In late 2017, I asked clients and some of my friends for their most-loved book of the year. Here are a few of the popular ones. Enjoy.

NON-FICTION

Achieving Longevity: How Great Firms Prosper Through Entrepreneurial Thinking by Jim Dewald,‎ forward by W. Brett Wilson

Starting a business is hard, but keeping an established company going can be equally challenging. In the long run, every business will need to adapt to changing market conditions, technologies, and competitive environments. Achieving Longevity explains how to manage those changes through entrepreneurial thinking.

The Innovator’s Dilemma: The Revolutionary Book That Will Change the Way You Do Business by Clayton M. Christensen

The Innovator’s Dilemma is the revolutionary business book that has forever changed corporate America. Based on a truly radical idea— that great companies can fail precisely because they do everything right—this Wall Street Journal, Business Week and New York Times Business bestseller is one of the most provocative and important business books ever written. Entrepreneurs, managers, and CEOs ignore its wisdom and its warnings at their great peril.

Scaling Up: How a Few Companies Make It…and Why the Rest Don’t by Verne Harnish

In Scaling Up, Harnish and his team share practical tools and techniques for building an industry-dominating business. These approaches have been honed from over three decades of advising tens of thousands of CEOs and executives and helping them navigate the increasing complexities (and weight) that come with scaling up a venture.

Secrets of the Canadian Real Estate Cycle: An Investor’s Guide by Don Campbell, Kieran Trass, Greg Head

Canadian real estate investors often hear about real estate cycles, yet very few people can describe what they are and how to actually use them to one’s advantage. The Canadian Investor’s Guide to Secrets of the Real Estate Cycle shows Canadian investors the ins and outs of the various phases of the real estate cycle, such as boom, slump, and recovery, in order to equip them with the knowledge to make practical and informed decisions about their portfolios.

The Beauty of Discomfort: How What We Avoid Is What We Need by Amanda Lang

Why do some people drive change while others are blindsided by it?

Why are some people able to adapt and thrive?

How can we make change easier?

Truly successful people don’t merely tolerate discomfort—they embrace it and seek it out again and again. Business founders and university students, top athletes and couch potatoes, meditation gurus and military leaders all have very different ways of coping with discomfort, but the most successful among them believe that withstanding discomfort is a skill that has helped them in hugely positive ways. Some were forced into discomfort through no choice of their own—a life-altering illness, a business fiasco—while others signed up for it because they had goals they were determined to achieve.

Into the Gray Zone by Adrian Owen

A world-renowned neuroscientist reveals his ground-breaking work with patients whose brains were thought vegetative or non-responsive but in up to 20 percent of cases were found to be vibrantly alive.

The Book of Joy: Lasting Happiness in a Changing World by Dalai Lama,‎ Desmond Tutu, Douglas Carlton Abrams

Two great spiritual masters share their own hard-won wisdom about living with joy even in the face of adversity.

Zero to One: Notes on Startups, or How to Build the Future by Peter Thiel,‎ Blake Masters

If you want to build a better future, you must believe in secrets.

The great secret of our time is that there are still uncharted frontiers to explore and new inventions to create. In Zero to One, legendary entrepreneur and investor Peter Thiel shows how we can find singular ways to create those new things.

FICTION

Circling The Sun by Paula McLain

Brought to Kenya as a small child and then abandoned by her mother, Beryl is raised both by her father–a racehorse trainer–and the native Kipsigis tribe on her father’s land. Her unconventional upbringing transforms her into a daring young woman, with a love of all things wild, but everything she knows and trusts dissolves when her father’s farm goes bankrupt. Reeling from the scandal and heartbreak, Beryl is catapulted into a disastrous marriage at the age of 16. Finally, she makes the courageous decision to break free, forging her own path as a horse trainer and shocking high society in the process.

Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

A searing new novel, at once sweeping and intimate, by the award-winning author of Half of a Yellow Sun: a story of love and race centered around a man and woman from Nigeria who seemed destined to be together–until the choices they are forced to make tear them apart.

The Poisonwood Bible: A Novel by Barbara Kingsolver

The Poisonwood Bible is a story told by the wife and four daughters of Nathan Price, a fierce, evangelical Baptist who takes his family and mission to the Belgian Congo in 1959. They carry with them everything they believe they will need from home, but soon find that all of it — from garden seeds to Scripture — is calamitously transformed on African soil. What follows is a suspenseful epic of one family’s tragic undoing and remarkable reconstruction over the course of three decades in postcolonial Africa.

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© 2018 Lorraine A. Moore. All rights reserved. Permission granted to excerpt or reprint with attribution.