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Favorite Reads of 2020

In 2020, I read more than I ever had before in a year.

My reading usually tilts more towards non-fiction, but I mixed it up and added plenty of fiction to my reading this year as well.

Fiction

The Lost World by Michael Crichton

Anytime I feel like I’m a productive person, I remember that Michael Crichton wrote several best-selling and award-winning books while in medical school at Harvard. I finally got around to reading some of his novels this year, and I enjoyed The Lost World the most. His medical training is evident in his writing, but I found it to be additive to the story.

Normal People by Sally Rooney

I read this right before it was made into an excellent Hulu series. It took me a while to get over Rooney’s lack of punctuation or quotes for dialogue, which I found to be both unique and disconcerting. It’s a great story of the relationship of two Irish teens, Connell and Marianne, as they attend high school and college together.

The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion

The author was a 52 year old IT executive until he penned this novel, which is the first in a trilogy. Equal parts comedy, adventure, and romance. I think all of us know a guy with some Don Tillman-like tendencies. I laughed out loud at multiple inopportune times while reading this book (Sorry, Seattle Marriott continental breakfast diners).

Non-Fiction

Stories I Tell on Dates by Paul Shirley

Paul Shirley was a professional basketball player for over a dozen years stuck between being one of the best players in Europe but not quite good enough to stick in the NBA. This is a memoir of sorts from him that is painfully honest, earnest, and poignant.

3-Ring Circus by Jeff Pearlman

This is the story of the late 90s and early 2000s Lakers. I vaguely remember watching them dominate when I was in elementary school, but this book tells the complete story of how they rose, three-peated, and fell. Especially sad due to this year’s tragic passing of Kobe.

Digital Minimalism by Cal Newport

OK, this technically was a re-read but I can’t recommend this highly enough, especially to my fellow millennials. An important book due to this year’s onslaught of news dedicated to COVID, the election, and civil unrest. It’s a simple roadmap to redefine what a meaningful and satisfying digital life means to you.

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