Epoch Booklist: Recommended Reading for Dec. 1–7

Epoch Booklist: Recommended Reading for Dec. 1–7
Dustin Bass
Jeff Minick
Anita L. Sherman
Barbara Danza
This week, we feature a modern twist on “A Christmas Carol” just in time for the holidays and a comprehensive “how-to” guide for surviving in the wild.


‘Christmas Karol’ By Faith Moore

It’s Christmas Eve, and hard-charging Karol Charles once again abandons her two children and husband at home to chase after money at the law offices she founded along with her now deceased partner, Marley Jacobs. But a visit from Marley’s ghost, followed by revelations from other spirits, slowly show us and Karol that she is on a Scrooge-like pathway to disaster. This updated, clever take on Dickens’s “A Christmas Carol” reminds us what truly matters in life. P.S. Have some tissues handy.

DW Books, 2023, 320 pages


Ben Smotherman, fascinated by flying in the 1930s, flew bombers in World War II. His eldest daughter, Jan Davis equally enamored with the heavens, became an astronaut. This book combines her father’s biography, which includes the 21 months as a POW after being shot down, with Ms. Davis’s memoir as an astronaut on three Shuttle missions. A book about continuity and heritage and a mutual love of the skies, it looks at two generations on the cutting edge of aerospace.

Ballast Books, 2023, 336 pages


‘Mao’s America: A Survivor’s Warning’ By Xi Van Fleet

Xi Van Fleet garnered national attention when she spoke out at a school board meeting in Loudoun County, Virginia, in the summer of 2021. As a young girl growing up in communist China during Mao’s Cultural Revolution, she was alarmed by and spoke out against Critical Race Theory being taught in the public school system. Decades after she found a new life of freedom in America, she felt compelled to sound the alarm: Her new home is under attack from the same forces that destroyed her birth country.

Center Street, 2023, 320 pages


The outdoors are always calling; the problem is we don’t know how to answer. Dave Canterbury doesn’t just provide a list of items to take on a hardcore camping trip, he explains why to bring certain items (and there’s a lot of them), what brands are best to purchase, and how to use and care for those things. This book covers the gamut: It’s for those who want to go camping and for those who want to rough it. Most importantly, the book is a great guide for how to survive if things quickly turn south.

Adams Media, 2014, 256 pages


‘Centuries’ By Thomas Traherne

This 17th-century Anglican cleric, theologian, and writer was an obscure literary figure in his own day. More than 200 years later, however, his poems were discovered and published, as was his greatest work, “Centuries,” a book of hundreds of short meditations on faith, nature, beauty, and much more. Thomas Traherne aims to make us truly see the miraculous world in which we live, to be transfigured by that vision, and to know that the kingdom of heaven lies within us, waiting only for our arrival.

Angelico Press, 2020, 244 pages

For Kids

‘Oh, the Thinks You Can Think!’ By Dr. Seuss

A Dr. Seuss classic, “Oh The Thinks You Can Think!” celebrates the amazing ability to think, the power of imagination and the great possibilities within all of us. Well suited for beginning readers, this inspiring and engaging picture book encourages children to think, and to think about thinking, through the style Seuss is best known for.

Random House Books for Young Readers, 1975, 48 pages

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Dustin Bass is an author and co-host of The Sons of History podcast. He also writes two weekly series for The Epoch Times: Profiles in History and This Week in History.