The Hundred Books You Should Read To Stay Up The Curve!

There is no friend as loyal as a book.

One advice. Pick up a book every day. Even for just a few pages. Every book is a quotation — of other books, of experience, of the humans and civilizations that came before it. How could you not expose yourself to this? And yes, you do have time! Meals, before bed, on the train, in the waiting room, even on your phone or desktop. Read a few pages, read a whole book, but make a real and unending commitment to reading.

Whenever you read a good book, somewhere in the world a door opens to allow in more light.

– Vera Nazarian

Because there is so much out there that you can benefit from Biographies. Little-known gems. Life-changers. Philosophy. Science Fiction & Fantasy. The classics. Self-improvement. Books about war. Fiction. Even marketing and business books.

Biographies

1. Quitters Never Win: My Life in UFC ― The American Edition

With brand new material exclusive to this Updated American Edition, here―in his own words―is the story of the newest member of the Ultimate Fighting Championship Hall of Fame, Britain’s own Rocky Balboa, Michael Bisping

2. LA Times Kobe Bryant

This commemorative special edition honoring basketball legend Kobe Bryant is divided into two sections: “Kobe Is Gone, Never to Be Forgotten,” which includes intimate coverage from the week of Bryant’s death, including appreciations of both Kobe and his daughter Gianna, as well as reporting on Kobe’s second act as a devoted family man, producer, businessman and his complicated legacy both on and off the court.

3. Play Hungry: The Making of a Baseball Player

The inside story of how Pete Rose became one of the greatest and most controversial players in the history of baseball

4. The Unexpected Spy: From the CIA to the FBI, My Secret Life Taking Down Some of the World’s Most Notorious Terrorists

A highly entertaining account of a young woman who went straight from her college sorority to the CIA, where she hunted terrorists and WMDs

5. Live in Love: Growing Together Through Life’s Changes

When country music star Thomas Rhett won the ACM Award for Single of the Year with “Die a Happy Man,” his wife, Lauren Akins, was overjoyed. Her childhood best friend and now husband was being anointed the hottest new star in country music — for a song he had written about her. He was living his dream. Lauren was elated, but she was also wrestling with some big questions, not the least of which was, How can I live my own life of purpose?

6. Facebook: The Inside Story

As a college sophomore, Mark Zuckerberg created a simple website to serve as a campus social network.

Today, Facebook is nearly unrecognizable from its first, modest iteration. In light of recent controversies surrounding election-influencing “fake news” accounts, the handling of its users’ personal data, and growing discontent with the actions of its founder and CEO — who has enormous power over what the world sees and says — never has a company been more central to the national conversation.

Millions of words have been written about Facebook, but no one has told the complete story, documenting its ascendancy and missteps. There is no denying the power and omnipresence of Facebook in American daily life, or the imperative of this book to document the unchecked power and shocking techniques of the company, from growing at all costs to outmaneuvering its biggest rivals to acquire WhatsApp and Instagram to developing a platform so addictive even some of its own are now beginning to realize its dangers.

7. Between the World and Me

In a profound work that pivots from the biggest questions about American history and ideals to the most intimate concerns of a father for his son, Ta-Nehisi Coates offers a powerful new framework for understanding our nation’s history and current crisis. Americans have built an empire on the idea of “race,” a falsehood that damages us all but falls most heavily on the bodies of black women and men — bodies exploited through slavery and segregation, and, today, threatened, locked up, and murdered out of all proportion. What is it like to inhabit a black body and find a way to live within it? And how can we all honestly reckon with this fraught history and free ourselves from its burden?

8. The Splendid and the Vile: A Saga of Churchill, Family, and Defiance During the Blitz

On Winston Churchill’s first day as prime minister, Adolf Hitler invaded Holland and Belgium. Poland and Czechoslovakia had already fallen, and the Dunkirk evacuation was just two weeks away. For the next twelve months, Hitler would wage a relentless bombing campaign, killing 45,000 Britons. It was up to Churchill to hold his country together and persuade President Franklin Roosevelt that Britain was a worthy ally — and willing to fight to the end.

9. Open Book

This was supposed to be a very different book. Five years ago, Jessica Simpson was approached to write a motivational guide to living your best life. She walked away from the offer, and nobody understood why. The truth is that she didn’t want to lie.

10. The Watergate Girl: My Fight for Truth and Justice Against a Criminal President

It was a time, much like today, when Americans feared for the future of their democracy, and women stood up for equal treatment. At the crossroads of the Watergate scandal and the women’s movement was a young lawyer named Jill Wine Volner (as she was then known), barely thirty years old and the only woman on the team that prosecuted the highest-ranking White House officials. Called “the mini-skirted lawyer” by the press, she fought to receive the respect accorded her male counterparts―and prevailed.

Little-known Gems

1. The Hate U Give

Sixteen-year-old Starr Carter moves between two worlds: the poor neighborhood where she lives and the fancy suburban prep school she attends. The uneasy balance between these worlds is shattered when Starr witnesses the fatal shooting of her childhood best friend Khalil at the hands of a police officer. Khalil was unarmed.

2. Hatchet

Thirteen-year-old Brian Robeson, haunted by his secret knowledge of his mother’s infidelity, is traveling by single-engine plane to visit his father for the first time since the divorce. When the plane crashes, killing the pilot, the sole survivor is Brian. He is alone in the Canadian wilderness with nothing but his clothing, a tattered windbreaker, and the hatchet his mother had given him as a present.

3. Regretting You

Morgan Grant and her sixteen-year-old daughter, Clara, would like nothing more than to be nothing alike.

