Thursday, December 18, 2008

Top Books of 2008

I'm quite pleased to report that 2008 had been a relatively diverse year for me in terms of my reading life.

Whereas in the previous years I mainly concentrated on novels and an occasional non-fiction, I expanded my "repertoire" to cover more of the latter. 2008 saw me dipping my fingers into history, economics, and religion. I seriously made it a point to alternate between fiction and non-fiction.

Nonetheless, I fear that I'm not reading enough and I'm thus committing to finishing at least one book a week, which is not exactly that demanding (if only I can pull my self away from the internet on most evenings).

Having said that, here's my list of my favorite books that I read in 2008. Again, the books do not have to be published this year. Certainly I would likewise recommend that you check them out if any of these capture your interest.

Second runner-up: The God Delusion, by Richard Dawkins (2006)

When I posted about it on this blog, I wrote: "by far one of the most fascinating books I read lately". For religious people, the book would challenge the way you see your faith, and for atheists like me, it definitely affirms what we know all along.

First runner-up: Atonement, by Ian McEwan (2001)

I wrote: "I admire how the author successfully builds up the tension in the first half of the novel and the longing in the second half." McEwan triumphs in laying out superb imagery and capturing the deepest of guilt and passion.

The top book of 2008 is...

by: Jared Diamond

I wrote: "Referring to various disciplines as archaeology, linguistics, ecology, biology, and geology, the book is surprisingly easy to read... and very convincing at that. I've never been a fan of non-fiction, much less history, but this book, is pregnant with enlightening information".

Quite an odd and surprising choice given my reading track record, but this truly tickled my fancy in history and economic development. Guns, Germs, and Steel is the book that has the most impact on my reading interest this year, which makes it deserving as my top book for 2008.

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