My goal for this year is to read 50 books. At this point I have read 27 books, so I am a little ahead. I decided to tackle the Stieg Larsson trilogy as well as the Baroque Cycle trilogy.
First quarter 2011
1) Snow Crash by Neal Stephenson
Hiro Protagonist–hacker, samurai swordsman, and pizza-delivery drive is living in the Metaverse and people start frying their brains from the designer drug called Snow Crash. Interesting book, really enjoyed the 2nd half of the book, the first part was hard to get into
2) Boneshaker by Cherie Priest
A steampunk book, it has people turning into zombies from some gas that inventor Leviticus Blue released when drilling into the core of the earth. One scene reminded me of Darth Vader and Luke Skywalker, not the best book but still entertaining
3) Who moved my cheese? by Spencer Johnson
Horrible, horrible reviews on Amazon. Still an interesting story of how to cope with change (or maybe being agile) Probably very suited for people in IT who complain about scope creep, changing requirements and needing to keep their skill set up to date.
4) Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
It was interesting…I am sure it was eye opening and way ahead of its time when it was published in 1932. Some interesting things like the use of Our Ford (instead of Our Lord and of course the assembly lines that Ford first used which is I guess a metaphor for life in the World State). Soma…the good feel drug….I wonder how he came up with that one. Reminded me of 1984, the matrix and V for Vendetta.At times it was difficult to read..and I had to re-read paragraphs.
5) The War of the World by Niall Ferguson
This book is about the conflicts in the 20th century and maybe a reminder what could be waiting for us????
6) The big short by Michael Lewis
The best book I read so far this year….deals with the financial crisis of 2007/2008 but written in a very witty way…very much like Liar’s Poker..his first book…highly recommended
7) Full Dark, No Stars by Stephen King
Probably his best book in a looooooong time, this one has 4 short stories and some of them are real creepy.
8) Night Shift by Stephen King
Short stories, you probably know some of them like Children of the Corn or Graveyard Shift. Some interesting stories, I liked this book, I don’t really think you can go wrong with a Stephen King book.
9) Zombie Spaceship Wasteland by Patton Oswalt
This is a comedy book written by a comedian..nothing to do with zombies..pretty funny at times
10) How an Economy Grows and Why It Crashes by Peter D. Schiff and Andrew J. Schiff
Interesting book, explaining why we have the crisis and why Quantitative Easing is not the solution…also everything is explained with stories on a small island..highly recommended
11) The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson
A female hacker and a journalist are investigating a murder from decades ago. I really really liked this book. Some trivia..Stieg Larsson died while walking up the stairs to his publisher delivering the manuscripts..he never saw the books published!!!
12) The Coke Machine: The Dirty Truth Behind the World’s Favorite Soft Drink by Michael Blanding
History of Coca Cola, how it started, how it is very ruthless against anything that stands in its way, this of course also includes schools that want to eliminate soda from the lunchroom. Very interesting book, highly recommended.
13) A Heartbeat Away by Michael Palmer
Reminded me of a cross between Dan Brown and Richard Preston(The Cobra Event, The Hot Zone, The Demon in the Freezer) During the President’s State of the Union address, a terrorist releases a bio-agent with potentially fatal consequences, the only man who can save the group is a scientist the President has had locked away for treason. I really enjoyed this book.
14) Bad Science: Quacks, Hacks, and Big Pharma Flacks by Ben Goldacre
This book attacks doctors motivated by money, pharmaceutical companies and poorly designed studies.
Second quarter 2011
15) Quicksilver (The Baroque Cycle No. 1) by Neal Stephenson
Some people would like to call this math fiction instead of science fiction, this book has Isaac Newton, Gottfried Leibniz and other famous characters. It is a long book and takes place in several cities, one of them is Amsterdam. What really bugged me is that Stephenson mentions the IJsselmeer, well until 1932 this was still de Zuiderzee, so there is no way this existed in the 16 century.
Besides the factual inconsistencies I liked the book and the characters it has, for some reason it reminded me a little of Anna Karenina.