4. Thief River Falls

Lisa Power is a tortured ghost of her former self. The author of a bestselling thriller called Thief River Falls, named after her rural Minnesota hometown, Lisa is secluded in her remote house as she struggles with the loss of her entire family: a series of tragedies she calls the “Dark Star.”

5. Look Alive Out There

From the New York Times–bestselling author Sloane Crosley comes Look Alive Out There―a brand-new collection of essays filled with her trademark hilarity, wit, and charm. The characteristic heart and punch-packing observations are back, but with a newfound coat of maturity. A thin coat. More of a blazer, really.

6. The Silent Patient

Alicia Berenson’s life is seemingly perfect. A famous painter married to an in-demand fashion photographer, she lives in a grand house with big windows overlooking a park in one of London’s most desirable areas. One evening her husband Gabriel returns home late from a fashion shoot, and Alicia shoots him five times in the face, and then never speaks another word.

7. Wine Girl: The Obstacles, Humiliations, and Triumphs of America’s Youngest Sommelier

At just twenty-one, the age when most people are starting to drink (well, legally at least), Victoria James became the country’s youngest sommelier at a Michelin-starred restaurant. Even as Victoria was selling bottles worth hundreds and thousands of dollars during the day, passing sommelier certification exams with flying colors, and receiving distinction from all kinds of press, there were still groping patrons, bosses who abused their role and status, and a trip to the hospital emergency room.

8. The Jetsetters

When seventy-year-old Charlotte Perkins submits a sexy essay to the Become a Jetsetter contest, she dreams of reuniting her estranged children: Lee, an almost-famous actress; Cord, a handsome Manhattan venture capitalist who can’t seem to find a partner; and Regan, a harried mother who took it all wrong when Charlotte bought her a Weight Watchers gift certificate for her birthday. Charlotte yearns for the years when her children were young, when she was a single mother who meant everything to them.

9. In Five Years: A Novel

Where do you see yourself in five years?

10. Sharks in the Time of Saviors

In 1995 Kailua-Kona, Hawaii, on a rare family vacation, seven-year-old Nainoa Flores falls overboard a cruise ship into the Pacific Ocean. When a shiver of sharks appears in the water, everyone fears for the worst. But instead, Noa is gingerly delivered to his mother in the jaws of a shark, marking his story as the stuff of legends.

Life-Changers

1. Living Your Best Life: Letting Go of Self-Doubt, Fear and Other’s Expectations to Live the Life You’ve Always Dreamed

What If Who You Are Is Who You Were Meant To Be? As moms, we’re always someone’s someone, giving, loving, and nurturing. Stripped from all the labels, who are we, just being a girl in this world? Self-doubt reminds us that we aren’t enough, that someone else could do a better job raising our kids, or that we should be further along in life. Somewhere along the way, we feel stuck, loose our identity and purpose, comparing ourselves to others, as a measuring stick to success.

2. Suffer Strong: How to Survive Anything by Redefining Everything

After miraculously surviving a near-fatal brainstem stroke at age 26, as told in their memoir, Hope Heals, life for Katherine and Jay Wolf changed forever — and so did the way they viewed God, the world, and themselves in it. There was no going back to normal after such a tragedy. Yet Katherine and Jay learned that suffering is not the end, but rather the beginning of a new story.

  • Transform our unmet expectations into brave anticipations.
  • Disrupt the myth that joy can only be found in a pain-free life.
  • Rewrite the narrative of hard circumstances by turning our definitions of suffering into declarations of strength.
  • And, ultimately, thrive even in the lives we never imagined living.

3. Good Morning, Good Life: 5 Simple Habits to Master Your Mornings and Upgrade Your Life

Morning routines. We hear about them all the time. We see them on social media feeds and in online videos. We read about them in memoirs and self-improvement books. So, what’s the big deal? What’s so important about what we do every morning?

  • defy the morning missteps that keep you from starting the day on the right foot,
  • rise for a new day well-rested and prepared for what the day has in store for you,
  • shine each morning doing what makes you feel like your best version of you (rather than what the rest of the world says to do),
  • and thrive throughout your journey with some bonus productive lifestyle tips for the rest of your day!

4. Designing Your Life: How to Build a Well-Lived, Joyful Life

Designers create worlds and solve problems using design thinking. Look around your office or home — at the tablet or smartphone you may be holding or the chair you are sitting in. Everything in our lives was designed by someone. And every design starts with a problem that a designer or team of designers seeks to solve.

5. Change Your Mindset, Change Your Life: Lessons of Love, Leadership and Transformation

You can live an extraordinary life without regrets. In this book, author Garrain Jones reveals a proven strategy to change your life by changing your mindset. His powerful story of transformation will help you create awareness into your natural state and embrace the uniqueness within you that will restore health, happiness, and abundance in everything you do. Let it take you out of your everyday sameness and transfer you to a state of everyday greatness.

  • How to love yourself, build confidence, and heal broken relationships
  • Your unique purpose and how to use your heart and voice to be your truth
  • The incredible power of positive thinking
  • Why it is important to physically and mentally upgrade yourself and your surroundings
  • The importance of faith and the laws of nature and why you should trust the process
  • The tools to remove lifelong struggles and attract prosperity and passion in all areas of your life

6. The Journey from No-thing to Everything: How to Live your Best Life

The Journey from No-thing to Everything will provide you with the tools for remembrance and becoming the master of your own life. This transformative book will expand your view of the world and help you to let go of ego.

7. Think Like a Monk: Train Your Mind for Peace and Purpose Every Day

Shetty writes, “I grew up in a family where you could become one of three things: a doctor, a lawyer, or a failure. My family was convinced I had chosen option three. Instead of attending my college graduation ceremony, I headed to India to become a monk, to meditate every day for 4–8 hours and devote my life to helping others.”

