Here’s a list of some of the books I’ve read recently. I’ve starred the ones that I especially liked or that were otherwise special.
- High-Rise by J. G. Ballard. A dystopic story.
- Cryptonomicon by Neal Stephenson. A cypherpunk story.
- Pintti by Tommi Kinnunen. A sad story about a family in post-war Finland.
- Ehkä tänä kesänä kaikki muuttuu by Sisko Savonlahti. A break-up story about a 30-something freelancer living in Kallio.
- Resilient Management by Lara Hogan. Practical advice on how to communicate things as a manager, how to conduct 1:1s, etc.
- 300 Arguments by Sarah Manguso. Autobiographical aphorisms. Still great. (reread)
- The Phoenix Project by Gene Kim, Kevin Behr, and George Spafford. A just-story about the importance of IT for business. Suprisingly great considering how cheesy it is.
- Finite and Infinite Games by James P. Carse. Talks about life, but the life is held behind a veil. The book is dense – read it slowly to properly enjoy it. (reread)
- R.U.R. by Karel Čapek. Short and fun. The origin of the word robot.
- ⭐ How I Take Photographs by Daido Moriyama and Takeshi Nakamoto. Photos by Moriyama and interviews with him about photography.
- Elämän lyhyydestä by Seneca, translated by Juhana Torkki. The concerns of (rich) people two thousand years ago were not that different from their concerns now.
- Luoja lasta auttakoon (God Help the Child) by Toni Morrison. A story about people with troubled childhood.
- Hätä on tarpeen by Tommi Uschanov. Observations on how we (the US and Finland?) went from techno-optimism to general pessimism. Interesting references.
- ⭐ Kuvauksia Suomesta by A. P. Milyukov. A 19th century travelogue about Finland.
- Keisari Aarnio by Minna Passi and Susanna Reinboth. A thorough look at the career of Jari Aarnio, the indeed-quite-corrupted ex-head of the anti-drug police of Helsinki.
- 100 Ways to Improve Your Writing by Gary Provost. A collection of short tips for writers.
- ⭐ Frontier by Can Xue. A poetic, magical, dream-like story. Reading it was a struggle, but it was rewarding enough to persist.
- Prisons We Choose to Live Inside by Doris Lessing. A series of lectures about politics. Delivered in 1980s, not exactly fresh anymore.
- ⭐ Roadside Picnic by Arkady and Boris Strugatsky. A sci-fi classic. Quite different from Stalker the movie, but both are great.
- A Russian Doll and Other Stories by Adolfo Bioy Casares. A short story collection.
- The Way of the 88 Temples by Robert C. Sibley. A pilgrimage travelogue.
- Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance by Robert M. Pirsig. A philosophical road trip. (reread)
- Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut. A story about World War II. (reread)
- Escaping the Build Trap by Melissa Perri. On how to build an effective product-led organization. Probably more useful for CEOs than those doing concrete product work.
- Good Strategy Bad Strategy by Richard P. Rumelt. Good strategy identifies points of leverage and how to use them, bad strategy is fluff. The book has a good point, but it felt long-winded.
- ⭐ The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien. An adventure tale. Captivating even if everything is solved by luck. (reread)
- O by Miki Liukkonen. A hysterical realist novel. Possibly a David Foster Wallace pastiche?
All-time favorite fiction
I rarely re-read books, but there are some books I keep thinking about.
- Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy.
- Historias de cronopios y famas by Julio Cortázar.
- The Infinite Jest by David Foster Wallace.
I look at this list and I realize I must have incredibly ordinary taste. Still, they’re good books.
Lists of books read by other people
I’ve found the following lists especially interesting: