New Releases

April 23, 2024

April 23, 2024


Discovering your next great read just got easier with our weekly selection of four new releases.

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:

Dylan’s pick: All That Happiness Is: Some Words on What Matters by Adam Gopnik, Liveright

Our society is obsessed with achievement. Young people are pushed toward the next test or the “best” grammar school, high school, or college they can get into. Adults push themselves toward the highest-paying, most prestigious jobs, seeking promotions and public recognition. As Adam Gopnik points out, the result is not so much a rat race as a rat maze, with no way out. Except one: to choose accomplishment over achievement. Achievement, Gopnik argues, is the completion of the task imposed from outside. Accomplishment, by contrast, is the end point of an engulfing activity one engages in for its own sake. From stories of artists, philosophers, and scientists to his own fumbling attempts to play Beatles songs on a guitar, Gopnik demonstrates that while self-directed passions sometimes do lead to a career, the contentment that flows from accomplishment is available to each of us. A book to read and return to at any age, All That Happiness Is offers timeless wisdom against the grain.


Jasmine’s pick: The Canary Code: A Guide to Neurodiversity, Dignity, and Intersectional Belonging at Work by Ludmila N. Praslova, PhD, Berrett-Koehler Publishers

Healthy systems that support talent most impacted by organizational ills—canaries in the coal mine—support everyone.

Currently, despite their skills and work ethics, members of ADHD, autism, Tourette Syndrome, learning differences, and related communities face drastic barriers to hiring and advancement. In the U.S., 30-40% of neurodivergent people and 85% of autistic college graduates struggle with unemployment. Like canaries in the mine, they are impacted by issues that ultimately harm everyone. Lack of flexibility, transparency, and psychological safety excludes neurodivergent, disabled, and multiply marginalized talent—and leaves most employees stressed and disengaged.

This unique book is a guide to change-making for CEOs, managers, HR leaders, and everyone who wants to contribute to building a more inclusive world.

The authors’ over 25 years of experience spanning global diversity to neurodiversity leadership and extensive research on innovative practices of uniquely inclusive organizations around the world inform this books’:  

  • Explicitly intersectional approach to (neuro)inclusion
  • Holistic understanding of humans and their social, cognitive, emotional, and physical differences.
  • Holistic approach to organizational talent practices, from creating job descriptions and recruiting to onboarding, performance management, and leadership development.
  • A globally inclusive approach that centers, celebrates and invites multiple voices from the neurodivergent community. 
  • A “lead from where you are” approach to change-making.  

This groundbreaking book combines the lived experience with academic rigor, innovative thought leadership, and lively, accessible writing. To support different types of readers, academic, applied, and lived experience content is clearly identified, helping readers choose their own adventure.


Gabbi’s pick: Sixty Miles Upriver: Gentrification and Race in a Small American City by Richard E. Ocejo, Princeton University Press

Newburgh is a small postindustrial city of some twenty-eight thousand people located sixty miles north of New York City in the Hudson River Valley. Like many other similarly sized cities across America, it has been beset with poverty and crime after decades of decline, with few opportunities for its predominantly minority residents. Sixty Miles Upriver tells the story of how Newburgh started gentrifying, describing what happens when White creative professionals seek out racially diverse and working-class communities and revealing how gentrification is increasingly happening outside large city centers in places where it unfolds in new ways.

As New York City’s housing market becomes too expensive for even the middle class, many urbanites are bypassing the suburbs and moving to smaller cities like Newburgh, where housing is affordable and historic. Richard Ocejo takes readers into the lives of these newcomers, examining the different ways they navigate racial difference and inequality among Newburgh’s much less privileged local residents, and showing how stakeholders in the city’s revitalization reframe themselves and gentrification to cast the displacement they cause to minority groups in a positive light.

An intimate exploration of the moral dilemma at the heart of gentrification, Sixty Miles Upriver explains how progressive White gentrifiers justify controversial urban changes as morally good, and how their actions carry profound and lasting consequences for vulnerable residents of color.


Sally’s pick: When You Care: The Unexpected Magic of Caring for Others by Elissa Strauss, Gallery Books

Behind our current caregiving crisis, in which a broken system has left parents and caregivers exhausted, sits a fierce addiction to independence. But what would happen if we started to appreciate dependency, and the deep meaning of one person caring for another? If we start to care about care?

Drawing on research into parenting and caregiving, as well as her own experiences as a mother, journalist Elissa Strauss delves into the history and power of care in our lives and communities. With a curiosity and desire to more fully understand one of humanity’s most profound and essential relationships, she interrogates our societal obsession with going it alone, and poses a challenge to let ourselves be transformed by the act of caregiving.

When You Care weaves historical anecdotes and science with conversations with parents and caregivers to the young, old, disabled, ill, and more, revealing a rich array of insights about how care shapes us on the inside and the outside, for the better. Care is a long-ignored force in our collective and political lives, as well as a deeply philosophical, spiritual, and psychologically potent experience. Moreso, an embrace of care by both women and men will lead to a more gender equitable future and help us reimagine what it means to be productive and live a meaningful life. The result is an eye-opening exploration into the power of being depended on—and a stirring call to action to finally acknowledge the breadth, depth, and beauty of all that caregivers do.


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