I feel humbled that people actually read this annual post, even more so that they occasionally trust my advice and find great enjoyment out of the books I endorse.
Without further ado, here are the top books I read in 2018:
7. The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck by Mark Manson
I usually try and distill it down to a top 5, but this year I just couldn’t. A lot of good books and this one was actually a fluke. I had finished my book on a weekend trip and picked this up at the airport in Edmonton. There was a lot of hype around it last year, but for some reason the title always threw me off. Don’t let it.
6. Bruce Lee by Matthew Polly
I’m a sucker for a good biography and this one is sensational. Whether you know a lot about Bruce Lee or not, it’s irrelevant, he’s such a polarizing figure and Polly brings him to life. It’s not a short read, but I’d be surprised if you didn’t fly through this one.
5. Tiger Woods by Jeff Benedict
It was hard to choose between this one and the Bruce Lee one, but given its relevance I gave the Tiger Woods biography the edge. This book took years to make and is the first time that an authoritative biography has been done about the enigmatic icon that is Tiger Woods. Sports fan or not, it’s gripping.
4. The Elephant Whisperer by Lawrence Anthony
This book was part of a book club that I started with a few friends; presenting new reads that I would have never found on my own. This book is a collection of stories about a man in Africa who starts a wildlife range and good (or bad) fortune presents him with elephants. A refreshingly different book with deep insights into the animal psyche.
3. Play On: The New Science of Elite Performance at Any Age by Jeff Bercovici
Again, this one falls into personal preference, a fascinating dive into aging athletes and methods they use to prolong their careers. It’s broken down to appeal to elite athlete and weekend warrior alike, as Bercovici interviews the trainers of Federer, Lebron, Serena, and Jagr; to name a few.
2. Grit by Angela Duckworth
Another recommendation from aforementioned book club; I was fortunate to read this early in the year and benefitted from its mantra of grit: passion and perseverance for long-term goals. In the endless realm of self-help books, I still coin this one a must-read. Duckworth’s ability to articulate her ideas on page are uncanny and remember: enthusiasm is common, endurance is rare.
1. Being Mortal by Atul Gawande
This was one of the first books that I read in 2018 and endured the test of time to remain my favourite one. There’s not much more to say about Being Mortal then the fact that you will never look at life the same (in a good way). Over the years I’ve come to realize that a good book will grab your attention and entertain you. A great book will change your perspective on things. This is a great book.
- Bad Blood by John Carreyrou – The wild story behind Theranos labs
- Endure by Alex Hutchinson – Explores the human endurance limit, focusing on the 2 hour marathon
- Thrive by Dan Buettner – The happiest places on Earth and why
- Own the Day by Aubrey Marcus – Great book on living better in general