books to read



Read a short story by Alice Munro – “Night” (http://granta.com/night/). Chanced upon it from a tweet from someone. Name was somehow familiar, searched and found that she was the Nobel Prize winner for literature in 2013. Read few more of her stories from the New Yorker. I have a mental block when it comes to reading short stories – somehow I don’t like that it finishes too quickly and sometimes abruptly, not fully satisfying. These were good though. It kind of reminded me of why we read fiction – it gives comfort in knowing that there are other people who think similar thoughts, there are lives even in far off places and quite different circumstances, but quite human, like kindred spirits. That is one thing which is closed and sacred – other people’s thoughts. Apart from writers who risk baring it on paper for all the world to see, we have no way of knowing whether we are the only weird ones out there or the rest of world is also quite similar.

I was in the process of adding couple of her books to the reading list. Thought I will share the entire reading list itself - compiled over the years based on recommendations seen here and there. Pace of reading is slower than the rate of addition to this list.

We were in Phoenixville, a small town, for more than 5 years. It had a beautiful library – you could borrow upto 100 books, videos, magazines and audio CDs at a time (not that anybody might want to do that much). It had a tie up with libraries in 5 other counties and an online portal from where books could be searched across all the linked libraries and reserve – even if it is not in the local library, they would get it from any of the linked ones. There was hardly any book that I couldn’t find there. All this was for free – it was running on public and government funding. How I wish we had such ones here.

Categorizations have got mixed up over time, didn’t clean up much. Some day we may have a service which could take in everything we have read so far and everything we want to read and recommend the perfect books to read next in our interest areas. www.goodreads.com and Amazon recommendations are ok, but not satisfactory yet. For now if there are recommendations based on this, please leave a comment.

Business
1.       “The Book of Five Rings: The Classic Guide to Strategy” Miyamoto Musashi.
2.       48 Laws of Power
3.       "33 Strategies of War" by Robert Greene
4.       5 dysfunctions of a team, lean startup, Kanban blue book
5.       Anything You Want - Derek Sivers
6.       Design Is a Job - Mike Monteiro
7.       Rework - - Jason Fried, David Heinemeier Hansson
8.       Hackers, the heroes of the computer revolution – Steven Levy
9.       The Inmates Are Running the Asylum - Alan Cooper
10.    Don’t make me think - Steve Klug

Creativity, Brain, Cognition, Neuroscience
11.    Beautiful Evidence - Edward Tufte
12.    Mindstorms: Children, Computers, And Powerful Ideas - Seymour A. Papert
13.    A Technique for Producing Ideas – James Webb Young
14.    The Paradox of Choice - Barry Schwartz
15.    Mindset: The New Psychology of Success - Carol Dweck
16.    Flow - Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi
17.    Douglas Coupland, "Generation X: Tales for an Accelerated Culture"
18.    Emergence - Steven Johnson
19.    Everything Is Obvious - Duncan J. Watts
20.    Notes on the Synthesis of Form - Christopher Alexander
21.    Impro - Keith Johnstone
22.    The Psychopathology of Everyday Life - Freud
23.    The Ego and the Id - Freud
24.    Give and Take - Adam Grant
25.    Laws of Simplicity - John Maeda
26.    Set Phasers on Stun - Steven Casey
27.    I am feeling lucky - douglas edwards
28.    Ideas and Opinions – Einstein
29.    Intuition Pumps and Other Tools for Thinking - Daniel C Dennett
30.    Lean startup - Eric Ries
31.    Leonard Mlodinov - The Drunkard's Walk
32.    Management Myth - Matthew Stewart
33.    Microserfs by douglas coupland
34.    The Black Swan; and Fooled by Randomness - Nassim Taleb
35.    On Intelligence - Jeff Hawkins
36.    Pattern Language - Christopher Alexander 
37.    Picture This - Molly Bang
38.    Quiet  - Susan Cain
39.    Rolf Dobelli - The Art of Thinking Clearly
40.    Signal and noise - nate silver
41.    Steven Pinker - How the Mind Works
42.    The Art of Meditation - Mathieu Ricard
43.    The Better Angels of Our Nature - Steven Pinker
44.    The New Master Key System by Ruth Miller and Charles F Hannel
45.    The Motivation Hacker by Nick Winter
46.    The Power of Habit - Charles Duhigg
47.    The wealth of nations adam smith
48.    Think like a programmer - V. Anton Spraul
49.    Godel, Escher and Back - Douglas Hofstadter
50.    Art of Doing Science and Engineering: Learning to Learn - Richard Hamming

Writing
51.    "On writing well" by William Zinsser
52.    Bird by Bird - Anne Lamot
53.    Writing that works - Roman-Raphaelson

Politics
54.    Jared Diamond - Guns, Germs and Steel
55.    Jared Diamond - The World Until Yesterday
56.    India grows at night - Gurcharan Das

Philosophy
57.    A Guide to the Good Life: The Ancient Art of Stoic Joy
58.    Biology of Belief
59.    I Am A Strange Loop - Douglas Hofstadter

Personal Finance
60.    The Intelligent Investor - Benjamin Graham
61.    From the rat race to financial freedom - manoj arora
62.    Michael Covel's book - "Trend Following"

Fiction
63.    Alice Munro - Dance of the happy shades, Lives of Girls and Women, Who do you think you are?
64.    The fault in our stars - John Green
65.    Eat Pray Love - Elizabeth Gilbert
66.    Rabindrantah Tagore’s Gora;
67.    Charles Dickens “David Copperfield;
68.    Thornton Wilder’s Bridge Of San Luis Rey;
69.    Leo Tolstoy’s War and Peace
70.    Ann Patchett’s Bel Canto Thor
71.    Hyderdahl’s “Kon Tiki.”
72.    A tale of two cities - Charles Dickens
73.    Hunger Games
74.    All the King’s Men - Robert Penn Warren and Noel Polk
75.    Brain on Fire: My Month of Madness - Susannah Cahalan
76.    Dorris Lessing – The grass is singing, The golden notebook, Under my skin, Waiting in the shade
77.    Great Indian Novel – Shashi Tharoor
78.    Neal Stephenson - Anathem.
79.    Neal Stephenson - Snow Crash
80.    Patrick O'Brian - sea faring novels
81.    Franny and Zooey - JD Salinger

Auto biographies, General
82.    My Life and Hard Times – James Thurber
83.    Long way down  -  Ewan McGregor and Charley Boorman
84.    Tap dancing to work - warren buffet

Software
85.    Structure and Interpretation of Computer Programs - Abelson and Sussman
86.    Dyjkstra - Discipline of programming
87.    Knuth - Art of Programming vol 1-4
88.    How to lie with statistics
89.    Programming pearls - John Bentley

Sci-Fi
90.    Italo Calvino - Cosmicomics

91.    Ursula Le Guin

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