Something to Say

Staff Picks

Something to Say

Creators of Blogs, Podcasts, YouTube Channels and More Share Their Stories

While catching up on some light reading, why not try a little light listening with these ebooks and eAudiobooks available through OverDrive and the Libby app. Flip through the vibrant collection of photographs from one of the most read blogs in the world. Go on an adventure with a journalist who shakes up her career in a shaken up community. Laugh and sigh as creators of YouTube videos, podcasts, and blogs give life to their stories as only they can.

Humans of New York: Stories by Brandon Stanton, ebook
This second companion book to the widely popular photoblog, Humans of New York expands upon the first with quotes from the sitter as well as the photographer. Brandon Stanton captures not only beautiful photographic portraits but the subject’s greatest story. A girl photographed with her father writes to Stanton about her father's support through her struggles with an eating disorder. The message ends with a request to just show just their hands, which are touchingly entwined. A man who has just heard some bad news is surprised Stanton has approached a man of his size. A student shares concerns over getting what he needs from a neighborhood where someone gets pushed off the roof of a building. A photograph and quote from his principal and then President, Barack Obama follow. The final photo is of the three in the Oval Office.  Humans of New York: Stories captures the sorrow, frankness, confusion, hope and happiness behind the image, making for a worthy perusal for fans and new viewers alike.

Radio Shangri-La: What I Learned in Bhutan, the Happiest Kingdom on Earth by Lisa Napoli, read by Lisa Napoli
Public radio journalist, Lisa Napoli has a deep and satisfying conversation with a stranger about a career that has reached its mid-life crisis. The stranger is a mysterious former guide and now entrepreneur in the tiny kingdom of Bhutan, the Shangri-La of the title.  The Crown Prince of Bhutan has just established a radio station, Bhutan’s only radio station, to connect the country’s youth and the acquaintance thinks Napoli is just the person to develop it further. Months later Napoli leaves her somewhat stable job in Los Angeles for a leap into the unknown. What follows is Napoli’s career and personal awakening as Bhutan settles into an era of democracy with a young new king.

How to Be a Bawse: A Guide to Conquering Life by Lilly Singh, read by Lilly Singh
Walking up to perfect strangers not your cup of tea? Don’t see yourself dropping everything for a meaningful experience halfway around the world? Give How to Be a Bawse a listen. YouTuber, comedian and the social media personality known as Superwoman, Lilly Singh shares pithy advice drawn from an education in psychology and personal experience. Placing oneself outside of one’s comfort zone, staying on one’s hustle, controlling one’s thoughts and leaving emotion out of projects are just some of the pointers from this how-to directed at getting listeners to act on what they want.

I’m Judging You: The Do-Better Manual by Luvvie Ajayi, read by Luvvie Ajayi
If a Canadian’s not so gentle advice leaves you wanting more, try Nigerian podcaster Luvvie Ajayi’s take on all things deserving her “side-eye."  Ajayi begins by stating that as a comedian she has a lot to say, and so each chapter covers a laundry list of bad behavior and bad actors that falls under a very specific category. The kinds of “dinner scrooges”; the uncouth, including toddlers; types of friends (the “Lannister” type is particularly memorable); bad beys and more are treated to her razor-sharp cuts. Ajayi holds up a mirror for all to identify, or not, their shadiness.

You Can’t Touch My Hair: And Other Things I Still Have to Explain by Phoebe Robinson, read by Phoebe Robinson
The creator of the podcasts 2 Dope Queens (also a television show), Sooo Many White Guys and the blog, Blaria, Phoebe Robinson has a lot to say as well. Both memoir and expansion on topics covered in her programs, You Can’t Touch My Hair takes a clear-eyed look at microaggressions and the political climate of 2016 while detailing the comedian’s love life and career. Sprinkled throughout are the pop references Robinson is known for as well as her trademark word shortening. 2 Dope Queens work wife, Jessica Williams provides a loving and accurate foreword for this unicorn’s already considerable personal narrative.

The Year of Less: How I Stopped Shopping, Gave Away My Belongings, and Discovered Life is Worth More Than Anything You Can Buy in a Store by Cait Flanders, read by Cait Flanders
Now a well-known supersaver, once nearly $30,000 in personal debt. Her journey to solvency became the basis of her blog Blonde on a Budget and new career with a startup company in Toronto. A poor work/life balance, among other things soon followed her to her new life. An alcoholic since childhood Flanders had a blackout at a staff get together. Determined to stop drinking she began to see the mindless spending creep back. Flanders turned to her blog to hold herself accountable in getting her habits and her life under control. A harrowing panic attack, the breakup of a relationship and her parents’ separation don't derail her efforts to purchase only consumables that she has run out of. Tips like saving for experiences, not purchasing things because they are on sale, buying cheap items repeatedly and setting goals for getting rid of unused clothing augment a relatable, binge-worthy biography.