100 books like Love at Goon Park

By Deborah Blum,

Here are 100 books that Love at Goon Park fans have personally recommended if you like Love at Goon Park. Shepherd is a community of 11,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of The Afterlife Is Where We Come from: The Culture of Infancy in West Africa

Meredith Small Author Of Our Babies, Ourselves: How Biology and Culture Shape the Way We Parent

From my list on the anthropology of parenting.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am an anthropologist with a background in evolutionary biology, primate behavior, and cross-cultural approaches to parenting. I taught “The Anthropology of Parenting” for 20 years at Cornell University. The book grew from interviews with anthropologists, pediatricians, and child development experts taking a different stance about parents and babies—that we should look at how babies are designed by evolution and how cultures then interfere with those expectations. My book shows there is no perfect way to raise a child but there are styles in other cultures we can borrow to make our babies, and ourselves, more at ease.

Meredith's book list on the anthropology of parenting

Meredith Small Why did Meredith love this book?

This book is the only ethnography of infants, the Beng of Ivory Coast, West Africa. Gottlieb does a masterful job of explaining what is “normal” for the Beng and how very different their attitudes about parenting and babies are from Western Culture, and why the Beng believe their parenting ways are better. Gottlieb’s telling of the Beng baby story, like her writing, is engaging and life-changing.

By Alma Gottlieb,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Afterlife Is Where We Come from as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

When a new baby arrives among the Beng people of West Africa, they see it not as being born, but as being reincarnated after a rich life in a previous world. Far from being a tabula rasa, a Beng infant is thought to begin its life filled with spiritual knowledge. How do these beliefs affect the way the Beng rear their children?

In this unique and engaging ethnography of babies, Alma Gottlieb explores how religious ideology affects every aspect of Beng childrearing practices-from bathing infants to protecting them from disease to teaching them how to crawl and walk-and how widespread…


Book cover of Do Parents Matter?: Why Japanese Babies Sleep Soundly, Mexican Siblings Don't Fight, and American Families Should Just Relax

Meredith Small Author Of Our Babies, Ourselves: How Biology and Culture Shape the Way We Parent

From my list on the anthropology of parenting.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am an anthropologist with a background in evolutionary biology, primate behavior, and cross-cultural approaches to parenting. I taught “The Anthropology of Parenting” for 20 years at Cornell University. The book grew from interviews with anthropologists, pediatricians, and child development experts taking a different stance about parents and babies—that we should look at how babies are designed by evolution and how cultures then interfere with those expectations. My book shows there is no perfect way to raise a child but there are styles in other cultures we can borrow to make our babies, and ourselves, more at ease.

Meredith's book list on the anthropology of parenting

Meredith Small Why did Meredith love this book?

The Levines have studied the Gusii of Western Kenya for decades and in this book, they look at childhood in all its glory and compare Gusii parenting and parenting philosophy to Western culture.

By Robert A. LeVine, Sarah LeVine,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Do Parents Matter? as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

When it comes to parenting, more isn't always better,but it is always more tiringIn Japan, a boy sleeps in his parents' bed until age ten, but still shows independence in all other areas of his life. In rural India, toilet training begins one month after infants are born and is accomplished with little fanfare. In Paris, parents limit the amount of agency they give their toddlers. In America, parents grant them ever more choices, independence, and attention.Given our approach to parenting, is it any surprise that American parents are too frequently exhausted?Over the course of nearly fifty years, Robert and…


Book cover of The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down: A Hmong Child, Her American Doctors, and the Collision of Two Cultures

Alice Neikirk Author Of The Elephant Has Two Sets of Teeth: Bhutanese Refugees and Humanitarian Governance

From my list on cross-cultural interactions.

Why am I passionate about this?

I grew up in a small, rural community that is perhaps best defined by cold, grey, rainy days – perfect reading weather. I developed an interest in learning about different places and cultures through books. Then I started traveling and my interest turned into a passion, that transformed my educational journey. I completed a Masters and PhD in Anthropology and did my field research for my degree in Australia and Nepal. I still love to learn about new cultures, though the children have meant less traveling and more adventuring via books!

Alice's book list on cross-cultural interactions

Alice Neikirk Why did Alice love this book?

