March Reads

I read five books in March. Here are my rapid-fire thoughts on them.

That Will Never Work by Marc Randolph

It was fun to read the origin story of Netflix. There are so many good tidbits here for anyone that has entrepreneurial tendencies. Ideas are cheap. Seeing someone work through so many bad ideas to finally land on something that works was inspiring. The book motivated me to keep experimenting until I find the thing that works.

Brave New World by Aldous Huxley

I'm not sure how I feel after having read this book. There's something here about the cost of thinking for yourself. The book posits that happiness is the cost of being an individual thinker. Therefore, if you want to be happy, turn off your brain (by taking the feel-good drug, soma) and participate in self-indulgence. This idea has haunted me since reading the book, particularly when I start drawing connections between our society and the society from Brave New World.

Hidden Valley Road by Robert Kolker

Don and Mimi Galvin had twelve kids, six of whom developed schizophrenia. Hidden Valley Road is a heartbreaking yet riveting story of just how devastating schizophrenia can be – not just for the victims of this debilitating disease but for those charged with taking care of them as well. I had no idea how little we knew about schizophrenia. This book was mainly a depressing read, but it was an important read.

Leviathan Wakes by James S.A. Corey

I've been itching to read this book for a few months now. The hype I'd heard about this one was high going in, but it delivered. It's easily one of my favorite reading experiences of the year. The book has two points of view: Holden, an idealistic ice miner who finds himself in the middle of a space war. And Miller, a detective, assigned a missing person's case. These stories come together masterfully. Leviathan Wakes is a must-read.

The Good Lie by A.R. Torre

I don't typically read books like this, but I was in the mood for a thriller/mystery, and The Good Lie hit the spot. The story centers around Dr. Gwen Moore, a psychiatrist specializing in killers. A defense attorney recruits her to build a psychological profile on the Bloody Heart serial killer, whose most recent victim escaped. The lawyer is defending a teacher accused of being the Bloody Heart killer; all is not as it seems. It's a quick read, and had a fun reveal at the end.