Book recommendations: December 2012

Iâ??ve recently discovered a site, that recommends books for you based on your previous reading history, and yours and other peopleâ??s ratings. Itâ??s pretty good and beats Amazon, which shamefully still lacks a great recommendation engine, despite being in this business since the 90s and having a shitload of data to analyze.

In any case, I found this first book through and read it while vacationing in Mexico. Itâ??s called â??The End of Life Bookclubâ? and is a non-fiction book by a journalist Will Schwalbe. It struck a cord with me because itâ??s about love: family love, love of life and living it to the fullest, and love of great books. Itâ??s well-written and an easy read, despite the fact that it talks about such grim subjects as dying from cancer or the situation in Afghanistan. The book itself recommends some good reading, so thatâ??s why I give it a thumbs up.

This next one is an utterly hilarious, entertaining and engaging book called and mentioned it to a few people, but wanted to wait til I get to the end before recommending it. So the final verdict is – highly recommended! Itâ??s a great one.

â??The Light Between Oceansâ? by ML Steadman is a fiction novel that I think will appeal mostly to women, itâ??s a bit dramatic and sad like almost all books in the â??women-targetedâ? category (usually about loss of children and such). I normally donâ??t like to read this kind of drama, but the writing is beautiful and itâ??s set in Australia, so I made an exception. Well written, good storyline.

And lastly, James Altucherâ??s â??I was blind but now I seeâ? – provocative, no-nonsense honest read on a lot of controversial topics like religion, college, owning a house, fear, crappy people, creativity and more. A lot of that content is covered to some extent on his blog, but for $0.99 you get this complete packaged ebook. Recommended for those who hate to conform.

*All links to books mentioned above are to Kindle editions on Iâ??m hoping to make it easy to click and try/buy. I hate that itâ??s nearly impossible to buy a Kindle book from iPhone, as it drops you to paperback/hardcover versions if you search, and thereâ??s no way to find a Kindle one. Argh, Amazon, we are in a love-hate relationship I guess!

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