Bill Gates once said that if he couldn’t get through one book per week, then he was too busy. His time is worth a lot (like, a lot) so if Bill thinks it’s important to read, then read I shall.
I completed my 2017 reading goal just in the nick of time and thought I’d share in case you’re looking for a little reading inspiration in 2018!
16. Of Mess and Moxie by Jen Hatmaker (10/10): It hit all of the hot topics for me — the joys and trials of being a mom who works outside of the home, what church is like for millennials, politics in this trying time, and lots of giggles along the way. Highly recommend — my favorite Hatmaker book yet.
17. Option B, Sheryl Sandberg and Adam Grant (8/10): Such an honest book following Sandberg’s journey after unexpectedly losing her husband. She co-wrote it with a psychologist which gives it a science-based look at grief and getting through things that weren’t in your original plan.
18. Born A Crime by Trevor Noah (8/10): I didn’t know much about Noah before reading this one but I appreciated his humor and undeniable intelligence as I now understand the masses do, too. Noah outlines what it was like to grow up under his mother’s strict rule in a post-apartheid South Africa and how his tumultuous childhood influenced his adult life. (I recommend this one on audio book as his story-telling is phenomenal)
19. Wonder by R. J. Palacio (8/10): a nice story (soon to be made into a movie ft. Julia Roberts) about a little boy born with facial abnormalities as he enters a main-stream school. I’ll call it charming and touching. It’ll make a solid “feel good” movie. Good beach read as it’s written from the perspective of the kid so pretty simple/straightforward in its delivery.
20. Perfect On Paper by Maria Murnane (5/10): Meh. I just wanted a little rom-com to break up my self-reflection book streak… but it was kind of a lame story about a young female journalist who dates around in San Francisco. I’m not saying I could have written something better but… meh. Skip.
21. It’s All Relative by A.J. Jacobs (7/10): I have read everything that Jacobs has written and he did a great job with a tough topic. I wasn’t ga-ga over the study of ancestry before reading this book so I think that’s why I gave it an average rating. Although, it did spike my interest enough to order a 23andme genetics kit… more to come on that!
22. Ready Player One by Ernst Cline (7/10): This is going to make an awesome movie (especially in theater, maybe even baby-sitter-acquiring-worthy) but I think all the video game nam-drops and Dungeon and dragons references were a little lost on me. It was intriguing enough albeit a bit overdone.
23. What Happened by Hillary Rodham Clinton (10/10): Oh my goodness. I don’t care what you think of Hillary or her policies — this book covers way more than democratic politics. You start to remember the humanity of people (and hey, even politicians have feelings!) I was equally blown away by how much I didn’t know about the 2016 election and how new information continues to surface. I would recommend this to anyone willing to try it out. Alarming, enlightening, and full of hope for the future. Bonus points for listening to this one via audio book — it’s read quite poetically by the author.
24. The Darkest Minds by Alexandra Bracken (3/10): Alright, I’ve read some books that just don’t keep my interest and some that feel a little slow… but this is the only book that I read this past year that I really wanted to quit. I had to read a paragraph two or three times before I could understand what it was trying to say. Don’t do it. Sorry Bracken.
25. The Lost Wife by Alyson Richman (9/10): Wow, this one sucked me in (in the best kind of way). The story line follows a young man and woman who fell in love but were quickly separated by the Nazi invasion and went on to search for each other for years. It’s more than a love story. It highlights the resilience of the human spirit and the strength of our sacred memories.
Awesome, Jenn! I agree that Ready Player One is a little too much nerd-self-reference. And he second novel is supposed to be even worse.
I’m looking forward to reading several on this list.
Here’s one recommendation from me: Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind by Yuval Noah Harari. A really in depth look at the history of the human species and the three major revolutions that changed us dramatically.