8. Zen as F*ck: A Journal for Practicing the Mindful Art of Not Giving a Sh*t

The road to serenity is ahead, and it’s paved with a f*ck-ton of profanity. When quiet meditation and peaceful mantras aren’t enough to cut through the bullsh*t and brighten your day―hold close the pages of Zen as F*ck. On each and every page, you can give the good around you a warm f*cking hug and kick the bad on its ass. Journal your way through positive affirmations and cathartic-as-f*ck activities on your liberating journey toward something pretty close to happiness.

9. Talking to Strangers: What We Should Know about the People We Don’t Know

How did Fidel Castro fool the CIA for a generation? Why did Neville Chamberlain think he could trust Adolf Hitler? Why are campus sexual assaults on the rise? Do television sitcoms teach us something about the way we relate to each other that isn’t true?

10. The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck: A Counterintuitive Approach to Living a Good Life

In this generation-defining self-help guide, a superstar blogger cuts through the crap to show us how to stop trying to be “positive” all the time so that we can truly become better, happier people.

Philosophy

1. The Philosophy Book: Big Ideas Simply Explained

What existed before the Universe was created? Where does self-worth come from? Do the ends always justify the means?

The Philosophy Book answers the most profound questions we all have. It is your visual guide to the fundamental nature of existence, society, and how we think.

Discover what it means to be free, whether science can predict the future, or how language shapes our thoughts. Learn about the world’s greatest philosophers, from Plato and Confucius to modern thinkers such as Chomsky and Derrida and follow charts and timelines that graphically show the progression of ideas and logic.

Written in plain English, with concise explanations of branches of philosophy such as metaphysics and ethics, it untangles complicated theories and makes sense of abstract concepts. It is an ideal reference whether you’re a student or a general reader, with simple explanations of big ideas, including the four noble truths, the soul, class struggle, moral purpose, and good and evil.

If you’re curious about the deeper questions in life, The Philosophy Book is both an invaluable reference and illuminating read.

2. From Plato and Socrates to Ethics and Metaphysics, an Essential Primer on the History of Thought

Too often, textbooks turn the noteworthy theories, principles, and figures of philosophy into tedious discourse that even Plato would reject. Philosophy 101 cuts out the boring details and exhausting philosophical methodology, and instead, gives you a lesson in philosophy that keeps you engaged as you explore the fascinating history of human thought and inquisition.

3. Asking Questions — Seeking Answers

Featuring a remarkably clear writing style, Philosophy: Asking Questions Seeking Answers is a brief and accessible guide designed for students with no prior knowledge of the subject. Written by renowned scholars Stephen Stich and Tom Donaldson, it focuses on the key issues in Western philosophy, presenting balanced coverage of each issue and challenging students to make up their own minds. Each chapter incorporates discussion questions, key terms, a glossary, and suggestions for further readings to help make the material more understandable to novices. Comprehensive enough to be used on its own, Philosophy can also be used as a supplement to any introductory anthology.

4. How to Teach Philosophy to Your Dog

Because man’s best friend deserves to know the secrets of how to live a good life, too.

5. Self-Confidence: A Philosophy

Where does self-confidence come from? How does it work? What makes it stronger or weaker? Why are some people more confident than others? Is it only a question of temperament or the result of conscious self-improvement? How do you get closer to those who stand out thanks entirely to their confidence in themselves?

Drawing on philosophical texts, ancient wisdom, positive psychology, and a wide range of case studies that feature famous thinkers, artists, and athletes, but also unsung heroes such as a fighter pilot and an urgent-care doctor, Charles Pépin brings to light the strange alchemy that is self-confidence. In doing so, he gives us the keys to having more confidence in ourselves.

6. Letters from a Stoic

For several years of his turbulent life, Seneca was the guiding hand of the Roman Empire. His inspired reasoning derived mainly from the Stoic principles, which had originally been developed some centuries earlier in Athens. This selection of Seneca’s letters shows him upholding the austere ethical ideals of Stoicism — the wisdom of the self-possessed person immune to overmastering emotions and life’s setbacks — while valuing friendship and the courage of ordinary men, and criticizing the harsh treatment of slaves and the cruelties in the gladiatorial arena. The humanity and wit revealed in Seneca’s interpretation of Stoicism is a moving and inspiring declaration of the dignity of the individual mind.

7. Stoic Six Pack 5: The Cynics

For Cynics the secret to happiness was living a life of virtue in harmony with Nature with only the bare essentials necessary for survival. They rejected materialism and were free of belongings. Many were homeless and proud of it. The Cynics emphasized the value of self-sufficiency, or autarkeia. They ate one (vegetarian) meal a day and made a habit of walking vast distances to stay in shape. The school extolled the virtue of perseverance, or karteria.

8. Man’s Search for Meaning

Psychiatrist Viktor Frankl’s memoir of life in Nazi death camps has riveted generations of readers. Based on Frankl’s own experience and the stories of his patients, the book argues that we cannot avoid suffering but we can choose how to cope with it, find meaning in it, and move forward. Man’s Search for Meaning has become one of the most influential books of our times, selling over twelve million copies worldwide. With a foreword by Harold S. Kushner, Frankl’s classic is presented here in an elegant new edition with endpapers, supplementary photographs, and several of Frankl’s previously unpublished letters, speeches, and essays.

9. The Essential Epicurus: Letters, Principal Doctrines, Vatican Sayings, and Fragments

Epicureanism is commonly regarded as the refined satisfaction of physical desires. As a philosophy, however, it also denoted the striving after an independent state of mind and body, imperturbability, and reliance on sensory data as the true basis of knowledge.Epicurus (ca. 341–271 B.C.) founded one of the most famous and influential philosophical schools of antiquity. In these remains of his vast output of scientific and ethical writings, we can trace Epicurus’ views on atomism, physical sensation, duty, morality, the soul, and the nature of the gods.

