October 2022 Reading Recap

I had no idea that I could get burned out on reading, but that is exactly what happened after I read 100 books in 9 months. I took it easy the rest of 2022 and only finished a few books each month.

Here is what I read in October 2022:

The Oregon Trail: A New American Journey by Rinker Buck

I originally started reading this book several years ago. I read about halfway before setting it aside. I picked this book back up and listened to the audio version.

Growing up I loved playing the Oregon Trail computer game. This book tells the story of a modern crossing of the Oregon Trail, paired with mini-history lessons along the way. Rinker Buck is a good writer who draws the reader in and brings them along on the adventure. I especially liked the storytelling around the logistics of the Oregon Trail experience, how they fed themselves and the animals, maintained the equipment along the journey, etc. If you are interested in the Oregon Trail, this was an enjoyable read.

Mastering the Art of French Eating: Lessons in Food and Love from a Year in Paris by Ann Mah

Published in 2013, this book had been on my radar for a while. It was a fun, easy read/listen. It is a great book for anyone who loves to cook and especially for those who like France. I liked how the different chapters were focused one particular dish. I learned a lot about different cooking styles and food movements. I did skip one chapter on sausage, as someone who prefers not to eat meat, it grossed me out too much to listen to that chapter. 

Doing Good Better: How Effective Altruism Can Help You Make a Difference by William MacAskill

When I was at Yale Divinity School, I first learned about effective altruism. William MacAskill is a leader in that movement. Earlier in the year when I read How to Be Perfect by Michael Schur, I think Schur mentioned MacAskill’s work. Doing Good Better was a great introduction to the effective altruism movement. The philosophy gave me a lot to think about and reflect on.

Reading Lolita in Tehran: A Memoir in Books by Azar Nafisi

The protests in Iran began in mid-September 2022 and a friend finished this book around the same time. I had a copy that had been collecting dust on my shelf for a while. I finally picked it up. It was not really what I expected. I struggled with the author’s jumping around in time. This book was a best-seller when it was first published in 2003. I felt like the book showed its age. Popular non-fiction has shifted a lot in the past 20 years. I’m glad that I finally read this book, but it wasn’t a favorite.

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