The 8 Best Things I Read This Year

This is a quick list of the best things I read this year. I didn’t write much — there are only 4 posts on my blog for 2015. Welp. The list includes a mix of stories, poems, books and long essays in no particular order. To go to each read, click the name of the writer and the title. Don’t forget to share when you’re done :).

  1. Carmen Maria Machado -The Husband Stitch

The Husband Stitch is a story on Granta about a woman and her lover and a weird bow on her neck. I love this story because it is very descriptive and emotional. They say I love “people” stories. You’ll see a lot of them on this list.

2. Wale Lawal — Absence

Wale Lawal is known in the Nigerian Twitterverse for his witty tweets and sarcasm. This is a story of a young boy in the Mushin area of Lagos and the battles the boy faces as he moves into adolescence. Yes, this is a “people” story.

3. Eghonghon Aye — How It Happened

This is the story that inspired this list. Eghonghon writes about growing up in a neighbourhood littered with Baba Fryo cassettes left behind by an Igbo smoking man called “Birdman”. There’s a large probability I like this story because of the Baba Fryo cassette. How It Happened is on ArtsAndAfrica — an arts and literary site that showcases young African artists.

4. Randall Munroe — The Space Doctor’s Big Idea

Randall Munroe at the New Yorker explains Einstein’s theory of relativity in the most simple grammar ever. While reading this, I realised that I did not understand this aspect of A-level Physics.

5. Jessica Misener — The Bible Written In New York City Blog Voice

Over the years while hanging out with my friends, I have imagined what it’ll be like if events in the Bible happened now. If Jesus was baptised and a voice came from heaven, it’ll definitely be a Twitter trending topic. I find that a lot of people shy away from things like this because of the fear of “Blasphemy”(It’s also why they don’t question the things they’re told in Church but that’s another topic entirely). Jessica Misener writes the creation story in Chapter 1 of Genesis in a New York City Blog voice. It is brilliant and beautiful. Unfortunately, the Medium magazine it shows up in, Absurdist, will be shutting down soon.

6. Arundhati Roy — The God of Small Things

Esthappen and Rahel are absolutely beautiful and innocent children who just want to be happy. They’re living quite a confused life with their father away from them and their uncle telling them about communism while he manages a failing canned pickle factory. This is easily the best book I’ve read all year. My sister didn’t like this because “It’s just too sad”.

7. Stephen Wolfram — Untangling the tale of Ada Lovelace

If you’ve ever been through a primary or secondary school ‘Computer Science’ class, you’ll be familiar with Ada Lovelace. You were probably told she was the first programmer — which is kind of right. Mostly right. Stephen Wolfram, who is a big deal in the Mathematics and Computer world, did some research on Ada Lovelace and Charles Babbage and wrote this detailed essay about them. My take from this story is that networks of people are very important — whether they’re friends(Ada was Lord Byron’s daughter, Babbage was friends with Michael Faraday and Florence Nightingale), family or people in our industry over the Internet. Looking at you anti-Yaba Right people.

8. Paul Ford — What Is Code? If You Don’t Know, You Need to Read This

Paul Ford writes for Bloomberg, the most brilliant essay on code, programming, why programming is difficult, programming languages and why desktop software programmers are incredible douches. If you’re ever curious about programming, you should read this. I promise it’s simple to understand.

Hey, you made it to the end without dying :). If you liked this, please hit the recommend button and share. If you’ve got any great reads from this year, please add them in the responses section. Thanks.

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