With holiday breaks looming, our bloggers and avid readers contributed a list of books they enjoyed most in 2022. It’s an eclectic mix – different, yet familiar to our list from 2021. The topics and comments reflect a StarFish range of interests with a willingness to learn and share. We wish a happy holiday season and good reading to all.
Entangled Life by Merlin Sheldrake. The subtitle is “How Fungi Make Our Worlds, Change Our Minds & Shape Our Futures”. I think that what I’m learning is that fungi is like a much bigger thing in the world than just the mushrooms and shiitakes and portobellos that we have in our stir fries and risottos.
Be More Pirate I don’t know if I would call it my favorite because I don’t tend to categorize that way. But anyway, this is a fairly memorable one this year. The subtitle is “Or How to Take on the World and Win.” The author uses examples from the golden age of piracy in the 17th century as sort of exemplary traits and how to do great things. How some of the very innovative things that pirates did and how they can be applied to the world today.
The History of the Tomorrow (Homo Deus) written by Yuval Harari. Reading is limited for me, but “Homo Deus” was a book that got read this year. Originally written in Hebrew and translated to English, it is the follow-up to Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind. The author talks about human development, how we’re becoming more god-like, and how we’re changing the world with technology and things of that nature. It’s kind of cool.
The Coddling of the American Mind by Greg Lukianoff and Jonathan Haidt goes over how university students and school children aren’t being challenged as much as they used to be. It explores the defensive walls they put up and how they are taught to play against fun, challenging thoughts and ideas. I have a daughter, so I have to consider future generations and how they’re educated. And I thought this book is a great way to approach that goal.
Overcoming the Five Dysfunctions of a Team Patrick Lencioni previously wrote a book about the five dysfunctions, and it’s great, but it doesn’t really give you much advice. This is a much more digestible, informative, interesting read on how to overcome them.
Talking to Strangers by Malcolm Gladwell is a little bit less topical but enjoyable. Really challenging subject matter, but interesting stories. It makes you think. His books are great. It’s like compendiums of the best stuff.
Staying Alive by Ryan Westfield, an author of post-apocalyptic survival thrillers, is set in a post-apocalyptic world. I do not read nice books. I don’t have any favorite book at this time but I’m crazy on reading anything on the web.
The Capital Order. How Economists Invented Austerity and Paved the Way to Fascism by Clara E. Mattei is very anti-capitalist and it’s exactly what the title says it’s about. More of an exploration of how we usually look at the economy and stuff and how we evaluate its impact on society. This has usually been from the perspective of the people who have money, but not necessarily from the perspective of people. There’s not been a lot of social sciences exploring that stuff or at least when these systems are implemented. It’s very anti-capitalist, but it’s kind of interesting given all the world events going on.
Dune by Frank Herbert is a less serious book. It was a really good read and has nothing to do with any of the topics suggested by others. This is an escapist journey.
The Stormlight Archives from Brandon Sanderson was just one of the things I hadn’t read. It’s very much a fantasy fiction kind of thing and the book itself is “The Way of Kings”. Super old, I think. This is a decade old.
Everything Everywhere All at Once is a movie, not a book. It’s probably up for some awards and all that stuff. The premise is we’re one universe in a bunch of other universes. The characters have an ability to go to all their different lives and universes. It’s quite amazing to see a movie with so many thoughts crammed into every second, visually interesting, and one fun ride.
The Fault in our Stars by John Green – Even though the book has a sad ending, it teaches on living in the moment and enjoying all those little things in life which matters. It helped me to appreciate the things I have in life right now and feel gratitude for how far I have come. 😊
Anis: No Land to Light On by Yara Zgheib – Well, this drama turned out to be a great mystery and thriller which engaged me throughout. It depicts the struggles of immigrants and how it can change your entire life where you could gain but lose a lot on the other side. This story shows similarities in the struggle of a couple and the political turmoil which is impacting our society big time.
Full Catastrophe Living by Jon Kabat-Zinn is all about the powerful benefits of mindfulness. I liked what it said about not being able to “taste the food by reading the menu”. In other words, mindfulness is a practice and only by its practical application can the benefits be reaped.
The Kaiju Preservation Society” by John Scalzi – The author calls it the book equivalent of a pop song – a light, catchy and highly entertaining sci-fi novel. It is set during Covid times and gives insights into how Godzilla (kaiju) might have entered our world. “They’re the universe’s largest and most dangerous panda and they’re in trouble.” I highly recommend it.
Leadership by Doris Kearns Goodwin – I have a ton of fiction/mystery books I read and loved this year, but my favorite overall book was which was a fascinating combination of history and biography of 3 hugely impactful US Presidents.
Partnering by Jean Oelwang – She suggests that partners should look for a different analogy than two pieces of a puzzle fitting together. When you look for missing puzzle pieces, she suggests you are looking for a piece of yourself. Her preferred analogy is Lego pieces. What a brilliant way to think of partnering on so many levels. First, it’s 3D not 2D. Second, creativity can abound and third, it can change as people evolve.
I’m noticing a theme here of families in my top books of the year…
Black Cake by Charmaine Wilkerson is a captivating multigenerational family story. It looks at how past secrets impact and shape the current generation, who are unaware of those secrets’ existence.
The Strangers by Katherena Vermette is a deep, impactful story of family connections, trauma and hope for the future. Katherena, a Metis writer, explores race and class in this story.
Malibu Rising by Taylor Jenkins Reid (Author of the Seven husbands of Evelyn Hugo and Daisy Jones and The Six) – Looking into the lives of 4 famous siblings and the 24 hours that surround their annual summer party in 1983.
Is a favorite read missing from our list? We’d love to hear which books floated readers’ boats in 2022.
Astero StarFish is the attributed author of StarFish Medical team blogs. We value teamwork and collaborate on all of our medical device development projects.