For the past three years, I’ve had a vacation custom of reading one full book, cover to cover, during that particular trip.
This probably doesn’t sound that significant to most of you, but I’m not a speed reader. I’m not really a fast reader, either. I do alright gluing my syllables together, and usually, speed up or slow down per my engagement with the book’s storyline.
But the above scenario naturally assumes actual reading time. And that’s where this last vacation came in a little different. Instead of spending time spread over a book on a beach sipping a cold drink, this past trip we spent running around Peru, every single day! It would be nothing less of a misunderstanding to fly halfway across the world with the intention of sightseeing but sit on a beach instead, so we didn’t. And my kindle sat idle. Until the very last days of the trip, when we finally had some time to cool off in our AirBnB apartment in Lima. That’s when I started The 8th Sister by Robert Dugoni.
Below is a short list of books I’ve read cover to cover over the spread of a few short vacation days in the past few years.
2019: The 8th Sister by Robert Dugoni
I’m not sure where I saw a recommendation for this, but it was enticing enough to get me to add it to my reading list. It started of pretty hot, as a spy novel should, in Russia no less, and it took me by surprise in that I couldn’t really put it down. Once sucked in, I kept flipping through pages to the point where I officially finished the book with only minutes to spare before our plane landing in Berlin, Germany. I read half of the book in Peru, going through it somewhere above the Atlantic with a stop in Amsterdam and closing in just before Berlin. Now that’s what I call vacation reading.
2018. Small Fry by Lisa Brannan-Jobs
This book came out just before our trip to Montenegro and I spent my beach days going through it. I read it to get to know the other side of Steve Jobs, perhaps not a hero of mine, but definitely someone worth knowing about. I think the more we get to know Jobs the less we all like him. The ongoing play between genius Jobs and asshole Steve kept me wondering if I should throw my iPhone into the sea or keep on reading. Luckily I finished the book and kept my phone in one piece.
2017. Ready Player One by Ernest Cline
The recommendation for this book came from none other than Mr. Casey Neistad himself. He mentioned something along the lines of
“read it before the movie comes out”. I’ve never been a great fan of science fiction, but this book is something else entirely. The future made me think of where we’re going as the VR technology described in the book is really kind of here already. But the 80’s nostalgia was what did it for me. All the references, all the 80’s stuff, mixed in with technology and a great plot, my time spent on a Turkish beach flew by with this book open.
2016. The Everything Store by Brad Stone
The first book in what would later become my annual tradition, I came across this book while on a biography phase of my life. I had this urge to read up on people and learn how they got where they got and what, if anything, I could port over to my life. That’s still going on, by the way, the learning from smarter people part, but I haven’t read a great biography lately. In any case, Jeff Bezos and Amazon is what started my tradition, and ironically, I read all of my vacation books on an Amazon Kindle.