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TUNSTALL SUMMER READING 2019


Tunstall Summer Reading 2018

2001: A Space Odyssey by Arthur C. Clarke Science Fiction

This allegory about humanity’s exploration of the universe—and the universe’s reaction to humanity—is a hallmark achievement in storytelling that follows the crew of the spacecraft Discovery as they embark on a mission to Saturn. Their vessel is controlled by HAL 9000, an artificially intelligent supercomputer capable of the highest level of cognitive functioning that rivals—and perhaps threatens—the human mind.

The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho Fiction

Paulo Coelho's masterpiece tells the mystical story of Santiago, an Andalusian shepherd boy who yearns to travel in search of a worldly treasure. His quest will lead him to riches far different— and far more satisfying—than he ever imagined. Santiago's journey teaches us about the essential wisdom of listening to our hearts, of recognizing opportunity and learning to read the omens strewn along life's path, and, most importantly, to follow our dreams.

Alone on the Wall by Alex Honnold Non-fiction

Alone on the Wall recounts the most astonishing achievements of Honnold’s extraordinary life and career, brimming with lessons on living fearlessly, taking risks, and maintaining focus even in the face of extreme danger. Now Honnold tells, for the first time and in his own words, the story of his 3 hours and 56 minutes on the sheer face of El Cap, which Outside called "the moon landing of free soloing…a generation-defining climb. Bad ass and beyond words…one of the pinnacle sporting moments of all time."


Andrew Jackson and the Miracle of New Orleans : The Battle that Shaped America's Destiny by Jason Brennan Non-Fiction The War of 1812 saw America threatened on every side. Encouraged by the British, Indian tribes attacked settlers in the West, while the Royal Navy terrorized the coasts. By mid-1814, President James Madison’s generals had lost control of the war in the North, losing battles in Canada. Then British troops set the White House ablaze, and a feeling of hopelessness spread across the country.

Into this dire situation stepped Major General Andrew Jackson, who feared that President Madison’s men were overlooking the most important target of all: New Orleans. If the British conquered New Orleans, they would control the mouth of the Mississippi River, cutting Americans off from that essential trade route. The new nation’s dreams of western expansion would be crushed before they really got off the ground.

Bad Blood: Secrets and Lies in a Silicon Valley Start-up by John Carreyou Non-Fiction

In 2014, Theranos founder and CEO Elizabeth Holmes was widely seen as the female Steve Jobs: a brilliant Stanford dropout whose startup “unicorn” promised to revolutionize the medical industry with a machine that would make blood testing significantly faster and easier. Backed by investors such as Larry Ellison and Tim Draper, Theranos sold shares in a fundraising round that valued the company at more than $9 billion, putting Holmes’s worth at an estimated $4.7 billion. There was just one problem: The technology didn’t work.


Becoming by Michelle Obama Memoir In her memoir, a work of deep reflection and mesmerizing storytelling, Michelle Obama invites readers into her world, chronicling the experiences that have shaped her—from her childhood on the South Side of Chicago to her years as an executive balancing the demands of motherhood and work, to her time spent at the world’s most famous address. With unerring honesty and lively wit, she describes her triumphs and her disappointments, both public and private, telling her full story as she has lived it—in her own words and on her own terms. Warm, wise, and revelatory, Becoming is the deeply personal reckoning of a woman of soul and substance who has steadily defied expectations—and whose story inspires us to do the same.

Beyond Basketball: Coach K's Keywords for Success by Mike Krzyzewski Non-fiction

The Duke University men's basketball team has served as the gold standard in college athletics for well over two decades - and that's all because of the extraordinary impact of Mike Krzyzewski, the highly-respected coach of the Duke squad. In this book, he reveals his tips, advice, and time-tested guidance on how he coaches and educates his players about life beyond the basketball court.

Boomerang: Travels in the New Third World by Michael Lewis Non-fiction

The tsunami of cheap credit that rolled across the planet between 2002 and 2008 was more than a simple financial phenomenon: it was temptation, offering entire societies the chance to reveal aspects of their characters they could not normally afford to indulge. Michael Lewis's investigation of bubbles beyond our shores is so brilliantly, sadly hilarious that it leads the American reader to a comfortable complacency: oh, those foolish foreigners. But when he turns a merciless eye on California and Washington, DC, we see that the narrative is a trap baited with humor, and we understand the reckoning that awaits the greatest and greediest of debtor nations.


