What to Read on the Subway This Week: 3/19
This week, read how little things can make an impact, become a detective looking into the work of a prolific author, laugh about snacks, and munch on some Girl Scout cookies while you read about the organization’s founder.
On Your Kindle
The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference, by Malcolm Gladwell
When this book was first published in 2000, it created quite a buzz. The overarching premise that Gladwell purports—that seemingly small incidents, trends, and people can have enormous effects in business, sales, and history—is, by nature, unique, and it makes for an entertaining and interesting read.
With implications for work and personal life alike, the book breaks down the building blocks of a trend with its three rules of epidemics: the “Law of the Few,” the “Stickiness Factor,” and the “Power of Context.” You’ll enjoy the case studies Gladwell examines—the midnight ride of Paul Revere, the popularity of Hush Puppies shoes in the 90s, and the success of Sesame Street, to name a few. You'll also most likely find yourself trying to figure out if your personality fits one of those outlined in the “law of the few”—are you a Connector, a Maven, or a Salesman? Take this with you on the subway this week and find out!
On Your Smartphone
Members of our generation are literarily linked most closely through one fictional character, a boy who grew up alongside us (though his life was significantly more exciting than ours): Harry Potter, created by the indomitable J.K. Rowling. I remember crying when I finished the last book, not because its ending was so heart-breaking, but because I couldn’t believe the years-long Rowling-fed saga was finally at an end.
Imagine my delight when I learned that J.K. Rowling is soon to publish a new book, this time targeted toward adult readers. According to this article by The Guardian, Rowling’s choice of editor at her new publishing house indicates that this might be a crime novel, and I—sometimes quite the detective myself—fully intend to follow this story as it progresses.
On a Podcast
Mike and Tom Eat Snacks, Michael Ian Black and Tom Cavanagh
This is one strange podcast. In it, comedians Michael Ian Black and Tom Cavanagh literally eat snacks and talk about their choices. They spend roughly the first half of the podcast chatting about topics unrelated to snacking—in Episode 50, “Devil Dogs,” they discuss Downton Abbey and suddenly burst into British accents—before getting to the meat (or cake, or chip) of the podcast. They then suddenly get down to business, dissecting the snack as an engineer would (commenting, for example, on the ratio of crème to cake in a Devil Dog, the cake’s dryness, and the combination of milk with the snack). It’s bizarrely hilarious—and will definitely make you hungry, so make sure you listen with a snack close by.
On My Honor: Real Life Lessons from America's First Girl Scouts, by Shannon Henry Kleiber
With Girl Scout cookie selling season in full swing, it’s important to take the time to think about the point behind the peanut butter patties. We already know the entrepreneurial experience of being a Girl Scout can have far-reaching professional results, but we might not know much about Girl Scouts beyond the treats they peddle.
In this book, Kleiber examines the life of Juliette “Daisy” Gordon Low, the founder of the Girl Scouts of America. Though she founded this 100-year old organization—the first of its kind that was created solely for the benefit of American girls—few histories or biographies have been written about “Daisy.” Here, Kleiber organizes her chapters based on Girl Scout principles (“Know Yourself and Be Yourself,” “Challenge Yourself,” “Be Outdoors”) and weaves tidbits of Low’s past together with her own experience as a Girl Scout troop leader in Wisconsin for a cohesive story that fits with each chapter’s theme. Read for a great account of the woman who first thought girls could do more.
Photo courtesy of Mo Riza.
Want More Advice Like This?
Sign up and follow us on Facebook to get everything you need to succeed in your career from The Muse.