58 books like Running with the Buffaloes

By Chris Lear,

Here are 58 books that Running with the Buffaloes fans have personally recommended if you like Running with the Buffaloes. Shepherd is a community of 10,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of Born to Run: A Hidden Tribe, Superathletes, and the Greatest Race the World Has Never Seen

Sam Murphy Author Of Run Your Best Marathon: Your trusted guide to training and racing better

From my list on challenge the status quo about how to run.

Why am I passionate about this?

When I was a journalist, writing about health and fitness for women’s magazines and national newspapers, I had a strong sense that much of the advice being doled out by personal trainers and other ‘experts’ was dubious, to say the least. I decided to see for myself, embarking on an Exercise and Sport Science degree and training as a running coach. Two decades on, with a handful of running books and a 13-year-strong column in Runner’s World to my name, I still like to delve into the science underpinning physical activity to see if it really stands up, and if so, for who, and under what circumstances?  

Sam's book list on challenge the status quo about how to run

Sam Murphy Why did Sam love this book?

This must be one of the most widely read running books. For good reason – it’s a great read – exciting story, quirky characters – by an excellent journalist.

But at the heart of it lies one question: ‘Why does my foot hurt?’ McDougall’s quest to find out, his deep dive into the evidence underpinning many accepted aspects of the ‘science’ of running, is what influenced me as a runner, and as a coach.

Why do runners wear built-up shoes? Why do runners only move their bodies in one plane of motion and expect to have all-round fitness? Why do so many people lose the joy in running? Why don’t we eat salad for breakfast? If you read this book, and change nothing about your running, I’ll be surprised.

By Christopher McDougall,

Why should I read it?

4 authors picked Born to Run as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

At the heart of Born to Run lies a mysterious tribe of Mexican Indians, the Tarahumara, who live quietly in canyons and are reputed to be the best distance runners in the world; in 1993, one of them, aged 57, came first in a prestigious 100-mile race wearing a toga and sandals. A small group of the world's top ultra-runners (and the awe-inspiring author) make the treacherous journey into the canyons to try to learn the tribe's secrets and then take them on over a course 50 miles long.

With incredible energy and smart observation, McDougall tells this story while…


Book cover of Marathon Man: My 26.2-Mile Journey from Unknown Grad Student to the Top of the Running World

Paul C. Clerici Author Of Born to Coach: The Story of Bill Squires, the Legendary Coach of the Greatest Generation of American Distance Runners

From my list on the sport of running.

Why am I passionate about this?

Born and raised in the Boston area, I’ve always loved history and running. Fortunately, I’ve been able to combine those passions for decades as a newspaper sports editor, magazine writer, and author, who has covered the sport for decades; runner, who has run hundreds of races, from the mile to the marathon, including 43 marathons (Boston 23 times); and public speaker and media guest about the sport. I enjoy delving deep into the history of races, athletes, records, etc. – everything within the sport – which has afforded me the great pleasure to meet, interview, and become friends with many Olympians, champions, record-setters, and Hall of Famers.

Paul's book list on the sport of running

Paul C. Clerici Why did Paul love this book?

Any story about legendary running ambassador Bill Rodgers is worth the read. A U.S. Olympian and four-time winner of the Boston Marathon and New York City Marathon, his impact on the sport of running is immeasurable on many levels – shining a light on athlete inequality, repeated hard-earned road-race excellence, expanding the sport to the non-elite, and consistent approachability and promotion. His tenacity as a competitor helped push the sport into “primetime” and beyond. Having interviewed him many times over the years for my books and articles, Marathon Man reads the way he speaks, with honesty and insight. In addition to a Hall of Fame resume, part of his popularity is based on the fact the common runner can relate to many of his battles – a former smoker, blue-collar life, cancer survivor.

By Bill Rodgers, Matthew Shepatin,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

The legendary long-distance runner details his historic victory in the 1975 Boston Marathon that launched the modern running boom

Within a span of two hours and nine minutes, Bill Rodgers went from obscurity to legend, from Bill Rodgers to "Boston Billy." In doing so, he instantly became the people's champ and the poster boy for the soulful 1970s distance runner. Having won the Boston Marathon and New York Marathon four times each, he remains the only marathoner to have appeared on the cover of Sports Illustrated twice. Winning the Holy Grail of marathons in an unthinkable record time changed Bill's…


Book cover of The Loneliness of the Long-Distance Runner

Dennis Barker Author Of The River Road: Becoming a Runner in 1972

From my list on discovery & experience of running.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have been a runner for 50 years and a coach for 30 years. From 2001-2016 I was the coach of Team USA Minnesota Distance Training Center. During that time I coached 24 U.S. National Champions, including an Olympian & 2 USATF Running Circuit Champions, at 1500 meters, 3000 meters, and 10,000 meters on the track; the mile, 10k, 15k, 10 miles, half-marathon, 20k, 25k, and marathon on the road; 4k, 6k, 8k and 10k in cross country.  Athletes I coached qualified for 30 U.S. national teams competing in IAAF World Championships in cross country, indoor track, outdoor track, and road, and achieved 73 top-three finishes in U.S. Championships. 

