Our staff’s summer reading picks

by Badgley Phelps | Jun 16, 2017

Looking for some great books to add to your summer reading list? Here are some of our staff favorites.


Mitzi Carletti recommends…

A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman
Booklist says, in its starred review, “If there was an award for ‘Most Charming Book of the Year,’ this first novel by a Swedish blogger-turned-overnight-sensation would win hands down.” The book is the story of Ove, a curmudgeon who likes things as he likes them, as his life is turned upside down when some new neighbors move in. It’s one you likely won’t want to end – and that will stick with you long after it does.

Steve Phelps recommends…

The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah
With 4.5 out of 5 stars on Goodreads and nearly 35,000 reviews, this historical fiction novel tells the story of two sisters coming of age just before the World War II German occupation of France. Inspired by the story of Andrée de Jongh, read the book before the movie debuts next year.

Kathy Dahm recommends…

The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
Need incentive to revisit Fitzgerald’s Jazz Age chronicle of the life and times of wealthy socialite Jay Gatsby? Check out this Washington Post review of Maureen Corrigan’s book, “So We Read On: How The Great Gatsby Came to Be and Why it Endures.” According to Corrigan, “Gatsby’s magic emanates not only from its powerhouse poetic style — in which ordinary American language becomes unearthly — but from the authority with which it nails who we want to be as Americans…It’s that wanting that runs through every page of Gatsby, making it our Greatest American Novel.”

More fiction recommendations:

  • For a funny beach read, Victoria Best recommends Opening Belle by Maureen Sherry, which is about a Wall Street executive trying to balance work and motherhood.
  • For a thrilling read, or several, Kevin Callaghan recommends the Mitch Rapp series by Vince Flynn and Kyle Mills. The latest books in the series are Order to Kill and Enemy of the State.

Julie Parisio Roy recommends…

Option B: Facing Adversity, Building Resilience, and Finding Joy by Sheryl Sandberg and Adam Grant
Among Amazon’s Best Books of 2017, this page-turner chronicles how Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook COO and bestselling author, triumphed over tragedy after the unexpected passing of her husband in 2015. Sandberg and co-author, psychologist Adam Grant, share how resilience is like a muscle that can be developed so we’re prepared when confronted with painful events in our lives.

Curtis Pepin recommends…

Touching the Void: The True Story of One Man’s Miraculous Survival by Joe Simpson
From Amazon, “Joe Simpson and his climbing partner, Simon Yates, had just reached the top of a 21,000-foot peak in the Andes when disaster struck. Simpson plunged off the vertical face of an ice ledge, breaking his leg. In the hours that followed, darkness fell and a blizzard raged as Yates tried to lower his friend to safety. Finally, Yates was forced to cut the rope, moments before he would have been pulled to his own death.” If that doesn’t grip you, we don’t know what would.

Jeff Walters recommends…

Beer Money: A Memoir of Privilege and Loss by Frances Stroh
In this beautifully-written memoir, Frances Stroh, heir to the Stroh Brewing Company, writes of coming of age at a time when her family was estimated to be worth $700 million — and what happened when the company collapsed alongside the economy in Detroit. The family crumbled as its fortune dissolved and scandal plagued its ranks. Stroh retells all in this relatable story about family dynamics against the backdrop of the rise and fall of a legendary company.

Cal Spranger recommends…

How Bad Do You Want It?: Mastering the Psychology of Mind over Muscle by Matt Fitzgerald
In this highly-rated read, coach Matt Fitzgerald shows “mind over matter” in action, examining more than a dozen races from running, cycling, triathlon, XTERRA and rowing to prove how the best athletic performances originate with the mind, not the body.

More nonfiction recommendations:  

  • Lisa Price recommends The Zookeeper’s Wife by Diane Ackerman, the true story of how the director of the Warsaw Zoo and his wife saved hundreds of Jews imprisoned following the German invasion of Poland.
  • Eileen Olson recommends The Grace to Race: The Wisdom and Inspiration of the 80-Year-Old World Champion Triathlete Known as the Iron Nun by Sister Madonna Buder and Karin Evans.

Mike Schultz recommends…

Predictably Irrational: The Hidden Forces That Shape Our Decisions by Dan Ariely
From Publishers Weekly, “Irrational behavior is a part of human nature, but as MIT professor Ariely has discovered in 20 years of researching behavioral economics, people tend to behave irrationally in a predictable fashion.” This entertaining read addresses weighty issues in an unexpected and surprisingly humorous way.

Tim Thomas recommends…

Lords of Finance: The Bankers Who Broke the World by Liaquat Ahamed
In this Pulitzer Prize winning book, Ahamed reveals the true cause of the economic meltdown preceding the Great Depression. The New York Times Book Review called it, “A magisterial work...You can't help thinking about the economic crisis we're living through now.”

Mike Gerke recommends…

Behavioral Finance and Wealth Management: How to Build Optimal Portfolios That Account for Investor Biases by Michael M. Pompian
As the book flap says, "Although fear and greed have always driven the markets – as well as good and bad investment decision-making – behavioral finance as a discipline has only recently attracted serious attention from both financial professionals and investors. Given the run up in stock prices during the late 1990s, and the subsequent popping of the technology bubble, understanding investor behavior is now more important than ever." This book provides tips for how to adapt behavioral biases to improve investment outcomes.



Subscribe to Our Blog

  1. Email address is required.
    You have entered an invalid email address.
  2. First name is required.
  3. Last name is required.

Search Our Blog