Books I Read 2021

Maybe posting a list of the books I read is a case of self-indulgent pride, or simply a desperate attempt to break the blog seal for the new year, or perhaps some combination of the two. Matt Haig says “We are mysteries to ourselves”, so even I can’t be sure of my own motivations.

Reading is the equalizer of my days. Reading can make the pettiness of some passing days more palatable. Over the years I feel I’ve had less of a say in who or what I am. I’ve had to become someone different to keep the peace, and to keep relationships in tact. I’ve had to be something different to keep the bills paid and to keep the lights on. But, the more I read the more I get to be myself, the more I get to be what I want to be, or at least something like what I want to be. If nothing else I get to escape the masquerade for a while and blissfully forget the farce I feigned participation in living.

I’m one half of a two-person book club. In the mornings before work I read and speak to the better half of the duo. In evening, after work, dinner, and adulting, I read and write more. I speak to my partner again. And, in those spaces I feel like my life is more mine, that I have a voice and choice in some small part of what I am and what I do. And everything else is tolerable because of it.

With that being said, every year I set a loose reading goal. I keep a list of the books I read. Here’s my “Books Read” list for 2021. In the coming weeks I may write a few short ‘reviews‘ of my favorites from the list.

  1. Consider This by Chuck Palahniuk
  2. A Circle of Quiet by Madeleine L’Engle
  3. Until the End of Time by Brian Greene
  4. The Buddha and the Badass by Vishen Lakhiana
  5. Everything is Spiritual by Rob Bell
  6. When You Are Engulfed in Flames by David Sedaris
  7. Tiny Beautiful Things by Cheryl Strayed
  8. Daring Greatly by Brene Brown
  9. The View from the Cheap Seats by Neil Gaiman
  10. It’s Great to Suck at Something by Karen Rinaldi
  11. Notes from an Apocalypse by Mark O’Connell
  12. Linchpin by Seth Godin
  13. Almost Everything by Anne Lamott
  14. Let’s Explore Diabetes With Owls by David Sedaris
  15. American Gods by Neil Gaiman
  16. Little Weirds by Jenny Slate
  17. Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman
  18. Learning to Be by Juanita Campbell Rasmus
  19. The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck by Mark Manson
  20. Everything Happens for a Reason by Kate Bowler
  21. The Second Mountain by David Brooks
  22. I’m Still Here by Austin Channing Brown
  23. Braving the Wilderness by Brene Brown
  24. Lullaby by Chuck Palahniuk
  25. Skin in the Game by Nassim Nicholas Taleb
  26. A Monk’s Guide to Happiness by Gelong Thubten
  27. Yes Please by Amy Poehler
  28. Wild by Cheryl Strayed
  29. Letters to a Young Poet by Nonfiction
  30. The Dharma of Poetry by John Brehm
  31. The Art of Asking by Amanda Palmer
  32. Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman
  33. Nobody Will Tell You This But Me by Bess Kalb
  34. Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates
  35. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon
  36. An Abundance of Katherines by John Green
  37. An Absolutely Remarkable Thing by Hank Green
  38. The Untethered Soul by Michael A. Singer
  39. Let’s Pretend This Never Happened by Jenny Lawson
  40. The Alienist by Caleb Carr
  41. Why Not Me? by Mindy Kaling
  42. The Writing Life by Annie Dillard
  43. Me Talk Pretty One Day by David Sedaris
  44. Good Omens by Neil Gaiman & Terry Pratchett
  45. Broken (In the Best Possible way) by Jenny Lawson
  46. The Order of Time by Carlo Rovelli
  47. The Trouble With Being Born by E.M. Cioran
  48. Dan Gets a Mini Van by Dan Zevin
  49. The Anthropocene Reviewed by John Green
  50. The Upside of Being Down by Jen Gotch
  51. Small Victories by Anne Lamott
  52. Braiding Sweetgrass by Robin Wall Kimmerer
  53. Furiously Happy by Jenny Lawson
  54. Do you Mind if I Cancel by Gary Janetti
  55. Radical Compassion by Tara Brach
  56. The Four Loves by C.S. Lewis
  57. The Midnight Library by Matt Haig
  58. Love Kurt by Kurt Vonnegut
  59. Grit by Angela Duckworth
  60. A Grief Observed by C.S. Lewis

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