100 Book Goal for 2018

December29

January 2018

1. The Culting of Brands: Turn Your Customers into True Believers – This was written in 2005 but the advice is maybe even more timely given the huge war to the bottom for mindshare of consumers. Good read.

2. The Entrepreneur’s Guide to Customer Development: A cheat sheet to The Four Steps to the Epiphany – Good short read, very useful for what I am playing with.

3. Tribes: We Need You to Lead Us – Decent points and short read. Almost just like a brainstorming and list of thoughts. Useful if you are stuck on something or want to refresh.

4. 5. 6. 7. Books 1 through 4 of the Throne of Glass series. The first one took me by surprise as so little happened in book 1, yet somehow the author makes you think a lady who killed 23 people trying to escape a slave camp and is the most famous assassin in the world is also not a monster. Good books and they get better and better. Currently working on book 5 :).

8. Iron Gold – This is book 4 in the red rising saga, which is like if rome was in space. A little rough start as I wish he would catch you up on what happened in the last one since it has been a while but utterly awesome by the end. I lost some sleep staying up reading it :).

9. The Innkeeper’s Son – Didn’t love it and not reading any of the others. Slow going and just didn’t work as a plot, the kid gets lucky so many times it just is not believable. Frustrating book as the author is a decent writer, but the plot is did not work well.

10. Dauntless – This is book 6 in the blood on the stars series. Fun space warfare book with good characters. Good read and I am really hoping the next book wraps it up. This one ended on a weird note and I am not sure where they are taking it.

11. 12. A Sorcerer Rises and A Sorcerer Imprisoned. Books 1 and 2 of the Song of Sorcery series by Guy Antibes. Good fun fantasy books, I am looking forward to the next one. I give them a solid B+.

13. 14. Call to Arms and Counter Attack. Books 2 and 3 in the history of the Marine Corps series I’ve been reading. Well written and it is fantastic how he pulls in some great characters into history. I will probably snag the next one soon.

15. Legend – Meh, trying to be the next teen hit and falling short. I wouldn’t recommend it as just flat. Cool ideas, but couldn’t get into it. Her other book below is really good (War Cross).

16. War Cross – A really fun sci fi thriller about the future where a new VR game has changed the world and jacked into our brains. Good twist at the end and fun. I’ll pick up the next one to see how it goes. I am guessing we will see a movie of this if RP1 turns out good.

17. I love that this book is called Tamer: King of Dinosaurs – Don’t tackle this unless you have a PHD, super high brow. Fun read by a guy who writes some other super fun beach books, but this one just bored me. Not picking up the next one.

18. Black Friday – Interesting idea, but didn’t love it. Basically dude gets jumped, implanted with some super human stuff that turns on when an enemy alien lands on the planet. I would give it a C- as just didn’t work for me.

19. Empire of Storms – So good, and so far the best fantasy series I’ve read in a while. This is book 5 of the series, books 1 through 4 I read earlier and working on 6. Just a solid well written awesome characters fantasy series about demons, assassins, shapeshifters, and mistakes.

February

20. Lean Customer Development: Building Products Your Customers Will Buy – What a fantastic book, and man do I wish I had this 8 years ago or more… One that I bought in hardback to reread several times and pull info out of. I am using it this week to do some customer interviews.

21. Priceless: How I Went Undercover to Rescue the World’s Stolen Treasures – A Fantastic book about the FBI’s lead art crime agent, a lot of great stories. I really enjoyed this one and super well written.

22. The Land: Founding: A LitRPG Saga (Chaos Seeds Book 1) – Ok but overall a C-, it just reads like you are playing a video game and not much real plot. Skip it.

23. Hell Divers – A post-apocalyptic future, but it just fell flat. The characters are very simple and just a really boring plot.

24. Infinite – A story about some people gone crazy on a very long space trip, AI, and some other stuff. I didn’t love this book and give it a C-. It used some sci-fi tricks but didn’t add anything new, I can see how people new to sci-fi think this book is amazing but it just seemed pretty dang simple. Just not enough there to give it a good rating.

25. Towr of Dawn – This is book 6 of the Throne of Glass series and so so so so good. I can’t wait for book 7 and hopefully, they wrap this up soon. They have gotten better and better.

