2013 Book Selections

The Immigrant AdvantageJANUARY 2013

The Immigrant Advantage: What We Can Learn from Newcomers to America about Health, Happiness and Hope

by Claudia Kolker

Fascinated by the success of immigrant friends, Houstonian Claudia Kolker embarked on a journey to uncover how their customs are being carried on and adapted by the second and third generations and how they can enrich all of our lives. In a beautifully written narrative, she takes readers into the living rooms, kitchens and restaurants of immigrant families and neighborhoods all across the country.
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To Sell Is HumanFEBRUARY 2013

To Sell Is Human: The Surprising Truth About Moving Others

by Daniel H. Pink

The author reviews the historical protocol for selling and determines that it is officially dead. The immediate access to information via the Internet has completely altered the balance of power in direct sales exchanges. Consumers know far more and will, in the middle of your sales presentation, look up what you just said on their smart phones. Pink's book offers strategic advice on how to adapt to the world of the "caveat venditor."
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Like A VirginMARCH 2013

Like a Virgin: Secrets They Won’t Teach You At Business School

by Richard Branson
Business advice from the best in the business

Looking for advice in setting up your own company, improving your career prospects or developing your leadership skills? Why not ask Richard Branson? In Like a Virgin: Secrets They Won’t Teach You at Business School, Branson distils and shares the wisdom that has made him one of the world’s most recognized and respected entrepreneurs. From his top tips on succeeding in business to some hard-hitting opinions on the global finance crisis, this book brings together his best advice on all things business. It’s business school, the Branson way. 
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Private Empire - Houston Woman MagazineAPRIL 2013

Private Empire: ExxonMobil and American Power

by Steve Coll

In Private Empire Steve Coll investigates the largest and most powerful private corporation in the United States, revealing the true extent of its power. ExxonMobil’s annual revenues are larger than the economic activity in the great majority of countries. In many of the countries where it conducts business, ExxonMobil’s sway over politics and security is greater than that of the United States embassy. Private Empire tracks the corporation’s recent history and its central role on the world stage, beginning with the Exxon Valdez accident in 1989 and leading to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico in 2010.
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Small MessagesMAY 2013

Small Message, Big Impact: The Elevator Speech Effect

by Terri L. Sjodin

Small Message, Big Impact provides an entertaining, straightforward and practical how-to guide on effectively communicating an important message in a short period of time. She gives readers an inspiring new perspective on the power of what she calls the Elevator Speech Effect and shows them how to employ this amazing little tool to create influence in today's market. Perhaps you want to promote an idea, a project, or a concept. Maybe you are looking to create a more compelling message to sell a product or service that will help you access challenging decision makers. Whatever your purpose — be it professional, academic, political, philanthropic or personal — you can learn to craft a fresh, brief and persuasive message that generates tangible results!
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Coffee TraderJULY 2013

The Coffee Trader

by David Liss

This novel takes place in Amsterdam in 1659. Once among the city’s most envied merchants, Miguel has suddenly lost everything. Now, impoverished and humiliated, Miguel must find a way to restore his wealth and reputation. He enters into a partnership with a seductive Dutchwoman who offers him one last chance at success—a daring plot to corner the market of an astonishing new commodity called “coffee.” To succeed, Miguel must risk everything he values and face a powerful enemy who will stop at nothing to see him ruined. Miguel will learn that among Amsterdam’s ruthless businessmen, betrayal lurks everywhere, Even friends hide secret agendas.
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Lean In: Women, Work and the Will to Lead


Lean In: Women, Work and the Will to Lead

by Sheryl Sandberg

In 2010, Sandberg gave an electrifying TEDTalk in which she described how women unintentionally hold themselves back in their careers. Her talk encouraged women to “sit at the table,” seek challenges, take risks and pursue their goals with gusto. In Lean In, Sandberg digs deeper into these issues, combining personal anecdotes, hard data and compelling research to cut through the layers of ambiguity and bias surrounding the lives and choices of working women. She provides practical advice on negotiation techniques, mentorship and building a satisfying career, urging women to set boundaries and to abandon the myth of “having it all.” Written with both humor and wisdom, Sandberg’s book is an inspiring call to action and a blueprint for individual growth. Lean In is destined to change the conversation from what women can’t do to what they can.
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Power Of Habit


The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business

by Charles Dubigg

In The Power of Habit, award-winning New York Times business reporter Charles Duhigg takes us to the thrilling edge of scientific discoveries that explain why habits exist and how they can be changed. With penetrating intelligence and an ability to distill vast amounts of information into engrossing narratives, Duhigg brings to life a whole new understanding of human nature and its potential for transformation. At its core, The Power of Habit contains an exhilarating argument: The key to exercising regularly, losing weight, raising exceptional children, becoming more productive, building revolutionary companies and social movements, and achieving success is understanding how habits work.
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Setting The TableNOVEMBER 2013

Setting the Table: The Transforming Power of Hospitality in Business

by Danny Meyer
In this landmark book, Danny Meyer shares the lessons he's learned while developing the winning recipe for doing the business he calls "enlightened hospitality." This innovative philosophy emphasizes putting the power of hospitality to work in a new and counterintuitive way: The first and most important application of hospitality is to the people who work for you, and then, in descending order of priority, to the guests, the community, the suppliers and the investors. This way of prioritizing stands the more traditional business models on their heads, but Meyer considers it the foundation of every success that he and his restaurants have achieved.
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An Invisible ThreadDECEMBER 2013

An Invisible Thread: The True Story of an 11-year-old Panhandler, a Busy Sales Executive and an Unlikely Meeting with Destiny

by Laura Schroff and Alex Tresniowski

When Laura Schroff brushed by a young panhandler on a New York City corner one rainy afternoon, something made her stop and turn back. She took the boy to lunch at the McDonald’s across the street that day. And, she continued to go back, again and again for the next four years until both their lives had changed dramatically. Nearly 30 years later, that young boy, Maurice, is married and has his own family. Now he works to change the lives of disadvantaged kids, just like the boy he used to be. An Invisible Thread is the true story of the bond between a harried sales executive and an 11-year-old boy who seemed destined for a life of poverty. It is the heartwarming story of a friendship that has spanned three decades and brought meaning to an over-scheduled professional and hope to a hungry and desperate boy living on the streets. 
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