Airbnb Story

If you’re looking to do some traveling this spring and summer, your options might include an Airbnb. Often, these local properties are hosted, or rented out by people who furnish and maintain their residences with their communities in mind. They stock their bathrooms with fun, trendy, local products, leave maps and brochures for things to do in and around their location, and aim to make your stay as memorable as possible. After all, their hope is that you’ll leave a great review, and other people will want to stay!

Did you know there are 30 rental Airbnb properties in and around Carleton Place right now? You can find these and other property rentals right here at the Airbnb website.

Not sure what Airbnb’s are all about? There is a fascinating new book out called THE AIRBNB STORY: HOW THREE ORDINARY GUYS DISRUPTED AN INDUSTRY, MADE BILLIONS…AND CREATED PLENTY OF CONTROVERSY, by Leigh Gallagher. Find out how they developed this creative sharing idea, and how the travel industry has responded. (Hint…it hasn’t been easy for them.)

Would you consider renting out your home to strangers? There are lots of great websites, twitter posts, and Facebook pages devoted to starting up your own rental, with tips on how to furnish, what not to leave out when renting, and how to solve issues with renters. Drop in to pick up this book to find out more about the whole industry before you decide if it’s right for you. Maybe you’ll embark on a new adventure…and earn some extra cash while you’re at it!


Most of us would agree that work can sometimes feel like it lasts longer than a regular 5-day week. But what if you couldn’t leave work? NASA astronaut Scott Kelly spent 340 days orbiting in space, the longest an American astronaut has ever spent in space. In his book coming out in October, ENDURANCE, he reveals that it was not one big discovery that was the focus of his work, but all of the planned projects that he performed over those 340 days.

But one of the most fascinating projects will probably take years to analyze: the genetic differences that will appear between Kelly, and his twin brother Mark, who remained on Earth. While initial studies prove some interesting things, it will probably be years before the full extent of the data is understood. You can read a short excerpt from the book right here.

The excerpt puts you into the mindset of someone who is totally focused on his work, and not only enjoys it, but has learned how to better live on our planet now that he’s back home.

What do you think—would you enjoy living in space for that long?


With the invention of self-driving trucks that deliver goods and computers to do many jobs that people once did on a daily basis, are we going to lose jobs that were once so important to the human race? Or are the jobs we’re doing simply changing?

More than a decade ago, people dove into the book GIG: AMERICANS TALK ABOUT THEIR JOBS. It was one of the first books that gave insight into the American working life, the average jobs that people did, and also, the exceptional jobs. We often think we know what someone does in their job on a day to day basis, but this book was a gold mine of information, getting right down to the truest nature of the work people were doing back then. Why don’t they have books like this available for teens who are trying to decide what to study in University? Would they really spend the next four years or more studying design, math, and history if they knew that as a professional architect, they might spend the rest of their lives designing school gymnasiums? Maybe a frank, open, joyous book about what jobs really entail, would focus young people and push them into the right careers in the first place.

The New York Times just ran a story about the jobs Americans are doing right now--middle class workers, and not high-profile positions. Are jobs changing? Are we as people changing? I know that if I had had a better idea of what librarians did before deciding on a career path, I would have gone in this direction immediately, instead of taking the long way round.

Do you have a similar story about finding a career that suits you? Would you have preferred to know what a job was really like before starting a study path? Tell us!


One of the first BIG bestselling YA authors was Jay Asher and his book THIRTEEN REASONS WHY. Even before TWILIGHT and Stephenie Meyer took over the NYT bestsellers list, Asher remained on the hardcover list for over two years, garnering fans of his contemporary YA book about a teen suicide. More than 10 years later, and Netflix is releasing a series based on the book, coming out March 31, 2017.

The book centers around Hannah Baker who commits suicide. But before she leaves the world, she records a series of cassettes (will teens today even know what they are?) telling why she chose to end her life. The catch? The box of cassettes is delivered to her classmate Clay Jensen…and the first cassette explains that the reason he is receiving the box is because HE is one of the reasons she chose to end things. Each subsequent cassette is to be passed on to the next person on her list…with a total of 13 people she felt were responsible for her misery.

The book is engrossing, told from Hannah’s perspective, but also showing the fallout from each person who receives a tape. The reasons are detailed, brutal, and one must think, pretty common in many respects for a lot of kids out there today. While some of the subject matter is sensitive, the story covers it beautifully, and Asher’s writing style is too engaging to let the reader put it down.

How will Netflix approach the subject? Asher had a good deal of input on the set, and he claims Netflix will actually use the original ending to the book, so that should be interesting. I know I’ll be setting my reminder to start watching at the end of the month. Will you?

March Break Day 5

relaxI often feel like there are moments in life that would be better understood (or absorbed) if there were a book to go along with it. And while I’m sure there are many books that would pair up well with life events, which ones are the best?

Will Schwalbe, author of of the best-selling THE END OF YOUR LIFE BOOK CLUB, takes us through life with a list of new books, and the reasons we read in general.

30211956BOOKS FOR LIVING is really an ode to books, the ones Schwalbe sought out to define moments in his life. Each chapter focuses on a different moment that meant something to him, and one book that he decided would encompass that particular life event. Maybe it reminded him of a certain important person, or a particularly evocative life lesson. His list covers all kinds of books, from classics, to children’s books, and even a cookbook!

What books would be the cornerstones of YOUR life? This is such an interesting question! I feel like so many books made up my childhood, and got me through certain periods that would have been almost unmanageable without them. And yet, in adulthood, the books I read tend to be more for entertainment, and less for life lessons, or comfort. What about you?

March Break Day 4

relaxSo many people are into Game of Thrones, or Vikings. All of this mythology is interesting, and makes for great characters and storylines. (It doesn’t hurt that the casting of these series is pretty amazing.)

But if you’re like a lot of people, these shows/books have also made you wonder about the mythology behind the stories. Best-selling author Neil Gaiman was one of those people, and while he writes many stories that are based on historical or mythical ideas, this time, he is sticking with the facts in NORSE MYTHOLOGY by Neil Gaiman.

30831912The really funny thing is, Gaiman got a lot of flack from readers when this first came out because they said he was just “rehashing” the myths. Um…..yes, that’s the point, right? Apparently, not everyone understood that. But regardless of whether you know about Norse Mythology or not, Gaiman’s writing style is bound to bring these stories to life in a way that they’ve never been told before.

So why not brush up on some of that mythology this week. You’ll be able to dazzle people over coffee soon enough!