This book is a brilliant ethnography and one of the first books I read as a young anthropology student, The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down by Anne Fadiman.

It is about a Hmong family, living in California, that has an epileptic child and their interactions at a children’s hospital. The book came back into my life when my second daughter started having seizures and we were admitted into the same children’s hospital where the book was researched.

One of the doctors knew I was an anthropologist and reminded me of the book. Despite the cultural difference between myself and the Hmong family, I could see myself in their fear, their hope, and their desire to make sense of having a very ill child.

Book cover of Childhood: A Multicultural View

Meredith Small Author Of Our Babies, Ourselves: How Biology and Culture Shape the Way We Parent

From my list on the anthropology of parenting.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am an anthropologist with a background in evolutionary biology, primate behavior, and cross-cultural approaches to parenting. I taught “The Anthropology of Parenting” for 20 years at Cornell University. The book grew from interviews with anthropologists, pediatricians, and child development experts taking a different stance about parents and babies—that we should look at how babies are designed by evolution and how cultures then interfere with those expectations. My book shows there is no perfect way to raise a child but there are styles in other cultures we can borrow to make our babies, and ourselves, more at ease.

Meredith's book list on the anthropology of parenting

Meredith Small Why did Meredith love this book?

Konner is an anthropologist and physician who spent time with the !Kung hunters and gatherers studying children. This book is based on the PBS show Childhood, and it is everything you might want to know about childhood because it traverses both biology and culture. A dense read, but worth it.

By Melvin Konner,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Childhood as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

This Channel 4 TV tie-in book by anthropologist and psychiatrist Melvin Konner takes a journey through the childhood years - from conception and birth through adolescence - showing how children experience them, how parents and societies shape them and how science is beginning to understand them.


Book cover of The Girl Within

Trilby Kent Author Of Once, in a Town Called Moth

From my list on smart girls figuring out hard stuff.

Why am I passionate about this?

My family moved around a lot when I was younger, which may explain why I’m fascinated by the experience of being an outsider. To me, it’s not a bad thing; being on the outside can sometimes help a person to see things more clearly, to think more critically and creatively. The year I spent living in a country where English wasn’t the main language was one of the most stimulating periods of my life, because I was so attuned to all the tiny details that other people took for granted. Plus, as teenagers, everyone feels like they’re on the outside looking in – which is probably why all of my books have contained some coming-of-age element. 

Trilby's book list on smart girls figuring out hard stuff

Trilby Kent Why did Trilby love this book?

I’m just realising now that some of my favourite books were accidental finds – I think that this one turned up at a sidewalk sale. The author is a psychologist who uses the life stories of twenty women to illustrate her theory that girls are their most powerful, authentic selves up to the age of about twelve; that after that, their sense of personhood comes under attack from a whole range of sources, so that much of adulthood is spent trying to piece that pre-teen girl and her distinct sense of self back together. It’s extremely convincing and something I’ve found really interesting to discuss with my now tween-age daughter.

By Emily Hancock,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Girl Within as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Using the life stories of twenty women, psychologist Emily Hancock has identified a turning point in a women's life when a girl crystallizes a distinct and vital sense of self, which she then loses in the process of growing up, and tries to regain as an adult. A breakthrough book, this will change the way society views girls and women.


Book cover of My Years with Ayn Rand

Raven West Author Of Red Wine for Breakfast

From my list on strong women who succeed in a male-dominated world.

Why am I passionate about this?

In my freshman year at the University of Missouri-Columbia I started out as a journalism major. I joined Sigma Kappa where I met my “sister” Anne who worked at KBIA. I worked with her the rest of that year. Back home in Ellenville, NY, I convinced the station manager to hire me. I was the very first female radio announcer and engineer to work at the station. When my best friend was killed in a tragic accident, I needed to heal my loss by using the only method I knew would help; writing. Combining my experiences and passion for radio I wrote Red Wine for Breakfast to honor her memory.

Raven's book list on strong women who succeed in a male-dominated world

Raven West Why did Raven love this book?

Nathaniel Branden’s account of his relationship with Rand is honest and deeply emotional. For a psychologist who writes mainly on the theme of self-esteem, this book is a bit of a departure from his usual works, but for any fan of Rand and her volatile relationship with a man nearly half her age, it is well worth the read.

