Self-Improvement

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The Obstacle Is The Way, Ryan Holiday: At the age of 19, Ryan Holiday dropped out of college, becoming the Director of Marketing for American Apparel by 21. Now 26, he’s on his third novel, which explains how to use the wisdom of Stoic philosophy to overcome modern obstacles. Sound cheesy? Maybe. But if it worked for guys as successful as Marcus Aurelius and Holiday himself, we think it’s worth a read. In a similar vein, check out The Handbook, by Epictetus — you’ll finish it in 20 minutes, and it might just change your life.

Finance

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Capital in the 21st Century, Thomas Piketty: Global climate change income inequality has become one of the greatest issues of our time, inspiring debates everywhere from Fox News to the comments section of almost every article ever. In Capital in the 21st Century, Thomas Piketty looks at research on income equality from 20 different countries, analyzing its causes and presenting ideas for how to move forward. It’s one of the most important books on finance to come out in the last decade.

Memoir

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Shrinkage, Bryan Bishop: Many people know Bishop as “Bald Bryan” from the popular podcast, The Adam Carolla Show, though fewer know that in 2009 a doctor diagnosed him with an inoperable brain tumor that forced him to schedule chemo between work and wedding plans. Bishop handled the whole situation with endearing grace and humor, and uses this book to describe the surreal process of writing his own will and his “threesome”, which featured a physical therapist showing his wife how to bathe him.

Beach Read

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In Light Of What We Know, Zia Haider Rahman: In The Power of One, Bryce Courtenay channels the spectrum of human emotions to write a unique, riveting and multi-cultural tale; in his debut novel, In Light of What We Know, Zia Haider Rahman ensnares many of the same engrossing themes, and with plenty of his own style. It’s about the power of two friends — one who has always walked among the elite, and the other who rose to his position from rural Bangladesh. It’s a work born of talent and experience, sure to join the likes of The Power of One, The Kite Runner, and The Life of Pi as one of the past several decades’ most engaging works.

Coffee Table

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The Art of Dreamworks Animation, Ramin Zahed: Other than Pixar, perhaps no animation studio has been as influential as Dreamworks, founded in 1994 by Hollywood heavy-hitters Steven Spielberg, Jeffrey Katzenberg and David Geffen. Over the last two decades, Dreamworks has launched blockbuster franchises like Shrek, Kung Fu Panda and How To Train Your Dragon and produced brilliant one-offs like The Prince of Egypt, Antz and Chicken Run. Celebrate the last twenty years of history with this in-depth photo book, a collaboration between Dreamworks and the editor-in-chief of Animation Magazine.

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