Alliance Summer Reading List 2018

It’s time for our annual News Media Alliance summer reading list. The staff of voracious readers is plugged in to the news 24/7, but this summer, we’re making time for these amazing reads.

Have a suggestion to add? Tweet us with the hashtag #Alliancebooks.

Kirsten Ballard, Social Media and Blog Editor:

For work: The Big Life

Ann Shoket, former editor of Seventeen Magazine, teaches readers how to recognize their power, tap into ambition and craft a career full of passion. It’s geared toward helping millennial women create a career that is meaningful.

For fun: Circe

Madeline Miller recasts the female figure from the Odyssey to be her own hero in this modern epic.

Paul Boyle, SVP of Public Policy

For Work: Move Fast and Break Things

Move Fast and Break Things is the riveting account of a small group of entrepreneurs who hijacked the original decentralized vision of the Internet, and in the process creating three monopoly firms–Facebook, Amazon, and Google–that now determine the future of the music, film, television, publishing and news industries.

For Fun: A Gentleman in Moscow

In 1922, Count Alexander Rostov is sentenced to house arrest in the Metropol, a grand hotel across the street from the Kremlin. He is kept in an attic room while some of the most tumultuous decades in Russian history are unfolding outside the hotel’s doors. Unexpectedly, his reduced circumstances provide him entry into a much larger world of emotional discovery.

David Chavern, President & CEO:

For work: World without Mind

Franklin Foer reveals the existential threat posed by big tech, and in his brilliant polemic tone gives us the toolkit to fight their pervasive influence. It’s a must-read for anyone engaging in social media or using a smart phone.

For fun: Directorate S

Pulitzer Prize-winning author Steve Coll tells the epic and enthralling story of America’s intelligence, military and diplomatic efforts to defeat Al Qaeda and the Taliban in Afghanistan and Pakistan since 9/11.

Jane Elizabeth, Director, Accountability Journalism Project, American Press Institute

For Work: Overload: Finding the Truth in Today’s Deluge of News

Veteran journalist Bob Schieffer explores the intersection of political news, the 24-hour news cycle and explosion of fake news. It is based on interviews with 40 media leaders and tries to answer the question of whether citizens are overwhelmed or more informed.

For Fun: Bonfire

This thriller follows environmental lawyer Abby Williams back to her small hometown as she investigates the town’s high-profile plastics company. With tantalizing twists, slow-burning suspense and a remote, rural town, Bonfire is a dark exploration of the question: can you ever outrun your past?

Rebecca Frank, Director, Research & Insights:

For work: Becoming the News

Ruth Palmer digs into how normal people respond to becoming media subjects. She explores the power dynamic between journalists and sources and the influence of social media.

For fun: I’ll Be Gone in the Dark

This buzzy book made headlines with the recent arrest of the Golden State Killer. The true story digs into the elusive rapist/murderer who haunted California in the 70s and 80s, and the journalist who died while investigating the case.

Michelle Harris, VP, Membership & Development:

For Work: Brave Leadership

Learn how to uncover your barriers, prepare for high-stakes meetings and set the direction of your career with Kimberly Davis’ book. This book is an essential guide for today’s leaders.

For Fun: An American Marriage

This stirring love story is a profoundly insightful look into the hearts and minds of three people who are at once bound and separated by forces beyond their control. An American Marriage is a masterpiece of storytelling, an intimate look deep into the souls of people who must reckon with the past while moving forward–with hope and pain–into the future.

Mel Jones, Content Strategy Specialist, American Press Institute

For Work: Why We’re Here

Drawing lessons from The Harwood Institute’s work with public broadcasters, Why We’re Here documents how these organizations (and others like them) innovate, become more intentional in relating to communities, engage and mobilize people and ultimately deepen their impact in people’s lives.

For Fun: The Gospel Comes with a House Key

Rosaria Butterfield invites readers into her home to show them how God can use this same “radical, ordinary hospitality” to bring the gospel to our lost friends and neighbors.

Jennifer Peters, Reporter, Trends and Insights:

For Work: Messing with the Enemy

Clint Watts is a former FBI Special Agent, U.S. Army officer and leading cyber-security expert. He testified in the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence about Russian interference in the 2016 election. In this book, he discusses the misinformation campaigns, fake news and electronic espionage operations that have become modern warfare.

For Fun: Never Let Them See You Cry

Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter Edna Buchanan retells her days as a Miami Herald reporter on the police beat. It offers a look at how she balanced being tough and caring.


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