"Employ your time in improving yourself by other mens writings, so that you shall gain easily what others have labored hard for."
What a wonderful quote from Socrates. Most of us like nothing better than to benefit from someone else's hard work, however, chances are, Socrates had a lot more time on his hands than most of us do today. Pulled in all directions, it's often hard to find time to read the newspaper every day, let alone an entire book. Well, we may have just the solution for you. Check out this selection of "small wonders"-- books that measure about 5 x 7 inches, most with fewer than 200 pages, and all certain to improve your life.
The list is rich in titles that amuse, educate, offer advice, and short tales of lives well lived. The smallest in the collection is E. B. White's essay, Here is New York. At 60 pages, it is a witty, perceptive piece about Manhattan, speaking to what lasts and what really matters. If you haven't read it before, you are in for a rare treat.
As you may expect, many of these tiny volumes are dedicated to advice for the newly graduated. Anna Quindlen, Ann Patchett and Maria Shriver each have words of wisdom about what you can do with your life, especially when you are young and opportunities abound. Perhaps the best known is The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch, a college professor, diagnosed with terminal cancer, who wrote about achieving childhood dreams. It is at times humorous and inspirational, but ultimately it is simply about living your best life.
Please take the time to enjoy one of these small wonders, it won't take long and will certainly be worth the effort.