reading

(Note: I’ve shared quick thoughts on some of these – click to unfold.)

2019

7/23 Reading Like a Writer
7/18 The Art of Gathering 
7/16 The Vegetarian
7/08 Trillion Dollar Coach
7/05 A Gentleman in Moscow
7/03 Save Me the Plums

7/01 Habitat: The Field Guide to Decorating

Recommended by a coworker but not quite what I needed. This is very much a reference manual (charts of eg fabrics for different purposes) whereas I still want something that’ll train my eye and help me figure out my personal sense of style.

6/27 Just Mercy

Wonderful and painful. We are so lucky to have Bryan Stevenson in this world. Extreme reinforcement of my suspicion that unless you explicitly protect the vulnerable, even “neutral” systems are always naturally exploitative. 

6/17 The Leopard

Read for book club. I didn’t know how big of a deal this was in Italy – perennial bestseller and a really popular movie. Book was funnily uneven: some really memorable moments punctuated by LOTS of slow-moving description. I enjoyed the peek at this world but prob won’t reread. 

6/16 Winners Take All

Central point is that we’ve ceded too much responsibility from politics into corporations, which are ineffective agents of change because they preserve themselves above all else. I deeply agree with this. Book was 95% problem defining, 5% solution (Reclaim politics as the agent of change) — but I was hoping for 50/50. 

6/08 Antifragile

I love reading Taleb mostly BECAUSE he is odious and I pay more attention than usual so I can fume when he says something I disagree with. Takeaways from this book: the opposite of fragile isn’t “robust”, which merely survives tough conditions – but rather “antifragile”, which actually improves under tough conditions. Build systems that are antifragile. Nature is the best example of antifragility, so be skeptical of any new innovation not found in nature — chances are it doesn’t hold up over the long term.