updated 03/27/2014 AT 4:15 PM ET
•originally published 03/27/2014 AT 5:00 PM ET
Transformation can make for a very interesting read. Our staffers have found three very different books about taking matters into your own hands to change your life.
Let us know what you think of their choices – and tell us what you’re reading.
Her Pick: The Buddha Walks Into a Bar by Lodro Rinzler
On a blustery winter day that brought city traffic, a broken iPhone, and a late paycheck, I walked into a bookstore looking for some solace and found The Buddha Walks Into A Bar. Let it be known this is not your mother s hippie handbook: Rinzler takes a very 21st century approach to Buddhism by thoroughly understanding the new generation of tech-savvy peace-seekers. If you’re looking to foster compassion and inner peace on a crowded subway – and broaden your social interactions beyond tweeting and status updates – this book is for you!
Julie Farin, Senior Public Relations Manager
Her Pick: I Thought It Was Just Me by Brene Brown
“Shame is the intensely painful feeling or experience of believing we are flawed and therefore unworthy ” This is how professor Brene Brown, whose TedXHouston talk on The Power of Vulnerability propelled her into the national spotlight, describes what she believes is an epidemic in our culture. Shame, she says, leads to depression, anxiety, eating disorders, and much more. In this fascinating book she shares her own stories as well as what she’s learned from years of studying shame among women in key areas such as appearance, parenting and work. Best of all, she includes strategies for developing “shame resilience.”
Rennie Dyball, Senior Editor
Her Pick: Redefining Realness by Janet Mock
Janet Mock used to work at PEOPLE, but that’s not why I found her memoir about life as a trans woman so captivating (I gobbled it up in a day and a half–no small feat when you have a baby at home!) I learned so much about what it means to be transgender, yet I was equally fascinated by the universality of her story. Mock’s journey of self-discovery is not all that different from yours or mine – a lesson in acceptance that I hope all kinds of readers will take away from this powerful 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 fresh new fictionand more great book finds here.