Explore a list of recommended books

University colleagues recommend books that made an impact on them.
Explore a list of recommended books
Design: Lorena Lopez/University of Miami

We asked and our community delivered. Our list of book recommendations continues to expand this month with a mixture of subjects and genres. We’re thrilled to share this diverse collection of titles with you, our colleagues. Take a gander and pick your next read.


All the Flowers in Paris
Sarah Jio
“Two women are connected by an apartment in Paris. One is living during World War II and the other in modern times. The book weaves their different lives, which have so much in common as the women face adversity. Their role and love as mothers are put to the test, as well as the love for the men in their lives. This is an easy-to-read book that you won't want to put down. I read it in two sittings on the same day.” —Carol Reynolds-Srot, university editor, University Communications
Genre: Romance novel, Saga, Historical Fiction

Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim
David Sedaris
“These days it is essential to laugh. I recommend almost anything by David Sedaris.” —Gilda Santana, head of the Architecture Research Center; librarian for art and art history
Genres: Humour, Essay, Fiction, Anthology

The Minimalists
“ ‘Love people, use things, because the opposite never works.’ This collection of essays shows that there's a more fulfilling way of life than the ever-present American way of consumerism. This work was most thought-provoking.” —Joy Doan, head of Weeks Music Library
Subjects: Conduct of life, Consumption (Economics), Happiness, Minimalism

Falling Felines and Fundamental Physics
Gregory J. Gbur
“This fun book, with its equally enjoyable alliterative title, highlights how seemingly trivial questions (e.g. why do cats always land upright?), when taken seriously and pursued with rigor, can lead to some interesting scientific insights. Through the cases presented in ‘Falling Felines and Fundamental Physics,’ the author shows that the sciences are not static disciplines; rather, they are pursuits  of knowledge that are continually in flux and undergoing revision. Plus, tons of great pictures of cats!” —James Sobczak, STEM librarian, University of Miami Libraries
Subjects: Science, Physics

Salt Houses
Hala Alyan
“ ‘Salt Houses’ recounts the story of three generations of a Palestinian family. The book is the winner of the Dayton Literary Peace Prize, the Arab American Book Award, and was named the Best Book of the Year by NPR.” —Shatha Baydoun, librarian, University of Miami Libraries
Genres: Novel, Historical Fiction, Domestic Fiction



So You Want to Talk About Race
Ijeoma Oluo
“Recently, I started my journey to really focus time and energy on learning about systemic racism and white privilege. And I am trying to understand the experiences of others, particularly people of color. If you're looking for a place to start, I recommend picking up this book. It includes examples and perspectives from the author's experience and offers practical ways to have conversations about race. I was happy to see it was selected as this year’s One Book, One U title.” —Brittney Bomnin, communications manager, University Communications
Subjects: Social Science, Ethnic Studies, African American Studies

This Will be My Undoing: Living at the Intersection of Black, Female, and Feminist in (White) America
Morgan Jenkins
“This is the book that every young Black woman, or those dedicated to DEI and antiracist efforts in modern society should read.” —Joy Doan, head of the Weeks Music Library
Genres: Biography, Autobiography

The Unbearable Lightness of Being
Milan Kundera 
“Even in futility there is beauty.” —Gilda Santana, head of the Architecture Research Center; librarian for art and art history
Genres: Novel, Romance novel, Magical Realism, Philosophical fiction

You Look Like a Thing and I Love You: How Artificial Intelligence Works and Why It's Making the World a Weirder Place
Janelle Shane
“Are you curious why artificial intelligence can be both so smart and so dumb at the same time? Then this book is for you. ‘You Look Like a Thing and I Love You’ is a fun introduction to the weird world of artificial intelligence, which will hopefully get you to think and laugh about the ‘smart’ technologies that exist all around us.” —James Sobczak, STEM librarian, University of Miami Libraries
Subjects: Humor, Language, Computer Science, Intelligence (AI) and Semantics, Natural Language Processing, Neural Networks

Browse a list of book titles submitted via @univmiami on #nationalbookloversday. 

  • 12 Rules for Life by Jordan Peterson —@cameroncbruce
  • Candide by Voltaire —@lowkey_percussionist
  • The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein —@magz0112
  • Good Omens by Neil Gaiman —@00coogan
  • The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald —@arubalibbi
  • If You Give a Mouse a Cookie —@gingawithsoul2.0
  • Principles by Ray Dalio —@justinwyman
  • Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind by Yuval Noah Harari —@cameroncbruce
  • The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller —@rakhi.mira
  • To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee —@carolinemarielorenzo
  • Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens —@ejstagrm

Is there a book that has impacted you? Complete this short form to submit your title suggestions and participate in our next recommended reading list. Contact our team at lifeattheu@miami.edu with any suggestions or questions.