Chesapeake Requiem: A Year with the Watermen of Vanishing Tangier Island by Earl Swift Non-fiction

Chesapeake Requiem is an intimate look at the island’s past, present and tenuous future, by an acclaimed journalist who spent much of the past two years living among Tangier’s people, crabbing and oystering with its watermen, and observing its long traditions and odd ways. What emerges is the poignant tale of a world that has, quite nearly, gone by—and a leading-edge report on the coming fate of countless coastal communities.

Convergences: Essays on Art and Literature by Octavio Paz Non-fiction These sixteen essays on art and literature cover a wide range of topics including American painting, the religious rites of the Aztecs, Marxism, linguistics and Picasso. He penetrates the meaning of modernism, gnosticism and the effect of Edith Piaf on pygmies. Also analyzed is American cuisine, tantric Buddhism, the notion of nationhood, some haikus and manners good and bad.

Dear Martin by Nic Stone Fiction

Justyce McAllister is a good kid, an honor student, and always there to help a friend—but none of that matters to the police officer who just put him in handcuffs. Despite leaving his rough neighborhood behind, he can't escape the scorn of his former peers or the ridicule of his new classmates. Justyce looks to the teachings of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. for answers. But do they hold up anymore? He starts a journal to Dr. King to find out.


The Dry by Jane Harper Mystery FIction

After getting a note demanding his presence, Federal Agent Aaron Falk arrives in his hometown for the first time in decades to attend the funeral of his best friend, Luke. Twenty years ago when Falk was accused of murder, Luke was his alibi. Falk and his father fled under a cloud of suspicion, saved from prosecution only because of Luke’s steadfast claim that the boys had been together at the time of the crime. But now more than one person knows they didn’t tell the truth back then, and Luke is dead.

Educated: A Memoir by Tara Westover Memoir 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.

Everett Dirksen and His Presidents: How a Senate Giant Shaped American Politics by Byron Hulsey Non-fiction He was as recognizable by his mellifluous voice as by his rumpled appearance. Everett McKinley Dirksen was one of the most colorful American politicians of the twentieth century and was considered by some the most powerful man in Congress. Now Byron Hulsey takes a new look at the senator from Illinois to show how his interactions with the White House made him a pivotal figure in American politics during the Cold War era.


Gilead by Marilynne Robinson Fiction

Twenty-four years after her first novel, Housekeeping, Marilynne Robinson returns with an intimate tale of three generations from the Civil War to the twentieth century: a story about fathers and sons and the spiritual battles that still rage at America's heart. In the luminous and unforgettable voice of Congregationalist minister John Ames, Gilead reveals the human condition and the often unbearable beauty of an ordinary life.

The House of Broken Angels by Luis Alberto Urrea Fiction

In his final days, beloved and ailing patriarch Miguel Angel de La Cruz, affectionately called Big Angel, has summoned his entire clan for one last legendary birthday party. But as the party approaches, his mother, nearly one hundred, dies, transforming the weekend into a farewell doubleheader. Among the guests is Big Angel's half brother, known as Little Angel, who must reckon with the truth that although he shares a father with his siblings, he has not, as a half gringo, shared a life.

How Democratic is the American Constitution? by Robert A. Dahl Non-fiction

In this provocative book, one of our most eminent political scientists poses the question, “Why should Americans uphold their constitution?” The vast majority of Americans venerate the Constitution and the democratic principles it embodies, but many also worry that the United States has fallen behind other nations on crucial issues, including economic equality, racial integration, and women’s rights. Robert Dahl explores this vital tension between the Americans’ belief in the legitimacy of their constitution and their belief in the principles of democracy.


The Humans by Matt Haig Science Fiction When an extra-terrestrial visitor arrives on Earth, his first impressions of the human species are less than positive. Taking the form of Professor Andrew Martin, a prominent mathematician at Cambridge University, the visitor is eager to complete the gruesome task assigned him and hurry home to his own utopian planet, where everyone is omniscient and immortal.

