Sample Saturday – three nonfiction picks

Sample Saturday is when I wade through the eleventy billion samples I have downloaded on my Kindle. I’m slowly chipping away and deciding whether it’s buy or bye.

Beginners by Tom Vanderbilt

Why I have it: Because I plan for a lifetime of learning.

Summary: Why do so many of us stop learning new skills as adults? Vanderbilt begins a year of learning purely for the sake of learning. He tackles five main skills, choosing them for their difficulty to master and their distinct lack of career marketability – chess, singing, surfing, drawing, and juggling.

I’m thinking: Yes.

We Keep the Dead Close by Becky Cooper 

Why I have it: Not sure.

Summary: 1969: Jane Britton, a 23-year-old student in Harvard’s Anthropology Department, is found dead in her apartment. Decades later, Becky Cooper, a curious undergrad, hears the first whispers of the story, and it becomes one that she pursues, revealing a tale of gender inequality in academia, the silencing effect of institutions, and our compulsion to rewrite the stories of female victims.

I’m thinking: Yes.

The Confidence Game by Maria Konnikova

Why I have it: Have heard the author speak (maybe in relation to this book…?)

Summary: While cheats and swindlers may be a dime a dozen, true conmen are elegant, outsized personalities, artists of persuasion and exploiters of trust. How do they do it? Why are they successful? These are the questions that journalist and psychologist Maria Konnikova tackles.

I’m thinking: Yes.


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