Dennis' book list on discovery & experience of running

Dennis Barker Why did Dennis love this book?

A non-runner begins running in prison and discovers its therapeutic benefits that help him do his time and start him on a journey of self-discovery. Having been an early morning runner for many years, I appreciated the protagonist’s descriptions of frosty early morning runs, which I think are some of the best in literature.

By Alan Sillitoe,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked The Loneliness of the Long-Distance Runner as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Perhaps one of the most revered works of fiction in the twentieth-century, The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner is a modern classic about integrity, courage, and bucking the system. Its title story recounts the story of a reform school cross-country runner who seizes the perfect opportunity to defy the authority that governs his life. It is a pure masterpiece. From there the collection expands even further from the touching “On Saturday Afternoon” to the rollicking “The Decline and Fall and Frankie Buller.” Beloved for its lean prose, unforgettable protagonists, and real-life wisdom, The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner…


Book cover of When Running Was Young and So Were We: Collected Works of a Sportswriter from the Golden Age of American Running

Timothy M. Tays Author Of Wannabe Distance God: The Thirst, Angst, and Passion of Running in the Chase Pack

From my list on the passion for distance running.

Why am I passionate about this?

As a boy and then as a young man I was a passionate, compulsive, and hypercompetitive sub-elite distance runner. In middle age I became a clinical psychologist and only then did I come to fully understand my youthful need to run long distances fast and beat everyone that I could. I captured the etiology and passion in Wannabe Distance God.

Timothy's book list on the passion for distance running

Timothy M. Tays Why did Timothy love this book?

Imagine my satisfaction upon learning that Jack D. Welch published a book about the Golden Age of distance running. See, I was there, in the races, far far back, wondering what it was like to be as fast as the elite runners. Now I know. Welch, the co-founder of Running magazine (which I read at the time), approaches the great runners of the day from a journalist's perspective. Fascinating begins to describe it. Engrossing is even better.

I think When Running Was Young and So Were We will be interesting to runners in general, not just runners from the Golden Age, because the love of distance running and the interesting people who participate in it is the same today. What drives people to run? What are driven people like? What are driven people dripping with talent like? Jack D. Welch tells all.

By Jack Welch,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked When Running Was Young and So Were We as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

For many years Jack Welch wrote for Running magazine and Track & Field News, chronicling the extraordinary developments of running during the 1970s, 80s and 90's. When Running Was Young and So Were We is based on his columns from this period and is a unique book - telling the story of how running became a way of life for millions. * It's a book about excellence, inspiration and greatness. Not just what it takes to cross the finish line first, but also the lessons learned along the way. * It's a sports book - offering an up-close and personal…


Book cover of Alone

Kate McCarroll Moore Author Of Elinormal

From my list on navigating middle school years with honesty & empathy.

Why am I passionate about this?

As a former middle school teacher and librarian, I know first-hand the power of story to motivate and teach. Over the years, I have also been lucky enough to facilitate several mother-daughter book groups and have found that books that show characters wrestling with decisions about doing the right thing, and recovering from bad choices, help to show children that there is always hope. Middle school is a time of such challenge and change, and stories that show authentically drawn characters navigating this tough terrain can act as guideposts. Becoming independent, finding your voice, growing empathy, and cherishing family and friends are necessary steps to becoming confident and healthy humans.

Kate's book list on navigating middle school years with honesty & empathy

Kate McCarroll Moore Why did Kate love this book?

Twelve-year-old Maddie makes one bad decision with terrible repercussions that sets this story in motion as she finds herself utterly and truly alone.

This is a story that the girls in my mother-daughter book group had much to say about. Her quest to survive in a world that has been transformed seemingly overnight forces Maddie to trust her instincts in order to survive on her own.

The story reads like a metaphor for the transition from child to adult. The themes of honesty, resilience, and optimism in the face of challenging circumstances are at the heart of this riveting story.

By Megan E. Freeman,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked Alone as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 10, 11, 12, and 13.

What is this book about?

Perfect for fans of Hatchet and the I Survived series, this harrowing middle grade debut novel-in-verse from a Pushcart Prize-nominated poet tells the story of a young girl who wakes up one day to find herself utterly alone in her small Colorado town.