16) Professional SQL Server 2008 Internals and Troubleshooting by Christian Bolton, Justin Langford, Brent Ozar, James Rowland-Jones, Jonathan Kehayias, Cindy Gross and Steven Wort
A must read if you need to troubleshoot any performance problem with SQL Server, can’t recommend it enough.
17) The Selfish Gene by Richard Dawkins
A gene’s eye view of evolution, really interesting book, highly recommended.
18) Life by Keith Richards
Although Keith Richards has some tendencies of megalomania, I liked this book. Nothing earth shattering that we did not know already but still intersting to hear it from the person himself.
19) The End of Wall Street by Roger Lowenstein
A behind the scenes analysis of th crash of 2008 and what caused it. Hopefully we will learn from this. This was a good book and I really liked it.
20) Quantum Man: Richard Feynman’s Life in Science by Lawrence M. Krauss
I reviewed this here: Book review: Quantum Man: Richard Feynman’s Life in Science
21) Physics of the Future: How Science Will Shape Human Destiny and Our Daily Lives by the Year 2100 by Michio Kaku
I reviewed this here: Review: Physics of the Future: How Science Will Shape Human Destiny and Our Daily Lives by the Year 2100 by Michio Kaku
22) Securing SQL Server: Protecting Your Database from Attackers by Denny Cherry
I reviewed this here: Book Review: Securing SQL Server By Denny Cherry
23) The Girl Who Played with Fire by Stieg Larsson
The second book in this trilogy, you will learn why Lisbeth was locked up and who her father is
24) The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest by Stieg Larsson
The final book in this trilogy. This trilogy is awesome, it is too bad Stieg Larsson passed away, I would have loved to read more about Lisbeth Salander, Blomkvist and the rest of the characters
25) Bossypants by Tina Fey
A fun book from a funny woman
26) The King’s Speech: How One Man Saved the British Monarchy by Mark Logue
I didn’t see the movie, so nothing was spoiled for me. A good book detailing how King George VI overcam his speech problem and what actually caused these problems.
27) The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho
A shepherd is looking for a treasure, he travels a lot to find the treasure not where he expected it. This is a pretty short book and will remind you of a fairy tale in a way. I liked this book even if the characters lack dept and the book is very simple.
That is what I read so far this year. My goal is to read this whole list, that was published on Reddit a couple of months ago, within the next 5 years. I already read the ones in red
1. The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams.
2. 1984 by George Orwell.
3. Dune by Frank Herbert.
4. Slaughterhouse 5 by Kurt Vonnegut.
5. Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card.
6. Brave New World by Aldous Huxley. read in 2011
7. The Catcher in the Rye by J. D. Salinger.
8. The Bible by Various.
9. Snow Crash by Neal Stephenson. read in 2011
10. Harry Potter Series by J.K. Rowling.
11. Stranger in a Strange Land by Robert A. Heinlein.
12. Surely You’re Joking, Mr. Feynman! by Richard P. Feynman.
13. To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee.
14. The Foundation Saga by Isaac Asimov.
15. Neuromancer by William Gibson.
16. Calvin and Hobbes by Bill Watterson.
17. Guns, Germs, and Steel by Jared Diamond.
18. Catch-22 by Joseph Heller.
19. Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance by Robert M. Pirsig.
20. Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse.
21. The Selfish Gene by Richard Dawkins.
22. Godel, Escher, Bach: An eternal golden braid by Douglas Hofstadter.
23. Tao Te Ching by Lao Tse.
24. House of Leaves by Mark Z. Danielwelski.
25. The Giver by Lois Lowry.
26. Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoyevsky.
27. Animal Farm by George Orwell.
28. A People’s History of the United States by Howard Zinn.
29. The Lord of the Rings by J. R. R. Tolkien.
30. Ishmael by Daniel Quinn.
31. A Brief History of Time by Stephen Hawking.
32. Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov.
33. The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas.
34. His Dark Materials Trilogy by Philip Pullman.
35. The Stranger by Albert Camus.
36. Various by Dr. Seuss.
37. The Road by Cormac McCarthy.
38. Lord of the Flies by William Golding.
39. The Monster At The End Of This Book by Jon Stone and Michael Smollin.
40. Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas by Hunter S. Thompson.
