It’s no secret that I read a lot of books. Let me correct that—I listen to a lot of books. With my 45-minute commute each way to work, I have found the perfect way to fill that time with something useful—listening to books.
In 2020, I listened to 52 books during the year and so far in 2021, I am at 84 books. I know that sounds like a lot (it is), but it is amazing that the 90 minutes of commuting each day, plus some extra time when I go to doctors’ appointments or visit friends, allows me to finish so many books. Last month, while on our cruise, I actually read three printed books, which I carried with me in my luggage.
With so many books under my belt, there are always a few standouts that I like to share with friends. So, in the hope that you’ll consider adding Audible to your mobile device or have a Kindle, here are my top recommendations from 2021 for you to consider adding to your reading list for 2022:
Autobiographies or Biographies (I love reading peoples’ stories):
- Still Foolin’ ‘Em: Where I’ve Been, Where I’m Going, and Where the Hell Are my Keys.Narrated by Billy Crystal, the chapters alternate with actual comedy gigs, and his life story.
- Beginner’s Mind by Yo-Yo Ma. I didn’t know anything about Yo-Yo’s life history or his story. It’s a short read but really made me want to go to one of his concerts.
- Ladyparts by Deborah Copaken. Through every health challenge imaginable and a lot of laughter (she’s a comedian) and positive thinking, the author narrates this book and keeps you both laughing and in amazement.
- A Runner’s High: My Life in Motion by Dean Karnazes. The story of the ultramarathoning legend, I literally would find places to drive or walk while I was listening to this incredibly inspiring story so it wouldn’t stop.
- The Checklist Manifesto: How to Get Things Right by Atul Gawande. The author is a doctor who helped create the modern operating room checklist for surgery published and promoted by the World Health Organization (WHO). Examples of checklist usage by airplane pilots and surgery doctors made me realize how important and time-saving systems and processes are.
- Get A Grip: An Entrepreneurial Fable—Your Journey to Get Real, Get Simple, and Get Results by Gino Wickman. Similar to the fable approach that Patrick Lencioni used in The Five Dysfunctions of a Team, I had my entire management team read this book and we continue to discuss lessons from it.
- Make Your Next Shot Your Best Shot: The Secret to Playing Great Golf by Dr. Bob Rotella. He is America’s preeminent sports psychologist, and this book helped me keep my head in the game.
- The Splendid and the Vile: Saga of Churchill, Family, and Defiance During the Blitz by Erik Larson. The story of Winston Churchill during one year of World War II … Talk about having a vision and believing.
- Wheat Belly by William Davis, MD. This book has been on my list for a few years, recommended by a friend. I eliminated wheat from my diet after reading this book last month and it has helped me feel healthier, sleep better, have less aches and pains and, oh yeah, lose a few pounds.
- Snow Flower and the Secret Fan by Lisa See. Truth: Lisa is a personal friend of mine. I could not believe I had never read one of her books (she is a world-renowned writer and author). The storyline was fascinating about lifelong friendships and reminded me that you never know someone else’s story.
Do you have books you’d like to recommend to me? I would love that. Almost every single book on my list above was an unsolicited recommendation from a friend.