updated 10/31/2013 AT 3:00 PM ET
•originally published 10/31/2013 AT 5:00 PM ET
The hunt for Bin Laden in Abbottabad, Chinese smuggling rings in New York City, a transformative drama program in Levittown – these unfamiliar worlds have our staffers transfixed at the moment. Let us know what you think of their choices – and tell us what you’re reading.
Her Pick: No Easy Day by Mark Owen
The movie Zero Dark Thirty, which I loved, left me with even more questions about how the hunt for Osama Bin Laden really happened. So I picked up this memoir by a member of the Navy’s SEAL Team Six who led the raid on his compound. The firsthand account of SEAL training and the second-by-second description of the operation in Pakistan – and how easily it could have gone wrong – makes for one gripping read.
Alex Apatoff, Style News Editor
Her Pick: The Snakehead by Patrick Radden Keefe
My husband loves nonfiction (I don’t ), and he’s been bugging me to read this exploration of Chinese smuggling rings in New York City in the ’90s. I’m so glad I did. The densely layered plots, criminal masterminds and nail-biting suspense could have come out of any thriller – it proves that truth really is stranger (and more astounding) than fiction!
Jeff Truesdell, Staff Writer
His Pick: Drama High by Michael Sokolove
This is a smart, poignant portrait of downtrodden Levittown, Penn., a once-promising suburban oasis, and the drama teacher who built and maintains a nationally-renowned high school drama program there. The story makes you remember the rare teachers who really made a difference in your life. It’s a lovely book.
Check back every Thursday for another round of staff picks, and see more book reviews each week in PEOPLE magazine, on newsstands now. Plus, check out last week’s young adult novels with grownup appealand more great book finds here.