2021 Reading List – 1/4

2021 Reading List – 1/4

It’s 2021 baby! We’re just about a fourth of the way through the new year and the world feels like it’s starting to come back to life. It finally feels as if more people are getting the vaccine than are getting Covid and we can start figuring out how to exist together again.

Here are the books I’ve read since January of 2021 with my rating for them (5 being the best) along with a brief review. Any book without a number rating has been given to me by the author or publisher.

In addition to this list, you might also check out:

Click on any of the titles below to get to a link to buy it. (Disclaimer: As an Amazon Associate, I may earn commissions from qualifying purchases from Amazon.com).


Life Axioms – Part 2

Click here to see all posts in this series.

Earlier this year I read an entertaining book called “Living with a Seal” by Jesse Itzler where he literally hires a Navy Seal to privately train (and live with) him for a month. It’s a hilarious read to be sure. There’s an offhanded comment in the book about how Jesse only eats fruit till noon. I had never heard of this concept and was intrigued when I read it. He said he got it from a book he read almost three decades before.

That book is called “Fit for Life” by Harvey and Marilyn Diamond. Of course, I then had to read that book as well (I love it when good books connect me to other good books!). The book is about nutrition and specifically how your body processes the food you eat. There’s a number of interesting concepts in the book (I don’t really follow the other ones) but the primary one is about only eating fruit in the morning. I decided to try it myself and this has since become an axiom I live by.

Life Axiom: Only eat fruit till noon.


Life Axioms – Part 1

I’m going to begin a new blog series on something I’ve been thinking about lately. We all have ideas that shape how we act and why. I’ve been trying to recognize what those are for me and put words to them. Once you recognize what they are in your life, you can decide if you like them as is or if they need to be refined.

I’m still working on my list, but I think they’ll make for an interesting blog series. These are in no particular order, and I’m not even sure how many I’ll ultimately have. Without further ado, here’s one for you.

Life Axiom: Talk to people in your home only when you can see them.


Jesus and John Wayne

After hearing tons of people talk about Kristin Kobes Du Mez’s book Jesus and John Wayne, I now fully appreciate what the hype is all about. She manages to articulate decades of development of the Church in America. Her journalistic abilities are impressive and she’s clearly done her homework.

Essentially, she explores how Donald Trump came to be dominantly supported (and empowered) by Christian voters. Spoiler alert: it wasn’t an anomaly. I would strongly recommend this book to every Christian, especially every Christian guy.

Here are a few quotes to give you a taste:


10,000 Steps to Being More Open-Minded

Most people are raised with ideas that are collectively treated as true. These may include ideas like:

  • Don’t go to bed angry
  • Drink eight glasses of water a day
  • You shouldn’t crack your knuckles
  • You need eight hours of sleep a night
  • Never swallow gum
  • Don’t swim immediately after eating

For kids who grow up in a religious home, this is especially the case. They are raised with generations of beliefs and traditions handed down (and usually enforced) to them. For Christians, they could be strict adherence to the Ten Commandments, or a specific way of reading the Bible, or a grouping of theological doctrines to agree with (and the other doctrines to disagree with). Much of the time, being given these types of lessons is a blessing as it allows you to glean wisdom from those who have gone before you.


My New Favorite Interview Question

I’ve interviewed hundreds of people in my career. Most of the people turned out to be a great fit, but as anyone in the hiring role knows, you are ultimately making a guess at how someone will do in a role that you haven’t seen them do in your organization. And sometimes you guess wrong.

I’ll never forget interviewing one guy as I began our time by lobbing him the easiest open-ended question I had: “So, tell me a little about yourself.” I then watched in bizarre amazement as he paused for a few moments, looked around awkwardly, and replied, “I don’t know, tell me about you.” That potential hire was an easy pass and a short interview.