The Rose City Rollers league is made up of over 400 smart, tough, accomplished women who skate fast, hit hard, and defy stereotypes about female athletes ...And they read. Check out a list of favorites from Axles of Annihilation, one of the Rose City Rollers’ two All-Stars teams. Want more reading recommendations? Try My Librarian and get a personalized list made just for you.
The Mental Athlete by Kay Porter
Roller derby takes a lot of mental and physical strength. This book has given me a lot of great tips on how to deal with the tough situations. It’s a great guide not just for sports but also for life. We all have different challenges to face and it’s nice to have different ways to combat them head on.
A wonderful series of books about books! It’s about a father/book binder named Mortimer. When he reads books aloud, the characters come out of the book and into the real world, but with each character that emerges a new one must return to the book. One night when his daughter Maggie was very young, he accidentally reads his wife into a book called Inkheart. The trilogy follows him and his daughter as they go on a series of adventures trying to find Maggie's mother. One of my favorite parts about this series is that each chapter starts with a quote from a different book, so once I finished the series I had an incredible new list of books to read.
Anne of Green Gables by Lucy Maud Montgomery
Anne is a smart, adventurous, young, orphaned redhead. As a young freckle faced redhead growing up in the country, I always felt that Anne and I were meant to be bosom buddies.
When Nabi is not skating she enjoys…oh never mind, right now she is skating all the time. When the season is done she will hopefully read more books, see live theater, and do more hot yoga.
Roller Girl by Victoria Jamieson
Victoria Jamieson aka Winnie the Pow is a fellow skater with Rose City Rollers. I am lucky enough to be her derby wife and she gave me an advanced copy of her graphic novel. This beautifully illustrated book captures the heart of this sport. You don’t have to be involved in roller derby to fall in love with this story!
The Inner Game of Tennis by Timothy Gallwey
Mind Gym: An Athletes Guide to Inner Excellence by Gary Mack
I went on a sports psychology kick this season and read both of these multiple times, and they really helped with my mental game.
The Pearl that Broke Its Shell by Nadia Hashimi
A novel of two Afghanistan women in the same family but generations apart, who share similar hardship and struggles in a culture where females have little freedom.
Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand
The true story of a World War Two pilot who survives a crash at sea, only to face continued abuse as a prisoner of war.
The Chosen by Chaim Potok.
A book about two Jewish boys who grow up in completely different households. The father of each boy recognizes what his son will need to succeed in life, but it comes at cost to the father-son relationship.
When Spocker isn't skating, you'll often find her indulging in sci-fi, fantasy, and gaming, geeking out about lighting design, baking some serious-business desserts, obsessing over font libraries and color theory, or maybe even singing karaoke.
The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan
I first read this in middle school, and it's always been an important book for me: as a half-Chinese girl growing up in the United States, a lot of the experiences in the book felt familiar, and helped me understand more about the Chinese side of my background.
The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams
The entire 5-book “trilogy” was a lot of fun, but the first book always stands out in my mind. It’s an entertaining and funny flip on the science fiction genre, and a must-read for any sci-fi geek.
A Game of Thrones by George R. R. Martin
A lot of people know about the HBO show, but the books came first, and they’re worth the read. It’s not a series for the faint of heart, and you should be careful what characters you get attached to - no one is safe! :-) - but it’s a complex and riveting story that’s really grand in scope.
Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World by Haruki Murakami
I like a lot of Murakami’s work, and this was the first book of his that I found. It’s a story that’s split between two worlds--with odd-numbered chapters about one, and even-numbered chapters about the other! One world that feels a bit cyberpunk-y, and the other more mysterious and otherworldly.
The Windup Girl by Paolo Bacigalupi
This book creates an interesting world, where Thai culture and society is at the center, natural food is scarce, and calories are more valuable and coveted than anything else. The story follows multiple characters’ perspectives, and it was fun to watch the story emerge from their individual threads.
My Librarian and our featured guest readers are made possible by a grant from the Paul G. Allen Family Foundation to The Library Foundation, a local non-profit dedicated to our library's leadership, innovation, and reach through private support.
photo credits: Mercy Shammah - Your Sunday Best Photography www.yoursundaybestphotography.com