Discover The Best Books 📚

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The best books to help you find your place in the world

I’m interested in everything – which is a problem, because there’s not time for everything. So how do you find the best of the world and your own place in it? Understanding your motivations is a good place to start, hence The Molecule of More. The rest comes from exploring as much as you can, and that begins with understanding the scope of what’s out there: ideas, attitudes, and cultures. The greatest joy in my life comes from the jaw-dropping realization that the world is so full of potential and wonder. These books are a guide to some of the best of it, and some of the breadth of it.

A History of Western Philosophy The World According to Garp The Dopaminergic Mind in Human Evolution and History Thy Neighbor's Wife A Man in Full

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The best books celebrating Black hair

I’m an Afro-Caribbean-American filmmaker, photographer, author, and activist from Washington, DC. After graduating from Brown University with a Bachelor of Arts in French and Francophone Studies, I began pursuing a completely different career path: social activism through art and storytelling. I capture personal stories and intimate moments centering on Black liberation, immigrant justice, and women’s rights. My work is grounded in radical love, joy, and the knowledge that a more just world is possible. My award-winning documentary DACAmented has been internationally recognized, and my book My Beautiful Black Hair has been featured in The Washington Post, Buzzfeed News, and NPR’s Strange Fruit, among others.

Twisted: The Tangled History of Black Hair Culture Afros: A Celebration of Natural Hair Hair Story: Untangling the Roots of Black Hair in America Queens: Portraits of Black Women and their Fabulous Hair Hair Love

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The best picture books about diversity & inclusion

As the white parent of both a white child and a child of color, the discrepancies of representation and inclusivity in children’s literature is an important conversation in our home. Seeing themselves in books allows all children to dream big, feel seen, and know there is a place in this world for them. I hope both of my books, All Bears Need Love and Little Taco Truck do exactly that. I know the list of brilliant books I’ve suggested here are wonderful examples of inclusivity and diversity that young readers need.

The Skin You Live in A Mother for Choco Last Stop on Market Street The Day You Begin All Are Welcome

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The best books to inspire girls in STEM

I love encouraging kids to explore engineering, design, and technology! I am a former Google product designer for kids and families. I started writing to address a growing need for coding education, particularly for girls and kids of color. Stories are a wonderful way to demonstrate concepts and to invite kids to approach STEM with creativity and imagination. I picked a range of books for this post, from non-fiction to fantastic, because different kids will respond to different kinds of stories. Through these books, I hope that kids will find inspiration and tools for creative problem-solving, for STEM and beyond.

Wood, Wire, Wings: Emma Lilian Todd Invents an Airplane How to Code a Sandcastle Bracelets for Bina's Brothers Grace Hopper: Queen of Computer Code Made by Maxine

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The best picture book biographies of women in STEM

I’ve always loved math and science. When I decided to become a writer, I knew I wanted to share this love with children through my writing. Did I know I would one day have five published picture book biographies of women in STEM and three more on the way? Absolutely not. I feel fortunate I’ve had the opportunity to tell the stories of many unsung women scientists and mathematicians. To this end, I keep an ever-growing, ever-changing list of possible subjects for future biographies.

Queen of Physics: How Wu Chien Shiung Helped Unlock the Secrets of the Atom Joan Procter, Dragon Doctor: The Woman Who Loved Reptiles Emmy Noether: The Most Important Mathematician You've Never Heard of Classified: The Secret Career of Mary Golda Ross, Cherokee Aerospace Engineer Wood, Wire, Wings: Emma Lilian Todd Invents an Airplane

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The best books for young people about healthy sexuality and relationships

Shafia Zaloom is a health educator, parent, consultant, and author whose work centers on human development, community building, ethics, and social justice. Shafia has worked with thousands of children and their families in her role as teacher, coach, administrator, board member, and outdoor educator. She has contributed articles to The New York Times, The Washington Post, and numerous parenting blogs. Shafia’s book, Sex, Teens, and Everything in Between has been reviewed as “the ultimate relationship guide for teens of all orientations and identities.” It is one that “every teen, and every parent and educator - and every other adult who interacts with teens - should read.”

What Makes a Baby Celebrate Your Body (and Its Changes, Too!): The Ultimate Puberty Book for Girls Guy Stuff: The Body Book for Boys Wait, What?: A Comic Book Guide to Relationships, Bodies, and Growing Up S.E.X.: The All-You-Need-To-Know Sexuality Guide to Get You Through Your Teens and Twenties

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The best books about mad scientists

Christopher Rankin is an author, the host of the Vanadium podcast on YouTube, and a scientist in the field of renewable materials. He was awarded a PhD in materials science from the University of Pennsylvania and holds several patents. A lifelong lover of science, Rankin hopes to encourage greater public interest and a broader understanding of technical subjects.

Oryx and Crake Poisoner in Chief: Sidney Gottlieb and the CIA Search for Mind Control Altered States: A Novel The Boys from Brazil: A Novel The Scientist: A Metaphysical Autobiography

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The best books on love and sex in ancient Rome

I have always been fascinated by the ancient world. Some of my happiest childhood memories involve trips to Roman villas in Britain, theatres in Sicily, and museums across Europe. After studying Classics at Oxford, I completed a Masters and then a Ph.D., eager to gain as strong a grounding in the ancient world as I could before pursuing a career as an author. Ancient history has a reputation for being complicated. When I write books, I strive not to simplify the past, but rather to provide an engaging, memorable, and above all enjoyable path into it. 

Roman Passions: A History of Pleasure in Imperial Rome Looking at Lovemaking: Constructions of Sexuality in Roman Art, 100 B.C.-A.D. 250 Sex in Antiquity: Exploring Gender and Sexuality in the Ancient World The Art of Love Sexual Morality in Ancient Rome

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The best easy reader children's books featuring dogs

I belong to a family of dog lovers – Oscar, the black cocker spaniel; Buddy, the brown-and-white beagle; Riley, the buff cocker spaniel; Buffy, a black boxer mix, Milo and Max, Golden retrievers. In fact, cavorting with Riley at a San Francisco park was my inspiration for Bark Park. I also love children, especially my grandchildren Connor and Kasey. When Kasey, at five years of age, read my book Bark Park aloud for the first time, my heart swelled with joy! It took me back to my own young daughter Laura whose first all-by-herself read-aloud had been: Go, dog, go!  So it’s only natural for me to combine my two great loves – dogs and children – with these book recommendations.

Go, Dog. Go! How Rocket Learned to Read Dig, Dogs, Dig: A Construction Tail Big Dog and Little Dog Biscuit in the Garden

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The best gritty and gripping mystery books set in space

I have always loved science fiction. I spent years studying to be a scientist before I became a writer (I have a PhD in geophysics), and I love fiction that uses, remixes, and twists our weird and wonderful universe in interesting ways. But stories don't really grab me unless there is a strong emotional core. I need characters--I need people. And that's where my love of mysteries and thrillers comes in, with all the tragedy and trauma they can hold. This is the recipe for my ideal fiction: creepy mystery, human trauma, big ideas, weird science, and a little bit of a murder, as a treat. 

Six Wakes Leviathan Wakes All Systems Red Chasm City The Luminous Dead

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