2021 Reading List

I can’t be the only weirdo that plans out their reading ahead of time–can I?

I thought I might share my reading list for the new year, either to inadvertently suggest a few titles for you, or to prompt you to share your own.

P.S. I may only be able to begin, rather than completely finish, the longest of these sets (Library of Presidents), unless I’m willing to bump something else to ’22, which I don’t think I am.

WW1 & WW2:
The History of the First World War Commemorative Edition
History of the World War by Frank H Simonds
The Second World War by Churchill

Pre-World War Combat:
Folio Society’s Middle Ages set
The Campaigns of Napoleon by David Chandler
Bourrienne’s Memoirs of Napoleon
The Complete Josephus

USA:
Easton’s Library of Presidents set
Sandburg’s Lincoln set

Science:
The World of Mathematics by James R Newman
The Book of Popular Science set
Guns, Germs, and Steel by Diamond
The Selfish Gene & The Blind Watchmaker by Dawkins
Surely You’re Joking, Mr Feynman by Richard Feynman

Novels:
Thousand Cranes by Katabawa
The Ark Sakura by Abe
The Key by Tanizaki
Rashomon and Other Stories by Akutagawa
One Hundred Years of Solitude by Marquez
Hunger by Hamsun
The Mists of Avalon by Bradley
Library of America #79, compilation of Raymond Chandler
Story of the Eye by Bataille
House of Leaves by Danielewski
Kafka on the Shore by Murakami
Snow Crash by Stephenson

An Affordable Liberal Education

A dear friend recently asked me to put together a “curricula” of essential books to read–preferably ones that would kick-start the imagination of a creative writer and inform their craft. To his and my surprise, the list that resulted only contains 60 titles, and could reasonably be read in a couple of years. Nonetheless, I believe this list could replace most Bachelor of Arts programs today (in information imparted, if not credentials).

So, if you would like to glean the equivalent of a liberal education for free from your local library, I hope this list helps narrow down your search.

Essential Books

P.S. I’d also enjoy hearing critiques from any fellow bibliophiles on what should or shouldn’t have been included.