26. Into Thin Air – A book about a really bad climbing disaster on Everest in 96, you might have seen the movie. The book was hard to read, just like the movie. Well written and I really feel for the guy, talk about life-altering decisions etc… Good read.

27. Queen of Hearts – Book 9 in a ridiculous and fun trilogy I’ve mentioned before. Fun read, I wonder if he will ever wrap it up. At some point, I will give up and stop reading :).

28. A Night Without Stars – The final book in a series by one of my fav science fiction authors, Peter Hamilton. Great book and a great finish to it! I would love to live in this world :).

29. Persepolis Rising – The newest book in the Expanse series, good but given this is the 7th book I am not sure I will stick around much longer. It went from the early books being mystery/noir to a bit more space adventure. We shall see where they head next….

March

30. 31. 32. A Court of Thorns & Roses, A Court of Mist and Fury, and A Court of Wings and Ruin. An amazing series by another writer I recently discovered. Pretty hardcore fantasy and fantastic writing/plot/characters. The 3rd one wrapped up a pretty big plot so I am curious what the next one does. Good reads.

33. Running Lean: Iterate from Plan A to a Plan That Works – Great book and I am loving the methodology so far. Would have saved millions back in the day. Still learning it but so far the interviews are going well as I test some ideas.

34. Lean Customer Development: Building Products Your Customers Will Buy – Fantastic book as well, very useful for how to conduct product interviews.

35. 36. 37. Books 1, 2, and 3 of the Hundreth Queen series. Very solid books but stopping after 3 as the characters are just a bit flat and not as relatable as I usually like. The magic system is cool, but a little light on details even after 3 books.

38. Lucifer’s Hammer – Fantastic book, old school sci-fi about a surprise comet strike on earth and the build-up and what happens after. It actually caused me a little anxiety that I am not prepared :), lol!

39. Love ‘Em or Lose ‘Em: Getting Good People to Stay – A really really good read. A lot of stuff that makes you say duh hopefully, but so many good tid bits. I’ve been doing a deep dive into retention/engagement studies and this was very helpful.

40. I am counting these two books as one as they are pretty short. Ultralight Bike Touring and Bikepacking: The Ultimate Guide to Lightweight Cycling Adventures and Basic Illustrated Bike Touring and Bikepacking . I am planning a bike tour and wanted to make sure there wasn’t anything I missed. Good basic intros and well put together if you don’t want to crawl the web reading everything.

41. Why Dinosaurs Matter… Great book and I really enjoyed it :). We have to get off this planet. I wonder if we will be able to, or even if we can last another 1000 years.

42. 43. 44. Books 1 through 3 of the Manticore Ascendant book series. Usually, I avoid series with multiple writers but this has some great names behind it. The first one was a little slow but the next two were fantastic. Great big space opera and fantastic reads. Highly recommended.

45. Book 7 of the Blood on the Stars series was fantastic, and called the White Fleet. I can’t wait for more, monster book and so excited to see more come out!

46. All Systems Red (Kindle Single): The Murderbot Diaries – A short read about a half person half machine it seems like in the future. The first one is pretty light but good writing and cool concept. I am looking forward to reading the second when it comes out. This one got some awards and it was a good read IMO.

47. Mercs – A fun read about a future where earth is basically destroyed and humanity has spread out but still struggling after a bloody space war. Fun read, not sure if I will read the next one.

48. Adrift: Seventy-six Days Lost at Sea – I love sailing books and this was a great one. I stayed up very late just to finish it and find out what happened.

49. Children of Time – Now this is some CRAZY DEEP sci-fi. I really enjoyed it and the ending was awesome. How to explain it? Imagine we start seeding the galaxy with life like us, but we fuck up and due to our nature destroy most of ourselves except for a few colonies. And, one of the life forms that emerge are super smart spiders. Crazy town.

April

50. Once Is Enough – A book about a sailing trip, it was ok but not great.

51. 52. 53. 54. 55. Books 1 through 5 of the Mageborn series. Those being The Blacksmith’s Son, The Line of Illeniel, The Archmage Unbound, The God-Stone War, and Final Redemption. Fantastic reads and I really really enjoyed them.