10. Plotinus: The Enneads

The Enneads by Plotinus is a work which is central to the history of philosophy in late antiquity. This volume is the first complete edition of the Enneads in English for over seventy-five years, and also includes Porphyry’s Life of Plotinus. Led by Lloyd P. Gerson, a team of experts present up-to-date translations which are based on the best available text, the editio minor of Henry and Schwyzer and its corrections. The translations are consistent in their vocabulary, making the volume ideal for the study of Plotinus’ philosophical arguments. They also offer extensive annotation to assist the reader, together with cross-references and citations which will enable users more easily to navigate the texts. This monumental edition will be invaluable for scholars of Plotinus with or without ancient Greek, as well as for students of the Platonic tradition.

Science Fiction & Fantasy

1. Lakewood

When Lena Johnson’s beloved grandmother dies, and the full extent of the family debt is revealed, the black millennial drops out of college to support her family and takes a job in the mysterious and remote town of Lakewood, Michigan.

2. The City We Became

Every great city has a soul. Some are as ancient as myths, and others are as new and destructive as children. New York City? She’s got six.

3. Empress of Salt and Fortune

A young royal from the far north, is sent south for a political marriage in an empire reminiscent of imperial China. Her brothers are dead, her armies and their war mammoths long defeated and caged behind their borders. Alone and sometimes reviled, she must choose her allies carefully.

4. Chain of Gold

Cordelia Carstairs is a Shadowhunter, a warrior trained since childhood to battle demons. When her father is accused of a terrible crime, she and her brother travel to London in hopes of preventing the family’s ruin. Cordelia’s mother wants to marry her off, but Cordelia is determined to be a hero rather than a bride. Soon Cordelia encounters childhood friends James and Lucie Herondale and is drawn into their world of glittering ballrooms, secret assignations, and supernatural salons, where vampires and warlocks mingle with mermaids and magicians. All the while, she must hide her secret love for James, who is sworn to marry someone else.

5. Finna

Nino Cipri’s Finna is a rambunctious, touching story that blends all the horrors the multiverse has to offer with the everyday awfulness of low-wage work. It explores queer relationships and queer feelings, capitalism and accountability, labor and love, all with a bouncing sense of humor and a commitment to the strange.

6. A Pale Light in the Black: A NeoG Novel

For the past year, their close loss in the annual Boarding Games has haunted Interceptor Team: Zuma’s Ghost. With this year’s competition looming, they’re looking forward to some payback — until an unexpected personnel change leaves them reeling. Their best swordsman has been transferred, and a new lieutenant has been assigned in his place.

7. The House in the Cerulean Sea

Linus Baker is a by-the-book caseworker in the Department in Charge of Magical Youth. He’s tasked with determining whether six dangerous magical children are likely to bring about the end of the world.

8. House of Earth and Blood (Crescent City)

#1 New York Times bestselling author Sarah J. Maas launches her brand-new CRESCENT CITY series with House of Earth and Blood: the story of half-Fae and half-human Bryce Quinlan as she seeks revenge in a contemporary fantasy world of magic, danger, and searing romance.

9. Master of Sorrows (The Silent Gods Series)

You’ve heard the story before: an orphaned boy, raised by a wise old man, comes to a fuller knowledge of his magic and uses it to fight the great evil threatening his world.

10. The Killing Fog (The Grave Kingdom)

Survivor of a combat school, the orphaned Bingmei belongs to a band of mercenaries employed by a local ruler. Now the nobleman, and collector of rare artifacts, has entrusted Bingmei and the skilled team with a treacherous assignment: brave the wilderness’s dangers to retrieve the treasures of a lost palace buried in a glacier valley. But upsetting its tombs has a price.

The classics

1. The Great Gatsby: The Graphic Novel

First published in 1925, The Great Gatsby has been acclaimed by generations of readers and is now reimagined in stunning graphic novel form. Jay Gatsby, Nick Carraway, Daisy Buchanan, and the rest of the cast are captured in vivid and evocative illustrations by artist Aya Morton. The iconic text has been artfully distilled by Fred Fordham, who also adapted the graphic novel edition of To Kill a Mockingbird. Blake Hazard, F. Scott Fitzgerald’s great-granddaughter, contributes a personal introduction.

2. Pride and Prejudice

Few have failed to be charmed by the witty and independent spirit of Elizabeth Bennet in Austen’s beloved classic Pride and Prejudice. When Elizabeth Bennet first meets eligible bachelor Fitzwilliam Darcy, she thinks him arrogant and conceited; he is indifferent to her good looks and lively mind. When she later discovers that Darcy has involved himself in the troubled relationship between his friend Bingley and her beloved sister Jane, she is determined to dislike him more than ever. In the sparkling comedy of manners that follows, Jane Austen shows us the folly of judging by first impressions and superbly evokes the friendships, gossip and snobberies of provincial middle-class life. This Penguin Classics edition, based on Austen’s first edition, contains the original Penguin Classics introduction by Tony Tanner and an updated introduction and notes by Viven Jones.

