Monday, March 10, 2014

Reading 2013

The 27 books I read in 2013:

"The Rosie Project" Graeme Simsion. 5 stars. Hilarious. Brilliantly done. Engrossing.

"The Secret Garden" Francis Burnett. 4.5 stars. The gentle awakening touch of nature, the Magic of life. Rang true and pulled the heart ...
"A Storm of Swords" George RR Martin. 4.5 stars. Blimey, he really hits his straps in this one. Great to be re-reading these.
"Mindsight" Daniel Siegel. 4.5 stars. Clear and rational explanation for how the brain/mind/emotions work. Very helpful & revealing.
"The Australian Moment" George Megalogenis. 4.5 stars. Politics and the economy as never been so interesting! Must read for recent Aus h ...
"The Antidote" Oliver Burkmann. 4.5 stars. A superb synthesis of pragmatic philosophies for how to live well. Must read!

"1835" James Boyce. 4 stars. A fascinating and revealing history of the founding of Melbourne.
"Antifragile" Nassim Taleb. 4 stars. Refreshing & eye-opening perspective on the world, but waffles on a bit.
"Chronicles of Prydain" Lloyd Alexander. 4 stars. Classic fantasy for young readers.
"Jack de Crow" AJ Mackinnon. 4 stars. Rollicking good yarn of sailing a dinghy across Europe.
"Feral" George Monbiot. 4 stars. Eye-opening and appealing entreaty for rewilding our world. Not so relevant in Australian context though.

"Mountain Solitudes" Aat Vervoorn. 3.5 stars. Humble and philosophical tales of solo mountaineering in NZ.
"The Mountain" Drusilla Modjeska. 3.5 stars. An immersive insight into PNG history and culture.
"The Farseekers" Isobelle Carmody. 3.5 stars. An improvement on book one. A good escapist read.
"Sweet Poison" David Gillespie. 3.5 stars. Illuminating on the potential evils of fructose. Implies it increases short-term appetite, bu ...
"The Long Earth" Terry Pratchett & Stephen Baxter. 3.5 stars. A great premise and absorbing read but lacking a few explanations.
"Dance of Dragons" George Martin. 3.5 stars. Slow progress, excess characters, but good times with Jon and Arya. Clumsy finish.
"Cooked" Michael Pollan. 3.5 stars. Interesting exploration of cooking of all types. Learnt a few things but not brilliant.
"Wool" Hugh Howey. 3.5 stars. Great post-apocalyptic premise, but lacks good characters.
"The Boy Who Wouldn't Die" David Vincent. 3.5 stars. Amazing story of a Sudanese boy and his long road to Australia. Reality check!
"The Gathering" Isobelle Carmody. 3.5 stars. Dark. Absorbing.

"Obernewtyn" Isobelle Carmody. 3 stars. Missed this as a young 'un. Some good ideas but a bit clunky, and ended too rapidly.
"Born on a Blue Day" Daniel Tammet. 3 stars. A window into an Aspergers mind. Synesthesiac numbers - amazing!
"Krakatoa" Simon Winchester. 3 stars. Well written, wide ranging if overly detailed pop science/history.

"The Scatterlings" by Isobelle Carmody. 2.5 stars. Passably written and mildly interesting post-apocalyptica.

"The Bone Season" Samantha Shannon. Two stars. Trash. Readable, but ultimately dissatisfying.

"Shift" Hugh Howey. 1.5 stars. Disappointing follow-up to Wool. Mostly boring.

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