The 100 books nearest to my heart

Not the 100 books I recommend the most, but the ones that changed my life the most or spark the most joy in me.

The very top

  1. Pride and Prejudice
  2. The Great Gatsby
  3. Crime and Punishment
  4. Love in the Time of Cholera

Big American novels

  1. All the Pretty Horses
  2. My Ántonia
  3. The Scarlet Letter
  4. East of Eden
  5. The Crossing
  6. A Prayer for Owen Meany
  7. Crossroads
  8. The Grapes of Wrath
  9. Suttree
  10. The Cider House Rules
  11. Freedom
  12. The Corrections
  13. The World According to Garp

Big non-American novels

  1. My Struggle, Book VI
  2. My Struggle, Book I
  3. My Struggle, Book II
  4. My Struggle, Book III
  5. The Sea, The Sea

Other novels

  1. Midnight's Children
  2. A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man
  3. The Ground Beneath Her Feet

Childhood / adolescence / formative

  1. Baseball By the Rules
  2. Friday Night Lights
  3. Gödel, Escher, Bach
  4. Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance
  5. 1984

Turns out most of my favorite philosophy isn't in book form

  1. The Discovery of Things
  2. Philosophical Explanations
  3. Meditations on First Philosophy

Self-help

  1. Getting Things Done
  2. The Artist's Way
  3. The Art of Learning
  4. Never Split the Difference
  5. Peak

Sports and games

  1. The Breaks of the Game
  2. What I Think About When I Think About Running
  3. The Biggest Game in Town
  4. The Inner Game of Tennis

Computers

  1. Working Effectively with Legacy Code
  2. Refactoring
  3. Effective Debugging
  4. Designing Data-Intensive Applications
  5. Programming Pearls
  6. Fluent Python
  7. Architecture Patterns with Python

I went through a phase

  1. Infinite Jest
  2. A Supposedly Fun Thing I'll Never Do Again
  3. Consider the Lobster
  4. The Pale King
  5. Brief Interviews with Hideous Men

A lot of what I know about thinking came from poker

  1. Ace on the River
  2. Hold'em Poker for Advanced Players
  3. Seven-Card Stud for Advanced Players
  4. High-Low Split Poker for Advanced Players
  5. Super/System 2
  6. Elements of Poker

Parenting books are way underrated

  1. Precious Little Sleep
  2. Expecting Better
  3. No Bad Kids
  4. Oh, Crap!
  5. Bringing Up Bébé
  6. Cribsheet
  7. The Family Firm

Economics

  1. Average is Over
  2. The Great Stagnation
  3. The Complacent Class
  4. An Economist Gets Lunch

Baseball!

  1. The Baseball 100
  2. I was Right on Time
  3. Bottom of the 33rd
  4. The New Bill James Historical Baseball Abstract
  5. Summer of '49

Business

  1. The Hard Thing About Hard Things
  2. Talent
  3. High Output Management

Catch-all (nonfiction)

  1. A Moveable Feast
  2. The Autobiography of Frederick Douglass
  3. Walden
  4. Thinking, Fast and Slow
  5. A Swim in a Pond in the Rain
  6. Abe
  7. But What If We're Wrong?
  8. Bad Blood
  9. Battle Cry of Freedom
  10. Adam's Task
  11. RN: The Memoirs of Richard Nixon
  12. The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin
  13. The Apprentice: My Life in the Kitchen
  14. Self-Portrait in Black and White

Catch-all (fiction)

  1. The Dog
  2. Their Eyes were Watching God
  3. Play It as It Lays
  4. The Great Fire
  5. Straight Man
  6. The Power and the Glory
  7. The Tim Tebow CFL Chronicles

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