2014 Book Summary



Since 2010 I’ve been challenging myself to read 100 books a year and it has been a great habit to build. In 2014, I read 101 books and left mini reviews of them here. This was my lowest year since I started this challenge. Why was it so low? Because it has been one of the most crazy year of my life and I met someone who I enjoy spending time with even more than books :).

If you only read 3 books this year I recommend the following as my best of 2014:

1. Overwhelmed: Work, Love, and Play When No One Has the Time – This should be required reading for all Americans, and anyone in school. What do you want the minutes of your life to be? A rush through it, or something that feels deeply satisfying? This is an amazing book of one woman’s search for what has happened to our society and why we all feel so overwhelmed, rushed, and without any time for anything. Fantastic writing and backed by really interested research too.

2. How to Change the World: Social Entrepreneurs and the Power of New Ideas – Lindsey recommended this one to me I think, it is a fantastic story of what social entrepreneurship can do for the world and for the people who go down this path. I wish people would read this one in schools and especially university. It was also one of the best business oriented books I’ve read this year.

3. Down and Out in Paris and London by George Orwell – A true account by the famous author of what it is like to be poor and trying to live. Something everyone could remember for time to time and better understand why it isn’t as easy as getting a job or working harder sometimes. I really enjoyed reading this and found his entire experience fascinating.

One distant runner up was: Young Money: Inside the Hidden World of Wall Street’s Post-Crash Recruits. It followed the lives of 8 new recruits to Wall Street over a 2 to 3 year period, and if you want to learn about the good and bad wall street brings, read this book.

Best Business Books Of The Year:

Leaders Eat Last: Why Some Teams Pull Together and Others Don’t – This puts into words a lot of what I’ve felt for the last 10 years. I highly recommend this book and it really defines what great leadership is IMO.

Unlabel by Marc Ecko – A fantastic business book with real world advice by the famous artist/designer. He is very candid about his failures, problems, and where he fucked up. Great format too, and a lot more fun to read than most business books.

Titan: The Life of John D. Rockefeller, Sr. – An AMAZING person and an awesome read. It was very cool to learn how he built up his company, how he created the modern idea of the company, and the long challenges he faced down. It is mind blowing how many modern oil companies were spun off from his company…

Best Scifi / Fantasy
*This year this section is a bit longer as I found so many great ones, and I did so much more pleasure reading than normal due to stress this year brought into my life.

Words of Radiance (The Stormlight Archive) – This is book two of Brandon Sanderson’s new huge series and it is AMAZING!!! I have no words for how good this is. The man is a god :). The first book made last year’s mention I believe. If you like Wheel of Time, or any big series you will love this one (slow going and huge universe but amazing characters).

The last StormDancer: Lotus Wars Series – A fantastic book in a steampunk japanese universe, great characters and really unique. I’ve read the first two and I am waiting on the next one.

Starship Grifters (A Rex Nihilo Adventure) – An absolutely hilarious book about a space adventure, I was laughing out loud at this one as the main two characters are hilarious.

Nexus and Crux – A fantastic series of books about programmable nano bots that allow you to become human version 2.0. If you are interested in a future where you can change your biology I recommend this one. I read the first two and can’t wait for the 3rd.

Brilliance and A Better World – An amazing series of science fiction book about the near future when “Brilliants” start being born. They are human but have different talents that can cause problems, kinda like mutants. Great story and highly recommended.

Fallen Dragon by Sci Fi King Peter F. Hamilton – This guy can imagine huge universes but luckily this is a smaller one to start in. Just one book to get going, space adventure, time, and crazy crazy stuff. Great read.

Mindstar Rising and A Quantum Murder by Peter F. Hamilton – Amazing detective books set in this future dystopian world that comes about because of global warming.

The Promise of Blood and The Crimson Campaign – I think Brian McClellan is the best author I’ve found since Brandon Sanderson, these are amazing and gripping books about a napolean type era but with mages and mages who can work with gunpowder and the return of god’s.

Enjoy and good reading!

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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 :).