When twelve-year-old Maddie hatches a scheme for a secret sleepover with her two best friends, she ends up waking up to a nightmare. She's alone-left behind in a town that has been mysteriously evacuated and abandoned.

With no one to rely on, no power, and no working phone lines or internet access, Maddie slowly learns to survive…


Book cover of Killing Trail

Peggy Rothschild Author Of Playing Dead

From my list on mysteries for dog lovers.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m a lifelong mystery fan and animal lover. I’m drawn to mysteries that provide a window to a new world. And, since I love animals, I enjoy the added fun of having a realistic animal sidekick in the mix. All the books I’ve recommended here pulled me into their worlds, letting me spend time with fascinating characters as they untangled various mysteries—as well as with their wonderful, if fictional, canine companions. 

Peggy's book list on mysteries for dog lovers

Peggy Rothschild Why did Peggy love this book?

I love all of the books in Mizushima’s Timber Creek K-9 Mystery series and though you can start anywhere, this book was my introduction to Mattie Cobb and her dog, Robo.

The partnership between these two characters is wonderful as is the scene-setting, ancillary characters, and—of course—the actual mystery!

Mattie’s the sort of person I would enjoy spending time with in real life—along with Robo.

By Margaret Mizushima,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

An RT Book Review “Top Pick” and “Best First Mystery" nominee
A Library Journal “Debut of the Month”

Fans of K-9 mysteries and C.J. Box will love this debut police procedural that introduces Colorado’s best crime-fighting duo: Mattie Cobb and police dog, Robo.

While investigating the mysterious death of a young girl, Officer Mattie Cobb uncovers frightening secrets about her small Colorado hometown . . .

When a young girl is found dead in the mountains outside Timber Creek, life-long resident Officer Mattie Cobb and her partner, K-9 police dog Robo, are assigned to the case that has rocked the…


Book cover of Challenges of Ordinary Democracy: A Case Study in Deliberation and Dissent

Gerard A. Hauser Author Of Vernacular Voices: The Rhetoric of Publics and Public Spheres

From my list on why ordinary citizen voices matter to a democracy.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am the grandson of a political refugee. My grandfather was a gunrunner in the Greek resistance to Turkish occupation of Chios prior to the 1st Balkan War. His guerilla activity placed his life in danger. He fled pursuit by the Turks, which led to his eventual emigration to the United States. From childhood my family experience was of lively discussions that were inflected by my grandfather’s experience of resistance and US citizenship. They sparked my fascination with the role of citizen voices in a democracy. That was a main focus of my academic career, teaching rhetoric for more than 40 years at Penn State University and the University of Colorado Boulder.

Gerard's book list on why ordinary citizen voices matter to a democracy

Gerard A. Hauser Why did Gerard love this book?

Perhaps the most widespread engagement by ordinary citizens in political relations is with the education of their children. School boards are increasingly regarded as a site of passionate political contest over what our children will learn, especially when it comes to learning history and its consequences for their understanding of their community and nation. Challenges of Ordinary Democracy reports on three years in the life of a local school board. The voices of administrators, teachers, parents, and the press are examined when dissent takes center stage in the school board’s deliberations. Given that ordinary citizens will disagree, often vehemently, Tracy asks us to consider the parameters of reasonable hostility and why reasonable hostility is important for the voices of ordinary citizens to matter in deciding issues that affect their lives.  

By Karen Tracy,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Is there any place in America where passionate debate plays a more vital role in democratic discourse than local school board meetings? Karen Tracy conducted a thirty-five-month study of the board meetings of the Boulder Valley School District between 1996 and 1999 to analyze just how democracy operates in practice. In Challenges of Ordinary Democracy, she reveals the major role that emotion plays in real-life debate and discerns value in what might easily be seen as negative forms of discourse-voicing platitudes, making contradictory assertions, arguing over a document's wording, speaking angrily, attacking a person's character. By illuminating this one arena…


Book cover of The Diary of Mattie Spenser

Kim Taylor Blakemore Author Of The Good Time Girls

From my list on fierce women in the American West.

Why am I passionate about this?

The United States Old West is a legend, a myth, a land of contradictions. I grew up and have never left this vast land of scorching deserts, soaring peaks, misty coasts, and redwoods that touch the heavens. I grew up on the myths – Tombstone, Billy the Kid, Calamity Jane, Pearl Hart. What I love most are the stories of the women of the West, who survive with grit, wiles, and no small amount of courage. I love finding the lesser known women through novels and research and seeing their lives bloom before my eyes. Cowgirls, sufragettes, doctors, ex-slaves, Cheyenne, Arapahoe, cattle rustlers, homesteaders, dancehall girls.

Kim's book list on fierce women in the American West

Kim Taylor Blakemore Why did Kim love this book?