He is disgusted by the way humans look, what they eat, their capacity for murder and war, and is equally baffled by the concepts of love and family. But as time goes on, he starts to realize there may be more to this strange species than he had thought. Disguised as Martin, he drinks wine, reads poetry, develops an ear for rock music, and a taste for peanut butter. Slowly, unexpectedly, he forges bonds with Martin’s family. He begins to see hope and beauty in the humans’ imperfection, and begins to question the very mission that brought him there.

Inconvenient Facts: The Science that Al Gore Doesn't Want You to Know by Gregory Wrightstone Non-fiction

You have been inundated with reports from media, governments, think tanks and ''experts'' saying that our climate is changing for the worse and it is our fault. Increases in droughts, heat waves, tornadoes and poison ivy - to name a few - are all blamed on our ''sins of emissions'' from burning fossil fuels and increasing carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. Yet, you don't quite buy into this human-caused climate apocalypse. You aren't sure about the details because you don't have all the facts and likely aren't a scientist. Inconvenient Facts was specifically created for you. Writing in plain English and providing easily understood charts and figures, Gregory Wrightstone presents the science to assess the basis of the threatened Thermageddon.


Leadership: In Turbulent Times by Doris Kearns Goodwin Non-fiction

Are leaders born or made? Where does ambition come from? How does adversity affect the growth of leadership? Does the leader make the times or do the times make the leader? In Leadership, Goodwin draws upon the four presidents she has studied most closely—Abraham Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt, Franklin D. Roosevelt, and Lyndon B. Johnson (in civil rights)— to show how they recognized leadership qualities within themselves and were recognized as leaders by others. By looking back to their first entries into public life, we encounter them at a time when their paths were filled with confusion, fear, and hope.

Math with Bad Drawings: Illuminating the Ideas That Shape Our Reality by Ben Orlin Non-fiction

In Math With Bad Drawings, Ben Orlin reveals to us what math actually is; its myriad uses, its strange symbols, and the wild leaps of logic and faith that define the usually impenetrable work of the mathematician. Truth and knowledge come in multiple forms: colorful drawings, encouraging jokes, and the stories and insights of an empathetic teacher who believes that math should belong to everyone. Orlin shows us how to think like a mathematician by teaching us a brand-new game of tic-tac-toe, how to understand an economic crises by rolling a pair of dice, and the mathematical headache that ensues when attempting to build a spherical Death Star.


Moonwalking with Einstein: The Art and Science of Remembering Everything by Jonathan Foer Non-fiction

An instant bestseller that is poised to become a classic, Moonwalking with Einstein recounts Joshua Foer's yearlong quest to improve his memory under the tutelage of top "mental athletes." He draws on cutting-edge research, a surprising cultural history of remembering, and venerable tricks of the mentalist's trade to transform our understanding of human memory. From the United States Memory Championship to deep within the author's own mind, this is an electrifying work of journalism that reminds us that, in every way that matters, we are the sum of our memories.

The Mother Tongue - English and How It Got That Way by Bill Bryson Non-fiction

With dazzling wit and astonishing insight, Bill Bryson brilliantly explores the remarkable history, eccentricities, resilience and sheer fun of the English language. From the first descent of the larynx into the throat (why you can talk but your dog can't), to the fine lost art of swearing, Bryson tells the fascinating, often uproarious story of an inadequate, second-rate tongue of peasants that developed into one of the world's largest growth industries.

Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan Fiction

The Great Recession has shuffled Clay Jannon away from life as a San Francisco web-design drone and into the aisles of Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore. But after a few days on the job, Clay discovers that the store is more curious than either its name or its gnomic owner might suggest. The customers are few, and they never seem to buy anything―instead, they "check out" large, obscure volumes from strange corners of the store. Suspicious, Clay engineers an analysis of the clientele's behavior, seeking help from his variously talented friends. But when they bring their findings to Mr. Penumbra, they discover the bookstore's secrets extend far beyond its walls.