By Nathaniel Branden,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked My Years with Ayn Rand as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Previous Praise for Nathaniel Branden"Relentlessly revealing...the myth of Ayn Rand gives way to a full-sized portrait in contrasting colors, appealing and appalling, potent and paradoxical...it takes a special kind of nerve to write such a book." - Norman Cousins, author of Head First and The Healing HeartAyn Rand's Atlas Shrugged is one of the most influential books of the twentieth century-its popular impact ranked second only to the Bible in a major poll. Millions know Rand as one of this century's great thinkers, writers, and philosophers, yet much about the private Ayn Rand remains shrouded in mystery.Who was Ayn Rand?My…


Book cover of A Flicker in the Dark

K.T. Carlisle Author Of Reasonable

From my list on murder mysteries and psychological thrillers that will keep you up at night.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve been obsessed with murder mysteries and psychological thrillers for as long as I can remember. My father’s bookshelves were full of anthologies on serial killers, which piqued my curiosity at a very early age (probably too early, but we’re not here to judge my dad’s parenting skills, okay?). As I familiarized myself with the likes of Ed Gein, Jeffrey Dahmer, Charles Manson, and John Wayne Gacy, I became enthralled by the psychology behind what makes people commit heinous acts. Now as an author myself, these same stories fuel my inspiration and keep me motivated to write books that further explore the darker side of human nature. 

K.T.'s book list on murder mysteries and psychological thrillers that will keep you up at night

K.T. Carlisle Why did K.T. love this book?

This book helped me get out of a years-long reading slump. Once I picked it up, I couldn’t put it down, racing to find out what would happen next. Every time I thought I had it all figured out, I was pulled in the opposite direction, ultimately coming to a satisfying ending that was completely unexpected.

From the character development to the tightly woven plot to the author’s lyrical writing style, I cannot recommend this book enough to anyone who enjoys a gripping murder mystery-psychological thriller hybrid.

By Stacy Willingham,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked A Flicker in the Dark as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

She thought the murders had stopped. She was wrong.

'A smart, edge-of-your-seat story with plot twists you'll never see coming' Karin Slaughter

'Spectacular' Daily Mail

'Tense, twisty and threatening, A Flicker in the Dark will make you abandon your box sets' Val McDermid

The instant New York Times bestseller, soon to be a major TV series, developed by Emma Stone

Chloe Davis' father is a serial killer.
He was convicted and jailed when she was twelve but the bodies of the girls were never found, seemingly lost in the surrounding Louisiana swamps. The case became notorious and Chloe's family was…


Book cover of Being Ram Dass

Parvati Markus Author Of Love Everyone: The Transcendent Wisdom of Neem Karoli Baba Told Through the Stories of the Westerners Whose Lives He Transformed

From my list on by Westerners on Eastern mysticism.

Why am I passionate about this?

I've devoured books ever since learning to read. Now I am an author and a professional substantive book editor, particularly for spiritual memoirs. I am indeed fortunate to be able to combine my love of books with my love of the mystic realms, spiritual transformation, and beloved gurus. The first book I ever helped to edit was the first part ("Journey") of Be Here Now. Then I lived in India for a year, spending much of it with Neem Karoli Baba, Ram Dass's (and my) guru, absorbing his unconditional love. That state of real love, and the pathway leading to it, are the focus of the books I have recommended.

Parvati's book list on by Westerners on Eastern mysticism

Parvati Markus Why did Parvati love this book?

I first met Ram Dass in 1969 in Franklin, NH, three weeks after dropping acid for the first time, and by 1971 I was in India meeting his (and my) guru, Neem Karoli Baba.

In Being Ram Dass, I found out much more about this spiritual wayshower who altered my life so profoundly and taught me the meaning of "be here now" (incidentally, Be Here Now was the first book I ever worked on as an editor). From his explorations in psychedelics, psychology, and bisexuality to god, service, and devotion, it's worth reading about Ram Dass's life odyssey in detail in this captivating memoir.

