10 in 2010: What should I read?

In 2010 my goals are to finish procrastinated projects and make the most of my time.

I think it’s something to do with the last year of my 20s, as I turned 29 this year (Tuesday to be exact). So far, I’ve started the blog, I’m building my online profile, and I’ve already done more  freelancing than all of 2009. I’ve been cutting back on habits such as vegging on the couch playing video games, sleeping in, or wasting time on the Internet. (Ummm, I still have a way to go on those, the last two especially.)

The best way to achieve a goal, is to set it, then write it down. Inspired both by the last year of my 20s, and the mountains of unread books feeling neglected on my shelves, I’d like to finish 10 books in 2010.

And I’m looking for YOUR help narrowing down the list.

Here’s the problem: I’ve got a wide range of interests, from fantasy to non-fiction, spirituality to sports, literature to lighter fare such as fantasy and science fiction. I’m a lot better at piling books up than I am at finishing them off. I’d either like opinions from you on my not-so-short “shortlist,” or suggestions from out of the blue if there’s a must-read I haven’t thought of. Even if you are in a hurry, a quick yea/nay would be great. After a few days, I’ll post the list, and occasionally update my progress as a break from the usual sports stuff on the blog.


Gretzky’s Tears by Stephen Brunt – The newest book by a Canadian sportswriter whose style and success I’d like to emulate. His Facing Ali and Searching for Bobby Orr are both on my top 10 favourite sports books.

Fantasyland by Sam Walker – A friend recommended this in-depth look at the fantasy baseball obsession. I’m taking a year off from mine, so why not read a book about it?

It Ain’t Over Til It’s Over or Baseball Between the Numbers by Baseball Prospectus – Two highly recommended books by the awesome authors at Baseball Prospectus, the No. 1 site for baseball analysis.

Shoeless Joe by W.P. Kinsella – The inspiration for Field of Dreams, one of my top 10 favourite movies of all time.


Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell – Loved his first two books, The Tipping Point and Blink, and this one contains a section on junior hockey, my specialty.

The Shock Doctrine by Naomi Klein, The Collapse of Globalism by John Ralson Saul or Payback by Margaret Atwood – Three widely recommended books by Canadian authors that could change the way I look at the world.

Walden by Henry David Thoreau – Toying with the idea of cutting the cable is my idea of simplicity.

Managing Oneself by Peter Drucker – This was a Christmas gift from my dad, supposed to be great for learning your strengths and making the most of them.

Guns, Germs & Steel or Collapse by Jared Diamond – Both books are highly recommended looks at human history and the lessons we can learn.

Other ideas: Mao – The Unknown Story by Jung Chang and Jon Halliday, The Dispossessed by Alfredo Molano, Superfreakonomics by Steven Levitt and Stephen Dubner, Lost in the Amazon by Stephen and Marlo Carter Kirkpatrick, The End of Poverty by Jeffrey Sachs, The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch, Martin Luther King’s autobiography, one of Obama’s books, something else on leadership?


Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger – In honour of his recent death, it would seem fitting to finally read this great novel.

Some Great Thing by Lawrence Hill – A more obscure novel by the author of The Book Of Negroes, it deals with a young journalist facing issues with family, identity, and his place in the world.

The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde – I love Wilde’s short stories, this was his only novel.

Children of Men by P.D. James – Nothing puts a smile on your face like a great apocalyptic novel!

Other ideas: Something by Kurt Vonnegut, James Joyce or Douglas Coupland that I haven’t already read


The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho – I don’t know much about the most translated book by a living author but it was recommended by a very good friend.

Searching for God Knows What – Along with Rob Bell, a leader in connecting with a new generation of Christians.

God Is by David Adams Richards – The most accomplished writer from my home province of New Brunswick takes a dive into his faith.

Other ideas: Something by C.S. Lewis or Rob Bell, or another spiritual book?


The next book in one of the fantasy or sci-fi series I’m slowly working my way through: The Wheel of Time, The Sword of Truth, Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, Another sci-fi/fantasy book?


~ by Nathan White on March 14, 2010.

7 Responses to “10 in 2010: What should I read?”

  1. I think you should put Wuthering Heights onto your list of literature. It is one of the best novels of all time!

  2. On your non-fiction list, I must say the Shock Doctrine was quite an eye opener. It’s a tough call in that category as I also appreciated both of those Jared Diamond books. I think though that I would give the nod to Naomi.

  3. What? No Twilight? 🙂
    You really should add Book of Negroes though.

  4. Well, with anonymity to back me up, I reccomend Jim Marrs Rise of the Fourth Reich. It’s not what you think.It details the history of events that began with Operation:Paperclip, and leads up to the modern day. You’ll learn all about how Donald Rumsfeld was C.E.O. of Searle, the company that first produced aspartame, and how F.D.A. approval just happened to occur during the first Reagen Bush term.
    It’s a history lesson a lot of people aren’t interested in, but I make a distinction between conspiracy theorists and conspiracy research. Jim Marrs, Rise of the Fourth Reich. The American one.

  5. There are definately several books that I could recommend!! You mentioned Outliers and The Alchemist…both fantastic reads!! I would say in 2009 the most impactful book that I read was “Tribes” by Seth Godin. I think this is a book that anyone could get a lot of value from. It was originally written to be about Marketing and turned out to be about Leadership. Amazing how much this book reflects the time that we live in, and yet it would be significant in any era. That being said…it is one that you should pick up today!

    On top of this book…anyone that manages other poeple should take a look at Ken Blanchard’s “Helping People Win at Work”. Great book for anyone in a leadership position.

  6. Great suggestions everyone, thanks for that. I’m going to probably make the final list sometime next week based on this feedback, and what I’ve gotten on Twitter.

    I think Outliers, Shock Doctrine and the Alchemist are definitely going to make the list, I downloaded the audiobooks today for my long weekend of driving. I like the sound of Tribes as well, but, sorry girls, I don’t see Twilight or Wuthering Heights making the list! I do appreciate the suggestions though 🙂

    Prize to Umberto Vagillo for best pseudonym!

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