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I’ve seen plenty of “best 100 books I’ve ever read” or “best books of all times” lists.

This isn’t that, mostly because I’m rubbish at remembering books I’ve read (or movies I’ve watched, etc.) on demand.

Instead this is an ongoing list of (mostly) good books I’ve read. Caveat they may not be for everyone, but they’re ones I’ve enjoyed (with a few exceptions). The exceptions might be something that wasn’t good/enjoyable but was important, impactful, etc. Some of these are books I read as a kid, some are recent.

I’ll update this, if/when I remember to.

Some of these are the first in a series/trilogy/whatever. If I’m referring to the whole series/trilogy I’ll add (series). Maybe other notes as well. Asterisks mean “you REALLY should read this it’s great/important/underrated/whatever”. More asterisks really mean it.

Books, in no order at all:

  • The Things We Carried * - war is horrendous.
  • More With Less
  • The Way of Kings (series) - if you like fantasy, lovely series. Unfinished.
  • 1491
  • Berlin 1961
  • All the Pretty Horses (series) * - been a long time but will probably re-read in the next few years. Lots of depth both in the story and the writing.
  • Exodus
  • The Time Traveler’s Wife * - left me very, very sad
  • The Lord of the Rings (series)
  • Harry Potter (series)
  • Fatherland
  • The City and the City ** - don’t think I’ve read anything quite like this before or since.
  • Mistborn (series)
  • The Expanse (series)
  • Sharpe’s Tiger (long series, great historical fiction)
  • The Long Ships
  • The Scout Mindset
  • Redwall (series) - epic young adult fantasy series. Even more delightful watching my son enjoy them.
  • Liftoff
  • A Wrinkle in Time
  • The Arm of the Starfish
  • My Side of the Mountain
  • Hatchet
  • 11/22/63 - only Stephen King I’ve read. Gripping.
  • How to Change Your Mind
  • 1632 - absurd and fun if you like historical fiction but aren’t precious about it
  • One Man’s Wilderness
  • The Martian
  • Project Hail Mary
  • The Call of the Wild
  • Touching the Void
  • This Game of Ghosts
  • Dune
  • The Road (huge caveat, probably don’t read this, but powerful book)
  • Station Eleven
  • Fidelity (It took me until age 37 to read Wendell Berry. I hope to write like him, someday.)
  • In the Garden of Beasts – fascinating look at pre-war Germany through American ambassdor’s + family’s eyes
  • Act of Oblivion – great historical fiction
  • The Wager - kinda starts off slow but fascinating tale and I was fully engaged by halfway through
  • Night – only just now read this b/c my son was reading it for school as well. Holocaust memoir, with all that entails.


migrate to new astro config to use mdx, footnotes, etc. (#18) Travis Northcutt updated this on 3/31/2024