Skip to comments.What books would you suggest? (vanity)
Posted on 01/08/2002 2:39:30 PM PST by occam's chainsaw
Most of the reading I have done over the years has been of science fiction/fantasy books read simply for enjoyment. Now that I am a little older, I am becoming more interested in finding books which are educational as well as enjoyable. I have not read very much classical literature (the small Arkansas public school I attended had little to offer in Literature) and would consider reading some as long as it wasn't too tedious.
I was hoping that some of you more experienced & educated (self educated included of course) readers could offer some suggestions for me. Biographies, classics, historical novels, fiction/non fiction, are all open to consideration. I did read Rand's "The Fountainhead" years ago and enjoyed it very much. Please give me your suggested titles along with a brief description and/or reason you are suggesting each. I know I still have a lot to learn and I appreciate any help I can get.
But really, I could go on for days.
BTW, love your screen name, I have used Occums Norelco in the past.
Pilars of the Earth by Ken Follett
Saurum by Edward Rutherford
The Devil's Candy by Julie Solomon
Hollywood vs. America by Michael Medved
A Distant Mirror by Barbara Tuchman
Mere Christianity by C. S. Lewis
The Screwtape Letters by C. S. Lewis
Debt of Honor by Tom Clancy
Red Storm Rising by Tom Clancy
Good Omens by Terry Pratchett (and another guy)
I could go on and on and sorry for the bad spelling.
BreakPoint - The following are books identified by Chuck Colson as having been critical to his intellectual and spiritual development.
C. S. Lewis, Mere Christianity (and anything else by Lewis, especially The Abolition of Man)
Francis Schaeffer. How Should We Then Live?
Francis Schaeffer. The God Who Is There.
Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn. The Gulag Archipelago.
G. K. Chesterton. The Everlasting Man.
Paul Johnson. Modern Times.
Dietrich Bonhoeffer. The Cost of Discipleship.
Fyodor Dostoevsky. The Brothers Karamazov.
John Bunyan. The Pilgrims Progress.
Jerry Bridges. The Pursuit of Holiness.
Richard John Neuhaus. The Naked Public Square.
Do you mean to tell me that the Clintons lied?
I'm absolutely shocked!
Dallas Willard, "The Divine Consipiracy"
C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity
Chuck Swindol, Grace Awakening
My top recommendation: "Pillars of the Earth" by Ken Follett is awesome historical story about a man who wanted to build cathedrals in the middle ages, great book.
My second recommendation: "Bonfire of the Vanities" by Tom Wolfe (forget about the movie, the book is great and should be made into a new movie).
My third recommendation: "Atlas Shrugged" by Ayn Rand
My fourth recommendation: "The Gold Coast" by Nelson DeMille and anything else by him as well).
And, number five, even if you have seen the movie: "The Godfather" by Mario Puzo.
Now is a good time to read The Shipping News by E. Annie Proulx and see the movie (or vice versa). She won the Pulitzer Prize in 1994.
A guy in the Northeast gets knocked around in life, finally meets a woman, has a daughter, loses woman in a car crash, and moves to Newfoundland for a fresh start. It kinda works out in the end. I saw it Dec 27, and it was okay.
Link to: The Shipping News
Nietzsche. (All of them.)
Machiavelli, "The Prince."
David Boaz, "Libertarian Reader."
Hayek, "The Road to Serfdom."
Anything by Von Mises or Milton Friedman
The Politics of Prudence, Russell Kirk The Conservative Mind, Russell Kirk Ideas Have Consequences, Richard Weaver
When you have those out of the way, I'll give your a list of twenty more.
I think its out of print, so you may have to do some searching. They even made an animated movie version of it several years ago.
THE ROAD TO SERFDOM by Friederich Hayek
It is the most concise, easy to understand treatise on why a free market economy and republican government is inherently superior to socialism and communism.
2. "The Count of Monte Cristo"
3. The Hunchback of Notre Dame.
4."The Sorrows of Young Werther"
5. "Huckleberry Finn".
6. "Travels with Charley."
7. "The Sun Also Rises".
