Books of 2013:
This year books took a back seat as I hit the open roads and trails of Sudamerica, the most enthralling continent I have ever encountered and never intend to leave. Books I read were mostly recommended by fellow travelers and one of the most important being Open Veins of Latin America. It was recommended to me by an older traveler I met in Bolivia who sold everything he owned (house, car, boat, etc) to move to La Paz and ride bikes, a long time dream of his.
This book solidified every vague idea and fact I had ever heard about the struggle and fight of the riches and subsequent pillage over five centuries of a continent so diverse and magical. Natural wealth creates exploitation poverty in the people who possess it. This is the first book I have ever read which stirred so much anger and emotion for a land and a people who deserved more. Eduardo Galeano only further ignited my passion for this culture and world. More than just a chronology, historical scholarship, or essay, his book told the story of a whole people that I fell in love with.
It is my most highly regarded book thus far.
Another book, which I read long after returning to Australia, was a thoroughly entertaining and informative read, Desmond Morris’ Human Zoo. A study that concerns the city dweller. I highly recommend it to anyone interested in behavioral psychology of the urban animal in similar comparison to the captive zoo animal.
“We describe killings as men behaving ‘like animals’, but if we could find a wild animal that showed signs of acting this way, it would be more precise to describe it as animals behaving like men.”
Other notable mentions: Siddhartha, Shock Doctrine, Even Cowgirls Get The Blues, Confessions of An Economic Hitman, The Stranger, Patagonia, Atlas Shrugged.
Libros para 2014:
I spent little time in 2o13 focusing on fiction and creative literature. In fact I spent very little time reading at all. This year I want to return to stories of imagination as well as learning more about world history, a topic I feel greatly uneducated on.
Todos los fuegos el fuego (Julio Cortazar), John Steinbeck, Graham Greene, The Lawless Roads, Johnny Got His Gun, Ancient and Modern History, Anais Nin, The Sound of Things Falling, Reminiscence of the Cuban Revolutionary War, Mario Vargas Llosa.