summer reading header
Marcie Hopkins, University of Utah Health
leadership
Start Here for a Great Book to Read this Summer
Accelerate editors reached out to leaders from across the health system to find out what they’re reading this summer for our inaugural summer reading list. From speculative fiction to social science touchstones, there's a book here worth pursuing on a long summer evening or an upcoming vacation.

The Heart’s Invisible Furies, John Boyne 

The Heart’s Invisible Furies by John Boyne is a beautifully written story that spans decades and two continents. It isn’t light reading but is one of the best books I’ve read. At nearly 600 pages, it could last the whole summer. The tale includes love, drama, violence and redemption. I read at night to unplug and this book gave me a compelling story that kept me engaged for months. —Kencee Graves, Associate Chief Medical Officer 

Rising Strong, Brene Brown 

One of my all-time favorite books is Rising Strong by Brene Brown. I love it because it helped me recognize that everyone makes mistakes and falls down in their lives. What is really important is not being perfect all of the time but being true to our values and working to be better next time. —Jennifer Schmidt, Manager, Nutrition Care Services 

Circe, Madeline Miller 

The book Circe was a wonderful read about Greek mythology, and the powerful influence women had over the Titans and Olympians. Circe, daughter of god Helios and nymph Perse, became a witch known for her herbs and potions. She transformed good and evil in remarkable ways. In the end, it’s a beautiful story about love and perseverance!—Dayle Benson, Executive Director, UUMG 

Noise, Daniel Kahneman 

The best recent podcast on a book is from Hidden Brain on a new book by Daniel Kahneman called Noise. The book is about how to reduce variability (or noise) in our judgement, including medical diagnosis. The reason to read it is because Kahneman is a Nobel prize winner and NYT best-selling author.—John Fang, Division Chief, Gastroenterology 

Dr. Disaster’s guide to Suriving Everything, John E. Torres 

I am currently reading Dr. Disaster’s Guide to Surviving Everything by John E. Torres. It was a gift for my husband on this past birthday in June and I grabbed it! I just could not help myself. Even with our backgrounds in healthcare, formal and real-life education and training, we can all learn many helpful and potentially lifesaving advice. So far, an easy read and super helpful! —Alison Flynn Gaffney, Executive Director of University Hospital Service Lines and System Planning 

Drive, Daniel Pink 

Drive by Daniel Pink. It feels like morale is down at the hospital. People are trying to recover from all things Covid. This book looks at motivating people (what works and what doesn’t). It uses research to back up the claims. Ultimately, it helped me see what drives me so I can be my best in my professional life.— Susan Clark, Manager, Risk Management 

Moloka’i, Alan Brennert 

The book I recently read and keep thinking about is Moloka’i by Alan Brennert. Rachel, a young Hawaiian girl, is sent to the leprosy settlement of Kalaupapa. It’s a lovely story with great characters, interwoven with Hawaiian history and evolving knowledge of a disease.—Jessi Van Der Volgen, Clinical Associate Librarian 

The People Code, Taylor Hartman 

I really enjoyed and have been engaged in Taylor Hartman’s book, The People Code. I first came upon it at an LDI back in 2007 that really stuck with me; it has helped shape my management style and how to work better with others. I continue to implement what I learned from that LDI and book to ask myself:  What makes someone tick? What is their real motive? What is the right seat on the bus for them? How can I help them excel? The guidelines found in The People Code have been a valuable resource for me as I search for each person’s strengths, motives, and abilities in order to constantly improve our relationships and team workplace environment.—Winn Redd, Manager, ITS 

The Happiness Advantage, Shawn Achor 

The Happiness Advantage, by Shawn Achor. This book highlights a growing body of research on positive psychology and how it can impact our achievements at work. I enjoyed the book and consider it a low-stress read. I especially enjoyed learning more about the importance of social support circles while dealing with high levels of stress.—Tim Nelson, Project Manager 

Grit, Angela Duckworth 

Grit by Angela Duckworth. Angela Duckworth is one of my favorite researchers. I love the message in her book that success is largely due to grit, which is passion plus perseverance. I was the first in my family to go to college and worried about how I would make it in medicine. This book taught me that passion and hard work counted more than having a clear path carved ahead of time. This book has also been so valuable while I have been trying to teach my children resilience.—Kencee Graves, Associate Chief Medical Officer 

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Accelerate Editorial Team

The Accelerate Editorial Team is a group of health care professionals who lead development and production of this website (see About), University of Utah Health

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