I’ve made some headway on my Shelf Life Catch-Up goals. (Not a lot, but some.)
Here are some quick reviews:
The Grownup, by Gillian Flynn
I’ve been rapt by everything of Gillian Flynn’s that I’ve read, and this novella is no exception. In the span of a mere 62 pages, Flynn manages to draw you in, make you curious, give you goosebumps, surprise you, and make you question everything. And then make you question everything again. Her characters are so well-developed they are recognizable, knowable, but all untrustworthy enough to keep you questioning them well past the last page.
Being Relational: The Seven Ways to Quality Interaction and Lasting Change
by Louise Phipps Senft and William Sent
(Technically, I read this in the fall, but I’ve referred back to it so many times since I’m not willing to take it off the shelf just yet.) Whether you are looking to improve your business, social, or personal relationships, Being Relational should be at the top of your reading list. A self-improvement book on the surface, it carries a very important message about the good that can come for all when, instead focusing on “winning” in our dealings with others, we focus on sharing the win with the other party (or parties) involved–on creating a win-win result in every interaction. Taking the spotlight off the transaction and putting it on the relationship, the Senfts (who, between them, have decades of experience as mediators and negotiators) have outlined not only a way to improve our personal experience, but a philosophy that can change our society one relationship at a time.
Plumdog, by Emma Chichester Clark
Meet Plum, a “whoosell” (Whippet, Poodle, Jack Russell mix). At times, brave, at times crafty, and always lovable, Plum has been entertaining readers with his stories and antics on the blog Emma keeps for him (of the same name). But whether or not you are familiar with his blog, you will love Plumdog, the beautifully full-color illustrated (by Ms. Clark) diary of a year in the life of Plum. Starting with his new year resolutions (which include “To be braver” and “Not to unstuff my new toys immediately”) and throughout the seasons you will fall in love with Plum and become remarkably involved in his four-legged life and learn a thing or two from his personal dogma.