3. Moby Dick or The Whale

Moby-Dick; or, The Whale is an 1851 novel by American writer Herman Melville. The book is sailor Ishmael’s narrative of the obsessive quest of Ahab, captain of the whaling ship Pequod, for revenge on Moby Dick, the white whale that on the ship’s previous voyage bit off Ahab’s leg at the knee. A contribution to the literature of the American Renaissance, the work’s genre classifications range from late Romantic to early Symbolist. Moby-Dick was published to mixed reviews, was a commercial failure, and was out of print at the time of the author’s death in 1891. Its reputation as a “Great American Novel” was established only in the 20th century, after the centennial of its author’s birth. William Faulkner confessed he wished he had written the book himself, and D. H. Lawrence called it “one of the strangest and most wonderful books in the world” and “the greatest book of the sea ever written”. Its opening sentence, “Call me Ishmael”, is among world literature’s most famous.Melville began writing Moby-Dick in February 1850, and would eventually take 18 months to write the book, a full year more than he had first anticipated. Writing was interrupted by his making the acquaintance of Nathaniel Hawthorne in August 1850, and by the creation of the “Mosses from an Old Manse” essay as a first result of that friendship. The book is dedicated to Hawthorne, “in token of my admiration for his genius”.The basis for the work is Melville’s 1841 whaling voyage aboard the Acushnet. The novel also draws on whaling literature, and on literary inspirations such as Shakespeare and the Bible. The white whale is modeled on the notoriously hard-to-catch albino whale Mocha Dick, and the book’s ending is based on the sinking of the whaleship Essex in 1820. The detailed and realistic descriptions of whale hunting and of extracting whale oil, as well as life aboard ship among a culturally diverse crew, are mixed with exploration of class and social status, good and evil, and the existence of God. In addition to narrative prose, Melville uses styles and literary devices ranging from songs, poetry, and catalogs to Shakespearean stage directions, soliloquies, and asides.

4. The Catcher in the Rye

Anyone who has read J.D. Salinger’s New Yorker stories — particularly A Perfect Day for Bananafish, Uncle Wiggily in Connecticut, The Laughing Man, and For Esme With Love and Squalor — will not be surprised by the fact that his first novel is full of children. The hero-narrator of The Catcher in the Rye is an ancient child of sixteen, a native New Yorker named Holden Caulfield.

5. Middlemarch

George Eliot’s novel, Middlemarch: A Study of Provincial Life, explores a fictional nineteenth-century Midlands town in the midst of modern changes. The proposed Reform Bill promises political change; the building of railroads alters both the physical and cultural landscape; new scientific approaches to medicine incite public division; and scandal lurks behind respectability. The quiet drama of ordinary lives and flawed choices are played out in the complexly portrayed central characters of the novel — the idealistic Dorothea Brooke; the ambitious Dr. Lydgate; the spendthrift Fred Vincy; and the steadfast Mary Garth. The appearance of two outsiders further disrupts the town’s equilibrium — Will Ladislaw, the spirited nephew of Dorothea’s husband, the Rev. Edward Casaubon, and the sinister John Raffles, who threatens to expose the hidden past of one of the town’s elite. Middlemarch displays George Eliot’s clear-eyed yet humane understanding of characters caught up in the mysterious unfolding of self-knowledge. This Penguin Classics edition uses the second edition of 1874 and features an introduction and notes by Eliot-biographer Rosemary Ashton. In her introduction, Ashton discusses themes of social change in Middlemarch, and examines the novel as an imaginative embodiment of Eliot’s humanist beliefs.

6. Adventures of Huckleberry Finn

Referring to Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, H. L. Mencken noted that his discovery of this classic American novel was “the most stupendous event of my whole life”; Ernest Hemingway declared that “all modern American literature stems from this one book,” while T. S. Eliot called Huck “one of the permanent symbolic figures of fiction, not unworthy to take a place with Ulysses, Faust, Don Quixote, Don Juan, Hamlet.”

7. Lord of the Rings

The Lord of the Rings is an epic high-fantasy novel written by English author and scholar J. R. R. Tolkien. The story began as a sequel to Tolkien’s 1937 fantasy novel The Hobbit, but eventually developed into a much larger work

8. Brave New World

Aldous Huxley’s profoundly important classic of world literature, Brave New World is a searching vision of an unequal, technologically-advanced future where humans are genetically bred, socially indoctrinated, and pharmaceutically anesthetized to passively uphold an authoritarian ruling order–all at the cost of our freedom, full humanity, and perhaps also our souls. “A genius [who] who spent his life decrying the onward march of the Machine” (The New Yorker), Huxley was a man of incomparable talents: equally an artist, a spiritual seeker, and one of history’s keenest observers of human nature and civilization. Brave New World, his masterpiece, has enthralled and terrified millions of readers, and retains its urgent relevance to this day as both a warning to be heeded as we head into tomorrow and as thought-provoking, satisfying work of literature. Written in the shadow of the rise of fascism during the 1930s, Brave New World likewise speaks to a 21st-century world dominated by mass-entertainment, technology, medicine and pharmaceuticals, the arts of persuasion, and the hidden influence of elites.

9. Slaughterhouse-Five

Slaughterhouse-Five, an American classic, is one of the world’s great antiwar books. Centering on the infamous firebombing of Dresden, Billy Pilgrim’s odyssey through time reflects the mythic journey of our own fractured lives as we search for meaning in what we fear most.

10. The Hobbit

Bilbo Baggins enjoys a comfortable, unambitious life, rarely traveling farther than the pantry of his hobbit-hole in Bag End. But his contentment is disturbed when the wizard Gandalf and a company of thirteen dwarves arrive on his doorstep to whisk him away on a journey to raid the treasure hoard of Smaug the Magnificent, a large and very dangerous dragon.

Self-Improvement

1. Who Moved My Cheese?

Most people are fearful of change, both personal and professional because they don’t have any control over how or when it happens to them. Since change happens either to the individual or by the individual, Dr. Spencer Johnson, the co-author of the multimillion bestseller The One Minute Manager, uses a deceptively simple story to show that when it comes to living in a rapidly changing world, what matters most is your attitude.

