The first 2 months of 2018 have almost gone but wait, I’m not really ready for 2018 yet!!!
I don’t have much memory of the last two months apart from me working long hours for the painful project I’m involved. All has been a bit of blur and in a couple of days’ time, it’ll be March. Hopefully from now on I can take a little breather and actually think about the year ahead. One of the things I surely want to do is to continue reading but first of all, let’s recap what I finished reading in 2017.

My plan for last year was to read at least 12 books, averaging 1 book per month. Seems a low target considering some people can finish 1 book per week but I didn’t quite get there. Nevertheless, it still feels ok when I list all the books here. At least I finished some books I started reading years ago but never managed to go beyond 100 pages before 2017, such as Catch 22 and One Hundred Years Of Solitude.

1. War and Peace (Tolstoy)
2. For Whom The Bell Tolls (Ernest Hemingway)
3. Tender Is The Night (F. Scott Fitzgerald)
4. 1984 (George Orwell) – I started reading this a few years ago but felt too depressed to finish it.
5. Gone with the Wind (Margaret Mitchell)
6. One Hundred Years of Solitude (Gabriel Garcia Marquez)
7. Catch 22 (Joseph Heller)
8. Book 1 of The Christmas Stories: A Christmas Carol (Charles Dickens)
9. The total Money Makeover (Dave Ramsey)
10. The 100 – A Ranking Of The Most Influential Persons In History (Michael Hart)

I loved reading all the above books except for The Total Money Makeover because it’s such a basic book targeting financial illiterate audience in my opinion.

There are a couple of other classic books that I started years ago but never managed to go past 50 pages:  Lord Jim and Moby Dick. Maybe I’ll give it another go later. Contrary to 2017, this year is off to a very slow start on the reading front. I haven’t started any new book and I’m still finishing off The Great Philosophers that was intended to be finished last year.

The good news is, I’ll have slightly more time from now onwards and I’m ecstatic to be able to do things that give me more pleasure than stress!


read books

We all have a book (or books) that we have read multiple times. Some people reading this will find the concept of rereading odd, which makes sense on a logical level. Why would you reread something when there are so many new, exciting books to discover? The world is full of book recommendations, classics to sink your teeth into, choices from great lists that just demand to be read – so why do we keep going back to well-thumbed tomes?

Reason 1: Rereading Is Comforting

When we read a book for the first time, we don’t know it. Even if we have read something by the same author, there’s still a chance we won’t like the book, or it will have a twist that we don’t enjoy. There’s an element of trepidation at every page turn, right down to worrying about the fates of our favourite characters. With a great book, it’s a great experience – but it’s also a little bit scary.

We don’t have that sense of nervousness about the plot devolving or a beloved character meeting an untimely demise when we reread. We know how the story goes and what we need to prepare ourselves for. There’s no surprises and sometimes in life, you just want something comforting and predictable.

Reason 2: It’s Easier

There’s no doubt that reading takes some brain power. You have to summon up the energy to let the words on the page form pictures in your mind, think about plotlines, try and anticipate what’s going to happen next.

That doesn’t happen when we reread. You can almost do it on autopilot, enjoying the story but not really having to involve ourselves with it. We can read a “who dunnit” or see characters speculate about the motivations of someone, all safe in the knowledge that we already know the answer.

If this is the primary reason that you reread, it is worth trying out something from those “top 10” lists once in awhile. Reading should be pleasurable, but it should also test you on occasion – maybe try one new book for every three that you allow yourself to reread? After all, you’re going to need something new to reread eventually!

Reason 3: We Struggle To Find What We Like

If you only have an interest in a very narrow genre, then there might be a limited supply of stories available to you. In this case, why not try something in a genre you would normally go out of your way to avoid? See what’s recommended by fans of that genre and dive right in – you might be surprised at how much you like it.


keep readingI’ve been making conscious effort to develop good habits and stick to them lately and reading books everyday is one of those habits that I’d hope to stick to.

Looking around the house and in my e-reader, there are so many books that I just started reading but quit within the first 50 pages. With my reinforced determination, things are getting slowly better now. Adding to the list of finished books from last time, I finished reading Gone With The Wind and One Hundred Years of Solitude in the past month. So up till now this year, I’ve finished and throughly enjoyed these books:

War and Peace

For Whom The Bell Tolls

Tender Is The Night


Gone with the Wind

One Hundred Years of Solitude

Obviously I’m a slow reader but that’ll improve with time too! Right now I’m reading Catch 22, a book I started many times but never managed to go beyond 30 pages. It’s a very old paperback, the pages are now falling apart after all these years but this time I’ll finish reading it within a month:). Keep reading – that’s a promise.