The New Testament of the Bible Religious Text

The New Testament is the second part of the Christian biblical canon, the first part being the Old Testament, based on the Hebrew Bible. The New Testament discusses the teachings and person of Jesus, as well as events in first-century Christianity. This discussion group will approach this text as literature.

News of the World by Paulette Jiles Fiction

In the aftermath of the Civil War, an aging itinerant news reader agrees to transport a young captive of the Kiowa back to her people in this exquisitely rendered, morally complex, multilayered novel of historical fiction from the author of Enemy Women that explores the boundaries of family, responsibility, honor, and trust.

No Impact Man by Colin Beavan Non-Fiction

What does it really take to live eco-effectively? For one year, Colin Beavan swore off plastic and toxins, turned off his electricity, went organic, became a bicycle nut, and tried to save the planet from environmental catastrophe while dragging his young daughter and his Prada-wearing wife along for the ride. Together they attempted to make zero impact on the environment while living right in the heart of Manhattan, and this is the sensational, funny, and consciousness-raising story of how they did it. With No Impact Man, Beavan found that no-impact living is worthwhile--and richer, fuller, and more satisfying in the bargain.


The Reckoning by John Grisham Fiction

Pete Banning was Clanton, Mississippi’s favorite son—a decorated World War II hero, the patriarch of a prominent family, a farmer, father, neighbor, and a faithful member of the Methodist church. Then one cool October morning he rose early, drove into town, and committed a shocking crime. Pete's only statement about it—to the sheriff, to his lawyers, to the judge, to the jury, and to his family—was: "I have nothing to say." He was not afraid of death and was willing to take his motive to the grave.

Sinners Welcome by Mary Karr Poetry

Mary Karr describes herself as a black-belt sinner, and this -her fourth collection of poems --traces her improbable journey from the inferno of a tormented childhood into a resolutely irreverent Catholicism. Not since Saint Augustine wrote "Give me chastity, Lord -- but not yet!" has anyone brought such smart-assed hilarity to a conversion story.

The Souls of Black Folk by W.E.B. Du Bois Non-fiction

One of the most widely read and influential works in African American literature, “The Souls of Black Folk” is W. E. B. Du Bois’s classic collection of essays in which he details the state of racism and black culture at the beginning of the 20th century. First published in 1903, “The Souls of Black Folk” takes the reader on a history lesson of race relations from the emancipation proclamation to the early part of the 20th century. Principal to Du Bois’s exposition is the idea that African Americans live in a state of “double-consciousness” meaning that they have a “sense of always looking at one’s self through the eyes of others, of measuring one’s soul by the tape of a world that looks on in amused contempt and pity.” A founding member of the NAACP, Du Bois helped to lay the foundation for the debate that would become the civil rights movement.


The Tao of Bill Murray: Real-Life Stories of Joy, Enlightenment, and Party Crashing by Gavin Edwards Non-fiction

New York Times bestselling author Gavin Edwards, like the rest of us, has always been fascinated with Bill Murray—in particular the beloved actor’s adventures off-screen, which rival his filmography for sheer entertainment value. Edwards traveled to the places where Murray has lived, worked, and partied, in search of the most outrageous and hilarious Bill Murray stories from the past four decades, many of which have never before been reported. Bill once paid a child five dollars to ride his bike into a swimming pool. The star convinced Harvard’s JV women’s basketball team to play with him in a private game of hoops. Many of these surreal encounters ended with Bill whispering, “No one will ever believe you” into a stranger’s ear. But The Tao of Bill Murray is more than just a collection of wacky anecdotes. A sideways mix of comedy and philosophy, full of photo bombs, late-night party crashes, and movie-set antics, this is the perfect book for anyone who calls themselves a Bill Murray fan—which is to say, everyone.

The Undoing Project: A Friendship That Changed Our Minds by Michael Lewis Non-fiction

Forty years ago, Israeli psychologists Daniel Kahneman and Amos Tversky wrote a series of breathtakingly original papers that invented the field of behavioral economics. One of the greatest partnerships in the history of science, Kahneman and Tversky’s extraordinary friendship incited a revolution in Big Data studies, advanced evidence-based medicine, led to a new approach to government regulation, and made much of Michael Lewis’s own work possible. In The Undoing Project, Lewis shows how their Nobel Prize–winning theory of the mind altered our perception of reality.


