Healthy, Wealthy, and Wise
Elderhood: Redefining Aging, Transforming Medicine, Reimagining Life by Louise AronsonWhat it is: a thoughtful, comprehensive exploration of aging, from medical concerns to identity issues to depictions of the elderly in pop culture.
Why you should read it: Aging eventually comes for us all, but it also affects our families, our economies, and our wider societies.
For fans of: Being Mortal by Atul Gawande, Spring Chicken by Bill Gifford.
Childfree by Choice: The Movement Redefining Family and Creating a New Age of... by Dr. Amy BlackstoneWhat it's about: the author's decision not to have children of her own and the social significance of the increasing numbers of adults making the same choice.
Read it for: the impassioned (and occasionally humorous) presentation of the author's analysis, which is backed up by thorough research.
About the author: Dr. Amy Blackstone is a professor of sociology at the University of Maine who also runs the popular blog We're Not Having a Baby!
Range: Why Generalists Triumph in a Specialized World by David EpsteinWhat it is: a persuasive and thought-provoking vindication of the jack-of-all-trades; a review of the circuitous paths to success taken by notable (if distractible) athletes, inventors, and creators.
Featuring: author J.K. Rowling, Game Boy inventor Gunpei Yokoi, tennis champion Roger Federer.
Did you know? Legendary musician Duke Ellington quickly gave up on music as a child in favor of drawing and sports, only lured back by the emergence of jazz.
Conscious: A Brief Guide to the Fundamental Mystery of the Mind by Annaka HarrisWhat it's about: the science behind consciousness and the many
questions that science raises; what those questions might mean for reality, our relationships, and ourselves.
Who it's for: readers who appreciate a book that might leave them with more questions than they had before reading it; anyone looking for an accessible entry point to a big and complex topic.
You might also like: Subliminal by Leonard Mlodinow, Deviate by Beau Lotto.
Marriageology: The Art and Science of Staying Together by Belinda LuscombeWhat it is: an evidence-based and engaging dive into how to stay together and the benefits of healthy long-term partnership -- not just emotionally but also on your health and finances.
Topics include: relationship familiarity, learning to argue, infidelity, how (and when) to look into marriage counseling.
About the author: Award-winning journalist Belinda Luscombe has been an editor at large at TIME Magazine since 2008, where she writes the weekly "10 Questions" column.
Superbugs: The Race to Stop an Epidemic by Matt McCarthyWhat it's about: the troubling problem of antibiotic resistant bacteria, with a review of the history of antibiotics and the obstacles that researchers face in developing new treatments.
Why you should read it: Although the topic is sobering and the situation dire, the author presents his analysis with compassion and leaves readers with plenty of reasons to have hope.
Read this next: I Contain Multitudes by Ed Yong, Immunity by Luba Vikhanski.
The Naked Truth by Leslie MorganWhat it is: a witty and self-deprecating chronicle of the mid-life romantic (mis)adventures of Mommy Wars author Leslie Morgan, and the truths about relationships, emotions, and intimacy she learned along the way.
Topics include: insecurity, body image, modern dating challenges, aging, and self-love.
Is it for you? Morgan does not shy away from the steamier, messier details of her story while discussing dating and sex.
On Being Human: A Memoir of Waking Up, Living Real, and Listening Hard by Jennifer PastiloffWhat it's about: Jennifer Pastiloff's journey from being an insecure survivor of childhood trauma in a dead-end job to becoming a noted yoga instructor and successful public speaker.
Don't miss: Pastiloff's candid conversation about how she overcame the shame she had internalized while losing her hearing at age 20.
Reviewers say: "readers feeling stuck in their lives will devour this inspiring story" (Publishers Weekly).
The War for Kindness: Building Empathy in a Fractured World by Jamil ZakiWhat it is: an impassioned, thought-provoking, and well-researched rallying cry for empathy, which Stanford psychology professor Jamil Zaki argues is disappearing in modern society.
Why you should read it: Zaki's research undermines the common misconception that empathy is an inherent trait rather than a learnable skill.
Try this next: I Feel You by Cris Beam, Social Empathy by Elizabeth Segal.