My Favorite Books of 2016

In 2015 I finally got a library card, and in 2016 I made extensive use of the San Diego Public Library system! I read more in 2016 than many previous years.
  1. 1.
    The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work - John Gottman
    Man this book is so good. It's had a big impact on my marriage this year. The exercises at the end of each chapter have really helped my relationship. Everyone in a relationship should read this book.
  2. 2.
    Between the World and Me - Ta Nehisi Coates
    A lot has been said of this book and I have nothing new to add. This is the book "white people read to show that they know something" according to the author. Everyone should read this book.
  3. 3.
    The Way of Kings - Brandon Sanderson
    Legit hard fantasy, around 1000 pages. Best fiction book I read this year. It took about 200-300 pages to really get into but it was worth it. This book is both optimistic and challenging on a personal level. The best kind of fiction! The sequel, Words of Radiance is just as good. Highly recommended.
  4. 4.
    Hillbilly Elegy - JD Vance
    Another hyped book that mostly lives up to expectations, mainly because the author's story is so compelling. JD Vance is a political conservative and I knew going in that I was likely to disagree with parts of his ideology. That being said, in contrast to many conservative pundits Vance is very thoughtful and it's obvious that he is smart and has given much thought to his ideas. He doesn't say things to shock people but more to help people understand his world.
  5. 5.
    Finding God in the Waves - Mike McHargue
    I started listening to The Liturgists podcast at the beginning of 2016 and it was a big part of my spiritual life this past year. I really identify with "Science" Mike (McHargue) story of losing his faith and coming back to Christianity. This book is a huge encouragement to me that it's just ok to sit in your doubt without completely losing your faith.
  6. 6.
    Ancillary Justice - Ann Leckie
    Best sci-fi book I read in 2016. In fact I read the entire Ancillary trilogy. There's a matrix like twist to this story that I really appreciated. Some have criticized this book for being too PC but they are idiots. Leckie's ambiguous use of gender pronouns is fascinating and will make you think about gender roles in our society. It's also great to read sci-fi written by a female in a male dominated realm.