Published: 2 years ago

Summer Reading List: 2017

Summer time is catch-up-on-your-reading time. Here are ten picks I’d like to offer up if you have an Amazon gift card burning a hole in your pocket.


Awe: Why It Matters For Everything We Think, Say, and Do, Paul Tripp. Standard Tripp fare with is both terribly convicting and amazingly comforting, or – as my wife likes to describe him – “an extremely gracious slow-motion punch in the face.” To summarize: you and I don’t have an _____ problem, we have an awe problem.

The Curious Christian: How Discovering Wonder Enriches Every Part of Life, Barnabas Piper. Barnabas allows us adults to get back in touch with the permission some of us need to be curious and creative again. This one woke me up a little bit. (See my Top Ten Quotes post.)

Death By Meeting: A Leadership Fable…About Solving the Most Painful Problem in Business, Patrick Lencioni. Lencioni is always straight fire (which is why he gets two spots on the list), but this book made me implement changes before I finished reading it. It’s that good.

Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us, Daniel Pink. To be totally honest, I didn’t love this as much as the multiple people who recommended it to me (maybe it had something to do with my own drive?). But there is still some solid content that’s worth a read.

Inside the Magic Kingdom: Seven Keys to Disney’s Success, Tom Connellan. I thought I’d read every “how Disney does it” book out there. But then I heard about this gem from 20 years back. It’s another leadership fable, just in case you haven’t had your fill of Lencioni-styled reads.

It’s My Pleasure: The Impact of Extraordinary Talent and a Compelling Culture, Dee Ann Turner (See a clip here.) Chick-fil-A’s VP for Corporate Talent paints a great picture of what it looks like to develop great people and cultivate a great environment.

Next Door As It Is In Heaven: Living Out God’s Kingdom in Your Neighborhood, Lance Ford & Brad Brisco (See my Top Ten Quotes post.) I loved so many things about this book. Now that warm weather is here and neighbors are out more, pick it up.

Silos, Politics, and Turf Wars: A Leadership Fable About Destroying the Barriers That Turn Colleagues Into Competitors, Patrick Lencioni. More classic Lencioni, this time he tackles the all-too-easy isolation that happens among teams. It’s not “us” vs “them,” it’s “we.”

The Simplest Way to Change the World: Biblical Hospitality as a Way of Life, Dustin Willis & Brandon Clements. I’ll be reading this one right alongside you this week. A quick glance tells me this is similar to Next Door above, with a bit more of a discipleship spin.

Wordsmithy: Hot Tips for the Writing Life, Douglas Wilson. Wilson is what we call a “cheeky fellow.” If you write anything from emails to epistles, this will be a helpful – and at times hilariously funny – read. My favorite quote: “So here is the most basic rule. Be yourself. Don’t be boring. And if you are boring, try to deal with that first.”


Looking for more book ideas? You can see my full recommended reading list here.


The good folks over at the FTC want me to tell you the following: if you order a resource from a link on this page, I may receive a small affiliate commission from Amazon. If that bugs you, feel free to bypass my link and buy from a vendor of your choice. But still: buy it. I only promote items that have benefitted me and that I believe will benefit you.

  1. By Summer Reading List 2018: Yours. - Danny Franks on May 22, 2018 at 7:02 am

    […] a curated list of ten of the books I’ve read since this time last year, books that I would commend to you and tell you to read if you haven’t done so […]

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