Behind the Beautiful Forevers by Katherine Boo

9781400067558Behind the Beautiful Forevers
by Katherine Boo
(pub. 2/12)

Next to the luxury hotels in Mumbai live thousands of Indians in the Annawadi slums.  This is a revealing portrait of individuals trying to move ahead amidst corruption and a lack of education and opportunity.  Moving stories of survival in what seems a hopeless environment are contained in this excellent piece of investigative journalism.

Recommended by:
Kathy – Anderson’s Bookshop Naperville
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How to Get Filthy Rich in Rising Asia by Mohsin Hamid

9781594487293How to Get Filthy Rich in Rising Asia
by Mohsin Hamid

An unnamed narrator, in an unnamed country that closely resembles Pakistan, tells one man’s rags-to-riches story. This novel is both a record of human experience and an examination of geopolitical shift. Every character has an interesting backstory and Hamid is a master of multiple perspectives

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Kathy – Anderson’s Bookshop Naperville
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The Submission

9781250007575The Submission
by Amy Waldman

An engaging look at post 9/11 America examining how Americans deal with Muslims in the 21st century. Different points of view show how New Yorkers struggle finding consensus on the design of a 9/11 memorial that was designed by a Muslim – American architect. Part satire and part social commentary with some surprising twists.

Recommended by:
Kathy – Anderson’s Bookshop Naperville
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Outliers: The Story of Success

9780316017930Outliers: The Story of Success
by Malcolm Gladwell

What makes people extraordinary? An interesting look at why some people succeed and others do not. Gladwell explores how culture, timing and luck combine to foster success. I found the chapter on the effects of cultural differences and communication issued in the airline industry fascinating.

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Jennifer – Anderson’s Bookshop Naperville
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Bright-Sided

Bright-SidedBright-Sided
by Barbara Ehrenreich

An interesting look at the downside of positive thinking in America. The author believes that our cultural obsession with positivity has contributed to many societal ills such as personal debt, obesity, and the country’s recent financial crisis. A provocative read!

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Kathy – Anderson’s Bookshop Naperville
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Zeitoun

ZeitounZeitoun
by Dave Eggers

A surreal account of Hurricane Katrina from the perspective of a New Orleans resident who remained in the city after the flooding to protect his property and help his neighbors. When this resident is arrested due to his Syrian heritage, the reader becomes aware of the breakdown of society and the injustice of is situation. It is impossible to read this book without asking “how could this happen in America?”

Recommended by:
Kathy – Anderson’s Bookshop Naperville
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