Bob Pearson’s Favorite Early Summer Reads to Help You Think Outside the Box

Some people look at our world and see it in such a unique way that we find a new model or movie or bad guy in a way that was not so obvious at first.

That’s been my theme in reading books for the last few months. Read about people who think outside the box or topics that do the same.   

It’s quite an eclectic range to achieve this goal. Here’s a brief summary:

Mel Brooks – All About Me! – Mel’s memoir illustrates how he methodically selected a genre like the western and horror movies or a director like Alfred Hitchcock or a favorite entertainment venue like Broadway, then developed a style of comedy where he celebrated the genre, while poking fun at it. We are left with the 2,000-year-old man, High Anxiety, Young Frankenstein, and one-liners that we still share with our friends. 

Marty Makary, MD – The Price We Pay – This Johns Hopkins physician has a knack for utilizing data and common sense to expose a wide range of problems in our health system. He shows pricing disparities and treatment approaches that are radically different in the same city over and over again. We need more Marty Makarys to shine light on the practice of medicine. When you read his book, you realize we can all do more to advocate for clarity and transparency in healthcare costs.  

Seth Godin – The Practice: Shipping Creative Work – Seth’s book walks us through the philosophy of being a creator. Like any book by Seth, it is filled with snippets of wisdom that make you stop and think. A good book for folks in the communications and marketing industries.

Malcolm Gladwell – Talking to Strangers – Turns out we are not so good at reading people, which can cause significant issues in society. Through well-chosen anecdotes, we learn why we often misdiagnose a situation. The book sensitizes you to thinking more about those you interact with rather than just assuming you have it all figured out.  

Cliff Stoll – The Cuckoo’s Egg – An astronomer who is asked to work in computer science gets his first big assignment: find out why the billing is off by 75 cents. That journey in the 1980s led to uncovering the first major hacking story and arguably helped change the dialogue on the importance of cybersecurity. A classic.

John Banville – The Infinities – If you ever saw Hadestown on Broadway, you can imagine this book. It weaves in the supernatural with a scene in which the patriarch of a family is experiencing their last days on Earth. It’s a book that has you thinking about what you think you should think about. Guess I would say it is thoughtful (and well written). John Banville is a Man Booker Prize award-winning author.

Hans Joerg Schneider – Silver Pebbles – This is the second book I have read in a series about a detective in Basel, Switzerland, who always figures out the case. The detective, inspector Peter Hunkeler, is like a Swiss version of Columbo. Not all that smooth or well dressed, and you have your doubts he will solve the case, but he somehow stumbles on his way to the answer. 

By Bob Pearson, CEO

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels