Arden Library “Recommends”

Books about Connectedness    Arts & Music


The Music of Dolphins by Karen Hesse for younger readers — The story of an adolescent girl rescued from the sea, and how researchers attempt to rehabilitate her to the human world, after she only knew dolphins.

The Others: how Animals made us Human by Paul Shepard (1997), shares his recognition of how some of our mental powers are largely shaped by paying intense attention to wild animals — their sounds, smells, colors, footprints, droppings. Hunting made us the highly intelligent beings that we are.

The Soul of the Octopus by Sy Montgomery, who discovered and reports on extensive relationships with a handful of individual octopuses at the New England Aquarium.

The Tao of Pooh by Benjamin Hoff (1982) — While Eeyore frets and Piglet hesitates, and Rabbit calculates, Pooh just is, a mirror of how we mix our own emotions.

What the Dog Saw by Malcolm Gladwell (2010) — whose stories cover a wide range of thought-provoking material — the difficulties of mammogram reading, how hair coloring slogans mimicked and shaped definitions of 20th-Century feminism, and many more.

The Zookeeper’s Wife by Diane Ackerman (2008), a true story during world War II Poland, in which the Zabinski’s at the Warsaw zoo saved hundreds of people from Nazi hands, despite hardships and potential exposure for themselves.


Born to Run by Bruce Springsteen (2016) — the autobiography of this American singer-songwriter (b. 1949), known for his signature poetic lyrics – Americana, working class, sometimes political — sentiments.

Girl with a Pearl Earring by Tracy Chevalier (2001) — the coming of age story of a maid brought into Vermeer’s prosperous 1660’s home as a maid, whose portrait is one of the finest we remember.

Playing with Fire by Gerald Elias (2016) – in this detective story, Daniel Jacobus, a curmudgeon and blind master violinist, together with his musician friends Nathaniel, a large Afro-American and Yumi, a diminutive Japanese advanced student, aid local police with the investigation into the fire that destroyed the workshop of a violin restorer — layered with views into the world of music performance.

Rhythm Ride, a Road Trip through the Motown Sound, by Andrea Davis Pinkney, (2015) — a narrative of Motown founders and artists.

Updated 9/23/2017.