Potpourri Books (002) collage
Q: What do you get for the person who’s interested in everything?
A: A book!
If you have a friend, uncle, aunt, or spouse who watches true crime shows, can explain the infield fly rule, and owns a Theremin, you understand the degree of difficulty in finding a gift for that eclectic person on your list. If she collects bar towels from Ireland and has always wanted a pet ocelot, this list is just like her. We’ve assembled a group of books that fall outside our other categories. Written by Innovation Women speakers, these books run the gamut from local history to writing a book to film production.
In The Producer’s Playbook: Real People on Camera: Directing and Working with Non-Actors, Amy DeLouise provides guidance to film and video producers who work with non-actors. Whether you’re shooting a documentary, reality show, corporate training film, or a video journal, this book is a terrific resource. DeLouise has filled this book with practical tips on budgeting, and managing locations, crews, and client expectations. The full-color photographs further illustrate the author’s examples and the checklists and templates come in handy for working producers.
6 Things No One Tells You About Writing a Book: What You Need to Know About Your Book Journey Before You Hit the Road by Susan Baracco is a realistic look at writing and promoting a book and all the things you wish you knew before you started. Baracco has gone through it and lived to tell the tale. Here, using her experience as an author, she discusses time, resource, and expectation management.
Nothing beats local history. Boston has a well-known connection to the history of the United States, higher education, and pornography. In Inside the Combat Zone: The Stripped Down Story of Boston’s Most Notorious Neighborhood, Stephanie Schorow tells the story of the five acre neighborhood in the middle of straight-laced Boston, where adult bookstores and strip clubs ruled. Full of politicians, criminals, and characters, Schorow’s book is a different side of Boston and one worth reading about.
In Iron Butterflies: Women Transforming Themselves and the World, Birute Regine profiles sixty successful women from all over the world who have transformed themselves using their innate skills and what they’ve learned during their struggles. Regine uses the examples of these inspirational women to demonstrate the value of traditional feminine traits like empathy in leadership.
The senior care industry has a serious retention problem. Doreen Lang addresses this in her book, Hang on to Your Stars: The First 90 Days: A Step-By-Step Employee Engagement Solution for the Senior Living Community. Lang uses her two decades of experience in running workshops and managing senior living communities to describe how she engages her employees and makes them want to stay and succeed.
Politics these days is complex. If you want to be heard, you need safe, legal, and effective ways to get your point across. Road Map for Revolutionaries: Resistance, Activism, and Advocacy for All by Elisa Camahort Page, Carolyn Gerin, and Jamia Wilson is a hands-on guide delivering practical advice on engaging in protests, dealing with online political action, and getting involved at the local, state, and federal levels—safely.
Jonathan and His Mommy by Irene Smalls tells the story of a mother and son enjoying a simple walk home. It’s a sweet slice of the lives of two people just being together. Michael Hays’ illustrations are gentle and real. A happy book for the little one in your life.
Next Act Give Back: Discover Your Personal Path to Go From Being Charitable to Being a Changemaker by Kirsten Bunch is for the person who wants to get serious about playing her part in creating better, more sustainable and more equitable communities. If you have been thinking about how you can devote the next phase of your life to making a difference, whether through a new career or a total reinvention of yourself, this book will help you transform your life.
For months, Mildred Muhammed tried to get help for her wildly erratic husband and protection for her and her kids. John Muhammed was abusive and mentally unstable, but even after he kidnapped their children and changed their identities, no one listened to Mildred. John later became the infamous DC Sniper, killing ten innocent people and ruining thousands of lives. In Scared Silent, Mildred tells her story of fear and abuse in the hopes that it will help others dealing with domestic abuse or its aftereffects.
When Angels Play Poker by Maura O’Leary, is the story of Jimmy, a con-artist-turned-angel newly arrived in heaven who’s assigned to watch over his brother’s girlfriend. As he helps the young woman, he learns about patience and life.
When you give someone a book, you make an intellectual and emotional connection to them. Perhaps, finding a book for that uncommon person on your list is a way of bridging the gap between you.

Related Articles