Reading books has always been an important part of my life. I like going to bookstores or libraries to read or just to wander around. I somehow feel calm and joy when being surrounded by lots of good books. Nowadays I mostly read in English or Chinese, and occasionally in Japanese. I read both e-books and physical books.

Books that I like

Here are a few books that I liked, listed in no particular order. Technical books and books on art or music are generally not listed here.


  • Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer, by Siddhartha Mukherjee.
  • Creating language - Integrating Evolution, Acquisition, and Processing, by Morten H. Christiansen and Nick Chater.
  • The Order of Time, by Carlo Rovelli. A short but insightful book about time in Physics.
  • Understanding Comics: the Invisible Art, by Scott McCloud. An indepth and interesting discussion about the evolution, categorization and essence of not only Comics, but also arts in general.
  • Why We Sleep: Unlocking the Power of Sleep and Dreams, by Matthew Walker. A detailed survey of latest progress in research about sleep. Help to understand why sufficient sleep is essential for our mental and physical development, and what could go wrong when we do not have enough sleep.
  • The Sense of Style — the thinking person’s guide to writing in the 21st century, by Steven Pinker.
  • The Rise and Fall of the Dinosaurs, by Stephen L. Brusatte.
  • Buzz, Sting, Bite: Why We Need Insects, by Anne Sverdrup-Thygeson.
  • The Hot Zone: A Terrifying True Story, by Richard Preston. True stories about the origin of ebolavirus and marburgviruses.
  • The Highly Sensitive Person, by Elaine Aron. Very long and detailed, but the first few chapters are very worth reading, especially if you or any of your close friends are highly sensitive person.
  • An Anthropologist On Mars, by Oliver Sacks.
  • Born a Crime - Stories from a South African Childhood, by Trevor Noah.


  • The Moon and Sixpence, by W. Somerset Maugham. Biographical fiction based on the life of the artist Paul Gauguin.
  • The Selected Works of T.S. Spivet: A Novel, by Reif Larsen.
  • A Gentleman in Moscow, by Amor Towles.
  • The Plague, by Albert Camus.
  • The Fountainhead, by Ayn Rand. The story is a bit long and idealized, but the point made is very interesting (and controversial).
  • Murder on the Orient Express, The A.B.C. Murders and And Then There Were None, etc., by Agatha Christie.
  • Romance of the Three Kingdoms (三國演義). Read many many times when I was a child.
  • Nineteen Eighty-Four and Animal Farm, by George Orwell.
  • Through the Looking-Glass, and What Alice Found There, by Lewis Carroll.


  • A Song of Ice and Fire, ongoing series of fantasy novels by George R. R. Martin.
  • Harry Potter series, by J. K. Rowling.
  • The Dragonlance series. So far I have read Dragonlance Legends (龙枪传奇) and Dragonlance Chronicles (龙枪编年史).
  • Novoland: Traveler (九州•旅人), series by Zhan’an (斩鞍). Some other books in the Novoland (九州) universe are also good.
  • The Aspired Wings (図南の翼), by Fuyumi Ono (小野 不由美). It is one of The Twelve Kingdoms (十二国記) series. I have not read the other books in the series, but the anime created from those are very good.
  • Lord of Light, by Roger Zelazny. A mixture of steampunk, fantasy and Sci-Fi.
  • The Heaven Sword and Dragon Saber (倚天屠龙记), The Smiling, Proud Wanderer (笑傲江湖) and Demi-Gods and Semi-Devils (天龙八部), by Louis Cha Leung-yung (金庸).


  • Hyperion, by Dan Simmons. It is the 1st book of Hyperion Cantos, and I don't really like the rest of the series.
  • Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?, by Philip K. Dick.
  • The Three-Body Problem (三体), a trilogy by Liu Cixin. I like book II most.
  • Ender's Game, by Orson Scott Card. My personal rank for the trilogy is III, I and then II.
  • Foundation series, by Isaac Asimov.
  • Giants series, by James P. Hogan.
  • Neuromancer, by William Gibson.