Best Books of 2021

  1. The Four Winds: Kristen Hannah has done it again. Her Cinderella-esque tale of a woman who resecues herself from a live of drugery, poverty, and low self esteem is one to be read again and again.
  2. Jewish Pride: Rebuilding a People: Ben M. Freeman‘s treatise on Jews, and Jewish history is a must read for anyone who for once and for all wants to defeat antisemitism and all forms of hate.
  3. Girly Drinks: A World History of Women and Alcohol: Mallory O’Meara‘s non fiction book explores how inspite of a certain image, women have been creating and drinking all forms of alcohol for centuries.
  4. I Alone Can Fix It: Donald J Trumps Catastrophic Final Year: The subject of you know who will be on the lips of writers and political historians for years to come. Authors Carol Leonning and Philip Rucker examine how the former President believed that he did not need help in running the country.
  5. Squirrel Hill: The Tree of Life Synagogue Shooting and the Soul of a Neighborhood: Writer and podcaster Mark Oppenheimer tells the story of how a single neighborhood was affected by the murders of eleven Jewish residents in 2018.
  6. Peril: Bob Woodward and Robert Costa take a deep dive into how close the American democracy got close to destruction.
  7. The Heiress: The Revelations of Anne de Bourgh: This JAFF by Molly Greeley gives the spotlight to Anne de Bourgh, a minor Pride and Prejudice character who has yet to be fully seen or appreciated.
  8. Three Ordinary Girls: The Remarkable of Three Dutch Teenagers Who Become Spies, Saboteurs, Nazi Assasins-and WWII Heroes: This fascinating and powerful tale of three young ladies who led an underground war against the Nazis during World War II.
  9. Why She Wrote: A Graphic History of the Lives, Inspiration, and Influence Behind the Pens of Classic Women Writers: Written by the Bonnet at Dawn podcast hosts, this book examines the life and works of the women writers we have loved and respected for generations.
  10. The Matzah Ball: A Novel: Jean Meltzer’s Chanukah themed rom-com about two people who are secretly in love, but cannot speak the words due to the current and past trauma.

Here’s to the books we loved in 2021 and the books we will love in 2022.

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I Alone Can Fix It: Donald J. Trump’s Catastrophic Final Year Book Review

No one is an island. Whether in our personal lives or in our professional lives, we need other people. This is specifically true when one is at the helm of a major organization. Without the effort of those who are on the lower tiers, the purpose and/or goals of the firm will never be met.

I Alone Can Fix It: Donald J. Trump’s Catastrophic Final Year, by Carol Leonnig and Philip Rucker (authors of A Very Stable Genius: Donald J. Trump’s Testing of America), was published back in July. The book explores the final year of you know who’s time in office and how destructive it was. Between Covid-19, a nail-biting Presidential election, and a chaotic administration led by an egotistical conman, let’s just say that it was far from smooth sailing as it could have been. Telling the story of 2020 via a blow-by-blow account, it’s a deep dive into what went wrong and what we must do to never repeat the year again.

This book is incredibly good. It is a compelling non-fiction narrative with the fast heartbeat of a thriller and the underbelly of investigative journalism that makes you really think. If nothing else, it is a reminder of why it is so important to fight for democracy and never forget how easily it can crumble.

Do I recommend it? Absolutely.

A Very Stable Genius: Donald J. Trump’s Testing of America Book Review

The label of “genius” is rarely used in self-descriptive terms. It is usually given to someone by another person.

Several years ago, you know who declared that he was “a very stable genius”. A Very Stable Genius: Donald J. Trump’s Testing of America is the title of the new book written by Philip Rucker and Carol Leonnig. Published back in March, the book takes the reader through the last few years of the current Presidential administration. Pushing through the chaos, the noise, and the uncertainty, the writers reveal that somehow, there is some analytical thinking going on. But, it is curtailed by those with big egos, big plans, and the inability to see beyond one’s perspective.

Like all books about the current state of politics, the book has the tendency to be partisan. Questions can and will go come up about the legitimacy of the information and if someone involved in the writing process has an ax to grind.

This book is quite a read. The takeaway that I got is more proof that the current administration is a hot mess. What is worse, it is led by an egotistical, used car salesman man-child whose is only interested in number one. He does not have the inclination to lead, nor is he willing to listen to those who are well versed in the the job of President of the United States.

I recommend it.

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