December is upon us, and it is once again time to take a look at the highest-circulating non-fiction books. Each year is a little different, and 2008 was no exception: Let’s count them down to number 1!
10) Welcome to Your Brain: Why You Lose Your Car Keys but Never Forget How to Drive and Other Puzzles of Everyday Life, by Sandra Aamodt and Sam Wang. These two neuroscientists explain how our brains process information, regulate emotions, and form memories.
9) The Total Money Makeover, by Dave Ramsey. In these hard economic times, it is no surprise that this plan for financial freedom by the popular talk show host and advisor is on our list.
8) In Defense of Food: An Eater’s Manifesto, by Michael Pollan. The author lays siege to the American food industry and issues surrounding the purity of the food we eat, asking the question, “Where is the food in our food?”
7) Three Cups of Tea: One Man’s Mission to Fight Terror and Build Nations  One School at a Time, by Greg Mortensen. After an unsuccessful attempt to climb a Himalayan mountain, Mortensen found that building schools for Afghan girls was much more rewarding.
6) House Lust: America’s Obsession with Our Homes, by Daniel McGinn. While the housing market may have cooled, America’s fascination with buying, selling, improving, refinancing, and generally talking about our homes is as hot as ever.
5) Hope’s Boy, by Andew Bridge. A Harvard Law School graduate and children’s rights advocate, Bridge recounts the nightmarish decade he spent in the foster care system.
4) Real Change : From the World that Fails to the World that Works, by Newt Gingrich. Published in January 2008, the subject of this book by the bestselling author and former congressman was a prelude to the 2008 election.
3) Simplify Your Space: Create Order and Reduce Stress!, by Marcia Ramsland. The author has created the CALM approach to clearing out clutter and organizing your living space. If it is time to put your space in order – and discover the meaning of CALM – check this one out.
2) Too Young to Feel Old: the Arthritis Doctor’s  28-day Formula for Pain-free Living, by Dr. Richard Blau. Although it is not marketed as a miracle cure, this book has received many positive reviews from both the scientific and popular press.
1) Breathing Grace: What You Need More than Your Next Breath, by Harry Lee Kraus. Top honors this year go to Kraus, who is both a surgeon and a writer of Christian Fiction. In this book, he uses medical analogies to demonstrate spirituality.
That’s the countdown for another year. And remember, there are plenty more books that will interest you at the McPherson Public Library. What are you waiting for?
Steve Read has been director of the McPherson Public Library since 1990. A native of Salina, he completed his graduate work at the University of Denver and has served in public, academic, and research libraries in several cities.