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5 Magical Books That Will Make You Question Everything You Thought You Knew. Great books have the power to reconfigure and manipulate our entire understanding of reality – and our place within it. Whether you’re looking for guidance or are in need of deep contemplative reflection, these top five mind-altering and consciousness-raising books will undoubtedly fulfill your expectations. In no particular order… Stumbling on Happiness, by Daniel Gilbert Daniel Gilbert is a famous Harvard psychologist, specializing in the everyday flaws and biases of the human mind. According to Gilbert, humans are guilty of incorrectly judging others, inaccurate about what makes people happy, and even where you’re happy right here, in this moment. Throughout the course of the book, Gilbert proves that happiness has little to do with what happens to us in our lives, and more to do with our outlook or our interpretation of things.

The reason? The True Believer, by Eric Hoffer Antifragile: Things That Gain From Disorder, by Nassim Taleb The Denial of Death, by Ernest Becker. The Rory Gilmore Reading Challenge. Novels: On Location - 635 Novels/783 Locations. 8 Rejuvenating Books To Read In The Spring. After a long, blizzard-filled winter, spring finally seems to be here—an unpredictable March climate notwithstanding. Spring is a time of new beginnings and clean slates, when the last filthy vestiges of winter snow melt away and the trees burst out with fresh green buds. There’s just something about this season that makes us feel rejuvenated, purified, and ready to let go of the past. Whether that means finally cutting ties with a bad-news ex, donating the 68 percent of your clothing you never wear anymore, or cracking open a brand new book, spring is a perfect time to shake off your winter funk and try something new. What better to read, during this season of renewal, than great books about the bittersweet joys of starting over?

We’ve collected 8 books ideal for reading this season, with the lush spring settings and inspiring themes that make us feel refreshed and energized. Here are 8 perfect books to read in the spring: A Room With a View by E.M. The Roman Spring of Mrs. Smart Reads For Teens. Originally posted on Kirkus Who are we kidding? There may be more adults reading the recently published books on this week’s list than teens. These books wrestle with all the big questions: identity, race, sexuality, war. We hope teens read them too, but whatever your age, they deserve a spot on your list of books to read next. For more on Kirkus, click here. "Refreshingly rooted in the issues of the day, Burgess' near-future thriller stands out. 'The Hit' by Melvin Burgess "Refreshingly rooted in the issues of the day, Burgess' near-future thriller stands out.

After 20 years of economic recession, the gaps between England's rich and poor are wider and starker than ever. Read full book review here. The Bone Marrow Queen by Melissa Difatta. 30 Books You NEED To Read In 2014. Another year, another several dozen captivating books to add to your ever-growing reading list. You may still be conquering the mountain of titles you were gifted during the holidays, or the pile of award-winners you picked up at the end of last year, so anticipating 2014's heavy hitters may seem overwhelming. Which is exactly why we've parsed out a manageable list of what we believe will be the most rewarding reads. Take a look. Family Life by Akhil Sharma The heartbreaking story of a boy whose brother suffers brain damage after diving into a swimming pool is told in spare, deliberate language.

Leaving the Sea by Ben Marcus Marcus's acclaimed The Flame Alphabet showcased his ability to write fascinating experimental fiction, and we expect this short story collection to be no different. Perfect by Rachel Joyce Joyce's novel is both a coming-of-age story about a boy who becomes concerned when the British government adds two seconds to the year, and the tale of a man with OCD. Why Reading Is Important. The following is an excerpt from Wendy Lesser's Why I Read [Farrar, Straus and Giroux, $25.00]: It’s not a question I can completely answer. There are abundant reasons, some of them worse than others and many of them mutually contradictory. To pass the time. To savor the existence of time. To escape from myself into someone else’s world. To find myself in someone else’s words. To exercise my critical capacities. In any case, when I ask myself why I read literature, I am not really asking about motivation. When it comes to literature, we are all groping in the dark, even the writer.

I suppose if I had to give a one-word answer to the question of why I read, that word would be pleasure. I have tried, in this book, to cast a wide net in my definition of literature, looking at plays, poems, and essays as well as novels and stories. I do, however, have a time-travel machine of sorts, in the form of the literature of the past. Does this mean I am in retreat from reality? Reading Changes Brain's Connectivity, Study Suggests. It's no secret that reading is good for your brain.

But what actually happens inside your brain when you read a great novel? “Stories shape our lives and in some cases help define a person,” Dr. Gregory S. Berns, director of Emory University's Center for Neuropolicy in Atlanta, said in a written statement. “We want to understand how stories get into your brain, and what they do to it.” Now we may have a better idea, thanks to new research by Berns and his research team. The researchers took fMRI scans of the brains of 21 undergraduate students while they rested. The scans revealed heightened connectivity within the students' brains on the mornings following the assignments, and the changes persisted for the five days after the students had finished the novel.

"The anterior (front) bank of the sulcus contains neurons that control movement of parts of the body," Berns told The Huffington Post in an email. How long do the brain changes persist? Norway Is Digitizing All Its Books. Norway is going digital. In a plan to scan all of its publications to the cloud, the National Library of Norway is digitalizing its books, and it and plans to make them all freely available to users with a Norwegian IP address. The library plans to have the project completed in about 15 to 20 years. The initiative was first launched in 2006. Under the program, the institution will digitize its entire collection. It requires, by law, that all published content and media be submitted to the National Library, according to reports. By 2012, the Norway Library had digitized 350,000 newspaper editions, 235,000 books and 240,000 pages of handwritten manuscripts, among other forms of media including radio broadcasts and TV programs, the Scandinavian Library Quarterly reports.

As The Verge notes, the massive project is similar to other -- albeit smaller -- digitalization initiatives launched in the United Kingdom and Finland. What do you think of Norway's plan to digitize all its books?