Ask the Staff: The Book that Changed Your Life

Every Reader Anna Q Quote

For those voracious readers among us, several books captivate the mind. Every now and then, however, there's a book that changes the course of our lives. Some members of our staff were recently asked about this. Their answers ranged from stories about that opened their minds and changed their life path to books that helped them confront tough questions in their lives. Take a look at what they said, and let us know about your life-changing books. You can do so by replying in the comments of our social media feeds, including on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.


The Power of NowLaura, Librarian, North Side Library:
The Power of Now, by Eckhart Tolle

"When my husband had open heart surgery in 2010, The Power of Now, by Eckhart Tolle, changed my life. Whenever I worried about what might happen in the future or what may have happened in the past, remembering what I learned from that book reminded me to stay in the present moment to relieve the anxiety. It worked!"





Winter WheatLuann, Clerk, Central Library:
Winter Wheat, by Mildred Walker

"My 7th grade reading teacher had leant me her copy of this book, and while I didn't finish it, I felt that I had had it long enough and it needed to be returned to her. She was at her desk and I quietly walked up to her and said I wasn't done with it, but really liked it. She then looked at me straight on, and said please keep it. Her name was Miss Monroe."




Being MortalLinda, Deputy Director:
Being Mortal, by Atul Gawande

"This book gave me the courage to first have a conversation with my dad as to what he wanted as his health started failing. Did he want every possible option explored to solve any of his many health issues?

Then, knowing what he wanted, I was able to say “no” when different doctors wanted to solve one health issue without improving my dad’s overall health, and in some cases, the side effects might be worse than what he was dealing with at the time."



DarbyKaty, Library Assistant, North Side Library:
Darby, by Jonathan Scott Fuqua

"This book inspired me to stand up for a friend in middle school who was being bullied by some of my other friends. I caused my friend group to split because of my decision to defend my friend, but I have never regretted this choice. That life incident connects me very strongly to this book which deals with race, human rights, and friendship."




Dead Man WalkingChris, Clerk, South Side Library:
Dead Man Walking, by Sister Helen Prejean

"It totally changed the way I view the death penalty. I was pro before, but now I am against. If even one person is unjustly executed, it is too many. "





EastJennifer, Youth Services Librarian, Franklin Avenue Library:
East, by Edith Pattou

"It totally changed my life because it reignited my love of reading. After being too busy in high school and bogged down with way too much academic reading as a history major, I didn’t really read for fun at all. Then, I happened to pick up East, and I adored it! I have been a voracious reader ever since, with fairy tale adaptations like East always at the top of my TBR pile."