Unstructured Reading

  1. Eat a Peach by David Chang
  2. VHF, Summits and More: Having Fun With Ham Radio by Robert A. Witte
  3. Accelerate: The Science of Lean Software and DevOps by Nicole Forsgren PhD, Jez Humble, Gene Kim
  4. Zen and the Art of Radiotelegraphy by Carlo Consoli
  5. Longitude:the true story of a lone genius who solved the greatest scientific problem of his time by Dava Sobel
  6. Prepper Communications by Craig Buck
  7. The Timeless Way of Building by Christopher Alexander
  8. Storytelling with Data by Cole Nussbaumer Knaflic
  9. Wild : a journey from lost to found on the Pacific Crest Trail by Cheryl Strayed
  10. Dare to Lead by Brené Brown
  11. Atomic Habits by James Clear
  12. The Mosquito Coast by Paul Theroux
  13. Tuesdays with Morrie by Mitch Albom (I did not like this book.)
  14. Digital Minimalism by Cal Newport
  15. On Writing Well by William Zinsser
  16. The Elements of Style by William Strunk, Jr. and E.B. White
  17. The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin
  18. The Year of Magical Thinking by Joan Didion
  19. The Writing Life by Annie Dillard
  20. Measure What Matters by John Doerr
  21. On Writing by Stephen King
  22. The Strange Last Voyage of Donald Crowhurst by Nicholas Tomalin, Ron Hall
  23. A Wizard’s Guide to Defensive Baking by T Kingfisher
  24. The Midnight Library by Matt Haig
  25. Circe by Madeline Miller
  26. Project Hail Mary by Andy Weir
  27. The Scout Mindset by Julia Galef
  28. Fat Loss Forever by Peter Baker and Dr Lane Norton
  29. Deep Work by Cal Newport
  30. The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie

Structured Reading

At the beginning of this year, I randomly downloaded the Harvard Classics/Dr. Eliot’s Five Foot Shelf of books. This is a set of books that contains a selection of classic readings meant to provide a full classic liberal education in themselves.

My first exposure to this series was at my Granny’s house where she owned a subset of the shelf. I’ve never had a mind to read the entirety of the shelf.

Volume 50 of the 50-volume series contains several suggestions of the ways in which a reader may choose to tackle the task of intelligently navigating the embarrassment of material in the collection. I’ve naively chosen to follow the first suggested course of reading: The history of civilization.

Here I’ll track my progress and notes:

Final thoughts on 2021

Depending on how you count (if you count the Book of Job as a “book”) I read either 37 or 38 books this year. I read more books this year than I’ve ever read in any previous year. My Kindle tells me that I read every single day this year (or at least I unlocked my Kindle).

I read every night before bed and sometimes I read a few pages as soon as I wake up. I “read” eight of these books on audible, but I ended up buying additional copies of Deep Work, Atomic Habits, and Measure What Matters because they all had so much good content, and it was easier to take notes using digital or print editions.

I read the remainder of these books on my Kindle. I love the reading experience of the Kindle, and I recently learned about readwise which helps me export all my notes from my kindle to my computer. I bought a book stand at the end of 2021. My goal is to use it to read an actual physical book and take notes on my computer. Prior to this year (and my discovery of readwise), I most likely would have said physical books were my preferred format. At the end of 2021, I tend to prefer reading on the Kindle; however, there are a few books that don’t lend themselves very well to the paperwhite (any of the Tufte books for example).

Unlike in years past, I didn’t read any graphic novels this year — this is another Kindle limitation. I think I’ll revisit that in 2022 — I’d like to try some mangas (not that I have any idea where to start).

As of today (2022-01-01), there are six books that I’m more than 30% of the way through. I have plans to finish at least two of them, so that should give me a headstart on my 50 book(!) goal for 2022 😅.