As we did last year over the holidays and then again over the summer, we thought we would share with you a list of the books that we’re reading at Art+Logic. Maybe you’ll find something for yourself in this list (or for the developer or designer in your life).
So here, in no particular order, is our list for the end of 2019:
As usual, I have several on the go:
Fiction: Rivers of London by Ben Aaronovich
Non-Fiction: Calendar: Humanity’s Epic Struggle to Determine a True and Accurate Year by David Ewing Duncan
Culinary: The Curious Bartender, Volume I: The Artistry and Alchemy of Creating the Perfect Cocktail by Tristan Stephenson
Washington: A Life by Ron Chernow. Falls just a bit short of recommending George Washington for sainthood. More Savior of our Country than Father. A fascinating look into his mind, motivations, insecurities, and influences.
The Worm at the Core: On the Role of Death in Life. It’s a non-technical introduction to Terror Management Theory, which basically claims that a lot of human behavior is fundamentally driven by awareness of death.
I’m reading The History of Western Philosophy by Bertrand Russell — an accessible comprehensive look at all of Western philosophy.
Just finished reading REWORK by 37Signals and Sprint by Jake Knapp.
I’ve actually been working on these for ~15 years, but I’m reading the most recent updates. All by the FAA:
Pilot’s Handbook of Aeronautical Knowledge
Airplane Flying Handbook
Aeronautical Information Manual
Scale by Geoffrey West
Interesting take on biology, civilization and economics.
I’m reading Lore Olympus, a modern retelling of the stories of Hades and other Greek mythological figures.
The Water Dancer, by Ta-Nehisi Coats. It is as beautiful and epic as you’ve heard. Nearly Language Poetry at times. Also, Jon Ronson’s So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed — which is a rumination on shame in age of the internet and the power it possesses. Our love for righteous indignation and quick condemnation. And what it means when your momentary poor judgment, sense of humor, or wording is torn apart in the court of public opinion and then lives on forever on the internet, available with a single Google Search. Jon is very funny and this book isn’t very “tight” but it does provide a nice scan of the subject of Internet Shaming.
Larry Nivens’ Juggler of Worlds and Simon Winchester’s Atlantic (Great Sea Battles, Heroic Discoveries, Titanic Storms and a Vast Ocean of a Million Stories).
Paula McLain’s A mind of Her Own. It is an intimate story of Marie Curie in Paris. It depicts a time when she was a poor student at the Sorbonne. Good biographical fiction.
So far, Fleet of Worlds was my favorite Niven book, though I haven’t read the last one in that series. It’s on my pile. Unfortunately, Fleet of Worlds will be much more meaningful if you’ve already read a bunch of the previous books. . . I guess it’s still great by itself, but better if you already have the "history" for the tension to build upon.
Hmmm, in recent times, I’ve been reading blog posts by game developers about game design, marketing strategy, and the current state of sexism in "video game culture," whatever that is.
Lately, I’ve been reading mostly (and a lot of) dramatic literature, as I prepare scenes and monologues: All My Sons by Arthur Miller, Red by John Logan, Peoples, Places, and Things by Duncan Macmillan, Our House by Theresa Rebeck, The Pillowman by Martin McDonagh, to name a few.
Still working through The Brothers Karamazov ( because my son read it for his english class ), and Basic Writings of Nietzsche, but all eight books of James Corey’s space opera series The Expanse? Yeah, got through all of those in like two months ( very readable and better than the TV series ). Also E.B Sledge’s With The Old Breed, a classic about being a non-com Marine in the Pacific in WWII; an important counterpart I think to all those books by Stephen Ambrose.
Juan Carlos Perez
Just started reading Now We Shall Be Entirely Free by Andrew Miller, one of my favorite writers. His first novel, Ingenious Pain, is one of the best works of historical fiction I’ve ever read.