Monday, January 01, 2018

Books Read in 2017

Rather than post the complete list of books I read in 2017, I decided to just give an overview and highlight some of the best ones I read.

I read a total of 37 books this year, and I made an effort to read more broadly than I usually do. I read 5 classics, including 1984, My Antonia, Brave New World, Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea, and Murder on the Orient Express. Some of these books were disturbing and some were painfully boring, but I do think I benefited from reading them and have found many references to each of them in other books I read.

I also made an effort to read some books that exposed me to different cultures that I was unfamiliar with. Here are a few highlights in that category:
  • The Girl With Seven Names: A North Korean Defector's Story by Hyeonseo Lee - Is a very interesting autobiography about a girl who defected from North Korea. This was probably one of the best books I read all year, and I highly recommend it.
  • A Long Way Home by Saroo Brierley - This is another autobiography about a boy who lived in India and got separated from his family and eventually was adopted by a family in Australia. Much of the book chronicles how he found his birth family in an age and a country without a lot of computer access.
  • A Long Walk to Water by Linda Sue Park - This book taught me how much I take clean drinking water for granted and what a huge impact it can have on a community.
  • Beneath the Lion's Gaze by Maaza Mengiste - This book gives you an idea of the atmosphere in a crucial time in the history of Ethiopia.
The last category of books I wanted to highlight are books that just make you think. These books have some good elements and bad elements in them, but they all made me think, which is a good thing.
Finally, I want to commend audio books to you. If you are thinking you don't have time to read, I would say I felt the same way. For the last few years, I have read most of my books through audio books that I listened to while getting ready in the morning or driving to and from work. You might be surprised at how much time you have time to listen rather than read.

So, what about you? Did you read any good books this year?

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