2018 Reading List

I read 18 new books and re-read 4 for a total 22 books this year. Not quite the 26 I was shooting for. Again I probably spent too much time consuming pocket articles and podcasts.

I’m not a person prone to vices, but I find it hard to pull myself from the daily meltdowns in the whitehouse. It is my reality TV. I consume far too many articles and podcasts on it.

I suspect that had something to do with finally landing in the coveted 1% of pocket readers. 20 million words and 280 equivalent books seems pretty high to me, but who knows. I should really dedicate iOS’s text-to-speech and my wireless headphones (AirPods & Bose QC35s). I consume 99% of my articles and podcasts this way.

Now back to books. Here‘s everything I read this year with some of my favorites at the top.

Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly by Anthony Bourdain

Bourdain is a fantastic writer. I highly recommend the audiobook version which Bourdain reads himself. What could be better than hearing his story from the man himself?

Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House by Michael Wolff

I enjoyed this book way too much. A scary portrait of an unfathomably bad president.

Creative Selection: Inside Apple’s Design Process During the Golden Age of Steve Jobs by Ken Kocienda

One of the best books on the process of design at Apple. So much of what seems obvious today required years of iteration and collaboration.

Bad Blood: Secrets and Lies in a Silicon Valley Startup by John Carreyrou

This was wild scam that I wouldn’t have thought possible until reading it. I wish we knew more about what was going on in Elizabeth’s mind and how she restionalized the lies with people’s lives on the line. Will make a good movie soon I’m sure.

Homo Deus: A Brief History of Tomorrow by Yuval Noah Harari

Yuval takes everything from Sapiens and tries to project what our past behavior means for our future. Big takeaway: we should be treating animals better. Humans will soon arrive at a similar fate.

Molly’s Game: From Hollywood’s Elite to Wall Street’s Billionaire Boys Club, My High-Stakes Adventure in the World of Underground Poker by Molly Bloom

Entertaining read after watching the movie. Bizarre that running a poker game is illegal.

Bird Box by Josh Malerman

Fun page-turner with an original concept. Read this in a day and a half before watching the movie.

It Doesn’t Have to Be Crazy at Work by Jason Fried

I love how lean Jason and DHH keep their books. Great advice. Nothing extra.

Straight to Hell: True Tales of Deviance, Debauchery, and Billion-Dollar Deals by John LeFevre

Entertaining quick read similar to Tucker Max back in the day.

Altered Carbon (Takeshi Kovacs, #1) by Richard K. Morgan

A fun exploration of a future where our bodies are just sleeves for our minds and the very rich are effectively immortal. A good read before watching the Netflix show.

Losing My Virginity: How I’ve Survived, Had Fun, and Made a Fortune Doing Business My Way by Richard Branson

Finding My Virginity: The New Autobiography by Richard Branson

Not as good as Losing My Virgnity, but still a worthwhile read.

Open by Andre Agassi

I’m not a tennis fan, but this was an honest and well told biography.

Pitch Ninja: Persuasive Pitching and Presenting (The Virtual Dojo Book 1) by Mike Moyer

Great pitch advice especially around business plan competitions

Tribe of Mentors: Short Life Advice from the Best in the World Hardcover by Tim Ferriss

Some good advice. A lot of ok advice. Good book to read a few pages of every once in a while. Took me about a year to finish.

The Goal: A Process of Ongoing Improvement by Eliyahu M. Goldratt

Required reading for an operations course. I appreciate the novel approach, but the whole marriage storyline should be cut.

I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream by Harlan Ellison

Extreme Ownership: How U.S. Navy SEALs Lead and Win by Jocko Willink

I normally wouldn’t read a leadership/self-help book, but I’ve enjoyed hearing Jocko on some podcasts and gave this a shot. It has good, if somewhat obvious, leadership lessons.


American Kingpin: The Epic Hunt for the Criminal Mastermind Behind the Silk Road by Nick Bilton

My favorite book of 2017. Amazing and well told entrepreneurial story. More non-ficiton writers should copy Nick Bilton’s style. It is as entertaining as reading any fiction.

The Upstarts: How Uber, Airbnb, and the Killer Companies of the New Silicon Valley Are Changing the World by Brad Stone

I thought I knew these stories pretty well, but this goes to another level of detail. It is an inspiring read and feels like the first chapter for these companies.

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J.K. Rowling

I read this to get back into the wizarding world before going on the Harry Potter walking tour in London.

The Metamorphosis of Prime Intellect by Roger Williams

The beginning and end of this book are pretty disturbing, but if you can look past that, this is a very unique take on artificial intelligence run amok.

The Rise of College Alternatives

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