By Ram Dass, Rameshwar Das,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Being Ram Dass as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Perhaps no other teacher has sparked the fires of as many spiritual seekers in the West as Ram Dass. While many know of his transformation from Harvard psychology professor Richard Alpert to psychedelic and spiritual icon, Ram Dass tells here for the first time the full arc of his remarkable life.

Being Ram Dass begins at the moment he was fired from Harvard for giving drugs to an undergraduate. We then circle back to his privileged youth, education, and the path that led him inexorably away from conventional life and ultimately to his guru, Neem Karoli Baba. Populated by a…


Book cover of Ghost Planet

Cara Bristol Author Of Blown Away

From my list on sci-fi romances that you won’t be able to forget.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve read romance since I was teenager, and I’ve written all my professional life, first in journalism, then public relations, finally as an author. Being a sci-fi romance author is my dream job! There is nothing on this planet I’d rather do. I love the freedom and creativity of science fiction romance. There are new worlds to explore and fascinating characters to meet. The best books of any genre are those with “legs.” Years after reading them, you still remember the story. My goal is to send my readers on an unforgettable emotional journey to an exciting new world filled with characters they can’t help but fall in love with.

Cara's book list on sci-fi romances that you won’t be able to forget

Cara Bristol Why did Cara love this book?

I loved Ghost Planet for its fascinating premise delivered with a zinger.

Colonists of a newly discovered planet are being stalked by doppelgängers of dead people they once knew. Psychologist Elizabeth Cole goes to the planet for a job and immediately bonds with her supervisor, the creator of the Ghost Protocol, which forbids acknowledging or interacting with the ghosts (in an attempt to get rid of them).

And then Elizabeth discovers she, too, is a ghost, having died on arrival to the planet when her ship crashed. It’s been seven years since I read this book, and the plot has stayed with me.

By Sharon Lynn Fisher,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Ghost Planet as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Psychologist Elizabeth Cole prepared for the worst when she accepted a job on a newly discovered world--a world where every colonist is tethered to an alien who manifests in the form of a dead loved one. But she never expected she'd struggle with the requirement to shun these "ghosts." She never expected to be so attracted to the charming Irishman assigned as her supervisor. And she certainly never expected to discover she died in a transport crash en route to the planet. 
Reincarnated as a ghost, Elizabeth is symbiotically linked to her supervisor, Murphy--creator of the Ghost Protocol, which forbids…


Book cover of The Suspect

Kate Michaelson Author Of Hidden Rooms

From my list on ill or disabled sleuths.

Why am I passionate about this?

I know all too well that finding a diagnosis and treating a chronic health condition can be like unraveling a mystery—maybe that’s why characters dealing with these issues make natural detectives. As a mystery writer with chronic illness, I love reading about sleuths who embody the difficulties of living with health challenges yet show the tremendous capacity we still have to contribute. Many of the sleuths on this list are confined to their homes and unable to work, so solving a mystery not only adds suspense. It gives us the satisfaction of seeing these characters find their way back into the world and rediscover their sense of purpose.

Kate's book list on ill or disabled sleuths

Kate Michaelson Why did Kate love this book?

This is the first book in the Joseph O’Loughlin series, and my favorite because it shows Joe shortly after his Parkinson’s diagnosis.

I know it’s popular to portray sick people as angelic, long-suffering inspirations to us all, but reality often differs, especially as someone adjusts to a devastating diagnosis and its far-reaching impact. As a respected psychologist, Joe is normally thoughtful, intelligent, and kind, but as he becomes ensnared in the death of a former acquaintance, his personal despair over his illness sends him into a self-destructive tailspin. Rather than making me dislike Joe, the honesty of his struggle made me sympathize with him all the more. 

By Michael Robotham,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked The Suspect as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The psychological thriller that marked the debut of one of contemporary suspense fiction's most compelling heroes: "A gripping first novel...taut and fast-moving" (Washington Post).

Renowned psychologist Joseph O'Loughlin has it all -- a thriving practice, a devoted, beautiful, fiercely intelligent wife, and a lovely young daughter. But when he's diagnosed with Parkinson's, O'Loughlin begins to dread the way his exceptional mind has been shackled to a failing body, and the cracks in his perfect existence start to show.

At first, O'Loughlin is delighted to be called in to a high-profile murder investigation, hoping his extraordinary abilities at perception will help…


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