Thoughts on a Summer Reading Challenge – (with help from the J.P.Morgan List of 10 Books to Read this Summer)

I sort of read books for a living. I read books, prepare briefings and synopses, and help people discover the transferable principles.

I like to read — to read books. Do you?

Here is the problem. There really are way too many good books for any of us to read them all. And so we rely on lists, recommendations, reviews… and then we nurture long-held interests, and develop new ones.

Second MachineBusiness Insider just linked to the J.P.Morgan 15th Summer Reading List. I’ve read two of the ten books on the list, and presented synopses of both. The Second Machine Age I presented at the First Friday Book Synopsis, and The Metropolitan Revolution I presented at the Urban Engagement Book Club. I am not surprised that either of these made the list.

My colleague, Karl Krayer, presented one other of the 10 books – Talk Like TED — at the First Friday Book Synopsis.

As I clicked over to the J.P.Morgan site, they had brief pieces on one book from each year (from their earlier lists — click on the XV J.P.Morgan Reading List Fifteen Years tab) going back to the year 2000. From this list, we’ve presented three of the 14 at the First Friday Book Synopsis. The Tipping Point by Malcolm Gladwell and The World is Flat by Thomas Friedman were books I presented, and Karl Krayer presented Good to Great.tippingpoint

Have you caught the implication yet? We present synopses of good and important books, and we’ve missed most of these “important enough to read” books. It is amazing how many books that are valuable, insightful, “stretching,” I have not read. Ok – I’ll be more honest. Many of these I have not even heard of…

So, here’s my plan. Tomorrow is June 1. For the summer, I am planning/intending to read one book a month from the J. P. Morgan list that I would have never read otherwise. I will not read it to present on it (although, I suspect I will blog about each). I am going to pick books outside of my normal “likely” choices – books I would not have ever read otherwise!

What about you? Do you have a summer reading plan? I think this might be worth doing, don’t you? Click on over, pick three books (or, for the real book readers, pick all 10), and start reading.


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