Dive Into Cozy, Autumn Vibes with Our Philanthropic Reading List from Philanthropy Northwest

Dive Into Cozy, Autumn Vibes with Our Philanthropic Reading List from Philanthropy Northwest

African American young woman reading a book at home at her cozy corner

Embrace the cozy vibes of autumn with our fall reading list, brimming with captivating philanthropic reads suggested by our staff at Philanthropy Northwest. Get ready to grab a warm cup of tea, cuddle up in your reading nook and explore these pages this season! 


Invisible Women: Data Bias in a World Designed for Men by Caroline Criado Peres 

Mika Day, Manager, Marketing and Communications

Mika describes this novel as “a book about the gender data gap and its consequences.” Her recommendation of "Invisible Women" is a game-changing exploration of how gender bias is ingrained in our data-driven world. This book reveals the far-reaching consequences of treating men as the default in data, perpetuating inequality and discrimination against women. With gripping research from around the world, Caroline Criado Perez uncovers hidden gender inequalities in various aspects of life. This eye-opening exposé challenges us to rethink the data that informs our decisions and perceptions. This is a great read that will reshape your view of the world. 


Rest is Resistance: A Manifesto by Tricia Hersey 

Rachel Jackson, Vice President People, Operations and Finance

This fall, Rachel suggests reading "Rest Is Resistance." The book is a powerful manifesto that challenges our obsession with productivity as the measure of success. In a world driven by capitalism, the book highlights how we have been conditioned to work relentlessly, often at the cost of our well-being, all to feed a system that exploits and dehumanizes us. This fascinating read redefines rest as an act of resistance and reclamation of power. It disrupts the harmful forces of capitalism and white supremacy. Rooted in spiritual energy and centered on Black liberation, womanism, somatics and Afrofuturism, the book is a guide for those seeking liberation from the relentless grind. 


Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption by Bryan Stevenson

Mares Asfaha, Senior Manager, Programs

"Just Mercy" is a true story that serves as both a testament to the power of mercy and a passionate call to end mass incarceration in America. Bryan Stevenson, a remarkable lawyer, and founder of the Equal Justice Initiative, takes readers on a journey that challenges us to reevaluate the flaws in our justice system. Stevenson's storytelling is both moving and thought-provoking, making this book an unforgettable read for anyone interested in justice, mercy and the urgent need for reform. 


There There by Tommy Orange

Mares Asfaha, Senior Manager, Programs

Discover the journey of twelve characters from Native communities in Tommy Orange's remarkable novel, "There There." Set against the backdrop of the Big Oakland Powwow, this book weaves together their stories, revealing connections they may not yet realize. The novel explores the complexities and challenges faced by urban Native Americans. It delves into their painful history, celebrates their rich spirituality and beauty and portrays moments of communion, sacrifice and heroism. 


The Four Pivots: Reimagining Justice, Reimaging Ourselves by Shawn A. Ginwright

JulieAnne Behar, Senior Manager, Programs

“In 'The Four Pivots,' Shawn Ginwright, Ph.D., presents a compelling and thought-provoking roadmap for achieving long-term social justice impact. Departing from traditional approaches to activism, Ginwright challenges readers to embrace four fundamental shifts that he argues are crucial for creating meaningful change: awareness, connection, vision and presence. One of the book's strengths lies in its ability to guide readers through a process of self-reflection and transformation. This book will empower readers to pivot their thinking and actions, inspiring them to become agents of change in pursuit of a more just and equitable world.” 


Beyond Survival: Strategies and Stories from the Transformative Justice Movement Edited by Ejeris Dixon and Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha 

Taylor Coats, Manager, Programs and Membership

“This book was my introduction to transformative justice as a concept and has hugely shaped my understanding of the movement. The authors embed and intertwine thought-provoking lenses to the ‘how’ of grassroots movement work. They thoughtfully illustrate the importance of having a queer, anti-racist, anti-ableist analysis in strategy development at the grassroots level. There are so many lessons to be learned and leaned into for philanthropy here!” 


The Lightmaker’s Manifesto: How to Work for Change Without Losing Your Joy by Karen Walrond

Pragya Madan, Human Resources and People Advisor

“In ‘The Lightmaker's Manifesto,’ Walrond helps us name the skills, values and actions that bring us joy; identify the causes that spark our empathy and concern and then put it all together to change the world. Creative and practical exercises, including journaling, daily intention-setting and mindful self-compassion are complemented by lively conversations with activists and thought leaders such as Valarie Kaur, Brené Brown, Tarana Burke and Zuri Adele. With stories from around the world and wisdom from those leading movements for change, Walrond beckons readers toward lives of integrity, advocacy, conviction and joy.” 


Pay Up: The Future of Women and Work by Reshma Saujani 

Pragya Madan, Human Resources and People Advisor

"Pay Up" is a riveting call to action that confronts the myth of "having it all" and the challenges faced by working women in America today. The book highlights the harsh reality revealed by data: a significant exodus of women from the workforce in 2021, resulting in their lowest participation since 1988, increased unemployment rates and staggering wage losses. Mental health challenges have also surged, affecting over half of women. Saujani advocates for a fundamental shift in corporate culture and government intervention to address burnout and inequity. 

As the leaves change color and the air turns crisper, there is no better time to curl up with a good book. Whether you are passionate about philanthropy, seeking inspiration for social change or simply love a well-crafted story, our curated list has something for you to discover. We encourage you to support local talent and diverse voices as you explore these captivating reads. To discover more books written by Pacific Northwest authors, consider visiting Select Books. Additionally, if you are eager to uplift BIPOC voices and perspectives, BIPOC Books is an excellent resource for finding books authored by BIPOC writers. Happy reading!