2022 Reading List

#Reading #Books #Podcasts
Books read in 2022: 32
  1. Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring [A] Author(s):
    • J. R. Tolkien
    • I enjoy this series more and more each time I read it.
    • This time, I noticed how the adventure begins right in Hobbiton as Frodo is almost caught on a number of occasions. The movies scale the danger as the adventure goes on, but the books introduce the danger right from the start

  2. Crucial Conversations: Tools for Talking When Stakes Are High [B+] Author(s):
    • Joseph Grenny
    • Ron McMillan
    • Al Switzler
    • Kerry Patterson
    • I think this book is a ‘must-read’ for everyone and worth reading regularly. It provides so many practical, helpful tips applicable to relationships with a spouse, family, friends, co-workers, and bosses

  3. Live Not by Lies: A Manual for Christian Dissidents [B] Author(s):
    • Rod Dreher
    • Worth reading… forecasts concerning trends in today’s culture and provides practical steps (not the least of which is to ’live not by lies’) to live a Christian in this culture

  4. Extreme Ownership: How U.S. Navy SEALs Lead and Win [A+] Author(s):
    • Jocko Willink
    • Leif Babin
    • Absolutely fantastic read. A rare book I will read yearly.
    • Very challenging book that rips out the heart of excuses and apathy.

  5. Redeeming Mathematics: A God-Centered Approach [C] Author(s):
    • Vern S. Poythress
    • Mildly interesting
    • At times, the arguments seem overly simple, obvious, or forced. For example, the author argues that our ability to extrapolate natural numbers to infinity shows how we are thinking God’s thoughts after Him and imitating (in a small way) God’s infinitude. While this may be true, I don’t feel the weight/value of this argument.

  6. Trivium: The Classical Liberal Arts of Grammar, Logic, & Rhetoric [C+] Author(s):
    • many...
    • Fun and informative read, providing a number of basic constructs and principles in grammar, logic, and rhetoric.

  7. The Art of Doing Science and Engineering: Learning to Learn [C+] Author(s):
    • Richard W. Hamming
    • Fascinating read on multiple levels: historically (as it describes the development of a number of computer technologies), mathematically, technologically, and philosophically.
    • Good read although a bit dry or wandering at times

  8. Math Without Numbers [C+] Author(s):
    • Milo Beckman
    • Very fun and informative read. Does a great job of communicating the vastness, themes, and beauty of mathematics.

  9. Husband-Coached Childbirth: The Bradley Method of Natural Childbirth [C] Author(s):
    • Robert A. Bradley
    • This was clearly written at a very different time (e.g. a time when husbands couldn’t be in the room w/ their wives)
    • Good prep. material for husbands to understand what their wives will go through and how to support them
    • While I’m certainly not an expert, he seems to be overstating the ease of unmedicated childbirth

  10. Show Them No Mercy: 4 Views on God and Canaanite Genocide [B] Author(s):
    • C. S. Cowles
    • Daniel L. Gard
    • Eugene H. Merrill
    • Tremper Longman III
    • Stanley N. Gundry (Editor)
    • I felt all positions were very clearly articulated
    • My agreement w/ the various views (from greatest to least) is: 1. Spiritual Continuity, 2. Moderate Discontinuity, 3. Eschatological Continuity, 4. Strong Discontinuity
    • I was particularly interested by C. S. Cowles argument and responses. His respone to Tremper Longman was interesting in that he seemed (like Job’s friends) to be saying ‘The book of Revelation is complicated… here’s what it means…’. Additionally, his quotation of Exodus 34:6-7 (pg. 195) was interesting b/c he cut the quotation short so that it didn’t include God’s promise to punish the guilty and punish evil-doers and their children.

  11. Enlightening Symbols: A Short History of Mathematical Notation and Its Hidden Powers [C-] Author(s):
    • Joseph Mazur
    • Not as fascinating as I expected, but some interesting historical points

  12. Work [B] Author(s):
    • Daniel M. Doriani
    • As stated in the conclusion of this book: ‘[T]his book has argued that we can hope to effect live-giving social reforms through work’
    • As stated in the conclusion of this book: ‘This book maintains that despite human sin, the cultural mandate… still stands. We dare to think that Christians can do more than making a living or avoiding sin. We show that Christ, the King, has come and that His kingdom has arrived, even in our work, in every realm of life.’
    • Very good read that addresses some foundational questions about work from a historical, theological, and biblical approach

  13. The Death of Porn: Men of Integrity Building a World of Nobility [C] Author(s):
    • Ray Ortlund
    • Decent book serving as a call to action for men to reject the culture of Porn and the objectification of women.
    • Simple, short. Not earth-shaking, but encouraging and worth reading

  14. Four Views on Free Will [C] Author(s):
    • John Martin Fischer
    • Robert Kane
    • Derk Pereboom
    • Manuel Vargas
    • Very informative introduction - the intro alone is worth reading as it sets the stage for this fascinating topic

