10 best books of August: the Monitor's picks

Here are the 10 titles the Monitor's book critics are recommending this month.

10. "Real Talk for Real Teachers," by Rafe Esquith

Real Talk for Real Teachers is the fourth book by award-winning teacher Rafe Esquith and it's every bit as valuable as earlier Esquith bestsellers like "Teach Like Your Hair's on Fire." Esquith writes from his own experience teaching – and getting remarkable results – in a low-income California public school. Esquith is not a believer in easy formulas or short cuts and so his advice to teachers is pragmatic and down-to-earth yet also inspiring. Although especially useful for classroom teachers, this book will speak to anyone with an interest in education. You can read the Monitor's full review of "Real Talk for Real Teachers" here.

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Dear Reader,

About a year ago, I happened upon this statement about the Monitor in the Harvard Business Review – under the charming heading of “do things that don’t interest you”:

“Many things that end up” being meaningful, writes social scientist Joseph Grenny, “have come from conference workshops, articles, or online videos that began as a chore and ended with an insight. My work in Kenya, for example, was heavily influenced by a Christian Science Monitor article I had forced myself to read 10 years earlier. Sometimes, we call things ‘boring’ simply because they lie outside the box we are currently in.”

If you were to come up with a punchline to a joke about the Monitor, that would probably be it. We’re seen as being global, fair, insightful, and perhaps a bit too earnest. We’re the bran muffin of journalism.

But you know what? We change lives. And I’m going to argue that we change lives precisely because we force open that too-small box that most human beings think they live in.

The Monitor is a peculiar little publication that’s hard for the world to figure out. We’re run by a church, but we’re not only for church members and we’re not about converting people. We’re known as being fair even as the world becomes as polarized as at any time since the newspaper’s founding in 1908.

We have a mission beyond circulation, we want to bridge divides. We’re about kicking down the door of thought everywhere and saying, “You are bigger and more capable than you realize. And we can prove it.”

If you’re looking for bran muffin journalism, you can subscribe to the Monitor for $15. You’ll get the Monitor Weekly magazine, the Monitor Daily email, and unlimited access to CSMonitor.com.

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