Sunday, December 25, 2011

books

Norwegian Wood, by Haruki Murakami - Best book I've read in a long, long, long time. Every time I set it down I was left in a Murakami trance for hours. I can't even pinpoint what was so good about it. The writing style is simple yet beautiful, sparse yet vivid; the plot is mundane yet riveting; the characters are ordinary yet compelling; and most amazingly, a book that exclusively examines relationships doesn't end up in naval-gazing tedium, but rather draws you so deeply into their situation that you can listen to it on your kindle and not even notice the robotic text-to-voice imperfections or that you've been stuck in rush hour traffic for half an hour or that you somehow just ran errands all over town purely on muscle memory, and then you get home and turn it off and sit dazed at your desk for who knows how long trying to remember who you are or what you're supposed to be doing or why you were supposed to care.

Are you there vodka? It's me Chelsea, by Chelsea Handler - It was laying around and the title made me curious. About as mildly amusing as you would expect from a book you only read because it was laying around.

The Undercover Economist, by Tim Harford - Economists will find this boring, but I highly recommend it to anyone who hasn't learned economic theory. It's a very well done qualitative/popsci presentation. Especially those who like to argue about politics without understanding incentives or markets...

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