  15. Theology and Sanity [A] Author(s):
    • Frank Sheed
    • One of the best theology books I’ve read - it addresses pertinent, enlightning, and awe-inspiring topics usually neglected by theology books I’ve read
    • Even as a Protestant, I find this book fascinating and insightful

  16. Lord of the Rings: The Return of the Ring [A] Author(s):
    • J. R. Tolkien
    • Fantastic conclusion to the trilogy
    • Even better than the movie
    • Gets better every time I read it

  17. The Millionaire Next Door: The Surprising Secrets of America’s Wealthy [B] Author(s):
    • Thomas J. Stanley
    • William D. Danko
    • Good book w/ many suprises and practical insights into how to build wealth
    • Easy skim

  18. How to Get Control of Your Time and Your Life [C] Author(s):
    • Alan Lakein
    • Good book w/ some helpful practical tips
    • Not the best book on the subject of time/life management, but not bad and worth a skim

  19. Artificial Intelligence: Thinking Machines and Smart Robots with Science Activities for Kids [C] Author(s):
    • Angie Smibert
    • Alexis Cornell
    • Good intro for kids w/ some fun projects

  20. Learning to Invest: Principles for Abundant Living [C] Author(s):
    • Matt Schoenfeld
    • Good intro to various aspects of investing
    • Very basic, but a good intro and jumping-off point for beginners

  21. Scale: The Universal Laws of Growth, Innovation, Sustainability, and the Pace of Life in Organisms, Cities, Economies, and Companies [C+] Author(s):
    • Geoffrey West
    • The subtitle is very accurate; basic thesis: There are ’laws’ of scale that apply across diverse contexts and seem to be woven into the universe
    • For example, the ratio between size with heart rate for mammals (and this extends to other animals too) is very similar
    • I’m surprised I’ve never heard of this book before
    • Fascinating book I’d like to re-read as I didn’t get focus on it as much as I’d like

  22. The Call to Mastery [C+] Author(s):
    • Jordan Raynor
    • Encouraging and inspiring podcast celebrating the role of good work in the Christian life

  23. Practical Java Machine Learning: Projects with Google Cloud Platform and Amazon Web Services [C] Author(s):
    • Mark Wickham
    • Decent book - has a great overview of machine learning models and approaches (and how they map to Java)

  24. The Cartoon Guide to the Computer [B] Author(s):
    • Larry Gonick
    • Mark Wheelis
    • Fun read!
    • It’s always interesting to read a computer book written decades ago… the dicsussion of the future of high level languages is hilarious look back on a time when Fortran was cutting edge

  25. Perelandra [A+] Author(s):
    • C. S. Lewis
    • Such a great story
    • I think this is one of Lewis’ best worlds

  26. Superintelligence [C] Author(s):
    • Nick Bostrom
    • Pessimistic about the future of superintelligence
    • Assumes superintelligence possible and doesn’t get much into the philosophy supporting this claim
    • Appreciated the term ‘superintelligence’ instead of ‘artificial intelligence’
    • Appreciated the emphasis on the difficulty/impossibility of bounding work given to a superintelligent being/computer (e.g. telling a superintelligence to optimize production of paper clips could cause the super intelligence to take over the world to ensure paper clip production)

  27. Humble Pi: When Math Goes Wrong in the Real World [A] Author(s):
    • Matt Parker
    • Fun, cathartic read for those in engineering, computer science, or math
    • Fascinating study in what can go wrong (and leads quickly into a discussion of how to avoid things going wrong)

  28. The Briefing [A] Author(s):
    • Albert Mohler
    • Fantastic new resource providing ‘a daily analysis of news and events from a Christian worldview’

  29. Data Science on the Google Cloud Platform: Implementing End-to-End Real-Time Data Pipelines: From Ingest to Machine Learning [C] Author(s):
    • Valliappa Lakshmanan
    • Decent introduction to GCP which picks a project and walks through a solution

  30. Language Families of the World [A] Author(s):
    • John McWhorter
  31. Extreme Ownership: How U.S. Navy SEALs Lead and Win [A] Author(s):
    • Jocko Willink
    • Leif Babin
    • Read this book again this year… still very good
    • Appreciated emphasis on seeking win-win solutions rather than settling for win-lose or lose-lose options

  32. Farming the Woods: An Integrated Permaculture Approach to Growing Food and Medicinals in Temperate Forests [A+] Author(s):
    • Ken Mudge
    • Steve Gabriel
    • Fantastic read - very clear, informative, and practical
    • Accessible for those unfamiliar with Agroforestry
    • Great pictures/graphics throughout the book
    • One of the fascinating themes in the book is the ecological changes that climate change will bring. Apparently, tree species can move about 100 meters a year in any new direction. But to keep up with climate change, tree species would have to move about 10 kilometers a year! Thus, many farmers are proactively ‘helping’ tree species move (called ‘assisted migration’).