56. Invictus – An ok book about time travel. The writing was decent but the characters seemed a bit flat.

57. The Grey Sister – A solid sequel to book 1 in this fantasy series. I can’t wait for the 3rd!

58. 59. 60. Books 1 through 3 of the Farseer Trilogy. Those being Assassin’s Apprentice, Royal Assassin, and Assassin’s Quest. So… she is an amazing writer, and so so so good… BUT the characters is a complete failure, as are the people about him. It is like reading about someone who is a professional ball player but can’t hit a single ball. He is seriously terrible at his job, as our the people around him. That was frustrating but the rest was good. I feel like there is a book out there about the other side and how they can’t believe they lost against these incompetent people.

61. Traitor Born – Book 2 in the Secondborn series and a great followup to the first one, although a bit of a cliff hanger at the end. I am looking forward to book 3 and some conclusions…

62. Head On – A fantastic novel about the future, and a crime thriller. I love it when they put a solid crime thriller in a new setting. In this case, it is around a future where people can control robotic versions of themselves, generally only those with a disease that hurts their body but you get the idea. Great read! Especially with the twist on the Mongolian goat sport…

63. Redshirts – I love the author but this book just was a total miss. Hard to follow, and not as funny as I wanted it to be.

May

64. 65. 66. 67. The 4 books in the Riftwar Cycle, Magician: Apprentice, Magician: Master, Silverthorn, and A Darkness at Sethanon. This was a FANTASTIC fantasy series, I can’t believe I haven’t found it before. One of the best of the year.

68. The Four: The Hidden DNA of Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and Google – Interesting perspective, I don’t agree with it all but still a good read.

69. Valor’s Choice – I wanted to like this but the dialogue just felt off and didn’t click for me.

70. 71. 72. The Grisha book series, that being Shadow and Bone, Siege and Storm, and Ruin and Rising. This was a good series, like a solid B+.

73. Wrath of Empire, book two in the Gods of Blood and Powder. This is one of my fav series and so great to read the new one by Brian McClellan. Such a great sequel!

74. Articial Condition: The Murderbot Diaries. I loved book 1 but book 2 wasn’t my fav, decent story but felt short.

75. Jack Frost: Detective Jack Stratton Mystery Thriller Series – I did not like this one, just not for me.

76. 77. 78. 79. 80. 81. The six-book series of the Fool’s Errand and Fool’s Assassin, this made me cry so much at times as it is SO GOOD. Def best of the year. The main character and supporting are just incredible, combined with an amazing writer.

82. Lock In – I loved this one, a really cool sci-fi book about a disease that sweeps the world and leaves people without control of their bodies and the tech and world that emerges out of that.

June

83. How Not to Hate Your Husband After Kids – A great book, my wife bought it and I read it quickly as I was interested. I highly recommend this to anyone to have kids or in the middle of it. I def feel like the mom on a lot of stuff, as well as the dad.

84. 85. Lucky Universe and Lucky Legacy. Books 1 and 2 of just a space marine adventure series. Fun ones but otherwise I’d give them a solid B-.

86. Aching God – A good book and I can’t wait for the next one. Good Fantasy book with a little bit of a darker edge, PTSD, and so on. Good read!

87. Burning Tower – This is book 5 of a long-running series I’ve been reading and this was a good one, although a bit light on plot advancement. I am really hoping that the next one wraps things up.

88. Cult of Sutek – Good read, solid Fantasy book, going to grab the second one.

89. Footprints on the mountains. the news from the Pyrenees – A really cool read about a hike in the Pyrenees.

90. 91. The City of Pillars and The Tower of Bashan. Books 2 and 3 of the Cult of Sutek series, I love the two main characters and they really grow on you. I read the first one a month ago. I look forward to future releases :)

92. Moving to Portugal – Half a story and half practical advice, fun read about a British couple and their move to Portugal.

93. Lucky Empire – Just some fun space books about a space Marine nicknamed Lucky. I’d rate them a solid B-, I love the characters but after 3 books they feel a bit stale as they don’t really grow. Fun stuff though.

July

94. 95. 96. 97. 98. 99. Brian Haig’s series about a JAG lawyer named Sean Drummond. These are FANTASTIC books and on my short lists for the best of the year. Instead of linking to each book here is the authors page on Amazon. The books are thrillers and just a really fun character, they read fast. Man in the Middle was my least favorite, I’d give ie 3.5 stars, and the rest get 5 stars. Man in the Middle just rehashed the same concept of the book before and got annoyed with that by the end. Great author.

100. Black Dawn was so good and is book 8 of the space military series called Blood on the Stars. I can’t wait for the next one, and I am looking forward to the end :).

