1. Ilya Somin, Democracy and Political Ignorance: Why Smaller Government is Smarter. From my colleague at GMU Law, I have not yet read this one.
2. Damien Ma and William Adams, In Line Behind a Billion People: How Scarcity Will Define China’s Ascent in the Next Decade. How often does a book have both a good title and subtitle these days? The authors are more pessimistic about China long-term than I am, but nonetheless this is a very interesting take on The Middle Kingdom.
3. Clare Jacobson, New Museums in China. Good text but mostly a picture book, I loved this one. Stunning architecture, no art, full of lessons in multiple areas, think of it as a Straussian picture book with beauty on its side too.
4. John Durant, The Paleo Manifesto: Ancient Wisdom for Lifelong Health. A useful overview of its topic, with an influence from Art DeVany, but you will not find recipes for either “grubs” nor “worms” here.
5. John Sides and Lynn Vavreck, The Gamble: Choice and Chance in the 2012 Presidential Election. Good, sane tome on how the fundamentals matter and lots of campaigning ends up being cancelled out by the campaign of the other candidate.
From another direction, In a World… is a subtle and entertaining movie with much economics in it, most of all the economics of superstars in the “voiceover” sector. The Autobiography of Nicolae Ceacescu is mesmerizing, like watching one of the great silent films of the past, and the scenes where the Chinese communists praise the Romanian communists are some of the best ever filmed.