Saturday, December 31, 2016

Books in 2016


2016 wasn't a great year in reading. These are what got read in 2016.

  1. And Then One Day by Naseeruddin Shah
  2. Angry White Pyjamas by Robert Twigger
  3. When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi
  4. Achieve the Impossible by Greg Whyte
  5. The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg
  6. 26.2 Marathon Stories by Kathrine Switzer and Roger Robinson
  7. The Groaning Bookshelf and other stories by Pradeep Sebastian
  8. Sneaker Wars by Barbara Smit
  9. Faster by Michael Hutchinson
  10. Originals by Adam Grant
  11. Nudge by Richard Thaler and Cass Sunstein
  12. Still Fooling 'Em by Billy Crystal
  13. The Extra Mile by Pam Reed
  14. Shoe Dog by Phil Knight
  15. Yes Please by Amy Poehler
  16. The Evolution of Everything by Matt Ridley
  17. Mindset by Carol Dweck
  18. The Ocean of Churn by Sanjeev Sanyal
  19. Give and Take by Adam Grant
  20. Anywhere but home by Anu Vaidyanathan
But I feel somewhat better in that I enjoyed 19 of the above 20 books. For the first time in my life, I didn't turn to books when my mind wasn't quite alright, despite having the time to do so. I am hoping that 2017 is better and I have already bought Gaiman's "The View from the Cheap Seats" to start the year off on a bright, cheery note. With the exception of No. 4 perhaps, almost every other book above, is worth a general audience. I knew some of the content of No. 20, thanks to reading the author's various columns in newspapers and perhaps wouldn't have read it, if A hadn't given me a free copy. Still, the writing is very accessible.

No. 3 affected me strongly since I had read Kalanithi's popular piece in a Stanford publication, before he died. If you read it and I recommend you do, you'll see what a rich, dense personality Paul was. Bless his soul.

No. 6 is an outstanding coffee table book with a tonne of interesting facts about the marathon and some lovely writing by the author duo.

No. 16 is the best book I read in the year. The sweep of topics is dazzling and the writing is audacious. Occasionally did I find myself wondering whether the author was being a bit too sure of himself. It is quite a read and I'd strongly recommend it to anyone with an open mind and willingness to be challenged.

No. 17 is extremely relevant to me personally and professionally. Good read although the voice on the audiobook I heard made me wish I had read the paperback.

No 18 was a surprise buy thanks to a Google Play Books sale. Thoroughly enjoyable narrative with a lot to chew on, lending heft to the argument that history is written by the victors. For someone who isn't a history buff, but is happy to find alternative perspectives, this is a refreshing take on what we think is the history of the world around us.

I discovered Adam Grant a while ago before Originals became a bestseller and Sheryl Sandberg's association with him drove him into the mainstream, thanks to Give and Take. But I had put my reading of it on hold since I had gifted my copy to a friend. I just managed to finish it now. Unconventional book. Worth a read and in my opinion a lot more relevant and enjoyable than Originals.

I used a variety of formats to consume my books - Paperbacks, Google Play, Audible and epubs in some cases. The Audiobooks helped push my reading ahead when I slackened.

How was your year in reading?