101. Buying Property in Portugal – Research project for something Lindsey and I are looking into!

102. 103. 104. 105. 106. 107. 108. 109. 110. 111. 112. 113. 114. 115. 116. 117. 118. Robert Crais has an amazing detective series about LA detective Elvis Cole (plus Pike), I finished all of them and LOVED them. Just fun books with some great characters. I def cried at some parts as you get so attached to Elvis and Pike. Some are betther than others, but all are good reads. Monkey’s Raincoat, Stalking The Angel, Lullaby Town, Free Fall, Voodoo River, Sunset Express, Indigo Slam, LA Requiem, The Last Detective, The Forgotten Man, The Watchman, Chasing Darkness, The First Rule, The Sentry, Taken, The Promise, The Wanted.

119. 120. 121. Live Free or Die, Citadal, and The Hot Gate. A sci fi series about an alien invasion and the long road to trying to defend eart. I would give these a C+, the politics in the books is just silly and the author is pretty far rightwing. The first two were fun reads and then the writing just got kinda muddled and cliche.

122. Empire Of The Ashes – The epic ending to a solid fantasy series about a world where you harvest dragon blood so that some people can use it for special powers. I would give the entire series a B-. Amazing world but it got a little muddled by the end. I also wish the author would include a catchup chapter in the beginning.

123. Tiger’s Time – Book 4 in one of my all time favorite series about the Roman Legion in a slightly magical universie. Great read and I wish he could whip out 4 more in the next few months.

124. Thrawn Alliances – A great writer and a great characters but an utterly dissappointing book. Just boring and went nowhere. Some abrupt time switching too. Disappointing.

125. The Elven – A good book that spans thousands of years. That said I am not going to read the sequel as I did not love it.

126. The Hate U Give – A really moving and educational book about a young black girl who witnesses a police officer shooting her friend who is unarmed and the chaos that brings as her two worlds are merged.

127. The Other Woman – By Silva a great spy book with a great character, and an interesting ending where they loose. I can’t wait for the sequel given how he puts this in Trump time…

August

128. The Hunted – The story about a Russian entrepreneur running for his life. It was a bit boring in the middle but I had to stick with it to hear how it ended.

129. Two Minute Rule – A mystery about a convict’s police son and his murder. Not too bad, but not the best thing I’ve read this year.

130. The Capitol Game – A good thriller about the corruption in the military industrial complex. Good read.

131. The Shortest History Of Germany – A fascinating read and gave me some new perspectives.

132. 133. 134. 135. 136. 137. I’ve already written a blog post on this amazing book series. Amazing and fantastic books by one of my favorite authors. Go read them :)! They are:
Rage of Ares, Salamis, The Great King, Marathon, Poseidon’s Spear, and the first one is Killer Of Men.

September

138. Empire of Silence – Great book and I am looking forward to the second. I am just hoping he gets a tad more effective as it was a tad hard to believe he keeps stumbling into these situations where he is still alive yet he is supposedly this amazing person looking back and telling his story. Great writing and cool universe though :).

139. The Rage of Dragons – Fun book and not really about dragons too much. Very cool magic system and brutal. I can’t wait for the 2nd as I really dug the main character.

140. Book 9 of blood on the stars, Invasion. As good as always and I hope they wrap it up soon :). The story is about a huge space universe and two big wars.

141. 142. Fortune’s Rising and Fortune’s Folly. Fantastic books about aliens and a super pschyo little kid and her pet robot. Fun reads and highly recommended. I can’t wait for the next one…

143. Book 4 of the King’s Dark Tidings series, aka Kingdoms and Chaos. Good book but just felt a little light on content, I am hopeful the next few wrap it up and find his best friend. He also can’t be as much of a bad ass when all these people are following him around.

144. 145. The Dawn of the Iron Dragon and its sequel the Dream of the Iron Dragon – An interesting book where a spaceship from the future lands in Viking times. I did not like these books. It just went on and on and dragged its feet, not reading the sequel. Very flat characters. I was hoping the second book would fix some of this and it did not.

October

145. Marius Mules – I wanted this to be good, but the characters are just as flast as can be. Cool project but it felt like I was reading the bible.

