I'm doubling the goal. Posting books I have finished as I finish them along with a brief review/blurb.
1) 17/01/01 - Assholes: A Theory (Aaron James): philosophical treatise about what it means for someone to be an asshole and how we can deal with them
2) 17/01/01 - Assholes: A Theory of Donald Trump (same author): sequel to the prior book, subject obvious
3) 17/01/02 - The Alchemist (Paulo Coelho): I may be the only person on this forum who didn't like this book, but it's supposed to be an allegory about following your dreams. I appreciate that aspect of it, but I find the whole New Age mumbo jumbo to be a bit over the top.
4) 17/01/04 - Spaceman (Mike Massimino): Hubble telescope spacewalking astronaut's memoirs
5) 17/01/06 - Luna: New Moon (Ian McDonald): sci-fi dystopia played out on the moon in a feudal society (complete with warring great families); ends with a cliffhanger and sequel due out in March
6) 17/01/07 - The Art of Sleeping Alone (Sophie Fontanel): French writer's memoir about the years when she gave up relationships/sex. Not as enlightening (or even as scandalous) as I would have hoped, but occasionally surprisingly humorous.
7) 17/01/07 - On Bullshit (Harry Frankfurt): philosophical treatise on bullshit, the inspiration for James's treatises on assholes (cited above). At 67 pages, really more of an essay than a book, but published in book form.
8) 17/01/08 - A Deeper Love Inside (Sister Souljah): sequel to The Coldest Winter Ever, Souljah's novel about ghetto life in NYC. Silly, unrealistic ending, but Winter's younger sister Porsche is a much more interesting and sympathetic main character than Winter.
9) 17/01/08 - Good Morning, Midnight (Lily Brooks-Dalton): if you're a sci fi fan, all I can say is, wow. You should read this book. Loneliness and the myriad connections between an astronomer and an astronaut who unexpectedly and inexplicably find themselves to be two of the last people on or off the earth.
10) 17/01/10 - Dragons of Summer Flame (Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman): last of the Dragonlance series that follows the fates of both the original generation and the second generation (should be read after the original Dragonlance series and after The Second Generation, since it builds on all of those stories).
11) 17/01/15 - Join (Steve Toutonghi): strange, disturbing sci fi novel raising questions about the nature of what it means to be human and mortal in an era where technology makes it possible to combine one's psyche with those of others into a group psyche
12) 17/01/17 - Men We Reaped (Jesmyn Ward): memoir of a black woman growing up impoverished in rural Mississippi, focusing specifically on the many black men she knew (including her brother) who died young due to drugs or accidents. It's hard for me to explain why, but I came away from this book feeling annoyed with the author (who also had a drug problem with alcohol), not sympathetic.
13) 17/01/21 - The Girl Who Wrote in Silk (Kelli Estes): loosely historical mystery novel based on history of Chinese immigration to and expulsion from Washington Territory (later Washington State). Initially slow going and took time to get into, but worth the effort.
14) 17/01/28 - The All-Girl Filling Station's Last Reunion (Fannie Flagg): this is actually a re-read, but just as good the second time as the first. By the same author who wrote "Fried Green Tomatoes," with similar style and theme (older woman telling her life story to a middle-aged present-day woman trying to find herself)
15) 17/01/29 - Hillbilly Elegy (JD Vance): family memoir of a KY "hillbilly" and how he ended up successfully graduating from Yale Law School. I read this at the rec of several people on this site who were wanting to use it to try to understand why so many people voted for Trump. Not sure it provides much in the way of help along those lines, but it was an interesting book nonetheless, and well written.
16) 17/02/07 - Bait and Switch (Barbara Ehrenreich): this is the sequel to "Nickel and Dimed," her book about blue collar workers. B&S describes the trials and travails of laid-off white collar workers. The author is really pretty hilarious, but I think this book could have been so much more if she had questioned the premise of whether entering the white collar corporate world was worthwhile in the first place (she doesn't).
17) 17/02/17 - America: Imagine A World Without Her (Dinesh D'Souza): book based on his documentary of the same name (or maybe the book came first? I'm not sure.) Offers a counter to the prevailing progressive view of the US as a colonial power that "steals" from the little guys and gals. He's a little too rah rah pro Christianity, but otherwise I liked the book.
18) 17/02/17 - Night of the Animals (Bill Broun): ok, I really like sci fi and fantasy, but this was a totally out there, cultist dystopian future novel mainly told from the perspective of an unreliable nonagenarian drug addict narrator. I'm still not sure if I liked it. It was just....weird.
19) 17/02/25 - Calling Me Home (Julie Kibler): novel about a white girl and a black boy who fall in love in 1930s Kentucky with predictably bad results, alternating with a modern day story about the developing friendship between the same (now elderly) white woman and a young black woman. Very sad book and a bit cliche at times, but overall a good read.
20) 17/03/09 - Striking Back (Aaron Klein): history of the Munich Olympic Massacre of Israeli athletes in 1972 and the subsequent assassination campaign of Palestinian operatives carried out by the Israeli Mossad. The book got a bit dry and slow in places, but the descriptions of various commando actions like Operation Spring of Youth were almost like they were out of the plot of an action movie.
21) 17/03/09 - Venomous (Christie Wilcox): describes the mechanisms, evolution, research, and medical applications of various animal venoms. The author is a venom biologist (a toxinologist). This is a really cool and interesting book. I checked it out from the library, but I'm actually considering buying a copy because it's one that I can see myself wanting to re-read in the future.
22) 17/03/09 - Unworking (Clark Vandeventer) - I think I heard about this book here on MMM. The author is a proponent of lifestyle optimization (from the genre of Tim Ferris, minus the virtual assistants). This is his memoir of how he quit the rat race and took on what he calls "patchwork income" to be able to have his ideal lifestyle (mainly being a ski bum and family man) right now, rather than having to wait until he accumulated a big enough stash to retire.