Unsheltered by Barbara Kingsolver Fiction

How could two hardworking people do everything right in life, a woman asks, and end up destitute? Willa Knox and her husband followed all the rules as responsible parents and professionals, and have nothing to show for it but debts and an inherited brick house that is falling apart. The magazine where Willa worked has folded; the college where her husband had tenure has closed. Their dubious shelter is also the only option for a disabled father-in-law and an exasperating, free-spirited daughter. When the family’s one success story, an Ivy-educated son, is uprooted by tragedy he seems likely to join them, with dark complications of his own.

Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owen Fiction

For years, rumors of the "Marsh Girl" have haunted Barkley Cove, a quiet town on the North Carolina coast. So in late 1969, when handsome Chase Andrews is found dead, the locals immediately suspect Kya Clark, the so-called Marsh Girl. But Kya is not what they say. Sensitive and intelligent, she has survived for years alone in the marsh that she calls home, finding friends in the gulls and lessons in the sand. Then the time comes when she yearns to be touched and loved. When two young men from town become intrigued by her wild beauty, Kya opens herself to a new life--until the unthinkable happens.


Winners Take All: The Elite Charade of Changing the World by Anand Giridharadas Non-fiction

Former New York Times columnist Anand Giridharadas takes us into the inner sanctums of a new gilded age, where the rich and powerful fight for equality and justice any way they can--except ways that threaten the social order and their position atop it. We see how they rebrand themselves as saviors of the poor; how they lavishly reward "thought leaders" who redefine "change" in winner-friendly ways; and how they constantly seek to do more good, but never less harm. We hear the limousine confessions of a celebrated foundation boss; witness an American president hem and haw about his plutocratic benefactors; and attend a cruise-ship conference where entrepreneurs celebrate their own self-interested magnanimity.

The Wisest One in the Room: How You Can Benefit from Social Psychology's Most Powerful Insights by Thomas Gilovich Non-fiction

Renowned psychologists describe the most useful insights from social psychology that can help make you “wise�: wise about why people behave the way they do, and wise about how to use that knowledge in understanding and influencing the people in your life. When faced with a challenge, we often turn to those we trust for words of wisdom. Friends, relatives, and colleagues: someone with the best advice about how to boost sales, the most useful insights into raising children, or the sharpest take on an ongoing conflict. In The Wisest One in the Room, renowned social psychologists Thomas Gilovich and Lee Ross ask: Why? What do these people know? What are the foundations of their wisdom? And, as professors and researchers who specialize in the study of human behavior, they wonder: What general principles of human psychology are they drawing on to reach these conclusions?


Words That Hurt, Words That Heal: How the Words You Choose Shape Your Destiny by Joseph Telushkin Non-fiction

Joseph Telushkin is renowned for his warmth, his erudition, and his richly anecdotal insights, and in Words That Hurt, Words That Heal he focuses these gifts on the words we use in public and in private, revealing their tremendous power to shape relationships. With wit and wide-ranging intelligence, Rabbi Telushkin explains the harm in spreading gossip, rumors, or others’ secrets, and how unfair anger, excessive criticism, or lying undermines true communication. By sensitizing us to subtleties of speech we may never have considered before, he shows us how to turn every exchange into an opportunity.

Zeitoun by Dave Eggers Non-fiction

Abdulrahman and Kathy Zeitoun run a house-painting business in New Orleans. In August of 2005, as Hurricane Katrina approaches, Kathy evacuates with their four young children, leaving Zeitoun to watch over the business. In the days following the storm he travels the city by canoe, feeding abandoned animals and helping elderly neighbors. Then, on September 6th, police officers armed with M-16s arrest Zeitoun in his home. Told with eloquence and compassion, Zeitoun is a riveting account of one family’s unthinkable struggle with forces beyond wind and water.

Profile for Norfolk Academy

US Summer Reading Selections 2019  

US Summer Reading Selections 2019