2. The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck

In this generation-defining self-help guide, a superstar blogger cuts through the crap to show us how to stop trying to be positive all the time so that we can truly become better, happier people.

3. Man’s Search for Meaning

This seminal book, which has been called “one of the outstanding contributions to psychological thought” by Carl Rogers and “one of the great books of our time” by Harold Kushner, has been translated into more than fifty languages and sold over sixteen million copies. “An enduring work of survival literature,” according to the New York Times, Viktor Frankl’s riveting account of his time in the Nazi concentration camps, and his insightful exploration of the human will to find meaning in spite of the worst adversity, has offered solace and guidance to generations of readers since it was first published in 1946. At the heart of Frankl’s theory of logotherapy (from the Greek word for “meaning”) is a conviction that the primary human drive is not pleasure, as Freud maintained, but rather the discovery and pursuit of what the individual finds meaningful. Today, as new generations face new challenges and an ever more complex and uncertain world, Frankl’s classic work continues to inspire us all to find significance in the very act of living, in spite of all obstacles.

4. Outliers: The Story of Success

In this stunning new book, Malcolm Gladwell takes us on an intellectual journey through the world of “outliers” — the best and the brightest, the most famous and the most successful. He asks the question: what makes high-achievers different?

5. Eat That Frog!: 21 Great Ways to Stop Procrastinating and Get More Done in Less Time

A self help book on time management and setting priorities. Applies to both business and personal life experiences.

6. Awaken the Giant Within

Wake up and take control of your life! From the bestselling author of Inner Strength, Unlimited Power, and MONEY Master the Game, Anthony Robbins, the nation’s leader in the science of peak performance, shows you his most effective strategies and techniques for mastering your emotions, your body, your relationships, your finances, and your life.

7. Who Will Cry When You Die

“When you were born, you cried while the world rejoiced. Live your life in such a way that when you die, the world cries while you rejoice.”― Ancient Sanskrit saying

8. Flow: The Psychology Of Optimal Experience

Psychologist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi’s famous investigations of “optimal experience” have revealed that what makes an experience genuinely satisfying is a state of consciousness called flow. During flow, people typically experience deep enjoyment, creativity, and a total involvement with life. In this new edition of his groundbreaking classic work, Csikszentmihalyi demonstrates the ways this positive state can be controlled, not just left to chance. Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience teaches how, by ordering the information that enters our consciousness, we can discover true happiness and greatly improve the quality of our lives.

9. The Miracle Morning: The Not-so-obvious Secret Guaranteed to Transform Your Life Before 8AM

Hal Elrod is a genius and his book The Miracle Morning has been magical in my life. What Hal has done is taken the best practices, developed over centuries of human consciousness development, and condensed the ‘best of the best’ into a daily morning ritual. A ritual that is now part of my day.

10. The Power of Now

It’s no wonder that The Power of Now has sold over 2 million copies worldwide and has been translated into over 30 foreign languages. Much more than simple principles and platitudes, the book takes readers on an inspiring spiritual journey to find their true and deepest self and reach the ultimate in personal growth and spirituality: the discovery of truth and light.

Books about War

1. The Art of War

This classic Chinese text, the earliest known treatise on war, offers strategy and tactics that can be applied to every type of human conflict. Central to Sun Tzu’s philosophy is the concept of using deception and superior intelligence to minimize risk, which has made his book required reading at military, business, and law schools around the world. With a Foreword by B.H. Liddell Hart and a 74-page Introduction, this deluxe edition — beautifully presented in a sumptuous silk case — is a standout offering in the successful Art of Wisdom series.

2. The 33 Strategies of War

33 Strategies of War is a comprehensive guide to the subtle social game of everyday life, informed by the most ingenious and effective military principles in war. It’s the I-Ching of conflict, the contemporary companion to Sun Tzu’s The Art of War, and is abundantly illustrated with examples from history, including the folly and genius of everyone from Napoleon to Margaret Thatcher, Hannibal to Ulysses S. Grant, movie moguls to samurai swordsmen.

3. The Book of Five Rings

When the undefeated samurai Miyamoto Musashi retreated to a cave in 1643 and wrote The Book of Five Rings, a manifesto on swordsmanship, strategy, and winning for his students and generations of samurai to come, he created one of the most perceptive and incisive texts on strategic thinking ever to come from Asia.

4. Strategy: A History

In Strategy: A History, Sir Lawrence Freedman, one of the world’s leading authorities on war and international politics, captures the vast history of strategic thinking, in a consistently engaging and insightful account of how strategy came to pervade every aspect of our lives. The range of Freedman’s narrative is extraordinary, moving from the surprisingly advanced strategy practiced in primate groups, to the opposing strategies of Achilles and Odysseus in The Iliad, the strategic advice of Sun Tzu and Machiavelli, the great military innovations of Baron Henri de Jomini and Carl von Clausewitz, the grounding of revolutionary strategy in class struggles by Marx, the insights into corporate strategy found in Peter Drucker and Alfred Sloan, and the contributions of the leading social scientists working on strategy today. The core issue at the heart of strategy, the author notes, is whether it is possible to manipulate and shape our environment rather than simply become the victim of forces beyond one’s control. Time and again, Freedman demonstrates that the inherent unpredictability of this environment — subject to chance events, the efforts of opponents, the missteps of friends — provides strategy with its challenge and its drama.