This novel follows the journey of Mattie Spenser, a young bride who leaves her comfortable city life behind to settle in the harsh and unforgiving Colorado frontier.

As she faces numerous challenges, including isolation and the demands of homesteading, Mattie's inner strength and resilience shine through. Mattie's determination, the vivid depiction of frontier life, and the exploration of women's roles in the Old West pulled me right into her world.

A truly unique voice that absolutely enthralled me.

By Sandra Dallas,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Unexpectedly married to the man considered the catch of her hometown, a young woman finds herself traveling via covered wagon to Colorado in search of a new start, with only her reticent husband and her personal journal to keep her company


Book cover of Our Souls at Night

MJ Werthman White Author Of An Invitation to the Party

From my list on aging, family, and relationships.

Why am I passionate about this?

As a kid, our public library in the basement of the Methodist church became my second home. However, I considered any visit a bitter disappointment that didn’t result in one or two dog stories in the stack I signed out. Big Red, Old Yeller, Lassie, Lad a Dog, Call of the Wild, White Fang (the occasional wolf was also okay), I loved them all. That experience has continued to affect the adult I’ve become. As I’ve turned to reading, and writing, stories of family, relationships, and, lately, of aging, it’s become clear to me that I’ve never found a story that wasn’t improved by the appearance of a good dog.

MJ's book list on aging, family, and relationships

MJ Werthman White Why did MJ love this book?

Kent Haruf wrote Our Souls at Night as he was dying. What happens in it? Not a lot. It’s much easier to write stories in which things blow up, plot devices creak, and an ending ties everything up neatly. This quiet, elegiac novel is not that.

Addie and Louis, elderly neighbors, begin sleeping together because the nights are long and they are lonely. Her young grandson, Jamie, visits. Louis gives him a catcher’s mitt and brings home a shelter dog, Bonnie. Their grown children interfere. Complications ensue. And there are no quotation marks to indicate dialogue.

Yet, here I am telling you to go, now, find this book and read it today? Am I crazy? You decide (after you read the book).

P.S. Skip this film. Jane Fonda’s Stepford Wives’ perfection ruins a movie that needed its female beauty defined by wrinkles and gray hair, and an aging, infirm body.…

By Kent Haruf,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked Our Souls at Night as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

'Absolutely beautiful' The Times

'Luminous' Ursula K Le Guin, Guardian

'I loved Our Souls at Night' David Nicholls

Addie Moore's husband died years ago, so did Louis Waters' wife, and, as neighbours in Holt, Colorado they have naturally long been aware of each other. With their children now far away both live alone in houses empty of family. The nights are terribly lonely, especially with no one to talk to. Then one evening Addie pays Louis an unexpected visit.

Their brave adventures-their pleasures and their difficulties-form the beating heart of Our Souls at Night. Kent Haruf's final novel is an…


Book cover of Colorado Black on White

Sara Frances Author Of Unplugged Voices: 125 Tales of Art and Life from Northern New Mexico, the Four Corners and the West

From my list on beautiful imagery and intriguing text.

Why am I passionate about this?

After flirting with careers as an archaeologist, pilot, concert pianist, and diplomat, I settled on photographer after just a few month’s residence in Heidelberg, Germany, while studying for my Masters in Comparative Literature. The camera provided close personal interaction with people, while hearing their stories from a wide variety of cultural perspectives and social environments. Introduced by parents, I formed an obsession with opera, Native American drum music, vinyl recordings, and historic places, particularly Georgia O’Keeffe country, “south of the border” from our Colorado base. My family of musicians and artists stopped, listened, and loved the light and land of the Four Corners. I self-define as a photojournalist-poet, a griot.

Sara's book list on beautiful imagery and intriguing text

Sara Frances Why did Sara love this book?

Of prolific nature photographer Fielder’s many books, this is my fav.

It commands attention, a gift to be treasured, big, bold, luxurious. You’ll drown in the luscious reproductions, as though you were on the trail with him!

The unexpected bonus: his commentary tells you about his experiences loose in the wild, how chance weather patterns and animals made for dramatic imagery, his devotion to craft, and sheer delight in tramping the land of the West.

By John Fielder,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Colorado Black on White as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

John Fielder is Colorado's preeminent nature photographer. Colorado Black on White is his 50th Colorado book. In the mold of Colorado's best-selling book of all time, Colorado 1870-2000, Fielder represents his state exclusively in black and white. He edited 230 color images from his life's work in Colorado over the past 40 years, and rendered each in blacks, whites, and subtle tones of gray. Without the distraction of color, the viewer engages the shapes, textures, lines, and edges of this most scenic of states as never before.

Divided into eight chapters, Fielder spares no subject endemic to his adopted state.…


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