My 2014-2015 Reading List

Here it is! The second summary edition of my year's worth of reading (for reference, here's the first year). From April 2014 to March 2015, I've managed to read, and learn from, a total of 76 books. That's 143 in total since becoming truly free to pursue.

I feel truly blessed to have the opportunity to dive into so many exciting topics that offer guidance on both a personal and professional level.

I've always considered myself a perpetual student, but now my curriculum is self-determined. I go where curiosity takes me next because I feel I get more out of material for which I have a keen interest. The information has a tendency to stick a great deal more, too, when we're deeply engaged. The last two years have certainly been an exciting time, and it's even more exciting to be able to share some of this information and related insights with you via this blog.

As an aside: If you want to get a sense of the insights I've gained from becoming an avid reader, you may want to check out this post.

The books below represent the full list of what piqued my interest sufficiently to read cover to cover over the past year. If they become favourites, then I'll eventually add them to my recommendations.*


Areas of focus this year have included adding more fiction—which I've been lousy at doing because I keep starting them and not finishing them, reading in my native tongue (French) and reading in the areas of philosophy, psychology, finance, economics, writing/presenting, entrepreneurship, travel hacking, technology and health. I managed to cover all except for travel hacking, probably because I don't expect to travel as much in the coming year (only two trips planned so far, both in the US: Charlotte, North Carolina and the second has yet to be determined at the time of this writing). I also read some reference books in preparation for trips I took during the summer of 2014: the World Domination Summit in July, an African Safari in August and FinCon14 in New Orleans in September.

Sources for My Ever-growing Wish List

A number of the books on my "read it" list were recommended by Chris Guillebeau, Eric BarkerJ. MoneyMr. GrumpThe Escape Artist, Raptitude, The Minimalists, and Flannel Guy ROI. As mentioned in an earlier version of this review, I also become aware of potential selections from sources such as Ted, documentaries available on Netflix and Vimeo, and "further reading" ideas within books I'm currently reading.

Sometimes, I feel I've struck a gold vein. I find a topic I'm excited about and follow the book recommendations from one author to the next. That happened in serious fashion this year with a slight obsession around the hot topics of happiness, income inequality and behavioural economics.

Another source of inspiration for what to read next is based on the need to research a topic I want to write about on this blog. This desire to offer well-informed commentary lead me to read books about the philosophy of The Matrix, anti-consumerism, motivation and happiness.

I do also appreciate the suggestions I receive from my beloved local library and from reader comments. Any way of narrowing down the myriad of reading options available is always helpful because, no matter how voracious one's appetite, there's simply no way to read it all.

I also had the pleasure of making an unexpected discovery by reviewing the book Gold Diggers and Deadbeat Dads by Valerie Rind. I appreciated having the opportunity to do my first draft book review and help out a great individual at the same time. I look forward to reading her next book, which she's already hard at work on.

A Year In Books

Without further ado, here's my year of reading in review, from least to most recent:






September (Can you tell I was exhausted after coming back from Africa?):





  • Give It Up: My Year of Learning to Live Better With Less by Mary Carlomagno
  • The Small Big: Small Changes That Spark Big Influence by Steve J. Martin, Noah J. Goldstein and Robert B. Cialdini
  • Spent: Exposing our Complicated Relationship with Shopping, edited by Kerry Cohen
  • Zen Habits: Handbook for life by Leo Balboa
  • How The Mighty Fall: And Why Some Companies Never Give In by Jim Collins
  • The Martian by Andy Weir
  • Crush It: Why NOW Is the Time to Cash In on Your Passion by Gary Vanweiser


  • On Writing - A Memoir of the Craft by Stephen King
  • Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us by Daniel H. Pink
  • Consumerology: The Truth about Consumers and the Psychology of Shopping by Philip Graves
  • Nudge: Improving Decisions About Health, Wealth, and Happiness by Richard Thaler and Cass R. Sunstein
  • The Two-Income Trap: Why Middle-Class Parents are Going Broke by Elizabeth Warren
  • House of Cards by Michael Dobbs
  • The Art of Travel by Alain de Botton

March (Apparently, I went on a reading rampage!):

  • Buyology: Truth and Lies About Why We Buy by Martin Lindstrom
  • Sway: The Irresistible Pull of Irrational Behavior by Ori Brafman and Rom Brafman
  • Selling Sickness: How the World's Biggest Pharmaceutical Companies Are Turning Us All Into Patients by Ray Moynihan
  • Dumbing Us Down: The Hidden Curriculum of Compulsory Schooling by John Taylor Gatto
  • How We Got to Now: Six Innovations That Made the Modern World by Steven Johnson
  • The Great Cholesterol Myth: Why Lowering Your Cholesterol Won't Prevent Heart Disease by Jonny Bowden and Dr. Stephen Sinatra 
  • The Upside of Irrationality: The Unexpected Benefits of Defying Logic at Work and at Home
  • Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn
  • Minimalism: Live a Meaningful Life by Joshua Fields Millburn & Ryan Nicodemus
  • So Good They Can't Ignore You: Why Skills Trump Passion in the Quest for Work you Love by Cal Newport
  • Pound Foolish: Exposing the Dark Side of the Personal Finance Industry by Helaine Olen
  • Eat That Frog: 21 Great Ways to Stop Procrastinating and Get More Done in Less Time by Brian Tracy
  • The End of Memory: A Natural History of Aging and Alzheimer's by Jay Ingram

What's Up Next?

I'm going to maintain my interest in the topics of happiness, finance, education and philosophy for a while. I'm also keen on adding more fiction to my reading list because I'm realizing I've been giving fiction short shrift. I feel the lessons we can learn about what it means to live a good life often ooze out of many fictional stories and I appreciate feeling like I can get in a character's head. Finally, I'll be diving into more of the classics, such as Thoreau and Frankl. 

Curious to Know What I'm Reading Now?

Also, you may have noticed the relatively recent addition of a "Currently Reading" and "Just Finished" sections in this blog's sidebar. I added these new sections based on the number of inquiries I was receiving. Peeking at this sidebar is the best way to see what I've recently read and where I'm headed next. I usually update it every week or so, depending on how many books I manage to devour. A word of caution though, some of my "Currently Reading" end up being trashed in favour of better selections if they can't keep my interest. I'd suggest going with "Just Finished" instead to know what I've enjoyed and likely what I'll be writing about next.

I've already managed to start off my third year of reading by indulging in four books this month. I guess it's true that the more we read, the more we want to read. 

What about you? Anything in the list above you loved? Hated? Any recommendations you might have that I can add to my never-ending future reading list or that would help other visitors decide what to read next? And, if you have any questions about the titles above, drop me a line or leave a comment and I'll be sure to respond.

*As mentioned in my previous updates, my recommendations list does need to be updated and a number of books from this year will undoubtedly make the list.

***This one is a children's book, but the pictures are spectacular. A delight to read.

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