41. A Short History of Nearly Everything by Bill Bryson.
42. Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep by Phillip K. Dick.
43. A Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez.
44. The Art of War by Sun Tzu.
45. How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie.
46. Flowers For Algernon by Daniel Keyes.
47. The Hyperion Cantos by Dan Simmons.
48. A Confederacy of Dunces by John Kennedy Toole.
49. The Declaration of Independence, The US Constitution, and the Bill of Rights by Various.
50. Cat’s Cradle by Kurt Vonnegut.
51. A Canticle for Leibowitz by Walter M. Miller, Jr.
52. Odyssey by Homer.
53. Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury.
54. A Song of Ice and Fire by George RR Martin.
55. The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald.
56. The Brothers Karamazov by Fyodor Dostoevsky.
57. Ringworld by Larry Niven.
58. A Game of Thrones by George RR Martin.
59. The Art of Deception by Kevin Mitnick.
60. The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint Exupéry.
61. Freakonomics by Stephen Dubner and Steven Levitt.
62. The Moon is a Harsh Mistress by Robert A. Heinlein.
63. The Omnivore’s Dilemma by Michael Pollan.
64. Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad.
65. The Forever War by Joe Haldeman.
66. Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain.
67. Lies My Teacher Told Me by James Loewen.
68. Notes From Underground by Fyodor Dostoyevsky.
69. Everybody Poops by Tarō Gomi.
70. On the Origin of Species by Charles Darwin.
71. The Autobiography of Malcolm X by Malcolm X with Alex Haley.
72. John Dies at the End by David Wong.
73. The Communist Manifesto by Karl Marx.
74. Contact by Carl Sagan.
75. A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess.
76. The Prince by Niccolò Machiavelli.
77. Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand.
78. The Diamond Age by Neal Stephenson.
79. War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy.
80. The Stand by Stephen King.
81. The Dharma Bums by Jack Kerouac.
82. The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien.
83. Moby Dick by Herman Melville.
84. The Unbearable Lightness of Being by Milan Kundera.
85. Why People Believe Weird Things by Michael Shermer.
86. Manufacturing Consent: The Political Economy of the Mass Media by Edward Herman and Noam Chomsky.
87. Asimov’s Guide to the Bible by Isaac Asimov.
88. The Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemingway.
89. Collapse by Jared Diamond.
90. Infinite Jest by David Foster Wallave.
91. Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes.
92. Chaos by James Gleick.
93. American Gods by Neil Gaiman.
94. Starship Troopers by Robert A. Heinlein.
95. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nightime by Mark Haddon.
96. You Can Choose to Be Happy by Tom G. Stevens.
97. The Geography of Nowhere by James Howard Kunstler.
98. All Quiet on the Western Front by Erich Maria Remarque.
99. Candide by Voltaire.
100. Mein Kampf by Adolf Hitler.
101. The Girl Next Door by Jack Ketchum.
102. In Defense of Food by Michael Pollan.
103. The Dark Tower by Stephen King.
104. Fight Club by Chuck Palahniuk.
105. The Greatest Show on Earth by Richard Dawkins.
106. The Making of a Radical by Scott Nearing.
107. The Turner Diaries by Andrew MacDonald.
108. The Scar by China Mieville.
109. Steppenwolf by Hermann Hesse.
110. Going Rogue by Sarah Palin.
111. 120 Days of Sodom by Marquis De Sade.
112. Rendezvous with Rama by Arthur C Clarke.
113. Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood.
114. Beyond Good and Evil by Friedrich Nietzsche.
115. Gravity’s Rainbow by Thomas Pynchon.
116. Naked Lunch by William Burroughs.
117. Childhood’s End by Arthur C Clarke.
118. Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck.