146. Lean B2B – Learning! Back to work and refreshing on customer dev interviews as I work down the chain…

November

147. Work Rules!: Insights from Inside Google That Will Transform How You Live and Lead – Great book and very useful for what I am working on.

148. 149. Lean B2B: Build Products Businesses Want and The Lean Product Playbook: How to Innovate with Minimum Viable Products and Rapid Customer Feedback – Both these books have been supremely helpful as I learn how to do customer dev interviews and go from learning to testing what problems I am hearing and so on. I’ve flipped through each of them 50+ times as I construct the next interview or so on. I particularly like the Product Playbooks method to evaluate different problems and the value individuals put on them. They have been helpful as I’ve started to learn and I’ve got a long way to go.

150. Dark Sacred Night – The latest in a long line of Bosch novels. I prob will skip any after this, they are always great, but I am ready for something new considering I’ve read all of them up to this point.

151. Darkness Beyond – This was generally a good book, but it lacked some character depth and felt like I was reading a report. Good military action but just missing something.

152. Nightfall – This is book 10 of the Blood on the Stars trilogy. I can’t wait for the end, and it is a solid fun action space adventure book with some great characters.

153. Kingdom of Ash – The last in a very long Throne of Glass series. I cried a lot and it was a great ending :).

154. Data-Driven HR: How to Use Analytics and Metrics to Drive Performance – A really good overview and easy read. Trying to catch up!

155. The Data-Driven Leader: A Powerful Approach To Delivering Measurable Business Impact Through People – Good read if you want an introduction to this world. Kinda hokey at times but still decent and fast read.

156. Oath of Swords (War God Book 1) – Pretty good book, but not enough that I am going to read the second one. A story about gods, swords, and some really unique characters that I liked.

December

157. This Is Where You Belong: Finding Home Wherever You Are – I’ve always wondered how my wanderlust conflicted with my desire for a community. This was a very dense book but very interesting. I am not sure it answered anything, but it was a good read on what creates community.

158. People Analytics: How Social Sensing Technology Will Transform Business and What It Tells Us about the Future of Work – Wow, that is kinda creepy. Interesting read though. I am not sure he understands SMBs though, and that seems to be a recurring theme of these big people analytics guys not sure how to help SMBs.

159. Let’s Stop Meeting Like This: Tools to Save Time and Get More Done – Quick read, a zillion great ideas for meetings :).

160. 161. 162. 163. 164. 165. The 6 book Tyrant series by my favorite author Christian Cameron. These are amazing books :). Like my favorite book of the year he wrote, they are based on historical events in ancient Greece/Asia. I hugely recommend these although I think the Killer of Men series was better (I should note it is probably the best book series I’ve read in 5+ years and is in my top 10 all time books).

166. Deliverance – Book 1 of the Forgotten Colony series. This book was ok, but the characters just seemed pretty flat and it didn’t pull me in. I am not going to read the next one.

167. The Singularity Trap – This author wrote my favorite series last year (Bobiverse). This was a solid sci-fi book but something was missing. I enjoyed it immensely and would give it a 4 out of 5 stars. Good read but I can’t quite put my finger on why it wasn’t amazing…

168. Weight of the Crown – Book 6 in a long-running series, and the conclusion which I was happy to have. I liked books 1 to 3 a bit more and the end seemed to drag on and lose some of the starting magic. Good read though and a great ending :).

169. Red War – A new Mitch Rapp novel even though the author died, these are good just not up to the amazing work of the orig author. Fun read if you want to daydream about putting Russia in the right place amidst all their crazy posturing and insanity.

170. Cold Iron – This is book 1 of a new series by Miles Cameron. This was a great read and I can’t wait for the next one. It is about a young man training to be a mage, politics, upheaval, and sword fighting. It wasn’t as good as Red Knight or Killer of Men, but still very good and I can’t wait to read more. Great great great writer.

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This is bwb’s personal blog so he can share his thoughts with the world, however scary or silly they might be. Plus family and friends can track what I am up too, and where I am in the world.

I am pretty simple. I love Mangos. I love the ocean, although mostly at sunset as I’m a ginger. I love to travel, eat exotic food, read, and use my imagination. I love creating and developing ideas into businesses, understanding how all businesses work, and building cool stuff. I am a globalist and see the entire world as my responsibility and playground. And, I am married to an amazing woman who makes life even more fun :)! And, we are now the proud parents of Calico Jack :).


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