- Factfulness by Hans Rosling
- The War on Science by Shawn Otto
- Basic Economics by Thomas Sowell
- A Short History of Nearly Everything by Bill Bryson
- The Storm Before the Storm by Mike Duncan
- The Enigma of Reason by Hugo Mercier
- And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie
- The Mistborn Trilogy by Brandon Sanderson
- The Magicians by Lev Grossman
The non-fiction books were all incredible and highly recommended. I especially appreciate The War on Science as it is highly relevant in today's polarized and emotional political climate.
The fiction books were good, for the most part. However, The Magicians might be the worst book I have ever read, not limited to fiction or fantasy. For more on that, ask.
I managed to read significantly more books this year due to joining an at-work book club, which has been very nice.
What was your experience like?
For reference, my most recent fiction is:
- "Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World" by Murakami
- "Uprooted" by Naomi Novik
- "God Emperor of Dune" by Frank Herbert
Also, Grossman writes the perspective of women (especially with respect to sexual interactions) as if he were a horny 19 year old incel. It actually gives no consideration to how women truly think in the real world, which is offensive and makes for bad reading.
Just my thoughts though.
Plus, a big chunk of the rest of the series revolves around <spoiler> Julia healing from sexual trauma </spoiler> and it was both nuanced and satisfying.
I won't go so far as suggesting that you give it another try, but it's not as terrible as it might seem :)
That being said, the defenders here have me suspecting that I may have misjudged it or misinterpreted it some. There is also a fairly popular tv show based upon it. It is very polarizing, perhaps it’s the age of the reader or some other experience that makes it so.
I wonder how it managed to get published in the first place. Also, I love this review from George RR Martin, where he manages to discuss the book without complimenting it:
“The Magicians is to Harry Potter as a shot of Irish whiskey is to a glass of weak tea. Solidly rooted in the traditions of both fantasy and mainstream literary fiction, the novel tips its hat to Oz and Narnia as well to Harry, but don’t mistake this for a children's book. Grossman’s sensibilities are thoroughly adult, his narrative dark and dangerous and full of twists. Hogwarts was never like this.”
My one criticism is that sometimes he ignores oppositional arguments where I think he should address them. For example, he argues against market regulation in a number of cases, but doesn't admit that some market regulation is a good thing.
However, I'm very glad I read it and think it's much more good than bad.
Yes, that's because Thomas Sowell skews libertarian as mentioned by another commenter elsewhere in the thread.
I think this Amazon review  and a few others did a decent job of mentally preparing me wrt Sowell's biases before I committed to reading his very well-written book. It's essentially a caveat that there are quite a range of economic views out there but Basic Economics only exposes you to the economic view which he considers worthy of his time.
Regardless, Sowell does an excellent job of clearly expounding on what constitutes economic thinking.