Books Read in 2016
Here's a quick rundown of all the books I read in 2016. Books I particularly enjoyed and would recommend are in bold. Total books read: 52.
The Walking Dead, Volume 8, Volume 9, Volume 10, Volume 11, Volume 12, Volume 13, Volume 14, Volume 15, Volume 16, Volume 17, Volume 18 by Robert Kirkman
Great comic series which keeps getting better. Also a great strategy book for when the zombie apocalypse happens.
The China Study by Colin T. Campbell
Examines the relationship between food and chronic illnesses based on the China–Cornell–Oxford Project. It also criticises the reductionist approach we, as a society, now take to nutrition and medicine. I loved the start of the book, but it got increasingly repetitive. Read the first 35% of the book and you're golden!
War Horse by Michael Morpurgo
Quick read which I thought would be better than it was. A nice story but not particularly engaging.
Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion by Robert B. Cialdini
A really good book on the psychology of marketing. Being aware of how we think, feel and act on certain "triggers" enables us to defend ourselves against unwanted marketing, but also comes in handy if we're trying to sell more effectively.
Eating Animals by Jonathan Safran Foer
I want everyone to read this book, just to get better informed on modern day farming and the agricultural industry. Really informative, with a good mix of personal stories.
Modern Romance by Aziz Ansari
I love Aziz Ansari and this book reads pretty much how you'd imagine him to speak. Read for comedy, not science. A good holiday read.
Talk Like TED by Carmine Gallo
Helpful for understanding the basic principals of how to inspire and engage audiences through public speaking presentations. Points are clearly structured with good anecdotes and examples.
Eating on the Wild Side by Jo Robinson
Super interesting book on the evolution of the fruits and vegetables we tend to eat today (mostly about the diminishing amounts of anti-oxidants and phytonutrients in modern day species of plant foods). Note that this book is clearly written for US consumers.
Riding Shotgun: The Role of the COO by Nathan Bennett
The key takeaways from this book are pretty much summarised in the first two chapters of the book. I found the rest of it to be mildly interesting (it's filled with interviews and anecdotes from past COOs / CEOs) but ultimately, not much that was sufficiently concrete to take-away and apply.
The Corrections by Jonathan Franzen
Could not get into this at all despite trying for a quarter of the book. Gave up.
How Not To Die by Michael Greger
Super accessible book on nutrition which was easy to understand and structured in a really practical way. It starts with the science linking food to the most prevalent diseases affecting people in the US, and ends with a take-away guide on what to actually eat (and in what quantity) on a day to day basis.
Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind by Yuval Noah Harari
Picked this up after repeatedly hearing this recommended by entrepreneurs and business influencers I follow. This book has changed my perspective on life. Recommended reading for all.
A Brief History Of Time by Stephen Hawking
Really enjoyed the first half, but then got a little lost in the second. Still, a pretty entertaining read for such a complex subject.
Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Well written book, touching on topics like racism in the US, immigration in the UK, globalisation and Nigerian politics. As an immigrant living in the UK, I thought the observations were astute and well articulated. I learnt a lot from this book and think a lot of others could as well.
Career of Evil by Robert Galbraith
Another entertaining book in the series. Can't wait for the next book. Really good fun.
Think Like a Freak by Steven D. Levitt
Nowhere near as good as Freakanomics. More a collection of anecdotes and stories around general management-type phrases.
Time and Time Again by Ben Elton
Great set of characters, fun story line (which wasn't too far fetched!) and a superb ending.
Moonwalking with Einstein by Joshua Foer
This isn't a practical self-help book to improve your memory. It is about an individual's foray into using well-known memory training techniques and proving that they do work (and that having a great memory isn't just for a gifted few).
Deliciously Ella Every Day by Ella Woodward
A good plant-based cook book, although I preferred her first one. Lots of good, simple recipes, per usual.
The Girl in the Spider's Web by David Lagercrantz
I was super excited to read this book (I am a big fan of the first 3), but it didn't really deliver the goods. The story line was good, but the translation wasn't amazing.
The Vegan Muscle Fitness Guide to Bodybuilding Competitions by Derek Tresize
Only really relevant if you're planning to compete in a bodybuilding competition. Even then, I found it pretty basic and I think there are other better guides on the Internet.
Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier
Right up in my favourites list. Loved the start, end and all of the characters. Reading up about the author after really helped me understand the characters in more detail and added another dimension to the book.
Far from the Madding Crowd by Thomas Hardy
A great classic. Had been on my reading list for a long time (after enjoying Tess of the d'Urbervilles). Great characters and a story that really captures the essence of relationships well.
Body by Science by John Little
An excellent book on the infrequently discussed method of training known as high intensity strength training. The book explains the science and biology behind this training method, and provides practical advice on how to implement the technique.
Eat Like You Care: An Examination of the Morality of Eating Animals by Gary L. Francione
Answers typical questions a vegan gets asked consistently, in a simple Q&A format.
Gut: the inside story of our body's most under-rated organ by Giulia Enders
A fun and informative book giving a general overview of the human digestive system. Gleaned lots of small nuggets of trivia from it.
Timeline by Michael Crichton
My first ever book of Crighton's. I wanted to love it, but found the characters clichéd and boring, especially in the first 40% of the book.
The Sales Acceleration Formula by Mark Roberge
Very useful book on developing a sales team and how to sell in this internet age of extremely informed buyers. Relevant for new and established startups alike.
One for the Money by Janet Evanovich
Ha, so not what I was expecting at all in that it wasn't a thriller, but more of a funny chic-lit story in a crime setting. It was entertaining, but not quite my genre.
Jamaica Inn by Daphne du Maurier
Another excellent book from du Maurier. An intriguing start led to a slower paced middle, finishing with a bang! Wonderful storytelling and beautiful scene setting.
Time And Again by Jack Finney
Really wanted to like this book but found it very slow going with a boring main character. It would've been ok had the premise behind the time travel been good, but I found that lacking too. I think I'm missing something...
The Seventh Sense: Power, Fortune, and Survival in the Age of Networks by Joshua Cooper Ramo
The author writes about philosophy, technology, psychology and strategy, with the central theme being "networks". Found it a little repetitive at times, and thought the structure of the book could've been a little tighter, but a good read regardless.
Who Killed Piet Barol? by Richard Mason
Loved the first Piet Barol book and loved this one. It was entertaining, but also interesting for me, as someone who doesn't know a lot about South Africa's colonial and tribal past.
Hansons Marathon Method by Luke Humphrey
One of the better written books on running. Really practical, with step by step instructions on how to run your fastest marathon.
The Baron in the Trees by Italo Calvino
An absolutely delightful read, touching on themes of independence, individuality, European history and philosophy. A truly rare realistic fantasy.
I Am Pilgrim by Terry Hayes
LOVED this book! Took me a while to get through because it was a hefty 700+ page book, but it kept me up until 2am on school nights because it was just that good. Loved the central character and also really enjoyed the balance of smarts and drama throughout the book.
Cometh the Hour by Jeffrey Archer
Another great instalment of the Clifton Chronicles. One book left on a great cliff hanger!
Behind Closed Doors by B. A. Paris
An entertaining, quick read. Quite an intriguing storyline, and rather liked the ending.
The Couple Next Door by Shari Lapena
Not a bad read but the narrative was a little annoying at times. Good twists though.
Bonk by Mary Roach
Informative book on the history of sex research through history...with the added bonus of being extremely humorous.
The Innocent Man by John Grisham
This book was tedious to the point where I couldn't finish it. Way too detailed and protracted. I am perhaps not the target reader.