Common Impact Blog

Holiday Reading List

Holiday Reading List

By Dana Yonchak | Dec 11, 2014

If you're looking for interesting gift books, or just want some good reading lined up for your holiday break, here are a few recommendations from a few members of the Common Impact team. We hope you enjoy, and we wish you peace and happy holidays!


The Worst Hard Time: The Untold Story of Those Who Survived the Great American Dust Bowl

Timothy Egan

Recommended by Kristina. "This account of how America’s thriving grassland became the epic Dust Bowl and site of the United States’ worst prolonged environmental disaster offers a simultaneously fascinating and disturbing lesson on the repercussions of not thinking systemically when making decisions, as told through the voices of those who survived this historic tragedy."


Personal History

Katharine Graham

Recommended by Danielle. "An engrossing, completely authentic memoir of Katharine Graham’s personal and professional life as the head of the Washington Post during the Watergate scandal and some of the other most extraordinary events of the last half-century. What fascinated me most was her seemingly fearless leadership – as a woman – in a business that was truly an old boys club. Inspiring. It’s been a wonderful companion to these chilly, dark evenings we’re getting in NYC. Almost done…!"


Where'd You Go, Bernadette

Maria Semple

Recommended by Molly. "Though marketed as a beach read, I’d recommend Semple’s book for this holiday season, or for any weather! An unconventional novel that strings together myriad narrative forms – letters, emails, emergency room bills, FBI documents, and more – to produce a shrewd and zany satire of  urban, upper-middle class family life. Underlying the book’s characteristic absurdity and wit, is an astute commentary on parenthood, privilege and the modern tendency towards cultural extremism." 


Benjamin Franklin: An American Life

Walter lsaacson

Recommended by Dana. "Learning about founding father Benjamin Franklin in school was nowhere near as fun, or as interesting as reading this wonderful, story-laden biography of Franklin from Aspen Institute CEO Walter Isaacson. With footnotes as rich as the book itself, Isaacson deftly portrays Franklin as both the youth and the elder statesman, fascinating foibles included, who was also the founding father of the ‘doing well by doing good’ movement."