Big Words: Reading Recommendations from Our Book Club
Big is an agency full of introverts. And some extroverts—don’t worry, we see you and hear you. So it’s only natural that we have a monthly book club.
Each month, we pick a new read to dive into, and no genre is off the table: memoirs, essays, fiction, anything goes. Most recently, we read “Atomic Habits” by James Clear. (So we’re, like, really, really organized and efficient now.)
If you’re looking for a new book to get lost in, you’re in luck. Here are a handful of staff reviews on Big Book Club reads past and present.
“Trick Mirror: Reflections on Self-Delusion” by Jia Tolentino
Jia Tolentino is a staff writer at the New Yorker with a refreshingly real and inquisitive voice. Her writing cuts to the core of everyday issues in a way that reveals things that might otherwise be overlooked. I think what mostly attracts me to Tolentino’s writing is her ability to investigate modern “necessities” and social status quo without disenfranchising the reader. I’m only about two essays deep into “Trick Mirror”, and I don’t think I’ll ever look at a barre class the same way again. — Allie Binford, Content Creator
“Atomic Habits” by James Clear
I am not the biggest fan of the self-help category, but this one was a winner. “Atomic Habits” breaks down the science behind habit formation in a clear, digestible, and relatable way. Clear demonstrates how the tiniest adjustments to your daily routine can have a huge impact on your life in the long-term. He believes that the best habits are formed by adhering to a system and we can effectively accomplish more by doing less. During a time where I am trying to navigate a new normal, this book has been encouraging and useful on a daily basis. — JaneAnne Yager, Senior Account Executive
“Station Eleven” by Emily St. John Mandel
When I read “Station Eleven” back in December, it was hard to grasp the enormity of the main protagonist’s situation. A survivor of a global pandemic that wiped out most of the world’s population, Kirsten has few memories of the world “before.” Beautifully written and difficult to forget, this book weaves a tale that spans decades and draws all of the main characters together in unexpected ways using art as the through line in each of their stories. “Hell is the absence of the people you long for” was a haunting sentiment before, and it seems painfully prescient now, much like the novel itself. — Ashley MacLachlan, Accounting Supervisor
“Educated” by Tara Westover
“Educated” is one of the most captivating memoirs I’ve ever read. It’s unfathomable that after enduring so much physical and emotional pain through multiple stages of life, Tara pushed herself to beat all the odds against her. Just as soon as you tell yourself you would have handled things differently, you realize how hard doing anything different would’ve been. It’s a story that brings awareness to the fact that sometimes your psychological challenges are greater than your physical challenges, and it’s a battle you have to fight yourself. — Jess Brown, Content & Strategy Lead
“Braving the Wilderness” by Brené Brown
In “Braving the Wilderness”, Brené Brown once again perfectly and brilliantly explains a truth that we already know but do not always know how to deal with: the truth that we are all searching for belonging. The book shows us that we must go through what Brown describes as a “wilderness” to figure out who we truly are and what we truly believe so we can ultimately “belong to ourselves.” One of my favorite lines in the book reads, “True belonging doesn’t require you to change who you are; it requires you to be who you are.” — Luke Williams, Talent & Culture Lead
“Catching the Big Fish: Meditation, Consciousness, and Creativity” by David Lynch
This book is what I would imagine talking to David Lynch might be like, and I imagine him drinking a big milkshake without a straw during our conversation. He taught me how to fish. I am very thankful for that. — Paul Prudhomme, Art Director
If one of these books struck your fancy, or if you’re still hunting for your next read, please consider ordering from a small bookshop!
Thank You Books
5502B Crestwood Blvd Birmingham, AL, 35212
Little Professor Book Center (AL)
2844 18th St S Homewood, AL, 35209
Ernest & Hadley Booksellers
1928 7th St Tuscaloosa, AL, 35401
See also: bookshop.org