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Words We Are Reading: Book Reviews

Welcome to the Zeedia Media Mob’s Book reviews blog. We will update this regularly with our thoughts on the words we are currently reading. Since we love ALL THE WORDS, these reviews span many genres. We are always looking for great book suggestions so please leave them in the comments!

Thank you and happy reading! #WordsMatter

Book Reviews: Updated Regularly

book reviews

Book Title: Educated

Who wrote it: Tara Westover

What it’s about: Born to survivalists in the mountains of Idaho, Tara Westover was seventeen the first time she set foot in a classroom. Her family was so isolated from mainstream society that there was no one to ensure the children received an education, and no one to intervene when one of Tara’s older brothers became violent. When another brother got himself into college, Tara decided to try a new kind of life. Her quest for knowledge transformed her, taking her over oceans and across continents, to Harvard and to Cambridge University. Only then would she wonder if she’d traveled too far, if there was still a way home.

My take: I had never heard of this book when I chose it from my audio app on my phone. I didn’t realize it had won so many awards and the author, Tara Westover, has been interviewed by everyone, including Oprah and Ellen. The audio version also one at least one award for best audio performance. It is not read by the author. This book is an incredible true story of a remarkable woman who extracted herself from an abusive and often neglectful family to earn a Ph.D. from Cambridge. Tara is refreshingly insightful and honest about her experiences and captures the struggle with loving your family, but needed to leave a bad situation. If you like The Glass Castle by Jeanette Walls or Hillbilly Elegy by J.D. Vance, you will like this book too.

Title: Talking to Strangers: What We Should Know about the People We Don’t Know

Who wrote it: Malcom Gladwell

What it’s about: Something is very wrong, Gladwell argues, with the tools and strategies we use to make sense of people we don’t know. And because we don’t know how to talk to strangers, we are inviting conflict and misunderstanding in ways that have a profound effect on our lives and our world.

My take: I listened to this book while I was painting my bedroom and it definitely made the time go by faster. It also made me think a lot about communication and miscommunication. So many problems could be avoided or solved if people knew how to better communicate and listen. Especially when conversing with people very different from ourselves. My entire career is based on communication and conveying messages in interesting ways. For anyone who is interested in studying or improving communication and understanding of others would really like this book.

book reviews

Book Title: Badass Affirmations (The wit and wisdom of wild women)

Who wrote it: Becca Anderson

What it’s about: This book is filled with quotes and affirmations uttered, declared, and shouted by BADASS women throughout history. Maya Angelou, Joan Baez, Harriet Tubman, Frida Kahlo, and more. The book is divided into badass topics like, “being confident,” “love and lust,” and “family.” You can find something every day to inspire you to find your inner badass and conquer the day.

My Take: I love anything related to badass women (and men) – just badass people in general. Anyone who had the guts to say truths and shake things up. This book is chock full of ’em. It’s a quick read full of inspiration and would make a great gift for that badass woman in your life! Maybe you need to gift it to yourself!

~ Amy


book reviews

Book Title: The Hero and the Outlaw: Building Extraordinary Brands Through the Power of Archetypes

Who wrote it: Margaret Mark and Carol Pearson

What it’s about: This book was my introduction to the entire concept of Brand Archetypes, which I have built my business and brand strategy around. Check out the link to see my 2nd company. The authors, psychologists in their own right, introduced the idea of businesses using archetypes for branding. They talk about each of the 12 major archetypes and give examples of companies who are using specific ones. The company and brand strategy that my co-founder, Kevin Skarritt, and I built has taken this concept and turned it into a practical “how-to” brand strategy for any business, no matter the size, the industry, or the ad budget.

My Take: This book was critical in shaping my marketing strategy and philosophy and helped me build two businesses, a podcast, and a book (to be published soon.) Any business who is struggling with their identity, wants to solidify their brand, or just basically be better at marketing should read this book.

~ Amy


book reviews

Book Title: You are a Badass at Making Money

Who wrote it: Jen Sincero

What it’s about: I picked this book up after reading Sincero’s earlier book, You Are a Badass: How to Stop Doubting Your Greatness and Start Living an Awesome Life. I’ll read anything with “badass” in the title. However, the humor and practical advice in both of these books make for a humorous read that is both enjoyable and filled with things I can apply to my life right now.

Excerpt from the book jacket: You Are a Badass at Making Money is a refreshingly frank and entertaining guide for anyone who’s ready to start raking in the dough…Sincero knows all of the BS you can get wrapped up in when it comes to money, as well as what it takes to dig your way out.

My Take: I am always looking for practical advice to improve my relationship with money. What better way to do that than from a badass standpoint? It’s a quick read and you will be on your way to making your first million.

~ Amy


Book Title: The Alice Network

Who wrote it: Kate Quinn

What it’s About: This book is historical fiction that covers WWI and WWII and the aftermath. A network of female spies, a young-pregnant women after WWII trying to find her lost cousin and best friend. Codes, secrets, love, and incredible descriptions of post-war France and England. This novel has it all.

My Take: War novels are not generally my cup of tea, but this book pulled me in from the first paragraph. The intertwined stories of the main characters and their pasts is captivating. I can’t wait to read more by Kate Quinn.

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