119. The Book of Ler by MA Foster.
120. The Demon-Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark by Carl Sagan.
121. Johnny Got His Gun by Dalton Trumbo.
122. Cryptonomicon by Neal Stephenson.
123. Watership Down by Richard Adams.
124. Breakfast of Champions by Kurt Vonnegut.
125. Civilization and Capitalism by Fernand Braudel.
126. Sex, Drugs, and Cocoa Puffs by Chuck Klosterman.
127. A Fire Upon the Deep by Vernor Vinge.
128. The Saga of Seven Suns by Kevin J Anderson.
129. The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck .
130. American Psycho by Bret Easton Ellis.
131. The Mote in God’s Eye by Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle.
132. The Chomsky Reader by Noam Chomsky.
133. The Panda’s Thumb by Stephen Jay Gould.
134. Flatland by Edwin Abbot.
135. On the Road by Jack Kerouac .
136. The God Delusion by Richard Dawkins.
137. The Classical Style by Charles Rosen.
138. Here Be Dragons by Sharon Kay Penman.
139. An American Life by Ronald Reagan.
140. Pale Blue Dot: A Vision of the Human Future in Space by Carl Sagan.
141. The Little Schemer by Friedman & Felleisen.
142. Life in the Woods by Henry David Thoreau.
143. Black Lamb, Grey Falcon by Rebecca West.
144. Thus Spake Zarathustra by Friedrich Nietzsche.
145. Sandman by Neil Gaiman.
146. The Game by Neil Strauss.
147. Good Omens by Terry Pratchett & Neil Gaiman.
148. Mere Christianity by CS Lewis.
149. Walden by Henry David Thoreau.
150. The Collapse of Complex Societies by Joseph Tainter.
151. Cthulhu Mythos by H.P. Lovecraft.
152. The Stars My Destination by Alfred Bester.
153. The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett.
154. The Prince of Nothing by R. Scott Bakker.
155. Perdido Street Station by China Mieville.
156. Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl.
157. The Wasteland by TS Elliot.
158. The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini.
159. Pi to 5 million places by [kick books].
160. The Blank Slate by Steven Pinker.
161. The Dispossessed by Ursula K. Le Guin.
162. Guts by Chuck Palahniuk.
163. fear and trembling by Søren Kierkegaard.
164. One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest by Ken Kesey.
165. Kafka on the Shore by Haruki Murakami.
166. Ulysses by James Joyce.
167. Macbeth by Shakespeare.
168. Basic Economics by Thomas Sowell.
169. Atheism: The Case Against God by George H. Smith.
170. The Handmaids Tale by Margaret Atwood.
171. For Whom the Bell Tolls by Ernest Hemingway.
172. Sophie’s World by Jostein Gaarder.
173. Women by Charles Bukowski.
174. Red Mars by Kim Stanley Robinson.
175. We Need To Talk About Kevin by Lionel Shriver.
176. How We Die by Sherwin B. Nuland.
177. Philosophical Investigations by Ludwig Wittgenstein.
178. The singularity is near by Ray Kurzweil.
179. The Day of the Trifids by John Wyndham.
180. The Long Walk by Stephen King (writing as Richard Bachman).
181. Blood Meridian by Cormac McCarthy.
182. The Book: On the Taboo Against Knowing Who You Are by Alan Watts.
183. The Wheel of Time by Robert Jordan.
184. The Elegant Universe by Brian Greene.
185. A Suitable Boy by Vikram Seth.
186. Book of the New Sun by Gene Wolfe.
187. King Lear by Shakespeare.
188. The Power of Myth by Joseph Campbell.
189. The Voyage of Argo: The Argonautica by Apollonius of Rhodes.
190. The Baroque Cycle by Neal Stephenson.
191. Nichomachean ethics by Aristotle.
192. Long Walk to Freedom by Nelson Mandlla.
193. Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell.
194. The Master and Margarita by Mikhail Bulgakov.
195. The Chrysalids by John Wyndham.
196. The Occult by Colin Wilson.
197. Cosmos by Carl Sagan.
198. The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand.
199. Hamlet by Shakespeare.
200. The Hero with a Thousand Faces by Joseph Campbell.
So what have you read so far?