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JAMIE'S BOOKSHELF: New Business Or "Feel Good" Books For Summer Reading

Compiled by Editor Jamie H. Vaught

This is the first of a three-part series about your possible summer readings.

Below is a list of popular business, self-help, or positive-oriented books, in no particular order, that you may want to consider for your summer readings list.

--“The Third Wave: An Entrepreneur’s Vision of the Future” by Steve Case (Simon & Schuster, $26.95) is a part memoir and part guidebook that shares the road map for not just how to survive, but succeed in our rapidly-changing digital age. Case, who found and started AOL in the mid-1980s when many folks had never heard of the Internet, is a well-known entrepreneur and innovator. Like the First and Second Wave of the Internet, the author predicts the next technological revolution or the Third Wave will transform the economy and the way we live our lives. Case lives in Washington, D.C., where he serves as chairman and CEO of Revolution LLC, an investment firm which helps visionary entrepreneurs to build businesses.

--“The Happiness Equation: Want Nothing + Do Anything = Have Everything” by Neil Pasricha (G.P. Putnam’s Sons, $27.00) is a new hardcover about how to find happiness in your life. The author, who has written a popular series of “Awesome” books which have sold over a million copies, said the new book is an extension of “The Book of Awesome” series. “To put it simply, the ‘Book of Awesome’ series is the observation of awesome and ‘The Happiness Equation’ is the application of awesome,” said Pasricha in an interview, adding that his latest book contains nine secrets that slowly will help people move toward living happier lives. The author also pointed out it’s not all that easy to be happy as our brains are programmed to see problems.

--“Fierce Optimism: Seven Secrets for Playing Nice and Winning Big” by Leeza Gibbons (Dey Street Books, $26.99) tells the story about how kindness can go long ways and help your career. A television celebrity, Gibbons shares her upbeat personality, integrity and strategies of overcoming the negativism and nastiness in our society during her career path to success. “Optimism is undergoing a makeover, and it’s on the way to a new, powerful persona,” said Gibbons. “I didn’t create this movement. I’m not the Pied Piper of Positivity. But I heard it when Donald Trump said, ‘Leeza, you led with kindness….I don’t meet people like you.’ I figured it was time for me to take on the mantle of optimism.”

--“How To Have A Good Day” by Caroline Webb (Crown Business, $26.00) attempts to show readers how to transform our approach to everyday working life. The author gives specific tools arranged around seven practices to navigate the typical challenges in workplace -- from conflict with co-workers to dull meetings and packed inboxes. The 360-page hardcover is really a nice collection of practical advice, science and stories based on author's business and psychology background in helping many folks transform and improve their professional careers.

--“Born For This: How To Find The Work You Were Meant To Do” by Chris Guillebeau (Crown Business, $26.00) tries to help you to find the dream job. The author has come up with a practical guide for how to do it -- whether within a traditional company or business, or by striking out on your own. The 314-page effort is filled with inspiring stories of those who have successfully landed their dream career as well as tools, exercises and experiments, guiding you through today’s career options to discover the work that is suited to your interests, skills, and experiences. Guillebeau is also the author of “The $100 Startup,” a bestseller published in 2012.

--“The Happiness of Pursuit: Finding the Quest That Will Bring Purpose to Your Life” by Chris Guillebeau (Harmony, $16.00) is now available in paperback. The book will show how anyone can bring meaning into their life by undertaking a quest. In short, it’s an inspiring playbook for making your life count.

--“The Best Place To Work” by Ron Friedman (Perigee, $16.95) offers employees and executives game-changing advice for working smarter and turning any organization into a remarkable workplace. The author, who is also a psychologist, tells powerful stories with findings to show how leaders can use techniques to promote smarter thinking, greater innovation and stronger performance. For example, placing a fish bowl near your desk can elevate your thinking or thought process.

--“The Sleep Revolution: Transforming Your Life One Night At A Time” by Arianna Huffington (Harmony, $26.00) discusses our sleep deprivation crisis. The co-founder and editor-in-chief of The Huffington Post, Huffington writes that our lack of sleep seriously affects our health, our job performance, our relationships and our happiness, and we need to sleep so we can take back control of our lives. The 392-page hardcover also takes on the dangerous sleeping pill industry and all the ways our addiction to technology disrupts our sleep, and offers recommendations and solutions from the experts on how we can improve our lives.

Jamie H. Vaught, a longtime columnist in Kentucky, is the author of four books about UK basketball. He is the editor of online magazine and a professor at Southeast Kentucky Community and Technical College in Middlesboro. You can follow him on Twitter @KySportsStyle or reach him via e-mail at

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