I fell one short of my book a week goal at 51 books in 2016. This year I’ve excerpted some books where I thought a particular passage was self contained and gave a sense of the whole. However, books that were not excerpted should not be considered less eloquent or inspiring, some of the best defied […]
In 2015, I got the chance to read 54 new books, though they seemed to fall into narrower fields than in previous years. I’ve divided them into categories and the starred books at the top of each are my top picks. History and Biography *Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind by Yuval Noah Harari *Alexander […]
As Chartbeat has grown to 95 people, I’ve found it harder and harder to devote significant time to reading. I found more escape than usual in fiction and some months felt very meagre indeed. Still, the 54 books I did make it through in 2014 gave me much to think about. If I had to […]
I missed my goal by four and read 56 books in 2013. Some I had to struggle through for a month (I’m looking at you Advertising Media Planning) and others left me speechless at their brilliance. I’ve put an asterisk next to the books I particularly recommend and given short notes about those and a […]
Here are the books that devoured my weekends and early mornings this year. Fiction I loved Tom Robbins and Gillian Flynn this year, but didn’t see the fuss about Hilary Mantel and Wolf Hall. I relished every perfect morsel of Saki’s short stories for the sheer craft that they displayed. Old favourites such as Wilt […]
In 2011, diagnosis 41 books taught, challenged and entertained me (down from 43 in 2010, a worrying trend). This was how it played out. Philsophy Straw dogs by John Gray The Enchiridion by Epictetus The Writings of Musonius Rufus translated by Cynthia King Straw Dogs was recommended to me by a close friend and it […]
These are the books that kept me company and taught me in 2010: Business Four Steps to the Epiphany: Steve Blank The Checklist Manifesto: Atul Garawande The Innovators Dilemma: Clayton Christensen The Innovators Solution: Clayton Christensen Positioning: Al Ries Lean Thinking: James Womack/Daniel Jones Perfect Pitch: Jon Steel Complete Guide to Accelerating Sales Force Performance: […]
The Swann Galleries in New York are holding an auction of the polar library of Dr. John M. Levinson, a past President of the Explorers Club. Included in the Lots is one of only 65 extant copies of the first book published in Antarctica, Ernest Shackleton’s Aurora Australis, 1908. This copy of the book is […]
The Blank Slate by Stephen Pinker is one of those books that you should never read before heading out to meet friends. Quite pleasant conversations about gardening or sports will be interrupted by a diatribe as you attempt to explain the mind-blowing chapter you have just read. This will inevitably lead to an argument as […]
‘Every man is an impossibility, ed until he is born; everything impossible, until we see a success.’ Ralph Waldo Emerson rocks. I’d read about Emerson in Louis Menand’s The Metaphysical Club and made a note to find out more about this polymath of the 19th Century. Reading his essays on Self Reliance, History and his […]
“A century from now, sick when historians write about our era, one question will dwarf all others, and it won’t be about finance or politics or even terrorism. The question will be, simply, how could our rich and civilised society allow a known and beatable enemy to kill millions of people.” This is the question […]
I was a bit of a late bloomer when it comes to philosophy. I think the first book that really got me thinking about the subject (if we don’t count Dawkin’s Selfish Gene, sick which got me thinking about everything) was A.C. Grayling’s What is Good?, patient a superb and accessible read. Since then, prescription […]
A fantastic article by Josiah Ober on what we can learn from Classical Athens about the true strengths of democracy. (Via).
An event I was gutted to miss was the recent Selfish Gene: Thirty Years On at the LSE, which had such luminaries as Richard Dawkins and Daniel Dennet riffing on each other’s work. Luckily the transcripts and recording are now online. (Via).
Imagine a textile factory where the water comes out purer than when it went in, treatment imagine an auto plant roofed with meadow grasses that is the home of nesting wild birds, imagine a home that produces more energy than it uses where the very concept of waste is unknown. Bill McDonough is the design […]