5 Books I’m Excited to Read in 2019

By Jeff Palmer, CEO on February 25, 2019 | Print

I just shared my favorite reads from 2018, but I also want to tell you about the five books I’m most looking forward to reading in 2019. Once again, as a part of my daily walk and spiritual discipline, I plan to read through the Bible twice this year. But here are the other books I’m excited about getting to know (or re-know, in one case).

1. A Splendid Exchange: How Trade Shaped the World (2008)
by William J. Berstein

I have already started this book, and I’m intrigued by the author’s premise of how trade shapes our world. Case in point, when you drank your coffee this morning, you probably didn’t think about the coffee coming from North Africa, the sugar from the Caribbean, or the cup from China. You just drank your coffee. I am looking forward to the discussions of the ancient silk routes all the way up to modern globalization!

2. The Price of Inequality: How Today’s Divided Society Endangers Our Future (2012)
by Joseph E. Stiglitz

Ever since I read Capital by Piketty, I have been intrigued by the inequality of capital and wages in the modern Western world. I look forward to reading (and trying to wrap my head around) what Nobel Prize-winner Joseph Stiglitz sees as an endangerment to our future: a growing inequality.

3. The Economics of International Development: Foreign Aid versus Freedom for the World’s Poor (2016)
by William Easterly

Easterly has been one of my favorite authors on development throughout the years (The Elusive Quest for Growth (2001), The White Man’s Burden (2006), The Tyranny of Experts (2014)—yes, I’ve read them all!). He is an outspoken critic of foreign aid, seeing it in many cases causing and exacerbating problems in developing countries (e.g. poor governance, bad economic policies, propping up corrupt authoritative regimes). This newest work purports great progress and hope for the development of the poorest people but that, contrary to popular belief, “foreign aid has on average probably no effect on long-run growth.” He proposes “advocacy for more freedom for poor people, for more political and economic rights.” I look forward to this read, even though it will probably take me the better part of the year to wade through it.

4. Boone: A Biography (2007)
by Robert Morgan

This is (one of) my guilty pleasures for 2019. I grew up in Tennessee. I spent time in school in Kentucky. I grew up watching “Daniel Boone” on television and even had a record with the Daniel Boone theme song. I might even have to get a coonskin hat to wear while reading this one. I’m saving it for a long flight.

5. The Celebration of Discipline (1997)
by Richard Foster

This is one of those modern spiritual classics that I return to and reread every few years. This year, I plan to take my time, enjoy it, and learn once again the joy of exercising the spiritual disciplines. For those who have not read this classic before, I highly recommend it. Foster discusses the spiritual disciplines in three categories: the inward, the outward, and the corporate disciplines. All are disciplines with one purpose: to draw closer and into God.

So, I’ve shared with you five of my reads that I’m planning for 2019. I have several more on my list but always room for one or two more. Comment below and let me know what you’re reading and you might convince me to join you!

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