I lost the thread of this for a while…
Scythe (Arc of the Scythe Book 1) by Neal Shusterman
This might be the first book recommended to me by my son, I’m not sure. He picked it up in his school library, and enthusiastically recommended it.
This is a dystopian utopia YA novel. The premise, revealed in the first few pages, is that a supercomputer AI runs the utopian world, everyone is effectively immortal with all needs provided. The downside is that population needs to be controlled, and an order of Scythes, intentionally separate from the AI, must permanently kill a certain number of people a year.
We are asked, as reader, to accept the sacrificial premise, and follow the story through Scythes and their apprentices. It was a tough read for me at first. But, in the end, this is really good world building, well-written, with a page-turner plot.
Highly recommended. My son knows his stuff, apparently.
Naked Economics : Undressing the Dismal Science by Charles Wheelan
I can’t remember where this rec came from, I believe a podcast of some sort. But it is a great read; the “naked” means without the heavy mathematics and formulas. I wouldn’t have minded some formulas and graphs, but he does a very entertaining explanation any way. A lot of it is commonly known, but I learned or thought about something new in every chapter.
He delves into policical issues such as immigration and monetary policy, and gave me a lot of food for thought.