New Releases

December 26, 2023

December 26, 2023


Finding the right book at the right time can transform your life or your organization. We help you discover your next great read by showcasing four recently released titles each week.

The books are chosen by Porchlight's Managing Director, Sally Haldorson, and the marketing team: Dylan Schleicher, Gabbi Cisneros, and Jasmine Gonzalez. (Book descriptions are provided by the publisher unless otherwise noted.)

This week, our choices are:

Sally’s pick: 50 Ways to More Calm, Less Stress: Scientifically Proven Ways to Relieve Anxiety and Boost Your Mental Health Using Your Five Senses by Megy Karydes, Sourcebooks 

Let's face it: We all feel stress. Deep breathing, meditation, and yoga only go so far, and not being able to sit still and be alone with our thoughts isn't that unusual. The mind is designed to engage with the world around us, and there is no one-size-fits-all approach to finding what calms us because we are so unique in our circumstances, our lifestyles, our finances, and our interests. 

50 Ways to More Calm, Less Stress explores different ways each of our five senses can help bring more calm and less stress into our lives. Whether through touch, sight, taste, smell, or sound, each activity includes research or science-backed studies that support why it offers health and wellness benefits as well as ways you can incorporate them into your own life. The best part--most of the activities are either low or no cost and can be done inside your own home or right outside your door. 

Activities include: 

  • The magic of gardening 
  • Losing yourself while doodling 
  • Culinary therapy 
  • The nostalgic power of perfume 
  • Nature therapy 
  • Bathing in sound 
  • Capturing a memory 
  • Slow reading 

If your brain constantly feels like an internet browser with thirty-five tabs open, or if you want to quiet the noise in your head long enough to think about what matters most in your life, this book is for you.


Gabbi’s pick: ADHD for Smart Ass Women: How to Fall in Love with Your Neurodivergent Brain by Tracy Otsuka, William Morrow 

ADHD is one of the most diagnosed neurological disorders in the U.S.—yet approximately 90% of women with ADHD remain undiagnosed. Instead, many ADHD women are misdiagnosed with anxiety or depression, and because of the gender gap in medical research, most doctors aren’t even aware of what ADHD looks like in girls and women. But even without an official diagnosis, women can find the magic in their neurodivergent brains.  

Enter Tracy Otsuka, certified ADHD coach, attorney, and podcast host of “ADHD for Smart Ass Women.” After being diagnosed with ADHD as an adult, Otsuka started her podcast to help women better understand their dazzling, creative ADHD brains. 

Now, taking everything she’s learned from coaching thousands of women and the latest medical research, Otsuka presents a comprehensive and unprecedented guidebook for women with ADHD. Readers will learn all about the drastically different symptoms and impacts ADHD has on woman—from unexplained underachievement to hormone dysfunction to eating disorders—and a load of enviable behaviors and positive outcomes: overflowing creativity, devoted focus, deep empathy, entrepreneurship, comfort in risk-taking, and more productivity at work. And because ADHD symptoms impact women differently, there is an entirely new set of strategies to deploy to discover their strengths and find their confidence. In entertaining chapters designed for the ADHD brain, readers will find tools and easy-to-implement solutions written specifically for women to harness the benefits of their neurodivergent brains. 

A revelatory and long overdue guide, ADHD for Smart Ass Women gives readers the keys to unlock their unrealized potential and understand their brilliant brains. Along the way, Otsuka rejects the common misconceptions and stigmas around ADHD, and highlights the ways women can tap into their neurodivergent strengths. By looking at their lives and their brains in a completely new light, readers will learn how to pivot their symptoms into superpowers.


Dylan’s pick: Feel-Good Productivity: How to Do More of What Matters to You by Ali Abdaal, Celadon Books 

We think that productivity is all about hard work. That the road to success is lined with endless frustration and toil. But what if there’s another way?

Dr Ali Abdaal – the world's most-followed productivity expert – has uncovered an easier and happier path to success. Drawing on decades of psychological research, he has found that the secret to productivity and success isn't grind – it's feeling good. If you can make your work feel good, then productivity takes care of itself.

In this revolutionary book, Ali reveals how the science of feel-good productivity can transform your life. He introduces the three hidden 'energisers' that underpin enjoyable productivity, the three 'blockers' we must overcome to beat procrastination, and the three 'sustainers' that prevent burnout and help us achieve lasting fulfillment. He recounts the inspiring stories of founders, Olympians, and Nobel-winning scientists who embody the principles of Feel-Good Productivity. And he introduces the simple, actionable changes that you can use to achieve more and live better, starting today.

Armed with Ali’s insights, you won’t just accomplish more. You’ll feel happier and more fulfilled along the way.


Jasmine’s pick: Self-Care for Latinas: 100+ Ways to Prioritize & Rejuvenate Your Mind, Body, & Spirit by Raquel Reichard, Adams Media 

Between micro- and macro-aggressions at school, the workplace, and even the grocery store, a constant news cycle highlighting Latine trauma, and a general lack of resources for women of color, it’s tough to be a Latina woman and prioritize your wellness, both physically and mentally. 
With Self-Care for Latinas, you’ll find more than 100 exercises to radically choose to put yourself first. Whether you need a quick pick-me-up in the middle of the day, you’re working through feelings of burnout, or you need to process a microaggression, this book is for you. 
In a world that works to devalue Latinas, it’s time to make the radical decision to prioritize you: your life, your joy, and your self-care. 



"Don't Look at Me Like That by Diana Athill. Originally published in 1967, recently re-published by NYRB. This is a kind of coming-of-age story about an artist and designer named Meg who emerges from her rural and religious upbringing to attend Cambridge with her best friend and finally settles down in London. Despite all signs pointing her toward a life of unsurprising domesticity, our protagonist cuts her own path and develops a social life that, for the time, is quite scandalous. The story is written in a terrific first-person voice, and though some of the inherent edginess has been lost over the decades since its original publication, there is enough wit and thoughtful social observation that seems timeless."

Michael Jantz, Logistics Director

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