2017-03-25 readingCurrently I’m on a quest to read as many good novels as possible. Though once upon a time I thought reading novels is a waste of time and devoted my spare time on self improvement books, I really missed the sophisticated writing style that most self improvement books don’t possess.

Last months I finished a few books that I started but quit reading a while ago:

For WhomThe Bell Tolls by Ernest Hemingway. Why I didn’t I finish reading this book at the first go? I felt it was going too slow – it took more than 300 pages to describe a 3 day event. I simply didn’t have the patience to read all those conversation with so much Spanish elements and the details went through Robert Jordan’s mind.

But reading all those self improvement books have taught me to be patient so I set on reading the book again. Omg, how glad I am to have finished this book and how I admire Hemingway as one of the greatest writers! I got goosebumps at the end of the narration. The ending touched me so much and I still get goosebumps whenever I think about it. I guest that’s the power of a good book hey.

Tender Is The Night. For something reason this book didn’t grab me as much as The Great Gatsby did. I loved reading The Great Gatsby and finished it without stopping. Tender Is the Night on the on hand, started really slow to me. For a while, I thought Rosemary would be the main character.  But as the story went on, I couldn’t let go of the book. I cared more and more about Dick Diver’s fate while hopelessly wishing he’d pick himself up again. But Scott Fitzergerald just didn’t write any happy ending books, did he. My heart sank for days and days after finishing reading the book. I simple can’t get rid of notion that Life Is Pain. Maybe that’s why I stopped reading novels – I could get too emotionally involved.

1984 by George Orwell.  Why I couldn’t finish reading it at first? I thought it was too painful. Too painful to go through the endless lies and manipulation by the evil inner party; to painful to face the torturous experience Wilson Smith went through. Yes it was all fiction but I didn’t have the mental strength to deal with it all. But you see, if I couldn’t deal with the pain depicted in a book , how can I deal with real life’s problems? With that thought in mind, I read the whole book. Still can’t help but say: How clever was George Orwell.

Right now, I’m reading Gone with the Wind, by Margaret Mitchell, a book that I read many times in Chinese version and know the story inside out. It is a much easier read compared to the 3 books above though it’s still kind of sad. I love the English version and have more than 1000 pages to enjoy.

My “To read” list consists 2 books I’ve been trying to read since 2000 but never managed to finish:

One Hundred Years of Solitude

Catch 22;

a self- improvement book someone recommended to me a couple of days ago: The Power of Asking and a book I’ve started earlier this year: The Great Philosophers.

read more

I’m loving my amazon kindle and bringing it with me almost all the time. After 1500 pages of War and Peace, I’ve been taking my time to decide what’s to read the next, preferably not a novel or a self help book. I’m leaning towards genres like history, biography, philosophy this time. The questions is: which book?

read more

There are lots of books in my parents house. I used to only read the novels to indulge my dreaming nature.

Now that I am fully aware of my weaknesses and have no time to waste, my reading list of this year consists of books targeting the areas that I’m not familiar with at all.

There are books that are highly engaging and I’d love to go back and read again. One book seemed to be a struggle for me to finish but I finished it any way. For my personal record, from January to date, I’ve finished the following books:

1. Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion

by Robert B. Cialdini

2. The Honest Truth About Dishonesty

by Dan Ariely

3. The Happiness Advantage (audio book)

by Shawn Achor

4. Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less

by: Greg McKeown

5. Think and Grow Rich (audio book)

by: Napoleon Hill

6. Ziglar on Selling (audio book)

By: Zig Ziglar

7. Goals (audio book)

By: Zig Ziglar

8. Secrets of Closing the Sale (audio book)

By: Zig Ziglar

9. Getting to Yes

By:Roger Fisher, William L. Ury, Bruce Patton 

10. Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin

I’m in the process of making notes to help me to remember (and hopefully make use of)  the concepts that I’ve read. Absolutely love the process of reading & will continue to do so indefinitely.

Currently reading From Good To Great.