I am again making a list of all the book listening and reading, as well as key podcast listening that I have done in 2022, as I did with Books of 2021 Below is a list of all the books I have read or listened to, including the source: Libby (a library download service), Amazon Kindle, and Chirp*. From this list, I provide the following as the best three books and one podcase I read or listened to in 2022 listed in order of their importance to me:
- The Things They Carried – Tim O’Brien (Chirp) which is a book about a man’s experience during his time in Vietnam during the Vietnam War, which opened my eyes wider to the challenges that anyone who was on the ground there, must live with every day of their lives since that experience, motivating me to listen to Vietnam: The Definitive History of the War – Robert K. Brigham (Chirp) to fill in the details.
- Napoleon: A Life – Andrew Roberts (Kindle) which was a long read, but detailed and up-to-date with the best information from letters recently made available.
- Fall of Civilizations – Paul Cooper (Podcast of 15 Episodes) which provided much detail for a large number of civilizations which I have only heard fragments about and now I know so much more, e.g., the Mayan, Aztec and Inca civilizations addressed separately in multi-hour presentations now also available as videos on YouTube.
- Endurance – Alfred Lansing (Chirp) which detailed the amazing adventure of Ernest Shackleton and his crew of the Endurance, a story anyone interested in adventure stories should read.
I’ve continued my exploration of the Dune series written by Frank Herbert with two of his books that followed Dune. I’ve now read seven books from the Dune series and I’m not convinced any more are worth reading after being disappointed with these (given here in chronological order):
- The Butlerian Jihad – Brian Herbert & Kevin J Anderson
- House Atreides – Brian Herbert & Kevin J Anderson
- House Harkonnen – Brian Herbert & Kevin J Anderson
- House Corrino – Brian Herbert & Kevin J Anderson
- Dune – Frank Herbert (including watching two or three movie versions)
- Dune: Messiah – Frank Herbert (Libby Audiobook)
- Children of Dune – Frank Herbert (Libby Audiobook)
Most of the books I read this year were audiobooks from Chirp or Libby, or podcasts, since I spent the majority of my year reading Napoleon: A Life, which I would only get on average 2-4% a night completed when I had a chance to read before sleeping, my usual time to read a Kindle book.
My interests again focused on history, with eight books spanning from ancient Greece up to the history of Alexander the Great, to an to three books covering this history of the U.S., as well as quick overviews of the history of war and entrepreneurs:
- The American Story – David Rubinstein (Chirp)
- Alexander the Great – Phillip Freeman (Chirp)
- The American Revolution: The War for Independence and the Birth of the United States – Robert McDonald (Chirp)
- Railroaded: The Transcontinentals and the Making of Modern America – Richard White (Kindle) which I will get back to finishing after I have completed several books about Australian and Brisbane history, my primary interest right now.
- Clanlands: Whiskey, Warfare and a Scottish Adventure like no Other – Sam Heughan and Graham McTavish (Chirp)
I listened to six courses, three were overviews (101 type courses), one a more advanced review of consciousness, a regular favorite topic of mine, and two were a formulaic overviews of entrepreneurs and the history of war:
- Sociology 101: How Social Forces Shape Our Lives – Alicia Simmons (Chirp)
- Philosophy 101: How to Think Big – Kevin Corcoran (Chirp)
- Ancient Greece 101: Greek History, Myth and Civilization – Christopher M Belitto (Chirp)
- Mind, Brain & Behavior: An Audio course on Consciousness – Kevin Corcoran (Chirp)
- History of War: From Ancient Greece through the American Civil War – Brian Gibby (Chirp)
- Entrepreneurs Who Changed History – DK (Chirp)
I read one self help book, not my normal reading material, but a discussion with a man in my men’s circle about maybe having a circle focused on our shadows associated with death, suggested this might be a good book to review: A Year to Live by Stephen Levine (Kindle). I’m still reading this as it is useful on breaks from reading other books, like the one on Napoleon.
I did listen to five classics. I particularly enjoyed the Leo Tolstoy novel The Death of Ivan Illyich because it had an excellent perspective about dying, from which people like Ram Das and Stephen Levine:
- Washington Square – Henry James (Chirp)
- The Death of Ivan Illyich – Leo Tolstoy (Chirp)
- Gilgamesh – Stephen Mitchell (Chirp) including a detailed analysis of this oldest known written story
- Gullivers Travels – Jonathan Swift (Chirp and this reader was terrible, so I would not recommend it to anyone)
- Notes from the Underground – Fyodor Dostoevsky (Chirp)
* Chirp books has many audiobook deals for $1.99, which was the cost of most of these books listed here. I would rarely purchase, a rare but very interesting book costing $2.99 or $3.99. You can get a subscription to a daily or weekly notification of the special sales on their website but you have to have their phone app and an account with them so they can bill you if you purchase a book.