The Uncommon Life

Our Uncommon Book Club Picks

October 20, 2014

Once the weather gets dreary and the bikes get put into storage, the typical morning commute of a U-Gooder involves a meandering, pre-coffee descent into the New York subway, followed by a (hopefully) quick transfer to the N or R trains. These are the two main lines that run through our neighborhood of Sunset Park, so it’s not unusual to bump into coworkers with their noses in a book. Given these frequent literary sightings, it seemed apropos to ask my fellow U-Gooders just what has them so engrossed that they almost miss the 59th Street stop.

What are you reading right now?
Nikki Desautelle“I just finished Magician’s Land by Lev Grossman, the final book in a series which starts off as a darker, more grownup up version of wizard school a la Harry Potter. It’s great because it allows me to continue my life long fantasy of the magical life that was STOLEN FROM ME.”
–Nikki DeSautelle, Graphic Designer


What’s your all-time favorite book?
Brian HashemiTropic of Cancer by Henry Miller. I remember walking into my college bookstore freshman year, reading the first paragraph, falling in love with it, and immediately deciding Henry Miller was my favorite author ever. Years later, and after reading every single book (both fiction and non-fiction) that Miller ever wrote – and he wrote a lot – it still holds true. Actually, just over Labor Day, I visited the Henry Miller Memorial Library in Big Sur, which was like a pilgrimage for me.”
–Brian Hashemi, Director of Marketing


Rebecca Marshall“It’s a tie between A Tale of Two Cities (the first book that really sucked me in; it made me love reading) and Prince of Tides. (I have no idea why I love this book. I just do. Every time I put it down I wanted to pick it back up.)”
–Rebecca Marshall, Associate Art Director



Reading tablet or the real thing?Jen Grim
“While I own hundreds of real books, I vote for tablet. I travel a lot and love the convenience of always having several books to read without having to sacrifice suitcase space for books.”
–Jennifer Grim, Director of Customer Service



Jille Natalino
“The real thing. I read a novel on my iPhone once and my eyes hurt for weeks afterwards, but more importantly: I m a bit nosy— I like to know what other people are reading on the subway and can use any excuse to talk to strangers (the fault/charm of being a Southerner.) Therefore, I prefer my books to proudly display their titles as well”–Jille Natalino, Graphic Designer

Sum up your you life with a book title.Emily Hodges
Catch 22 – From deciding what shoes to wear in the morning, to choosing what to eat for lunch, to booking an AirBnb accommodation for my next travel plans — I’m always thinking “I should have went with the other choice” even if I know exactly why I didn’t.”
–Emily Hodges, Community Outreach Associate



Jen ColemanMe Talk Pretty One Day by David Sedaris—sums up how I feel before my morning coffee!”
–Jennifer Coleman,Community Outreach Assistant







Other titles that made the cut: Omnivore’s Dilemma (Michael Pollan), Jitterbug Perfume (Tom Robbins), The Alchemist (Paulo Coelho), Signature of All Things (Elizabeth Gilbert), and A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius (Dave Eggers).

Probably the best takeaway from this office poll is how eager everyone was to talk about what’s in his or her reading queue. Just add some good wine and bite-sized snacks, and we’d have had a good old-fashioned book club meeting. Too bad a crowded subway car isn’t an ideal setting for a tasteful crudité.

Do you have a can’t miss book club pick? Let us know in the comments below or by tweeting @UncommonGoods!

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2 Comments

  • Reply Linda Zarett October 20, 2014 at 6:31 pm

    A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman is an amazing novel. It is funny and heartwarming, serious and heartbreaking all within the same story. I loved it.

  • Reply Jewelry Winner Kristin Schwartz Stops To Mold The Roses November 4, 2014 at 4:25 pm

    […] you may have learned in our recent Uncommon Book Club Picks, I’m currently reading Elizabeth Gilbert’s “The Signature of All Things,” a novel about […]

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