will be all we need to know.

So, what non-fiction book would you like to read and discuss in May, June and July of 2014?



Thu Feb 27, 2014 10:30 am
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Post Re: An early start: What non-fiction book shall we read in April, May & June?
Drunk Tank Pink: And Other Unexpected Forces That Shape How We Think, Feel, and Behave
By Adam Alter

Book Description:

Quote:
A revelatory look at how our environment unconsciously yet dramatically shapes the judgments and decisions we make every day

Most of us go through life believing that we are in control of the choices we make—that we think and behave almost independently from the world around us. But as Drunk Tank Pink illustrates, the truth is our environment shapes our thoughts and actions in myriad ways without our permission or even our knowledge. Armed with surprising data and endlessly fascinating examples, Adam Alter addresses the subtle but substantial ways in which outside forces influence us—such as color’s influence on mood, our bias in favor of names with which we identify, and how sunny days can induce optimism as well as aggression. Drunk Tank Pink proves that the truth behind our feelings and actions goes much deeper than the choices we take for granted every day.


From Booklist:

Quote:
It’s commonly known that a lot of police departments and detention centers use a certain shade of pink in their cells because the color is believed to have a calming effect. But the color pink isn’t the only thing that affects how we behave; there are dozens of factors that influence our thoughts and beliefs. Consider the compass, for example: the earth’s surface is horizontal, and there’s no need for north to be above south, but the association of north with up and south with down has some very interesting repercussions (such as people’s tendency to prefer to travel south rather than north to go to a store, because north is uphill). Or consider this: people with names that begin with the letter K were responsible for 10 percent of donations for Hurricane Katrina relief efforts, but for only 4 percent of donations “to all disasters before Katrina.” An intelligent, often surprising exploration of the way cues of all varieties (sounds, colors, images, symbols, and more) shape the people we are, for better or worse. --David Pitt


Book Reviews:

"Adam Alter's book will change the way you look at our world."
--Dan Ariely, New York Times bestselling author of Predictably Irrational

"You'll laugh, you'll gasp, you'll shake your head in disbelief as Alter shows you that we are all, to some degree, balls in a giant pinball machine. If you want to see the bumpers -- and regain some control of your destiny -- read this delightful book."
--Jonathan Haidt, author of New York Times bestseller, The Righteous Mind

"Alter not only explains the source of many cognitive quirks, but convincingly argues that comprehending them affords a better understanding of broader behaviors, from cyclical poverty to altruism... In Alter's hands, case studies take on new life... as he fluently moves between psychology, medicine, and cultural history, offering surprises to readers at many levels of expertise."
--Publishers Weekly

"With remarkable clarity and subversive humor, Alter presents a radical new perspective on human nature."
--Paul Bloom, author of How Pleasure Works

"Adam Alter has collected the most wonderfully strange and surprising nuggets of recent psychological research in one book. I guarantee you'll be want to share the incredible anecdotes in Drunk Tank Pink with friends."
--Joshua Foer, New York Times bestselling author of Moonwalking with Einstein

"Drunk Tank Pink is a smart and delightful introduction to some of psychology's most curious phenomena and most colorful characters."
--Daniel Gilbert, New York Times bestselling author of Stumbling on Happiness

"Reading Adam Alter's book about the many ways our perceptions are affected is so compelling that it put me in a seriously suspicious frame of mind...he seems to realize that his material does not require much to make it fascinating--not even a fancy font."
--The Smithsonian (a "Notable Book")

"Popular NYU psychology and marketing professor Adam Alter has composed a fascinating tome about the hidden things that make us think, act, and feel the way we do. The debut result will please readers of Malcolm Gladwell and other writers about unexpected wonders. Editor's recommendation."
--Barnes & Noble (A "Book of the Month" and "Editor's Recommendation" book)

"Alter's findings are intriguing...he peppers his text with illustrative anecdotes, incidents, studies and characters, making the book highly readable and informative."
--Kirkus Reviews (A Kirkus Recommended book)




This book seems like the type we'd really enjoy discussing. We talk about free will in the Religion forum all the time. How much free will do we really have and how much are we impacted by subconscious influences?



