I Want To Learn

books that changed the way i see things

Home Fire by Kamila Shamsie
Two sisters and a brother, family, love, immigration, and extremism. Fiction. It’s incredible. Read it.

King Leopold’s Ghost by Adam Hochschild
The story of the Belgian colonization of the Congo. Longish, but not boring

The Warmth of Other Suns by Isabel Wilkerson
America’s Great Migration from 1915-1970. Follows the true stories of three different people who migrated during this time. Beautifully written. Every American should read this book.

How Democracies Die by Steven Levitsky, Daniel Ziblatt
The title is pretty self-explanatory. Looks at the methods by which democracies across the world have met their end and how countries protect themselves from authoritarian take-over. A scary read given where we are today, but super interesting. If you want some historical context for why we should be worried today…go for it.

My Life on the Road by Gloria Steinem
Short accounts that the author had with people across the country throughout her career as an activist. I underlined so many sentences in this book I don’t even know why I bothered underlining anything at all.

Just Mercy by Bryan Stephenson
True story written by a black lawyer of a case early in his career that gave him an entirely new understanding of the criminal justice system. Really eye opening. Really depressing. Really good.

The Examined Life by Peter Grosz
Short stories from the career of a psychoanalyst that will make you reconsider why we do what we do.

We Should All Be Feminists by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Super short, also underlined so much. Just read it.

Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood
I thought about this book for years after I first read it. When people ask me about my favorite book, this is one I always mention. Unsettling but so very good.

Drift by Rachel Maddow
The evolution of the US military, it’s relationship to the country, and how military decisions are made. Really eye opening. Super informative.

The Other Wes Moore by Wes Moore
True story of two men, both named Wes Moore, both from the same neighborhood in Baltimore, one ended up a Rhodes Scholar and White House Fellow, the other serving a life sentence for murder. An exploration of the things in life that change our trajectories for better or worse.