In early 2020, I started experimenting with a running log of the books I read. I include a one-sentence review of each book below, too.
I’m only counting books I’ve read cover-to-cover (most of which are listed below). I’ve been trying to read only what is useful and/or put down books that I’m not enjoying. I feel like this is helping me read more, because I don’t get stuck on a book or feel guilty for not reading a book in its entirety.
- The Children of Húrin (J.R.R. Tolkien) [Goodreads]
- The Book of Job, without redemption.
- The Haunted Mesa (Louis L’amour) [Goodreads]
- An ambitious, page-turning medley of science fiction and western literature that felt half-finished.
- Atlas Shrugged (Ayn Rand) [Goodreads]
- A society that doesn’t encourage value creation and delivery will eventually have neither.
- Player Piano (Kurt Vonnegut) [Goodreads]
- A more plausible version of The Matrix, set in a future America where big companies and the government have automated all the jobs away.
- The Hunt for Red October (Tom Clancy) [Goodreads]
- Trying to find a rogue submarine without letting the other global superpower know that you know about said submarine.
- Patriot Games (Tom Clancy) [Goodreads]
- Jack Ryan stops a terrorist group from doing bad things.
- Foundation (Isaac Asimov) [Goodreads]
- Saving humanity across the galaxy from a 30,000 year dark age depends on a thousand-year plan and the ingenuity of a few.
- Foundation and Empire (Isaac Asimov) [Goodreads]
- An unforeseen force thwarts the supposedly prescient thousand-year plan.
- Second Foundation (Isaac Asimov) [Goodreads]
- A search for a hidden power takes Foundationers to the other end of the galaxy.
- The Fellowship of the Ring (J.R.R. Tolkien) [Goodreads]
- Four unlikely heroes team up with five likely heroes to destroy a magical ring and save the world from unimaginable evil.
- The Two Towers (J.R.R. Tolkien) [Goodreads]
- The quest continues with an uneasy alliance, betrayal, and bravery in the face of tragedy and near-certain doom.
- The Return of the King (J.R.R. Tolkien) [Goodreads]
- A lost king emerges from the shadows to lead his people in a final stand against Sauron, while the power of the Ring overwhelms the Ring-bearer.
- Foundation’s Edge (Isaac Asimov) [Goodreads]
- A search for humanity’s planet of origin leads to a choice that will change the fate of the galaxy.
- Foundation and Earth (Isaac Asimov) [Goodreads]
- Exploring the ruins of a civilization that pre-dated the Empire leads to the beginning.
- Prelude to Foundation (Isaac Asimov) [Goodreads]
- A young scientist gives a talk at a conference that changes the fate of the galaxy.
- Forward the Foundation (Isaac Asimov) [Goodreads]
- The loss of family and friends nearly saps Hari’s will to set his thousand-year plan in motion, but he discovers a new hope for the future from his granddaughter that encourages him to complete his life’s work.
- The Virtues of War (Steven Pressfield) [Goodreads]
- Alexander learns that conquest is a fire that cannot be contained; it not only burns everything in its path, but also the fuel that feeds it.
- Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat (Samin Nosrot) [Goodreads]
- Learning the first principles of cooking will make you formidable in the kitchen, without needing a cookbook.
- High Output Management (Andrew S. Grove) [Goodreads]
- Being an effective people manager requires providing your team with clear objectives and helping your team to accomplish those objectives by creating as much managerial leverage as possible.
- Show Your Work! (Austin Kleon) [Goodreads]
- Build a habit of sharing what you’re working on—you’ll get better at your craft while building an audience.
- Competing Against Luck (Clayton M. Christensen, Taddy Hall, Karen Dillon, David S. Duncan) [Goodreads]
- Understand the progress your customers are trying to make in a given situation (i.e. struggling moment) and empower them to better make that progress with your product or service.
- Built to Sell (John Warrillow) [Goodreads]
- Selling a business requires a scalable, repeatable business model (and you should build toward this whether you want to sell your business or not)!
- The Almanack of Naval Ravikant (Eric Jorgenson) [Goodreads]
- Buckets of practical advice on how to build wealth and learn to be happy.
- Total Workday Control Using Microsoft Outlook (Michael Linenberger) [Goodreads]
- Tool-specific recommendations that balance practicality and productivity theory.