5. Infantry Attacks

Field Marshal Erwin Rommel exerted an almost hypnotic influence not only over his own troops but also over the Allied soldiers of the Eighth Army in World War II. Even when the legend surrounding his invincibility was overturned at El Alamein, the aura surrounding Rommel himself remained unsullied. In this classic study of the art of war, Rommel analyzes the tactics that lay behind his success. First published in 1937, it quickly became a highly regarded military textbook and also brought its author to the attention of Adolph Hitler. Rommel was to subsequently advance through the ranks to the high command in World War II. Though most people immediately connect Rommel with the African campaigns of World War II, he made his initial legendary giant steps during the First World War. In this 1935 title, he recalls his greatest battles, outlines how he won them and provides his strategies on the use of armour in the field lessons ultimately used by Patton and other Allied tank commanders to defeat him. — Library Journal As a leader of a small unit in the First World War, Rommel proved himself an aggressive and versatile commander, with a reputation for using the battleground terrain to his own advantage, for gathering intelligence, and for seeking out and exploiting enemy weaknesses.

6. The Face of Battle

The Face of Battle is military history from the battlefield: a look at the direct experience of individuals at the “point of maximum danger.” Without the myth-making elements of rhetoric and xenophobia, and breaking away from the stylized format of battle descriptions, John Keegan has written what is probably the definitive model for military historians. And in his scrupulous reassessment of three battles representative of three different time periods, he manages to convey what the experience of combat meant for the participants, whether they were facing the arrow cloud at the battle of Agincourt, the musket balls at Waterloo, or the steel rain of the Somme.

7. The Direction of War: Contemporary Strategy in Historical Perspective

The wars since 9/11, both in Iraq and Afghanistan, have generated frustration and an increasing sense of failure in the West. Much of the blame has been attributed to poor strategy. In both the United States and the United Kingdom, public enquiries and defence think tanks have detected a lack of consistent direction, of effective communication, and of governmental coordination. In this important book, Sir Hew Strachan, one of the world’s leading military historians, reveals how these failures resulted from a fundamental misreading and misapplication of strategy itself. He argues that the wars since 2001 have not in reality been as ‘new’ as has been widely assumed and that we need to adopt a more historical approach to contemporary strategy in order to identify what is really changing in how we wage war. If war is to fulfil the aims of policy, then we need first to understand war.

8. The grand strategy of the Roman Empire from the first century A.D. to the third

At the height of its power, the Roman Empire encompassed the entire Mediterranean basin, extending much beyond it from Britain to Mesopotamia, from the Rhine to the Black Sea. Rome prospered for centuries while successfully resisting attack, fending off everything from overnight robbery raids to full-scale invasion attempts by entire nations on the move. How were troops able to defend the Empire’s vast territories from constant attacks? And how did they do so at such moderate cost that their treasury could pay for an immensity of highways, aqueducts, amphitheaters, city baths, and magnificent temples?

9. The Mask of Command

In The Mask of Command, John Keegan asks us to consider questions that are seldom asked: What is the definition of leadership? What makes a great military leader? Why is it that men, indeed sometimes entire nations, follow a single leader, often to victory, but with equal dedication also to defeat?

10. How to Make War: A Comprehensive Guide to Modern Warfare

An indispensable guide to how wars are fought, James F. Dunnigan’s classic text has been enormously popular with citizens, professional soldiers, and journalists alike. Now, it’s been revised to include a stunning array of new subjects. From the cutting edge of cyberwar to the current concern about terrorism, How to Make War presents a clear picture of complex weapons, armed forces, and tactics.

Fiction

1. The Dancing Girls

When loving wife Jeanine Hammond is found dead in a small leafy town in Massachusetts, newly promoted Detective Jo Fournier is shocked to her core. Why leave her body posed like a ballerina? Why steal her wedding band and nothing else? Hungry for answers, Jo questions Jeanine’s husband, but the heart-breaking pain written on his face threatens to tear open Jo’s old wounds. It’s the same pain she felt when her boyfriend was cruelly shot dead by a gang in their hometown of New Orleans. She couldn’t get justice for him, but she’s determined to get justice for Jeanine’s devastated family.

2. American Dirt

Lydia Quixano Pérez lives in the Mexican city of Acapulco. She runs a bookstore. She has a son, Luca, the love of her life, and a wonderful husband who is a journalist. And while there are cracks beginning to show in Acapulco because of the drug cartels, her life is, by and large, fairly comfortable.

3. Then She Was Gone

Ellie Mack was the perfect daughter. She was fifteen, the youngest of three. Beloved by her parents, friends, and teachers, and half of a teenaged golden couple. Ellie was days away from an idyllic post-exams summer vacation, with her whole life ahead of her.

4. The Woman I Was Before

Of all the emotions single mother Kate Jones feels as she walks into her brand new house on Parkview Road, hope is the most unexpected. She has changed her name and her daughter’s, and moved across the country to escape the single mistake that destroyed their lives.

5. The Silent Patient

Alicia Berenson’s life is seemingly perfect. A famous painter married to an in-demand fashion photographer, she lives in a grand house with big windows overlooking a park in one of London’s most desirable areas. One evening her husband Gabriel returns home late from a fashion shoot, and Alicia shoots him five times in the face, and then never speaks another word.

6. The Pale-Faced Lie: A True Story

Growing up on the Navajo Indian Reservation, David Crow and his three siblings idolized their dad. Tall, strong, smart, and brave, the self-taught Cherokee regaled his family with stories of his World War II feats. But as time passed, David discovered the other side of Thurston Crow, the ex-con with his own code of ethics that justified cruelty, violence, lies — even murder.

7. Little Fires Everywhere

From the bestselling author of Everything I Never Told You, a riveting novel that traces the intertwined fates of the picture-perfect Richardson family and the enigmatic mother and daughter who upend their lives.