8. "Gone with the Wind."
9. Any Shakespear plays.
10. Any Arthur Miller or Tennessee Williams plays.
And my compliments once again on your screen name < g >
Among American authors, Twain, Poe and Henry James are favorites. Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter was an acquired taste and I found James Fenimore Cooper to have created good plots deeply buried in thickets of bad prose. One 19th century American who may surprise readers is Ulysses Grant. His memoirs are top notch, but then again Twain was his editor. For influences like the transcendentalists, among them Emerson and Thoreau, I recommend a few excerpts from an old college textbook to get a flavor of what all the fuss was about instead of reading the entire works, but that is personal taste.
*MOBY DICK* by Herman Mehlville Anything by Charles Dickens Anything by Mark Twain *Jane Eyre* by Charlotte Bronte *As I Lay Dying* by William Faulkner *Uncle Tom's Cabin* by Harriet Beecher Stowe
I could go on and on, but that should get you started. :)
A book that is mentioned there, "How to Read A book" by Mortimer Adler and Charles Van Doren is one recommended for high school 'Classical' homeschoolers who lean heavily on the classics and Great Books for their literature. I plan to read it before my kids do since I'm going to be reading most of what THEY read so we can discuss it.
I grew up in MS, and my English teachers didn't stress the Classics very much at all. Oddly, in my American Lit. class I don't remember reading ANYTHING by Eudora Welty, Walker Percy or Flannery O'Connor, three of the South's finest writers! I've had to educate myself in that genre since I finished school!
15-20 years old, but deals with nuclear terrorism. Unimaginable then, now......?????
The Civil War, a Narrative by Shelby Foote (Excellent history done in narrative form which makes it an enjoyable read)
On the Road by Jack Kerouac (seminal work by the creator of the Beat Generation, prose is very unconventional but flows once you get the hang of it. For my money, a book that glorifies what is great about America, the freedom to go from place to place)
The Dharma Bums by Jack Kerouac (More conventional prose, a great story about freedom and adventure with Buddhism thrown in)
Little Big Man by Thomas Berger (Funny, historical, informative and tragic all at once. Great for it's unflinching look at native Amreicans)
1984 by George Orwell (The dire warning about encroaching government, a cry for freedom and individualism and an indictment of Stalinism and statism)
Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain (Hemingway said American literature begins and ends with this book, and he was right. Simply a great story written by America's greatest storyteller)
God there's so many more, I'll add them as I think of them.
Tesla: Man out of time (Margaret Cheney)
The Richest Man of Babylon (George S. Clason)
Published by Arlington House in 1964
Library of Congress Catalog Card Number 64-14211
I just ordered this used book from Amazon (yes, they do that) and started to read it. It is a bit dated, but fun and easy. It pegs liberals based on their beliefs. Thought provoking and fun.
The inside front sleeve says: " This is the book that dissects modern liberalism as no book ever has. James Burnham shows us that strange amalgam of self-righteousness, guilt, good intention, fuzzy logic, arrogance, double standard, selective indignation and selective compassion that produces the mind and psychology of the liberal.
"Burnham's insights search out the agonies of liberalism:
- Why liberalism is the ideology of suicide
- The common ancestors of liberalism and Communism.
- Why liberals sneer at patriotism.
- Very precisely: how liberalism lies at the root of race riots, murderous taxes, national surrender and the crime explosion -- and why liberals are helpless to do anything about their own follies.
- Why liberalism clashes with Christianity.
- The inner drive that impels liberals to war on the Right -- while giving the Left an ever-so-gentle tap on the wrist, at worst.
- EXTRA! Burnham's fascinating '39 Articles of Liberalism,' an intriguing test you, or anyone, can take to determine your 'ideological quotient.' You'll be astonished at how accurate it pinpoints anyone's political slant."
The Conservative Mind -- Russell Kirk
Homage to Catalonia -- George Orwell
Modern Times -- Paul Johnson
The Civil War (3 volumes)-- Shelby Foote
As I Lay Dying -- William Faulkner
You can't go wrong spending a few months reading these books. Enjoy!