The Best of Robin’s Reading List from 2014

In 2014 I’ve read more books than in any previous year of my life. That includes the Reed College humanities curriculum, which is just ridiculous. I chalk up the depth and breadth of my reading to the combination of my  infra-red sauna, Amazon Prime, and the fact that I’ve been writing. These are some of my favorite books, and miscellaneous media, from 2014.

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A Fighter’s Heart – A must read for anyone who has tried a martial art and everyone on the other end of the spectrum who has asked the question “why fight.”

Apollo’s Angels – Your primer in the history of ballet. Also, a national bestseller..

Average Is Over – Read this book! Think of it as an investment in your future. The best future-thinking and economics book I’ve read in many years.

Daily Rituals: How Artist Work – A series of short epitaphs looking at the daily habits of artists, writers, and scientists.

Flow – The book that popularized the term. Now its time to understand what flow really is and where to find it.

Fluent in 3 Months – Fascinating tools, applicable for learning a language and for learning anything else with great rapidity

How To Do A Handstand – I wrote my first book this year, which has since become a Japanese National Bestseller.

The Moment with Brian Koppelman – A podcast explore creativity, presence, the arts, and more.

The Monkey Wrench Gang – A classic which is responsible for my love affair with the desert. Also useful if you’re feeling a bit rebellious.

The Morning Pages – This workbook is the most useful tool I’ve discovered for unearthing obstacles. I think of it as a tool for getting my crazy out on a page, so I can spend more time doing productive work.

The Number of the Beast – Heinlein is responsible for coining the term “grok” and the “Heinlein” crater on the moon. This book is a wild romp through time, space, and mathematics.

The Obstacle Is the Way – No nonsense Stoic advise from throughout history on getting through the rough spots.

Twyla Tharp’s The Creative Habit – Dance choreographer Twyla Tharp tackles the question how to be more creative, more regular, more diligent and more productive. Hard work, clear thinking, and a lot of sweat. The specific tools in this book are invaluable.

Well Fed – Whether you’ve considered the Paleo diet, read cookbooks for pleasure (inconceivable to me), or just want to talk about food this is among the best.

I hope you enjoy whichever of these books catch your eye. Each has served me well in 2014, and I’m looking forward to many more discoveries in 2015. On a related note, if you’re interested in a similar exploration into a diverse array of topics, try my Learning List emails.

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