8. Ordinary Grace

New Bremen, Minnesota, 1961. The Twins were playing their debut season, ice-cold root beers were selling out at the soda counter of Halderson’s Drugstore, and Hot Stuff comic books were a mainstay on every barbershop magazine rack. It was a time of innocence and hope for a country with a new, young president. But for thirteen-year-old Frank Drum it was a grim summer in which death visited frequently and assumed many forms. Accident. Nature. Suicide. Murder.

9. The Tuscan Secret

Anna is distraught when her beloved mother, Ines, passes away. She inherits a box of papers, handwritten in Italian and yellowed with age, and a tantalising promise that the truth about what happened during the war lies within.

10. The Secrets We Keep: A gripping emotional page turner

When Tessa arrives at the little house by the lake with her two children, it is an escape. The rental house may be a bit small — but it’s theirs for the summer. A place to hide…

Marketing and Business books

1. Thinking Like a Boss: Uncover and Overcome the Lies Holding You Back from Success

With over 11 million female-owned businesses in the US today, more women than ever are taking the reins to create their own success. Maybe you feel the pull to start a business but deep down you’re afraid that you don’t have what it takes. Maybe you have a great idea but wonder if you’re actually qualified to make it happen. Or maybe you want to expand your business, but you’re worried about how it will affect your family. If that’s you, it’s time to start thinking like a boss.

2. The Power of Moments: Why Certain Experiences Have Extraordinary Impact

While human lives are endlessly variable, our most memorable positive moments are dominated by four elements: elevation, insight, pride, and connection. If we embrace these elements, we can conjure more moments that matter. What if a teacher could design a lesson that he knew his students would remember twenty years later? What if a manager knew how to create an experience that would delight customers? What if you had a better sense of how to create memories that matter for your children?

3. Startups and Downs: The Secrets of Resilient Entrepreneurs

Today’s media is replete with stories about major entrepreneurial successes, IPOs (initial public offerings), mergers, and acquisitions. Reporters and readers alike have also been captivated by the stories of entrepreneurial failures, downfalls, and massive exits (think Travis Kalanick, Elizabeth Holmes, and Doug Evans). However, entrepreneurship is rarely linear, and a lot happens between the headlines and reality. Entrepreneurship is a cycle of failures and recoveries — hopefully with more successes than not.

4. Upstream: The Quest to Solve Problems Before They Happen

So often in life, we get stuck in a cycle of response. We put out fires. We deal with emergencies. We stay downstream, handling one problem after another, but we never make our way upstream to fix the systems that caused the problems. Cops chase robbers, doctors treat patients with chronic illnesses, and call-center reps address customer complaints. But many crimes, chronic illnesses, and customer complaints are preventable. So why do our efforts skew so heavily toward reaction rather than prevention?

5. Change Maker: Turn Your Passion for Health and Fitness into a Powerful Purpose and a Wildly Successful Career

With thousands of certifications, seminars, websites, and gurus promising advice, it’s difficult for even the best pros to turn their passion for health and fitness into meaningful — and measurable — success.

  • Identify what your clients really want and deliver it every time
  • Build new relationships and become a next-level coach
  • Get new clients, make more money, and manage a thriving business
  • Nurture and protect your most precious asset, your reputation
  • Create a life-long, growth-oriented continuing education plan

6. The Golden Toilet: Stop Flushing Your Marketing Budget into Your Website and Build a System That Grows Your Business

The last thing you need to invest in is yet another website rebuild. In fact, that fancy website of yours is nothing more than a beautiful, brand new, solid-gold toilet.

7. Never Split the Difference: Negotiating As If Your Life Depended On It

After a stint policing the rough streets of Kansas City, Missouri, Chris Voss joined the FBI, where his career as a hostage negotiator brought him face-to-face with a range of criminals, including bank robbers and terrorists. Reaching the pinnacle of his profession, he became the FBI’s lead international kidnapping negotiator. Never Split the Difference takes you inside the world of high-stakes negotiations and into Voss’s head, revealing the skills that helped him and his colleagues succeed where it mattered most: saving lives. In this practical guide, he shares the nine effective principles ― counterintuitive tactics and strategies―you too can use to become more persuasive in both your professional and personal life.

8. Uncopyable: How to Create an Unfair Advantage over Your Competition

What separates average businesses from extraordinary successful ones? Better product? Nope. Your competitor will rapidly reverse-engineer your ‘’secret sauce’’ and get their ‘’better-than-you’’version on the market faster than you can say ‘’Usain Bolt.’’

9. Master of One: Find and Focus on the Work You Were Created to Do

Imagine how different your life would be if you spent your time doing the very thing that brings you the greatest joy. It’s possible, but most people spend their days making incremental advances on numerous tasks, competent at many things but exceptional at none. That’s because for too long we’ve believed the lie that more activity, more jobs, and more responsibility equals greater effectiveness. In short, we are becoming a society of “jacks-and-jills-of-all-trades and masters of none.”

10. The Power of Experiments: Decision Making in a Data-Driven World

Have you logged into Facebook recently? Searched for something on Google? Chosen a movie on Netflix? If so, you’ve probably been an unwitting participant in a variety of experiments―also known as randomized controlled trials―designed to test the impact of different online experiences. Once an esoteric tool for academic research, the randomized controlled trial has gone mainstream. No tech company worth its salt (or its share price) would dare make major changes to its platform without first running experiments to understand how they would influence user behavior. In this book, Michael Luca and Max Bazerman explain the importance of experiments for decision making in a data-driven world.

Nomad | Early Stage Investor | Wannabe Anthropologist | Technology Evangelist | Curious, Inquisitive & Experimental Entrepreneur

Nomad | Early Stage Investor | Wannabe Anthropologist | Technology Evangelist | Curious, Inquisitive & Experimental Entrepreneur