Here's what's being read, and recommended, by PPF staffers this summer

We asked PPF team members and Fellows for recommendations on what they’re reading this summer.

Trudeau on the Ropes by Paul Wells.

Wells’ Trudeau on the Ropes is a beach read for wonks: a policy book that is short, funny and a page-turner. In the lead up to next year’s election, Wells offers an insightful recap of the past nine years of the Trudeau government, helping readers understand the current political landscape and what’s ahead. — Sara-Christine Gemson, Executive Director, PPF Academy & Action Canada

The Price is Wrong: Why Capitalism Won’t Save the Planet by Brett Christophers.

The book presents a compelling critique of the capitalist system’s ability to effectively combat climate change. Christophers meticulously deconstructs the assumption that market mechanisms will naturally lead to environmental sustainability. He posits that the energy transition is stymied not by cost but by capital’s relentless pursuit of profit. The book reveals that renewable energy’s reduced costs have not spurred the anticipated green revolution, as the profit margins remain too slim to attract substantial private investment without government subsidies. Christophers advocates for a radical restructuring of energy ownership, suggesting that only by extricating it from the profit-centric private sector can we ensure the swift and decisive action required to address the ecological crisis. This thought-provoking work invites readers to reconsider the role of capitalism in our environmental future and serves as a crucial conversation starter for those seeking to understand the economic dimensions of the climate challenge. — Arash Golshan, PPF Policy Associate

Chores by Maggie Burton.

In her debut book of poetry, Burton finds poetry in the everyday. On washing the dishes — “rubbing patches on the small of the plate’s back;” on hooking a rug — “each wave of colour bright as the backs of beetles;” on cleaning out the fridge — “shelves weighed down with unnecessary bits of lives sustained by convenience.” I stumbled on Maggie’s poetry at the Griffin Prize readings in Toronto last month and have fallen hard. I bought four copies. — Alison Uncles, Vice-President, PPF Media and Communications

The Unraveling: Reflections on Politics without Ethics and Democracy in Crisis by Bob Bauer.

An excellent read and intriguing insight into the world of U.S. politics vs. government. Bauer reflects on his long career as a lawyer and shares his successes and challenges in a remarkably honest narrative. Plus a warning of what he thinks is to come, with the last word for the responsibility of all of us to hold those involved in politics accountable for the choices they make. — Laurie Grice, PPF Chief Financial Officer

Justin Trudeau’s Last Stand by Justin Ling

Whether you’re talking to one of the country’s leading policy experts or your friends at a summer BBQ, the majority of Canadians agree “it feels like everything is broken in this country right now.” A great read (via The Walrus) on what has taken place over the course of Trudeau’s leadership and how plans unfolded, as well as the gaps. — Kathleen Gnocato, PPF Vice-President, Strategic Engagement.

The Prince by Stephen Maher

Maher has been a keen observer of Canadian federal politics for two decades. It makes him ideally suited to deconstruct the last tumultuous one of the Trudeau government, of its promises, those made and broken, and the self-inflicted wounds, of which there were many. It was an era that unfolded into two explosive and disruptive parts — the pre-COVID Donald Trump era and the once-in-a-century pandemic that followed. Maher feverishly ties it all together, a tragedy in two parts into which the historians well delve deeper as time goes by. Journalism, it is said, is the first take of history and this is the book-sized version of that. Maher suggests that Trudeau’s princely, possibly narcissistic disposition played a big role here in what looks like his inevitable downfall. As Maher plots that trajectory, the reader is left with an inescapable feeling of loss — not necessarily for the fallen Prince, but for the rest of us who were knocked off our axis during this decade of epic disruption. — Mike Blanchfield, PPF Director, Energy Policy and Global Affairs

See more recommended reading from PPF.