I set an ambitious goal of reading a book a week in 2018. As of 27th December 2018, I am at 47/52 (and not likely to get much further). Here are some thoughts about I learned during this journey.
- Finding a way to read consistently is key. I read everywhere this year - whether it was scrolling on my iPhone at bus stops, turning the pages of a physical book while at cafes or using the Kindle app on my iPad while lazing at home on a beanbag.
- Remembering what you have read is much easier when you take notes and highlight (thank you Kindle / iPad!).
- Reading something for the second time is often far more rewarding than reading a second book if the book has sufficient depth. There were 4 books that I re-read this year - Gödel Escher Bach, The Pale King, Infinite Jest and Getting Things Done. In all cases I felt that the second reading was far more entertaining and useful.
- Taking time to select your next book to read is worth it. This kind of struck me after realizing the value of reading something more than once - if I can only read about 500 unique books in my lifetime, and each book takes an average of 15 hours to read twice, then it is worth spending more than 5 minutes picking out my next read.
Some other fun things
- Sum, forty tales from the afterlives by David Eagleman
- Infinite Jest by David Foster Wallace
- The Last Samurai by Helen Dewitt
- Gödel, Escher, Bach by Douglas Hofstadter
- Sapiens by Yuval Noah Harari
- The Myth of Sisyphus by Albert Camus