Thu Feb 27, 2014 11:49 am
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Post Re: An early start: What non-fiction book shall we read in April, May & June?
There's going to be a 2-month overlap with the latest pick (the Haidt book)?



Thu Feb 27, 2014 6:24 pm
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Post Re: An early start: What non-fiction book shall we read in April, May & June?
Each book is of appeal to different members and/or visitors so having some overlap has served us well over the years. We need a few non-fiction books on the menu concurrently. Same goes for fiction. This thread will help us determine if a 2nd non-fiction book will work. If we get little to no activity we won't start a new non-fiction book in April. We could delay the start of the next non-fiction discussion till May 1st. Are you concerned that April 1st is too soon for a new non-fiction to start?



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Post Re: An early start: What non-fiction book shall we read in April, May & June?
I have no problem with it if we can attract some interest. Let me think of some possibilities.



Thu Feb 27, 2014 7:15 pm
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Post Re: An early start: What non-fiction book shall we read in April, May & June?
Sounds good.



Fri Feb 28, 2014 5:24 pm
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Post Re: An early start: What non-fiction book shall we read in April, May & June?
Chris OConnor wrote:
Each book is of appeal to different members and/or visitors so having some overlap has served us well over the years. We need a few non-fiction books on the menu concurrently.


I think the idea of having two nonfiction books running concurrently is a good one. But, if you are looking to draw more people into the nonfiction forum, perhaps the second book should be something from a different subject area; perhaps one of the books mentioned recently, eg. "Duty", "Unbroken", or "Panel of Elders".
And if the interest is there, I would definitely like to see The "Happiness Hypothesis" theme continue in two or three months with "Drunk Tank Pink". In fact I have already ordered my copy.



Sat Mar 01, 2014 11:12 am
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Post Re: An early start: What non-fiction book shall we read in April, May & June?
I suspect this book discussion forum has focused too much on religion, however I can recommend God Is Not One: The Eight Rival Religions That Rule The World by Stephen Prothero. It would expand the dialog by counteracting many unspoken and surprising assumptions regarding Judeo-Christian heritage and religion in general. Although written by a professor in the Department of Religion at Boston University, it is quite accessible.

I can also support Duty by Gates.

I don't think that we have done much with history since I bury My Heart at Wounded Knee. Someone expressed interest in Thomas Jefferson and I recommended American Sphinx: The Character of Thomas Jefferson by Joseph Ellis. This is more of an analysis of Jefferson than a biographical timeline, but there are severe contradictions in his character that are difficult to resolve. This book is the first I heard of "The Great Silence" encoded in the U.S. Constitution.

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Sat Mar 01, 2014 10:14 pm
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Post Re: An early start: What non-fiction book shall we read in April, May & June?
I'll change this book suggestion thread to refer to "May, June and July." April is right around the corner and we don't have enough activity to warrant selecting a new non-fiction book to start in April. :hmm:



Sat Mar 15, 2014 3:53 pm
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Post Re: An early start: What non-fiction book shall we read in May, June & July?
Don't know how much interest there would be, but here's a popular (or maybe semi-popular) book about math with many short, apparently independent chapters:

The Joy of x: A Guided Tour of Math, from One to Infinity
by Steven Strogatz
http://www.amazon.com/The-Joy-Guided-To ... 166&sr=8-1

Quote:
Whether he is illuminating how often you should flip your mattress to get the maximum lifespan from it, explaining just how Google searches the internet, or determining how many people you should date before settling down, Strogatz shows how math connects to every aspect of life. Discussing pop culture, medicine, law, philosophy, art, and business, Strogatz is the math teacher you wish you’d had. Whether you aced integral calculus or aren’t sure what an integer is, you’ll find profound wisdom and persistent delight in The Joy of x.



Sat Mar 15, 2014 6:39 pm
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