Now in its 16th year, the J.P. Morgan Reading List features titles nominated and selected by J.P. Morgan employees across the globe. The List, issued twice a year, spotlights themes that reflect the diverse interests of its clients. Innovation, philanthropy, education and global affairs are frequent themes.
Here is the list for this summer:
- Creative Schools. Revolutionizing Education from the Ground Up by Ken Robinson.
In his latest work, Ken Robinson makes the case for tapping our advanced technological capital—and creativity—to foster learning and to revamp public education systems. Creativity, he says, is essential to innovative thinking. Through Creative Schools, he offers persuasive evidence, including stories from education’s frontlines, that students, teachers and societies benefit from a curriculum centered on creativity capability rather than standardized learning and assessment.
Ken Robinson, Ph.D., has worked with governments and education systems internationally, focused on the themes of creativity and innovation. His 2006 TED talk was the most viewed in TED’s history; he was knighted in recognition for his services to the arts and, in America, earned the Imagination Award from the Arthur C. Clarke Foundation and the Peabody Medal.
- Deep Down Dark. The Untold Stories of 33 Men Buried in a Chilean Mine, and the Miracle That Set Them Free by Héctor Tobar.
When 33 men were trapped in a mine 2,000 feet underground, they vowed to tell their story together if they survived. Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist Héctor Tobar was selected to write their saga. In Deep Down Dark, he recounts those 69 harrowing days—the miners’ ordeal, the families’ fears, the rescuers’ persistence, and how each person lives with the memory of this experience. With a novelist’s deftness, Tobar depicts the mosaic of human responses to life in danger.
Héctor Tobar is a columnist, journalist and author. He won a Pulitzer Prize in 1992 for his coverage of the Los Angeles riots in the Los Angeles Times. His previous books include The Barbarian Nurseries, Translation Nation and The Tattooed Soldier.
- Every Gift Matters. How Your Passion Can Change the World by Carrie Morgridge.
“Giving transforms two lives: the one who receives and the one who gives,” writes Carrie Morgridge, who has worked for 15 years with her husband at the Morgridge Family Foundation. Every Gift Matters shares inspiring tales of those who drive community change through giving. Imbued with Morgridge’s boundless passion and energy, Every Gift Matters reflects her own practice of pairing a gift with personal involvement, making this deeply felt account both moving and practical.
Carrie Morgridge and her husband devote their time to the Morgridge Family Foundation, formally founded in 2008, which focuses on education. She founded Student Support Foundation, offering a model for student giving, and launched Share Fair Nation, a national event that demonstrates how technology can enhance the classroom experience.
- How to Fly a Horse. The Secret History of Creation, Invention, and Discovery by Kevin Ashton.
For readers curious about the roots of innovation, Kevin Ashton’s How to Fly a Horse is a conversation starter. An entrepreneur and technology pioneer at MIT, Ashton chronicles the creative ingenuity, persistence and sometimes lonely path creators follow to move from idea to breakthrough. Tracing examples in medicine, science, technology, and more, Ashton argues that creativity and invention are not just the domains of a few and that with focus and determination, we can all be game changers.
Kevin Ashton knows firsthand about invention and creativity. In his diverse career, he co-founded the Auto-ID Center at MIT, which studied radio frequency chips and their packaging potential; coined the term “The Internet of Things;” and worked at three tech startups.
- Rain. A Natural and Cultural History by Cynthia Barnett.
Blending science and history—and a dedication to the environment—Cynthia Barnett’s Rain traces the evolution of one of the most common, precious and sometimes destructive forces in nature. Beginning with the primordial showers that created oceans and nurtured life, and moving through time to today’s altered weather patterns, Barnett brings a documentary approach to her subject, riveting the reader with facts and a sense of wonder.
Cynthia Barnett has written about the environment in magazines, newspapers and books for nearly 25 years. Her previous book, Blue Revolution: Unmaking America’s Water Crisis, which called for a water ethic for America, was featured on the Boston Globe’s 2011 list of top 10 science books.
- The Resilience Dividend. Being Strong in a World Where Things Go Wrong by Judith Rodin.
The strength of leaders, organizations and communities can often be measured by their ability to bounce back from a crises, observes Judith Rodin, president of The Rockefeller Foundation. In The Resilience Dividend, she offers stories of communities and businesses that have faced catastrophic events—ranging from weather or disease to political or economic crises—and then persevered and come away even stronger. Here’s a fascinating look at what makes leadership enduring.
Judith Rodin has been president of The Rockefeller Foundation since 2005. Her long list of achievements includes serving as the first female president of an Ivy League school (University of Pennsylvania), 19 honorary degrees, and recognition on the Forbes list of 100 Most Powerful Women for three years in a row.
- Saturday Night Live by Alison Castle.
Devotees of Saturday Night Live will enjoy celebrating the iconic program’s 40th anniversary with this comprehensive look back. Including more than 2,000 photos (some never before published), season reference guides and an insider’s look at a how a live show comes together, Saturday Night Live: The Book memorializes SNL’s spirit, irreverence and astonishing talent. With 500 pages, this coffee table tribute will be a Best Book among the show’s countless fans.
Alison Castle, photographer and editor, specializes in books related to photography, film and design. Her previous books include Some Like It Hot, The Stanley Kubrick Archives, and Linda McCartney: Life in Photographs. Working onSaturday Night Live: The Book gave her insider access to the 39th season of the show, an exhilarating experience for a lifelong fan.
- Where Chefs Eat. A Guide to Chefs’ Favorite Restaurants by Joe Warwick.
Food writer and restaurant critic Joe Warwick presents a guide to more than 3,000 restaurants, based on recommendations from more than 400 of the world’s top chefs. Listed by city, chef favorites range from neighborhood joints to top-flight destinations. With quotes from the chefs, reviews and city maps, Where Chefs Eat is a go-to sourcebook for the curious foodie as well as the well-seasoned traveler.
Joe Warwick’s professional life has centered on food, from waiter to restaurant critic to one of the founders of the World’s 50 Best Restaurants list. Where Chefs Eat is designed to be the opposite of that fine dining list, featuring places for every budget and every eating occasion.
- World Order by Henry Kissinger.
Few people in the last century have been closer to the pulse of international politics than Henry Kissinger. The Nobel Peace Prize winner knows firsthand what lies behind recent international accords as well as the global discord that remains.World Order is his call for international harmony and is filled with details that draw from his experience as historian, statesman, observer and friend—an informative and thought-provoking analysis of the challenges ahead.
Henry Kissinger’s distinguished career includes service as National Security Advisor and Secretary of State. For his many achievements, he earned the Presidential Medal of Freedom—the greatest civilian honor in the United States, the Medal of Liberty, and the Nobel Peace Prize. He is the author of more than a dozen books.
- The Wright Brothers by David McCullough.
Although with every attempt to fly, Wilbur and Orville Wright risked their lives, the brothers were determined to change history. Two-time Pulitzer Prize–winning historian David McCullough tells the story of their family and childhood, genius and ingenuity, successes and failures. McCullough includes details from private diaries, letters and family scrapbooks, making this a moving personal story as well as a tale of perseverance, history and invention.
David McCullough has won numerous accolades for his books, including the Pulitzer Prize (for both Truman and John Adams) and the National Book Award (for The Path Between the Seas and Mornings on Horseback). His gift for storytelling has been enriched by his diverse career as teacher, television and movie narrator, and public speaker.