We asked folks we admire to shoutout books and tell us about the impact those books had on them.

Nigel Deane | Musical Artist and Educator

I recently just finished Paulo Freire’s “Pedagogy of the Oppressed” for the first time. As an educator, especially doing independent contract work outside of the public and private education systems, I’m in a position where I can help provide some of the tools that students can use to empower themselves, but it takes a lot of experience, reflection, and self-examination to do an effective job. This book really put my role in perspective, and also had me reflecting on my own life and education’s role in it. After reading Freire’s book I’m inspired to seek out more revolutionary pedagogical thinkers and continue evolving as a teacher. I definitely recommend reading it, for anyone interested in social justice! (not just teachers). Read more>>

Audra Buras: Actor, Model, Voice Artist & Teacher

Lying, by Sam Harris, is one of the most important books that I have ever read. It helped me to realize the freedom that comes when you refrain from telling small lies, or “white lies”. I’ve embraced this as my approach to my professional and my personal life. Read more>>

Sofia Gregory: Actor & Writer

I recently read a book titled “The Wisdom of Anxiety.” A friend recommended it to me after we had a conversation regarding our shared interest in the way the mind operates. We’ve both found ourselves and the people we know experiencing an increase in their day to day anxieties, fears, and worries. I began to wonder why and so I picked up the book. I have always thought that social media is wonderful in the sense it brings about connection and introduces us to new topics and people (like the purpose of this magazine/column). However I also think that social media can be extremely harmful to our mental health. Plus, living through a pandemic where social isolation and loneliness were prevalent did not help. This book, written by Sheryl Paul, explores where that feeling of anxiety comes from and also presents the point of view that maybe, just maybe, anxiety can be a good thing. Read more>>

Winston A. Abalos: Producer & Amature Palm Tree Grower

A New Earth by Eckhart Tolle is my bible. I love the book because in understanding its teachings I have become more peaceful, I’m better at navigating the ups and downs of life and it’s my north star when all hell breaks loose in my heart and mind or in the outside world. It’s opened me up to a spiritual world I didn’t believe in. I’m intensely logical! Spirituality softens my logic and allows me to experience space, love, miracles and more joy.v I spent most of my young adult life in therapy. After more than a decade of learning and talking about my past it didn’t free me from it. The more I knew about my past, led to more past and therefore more pain. I thought I had hit rock bottom at 25 years old but it turned out there are more bottoms! My last last last resort was to open myself up to something other than therapy. Read more>>