My Reading List for 2021

by | Jan 19, 2021 | Leadership

Like many of you, I create a reading list for the upcoming year. 

What many people might not know is that my reading list is divided into themes. The reason for this is (1) I want variety in the books I read; (2) I want to focus my reading around a few key topics and/or skills; and (3) I always want to incorporate fiction in my reading.

Before sharing my themes and the books within those themes, I do want to make one note. Don’t get too caught up into the amount of books on my list. My goal is to read 38 books this year. (If I accomplish this, it’s the most I will have read in a year.) Now, I know successful people who read less than me and others who read more. The key when it comes to reading, like most other things, is quality over quantity. As Charles Spurgeon said, “Little learning and much pride comes from hasty reading.” 

Read to gain knowledge and insight. Read to learn a new skill or refine an existing strength. Read for pleasure and inspiration. Just make sure that whatever you read, you allow those books to benefit both your personal development and also add value to the lives of the people around you. 

Here is my reading list for 2021 categorized by their themes (all links are affiliate links):


Mental Toughness

  1. The Obstacle is the Way by Ryan Holiday
  2. Ego is the Enemy by Ryan Holiday
  3. Stillness is the Key by Ryan Holiday
  4. Toughness Training for Life by James E. Loehr
  5. It Takes What It Takes by Trevor Moawad
  6. The Power of Other by Dr. Henry Cloud
  7. Option B by Sheryl Sandberg and Adam Grant
  8. Discipline=Freedom by Jocko Willink


Strengths/Personal Development

  1. Now Discover Your Strengths by Marcus Buckingham and Donald Clifton
  2. Strengths Based Leadership by Tom Rath
  3. Emotional Intelligence by Daniel Goleman
  4. 12 Rules for Life by Jordan Peterson



  1. The Prince by Niccolo Machiavelli
  2. The Starbucks Experience by Joseph Michelli


Fiction: C.S. Lewis

  1. The Magician’s Nephew by C.S. Lewis
  2. The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis
  3. The Horse and His Boy by C.S. Lewis
  4. Prince Caspian by C.S. Lewis
  5. The Voyage of the Dawn Treader by C.S. Lewis
  6. The Silver Chair by C.S. Lewis
  7. The Last Battle by C.S. Lewis
  8. Out of the Silent Planet by C.S. Lewis
  9. Perelandra by C.S. Lewis
  10. That Hideous Strength by C.S. Lewis


Nonfiction: C.S. Lewis

  1. Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis
  2. The Problem of Pain by C.S. Lewis
  3. The Great Divorce by C.S. Lewis
  4. A Grief Observed by C.S. Lewis
  5. The Screwtape Letters by C.S. Lewis
  6. The Weight of Glory by C.S. Lewis


Autobiography/Biography: C.S. Lewis

  1. Surprised by Joy: The Shape of My Early Life by C.S. Lewis
  2. C.S. Lewis–A Life: Eccentric, Genius, Reluctant Prophet by Alister McGrath
  3. C.S. Lewis: A Biography by A.N. Wilson



  1. The Meaning of Marriage by Tim Keller
  2. Cherish by Gary Thomas



  1. The Question of God by Dr. Armand Nicholi, Jr.
  2. The Practice of the Presence of God by Brother Lawrence
  3. Aesop’s Fables


Game Plan

What’s on your reading list for 2021?

I’d love to hear about it. Write a comment below or connect with me on social media. Tell me which books you’re looking forward to reading this year (or maybe the books you’ve already read!).


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