Bill Gates 2021 Book List
Bill Gates has had plenty of time to read this year – at least that’s what he says in the introduction to his holiday book list. And it’s like, we figured it out, Bill; you are rich and really have time to read for fun. No need to rub it.
In a redemptive turn, however, he has collaborated with a number of local independent booksellers to offer sets of his selected readings, and it has to be admitted that this is solid programming, especially for anyone with a penchant for science fiction.
There will be 100 sets available for pickup on a first come, first served basis today and tomorrow, November 23, at the following bookstores: Elliott Bay Book Company, Paper boat booksellers, Phinney Books, Madison Books, and University bookstore. Now let’s move on to the playlist.
A thousand brains: a new theory of intelligence, Jeff Hawkins
Gates calls neuroscientist Jeff Hawkins’ second book “modest progress in suggesting brain structure,” which may seem like modest praise. But when it comes to an issue as complex as human cognition and neurophysiology, it is, in fact, a resounding endorsement. Hawkins addresses the biggest question on the ground: How do brain cells come together to form something as large and abstract as intelligence?
The Code Breaker: Jennifer Doudna, gene editing and the future of the human race, Walter Isaacson
Gates claims to be a great admirer of Isaacson’s work, which includes biographies of Steve Jobs, Benjamin Franklin, and Leonardo DaVinci. Nobel Prize-winning biochemist Jennifer Doudna joins these distinguished ranks in her latest book, which explores the radically revolutionary development of the CRISPR method of gene editing and its implications for the future of humanity.
Klara and the Sun, Kazuo Ishiguro
This speculative work of fiction by British novelist Kazuo Ishiguro (The leftovers of the day and Never let Me Go) reflects a philosophical foundation that unites all of Gates’ selections; it meditates on the nature of consciousness and intelligence and examines how technology shapes our perception of ourselves as individuals and as a species, through the story of a dystopian future where children are optimized through genetic engineering and mainly socialize with their robot companions when they attend. school from home (does that sound a little too true to you? That’s sort of the point).
Hamnet, Maggie O’Farrell
A slight reprieve from the strong science fiction penchant for other selections, this historical fictional novel won last year’s National Book Critics Circle Award with its moving and deeply personal take on one of the most popular literary figures. most imposing and mythical in history.
Hail Mary Project, Andy weir
The lone survivor of a desperate and ultimate mission to save the human race awakens with his memory in tatters millions of miles from the nearest sentient life form, or so he believes. From the author of The Martian, this new work by Andy Weir completes the list with high science fiction.