1. Yukio Mishima, The Sailor Who Fell From Grace With the Sea. Yes compelling, and a sufficiently influential book that you should read it. But aren’t you ever tempted to ask: has anyone ever behaved like that?
2. Rutger Bregman, Humankind: A Hopeful History. An elegantly written book, offering an optimistic take on human nature and cooperativeness. I am not sure there is anything fundamentally new in here, but I did in fact read and finish it.
3. Juan Williams, Thurgood Marshall: American Revolutionary. A very good and readable biography of exactly what it promises, also manages to avoid hagiography.
4. R. James Breiding, Too Small to Fail: Why some small nations outperform larger ones and how they are reshaping the world. A very useful book expanding on the theme that smaller nations have the potential to be much better governed and thus to have smarter policy and greater accountability.
I have not yet read Steven Johnson, Enemy of All Mankind: A True Story of Piracy, Power, and History’s First Global Manhunt, but in general I enjoy his works and find them smart.
There is also Jim Tankersley, The Riches of This Land: The untold, true story of America’s middle class.
Richard W. Hamming, The Art of Doing Science and Engineering: Learning to Learn is the latest Stripe Press blockbuster. Here is more information about the book.