Ryan Holiday's favorite books

  • The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz

    The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz

    The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz

    Mordecai Richler
    Fiction
    3.72 (8,166)

    A young, likeable Jewish hustler, member of the third generation of a Jewish immigrant family in Montreal, struggles to prosper despite his zany family and, in the process, learns about life. Reprint.

    Ryan Holiday

    What a book. Its not as good as What Makes Sammy Run but its so damn good.

     — Source

  • The Net Delusion

    The Net Delusion

    The Net Delusion

    Evgeny Morozov
    Computers
    3.67 (1,708)

    Updated with a new Afterword “The revolution will be Twittered!” declared journalist Andrew Sullivan after protests erupted in Iran. But as journalist and social commentator Evgeny Morozov argues in The Net Delusion, the Internet is a tool that both revolutionaries and authoritarian governments can use. For all of the talk in the West about the power of the Internet to democratize societies, regimes in Iran and China are as stable and repressive as ever. Social media sites have been used there to entrench dictators and threaten dissidents, making it harder—not easier—to promote democracy. Marshalling a compelling set of case studies, The Net Delusion shows why the cyber-utopian stance that the Internet is inherently liberating is wrong, and how ambitious and seemingly noble initiatives like the promotion of “Internet freedom” are misguided and, on occasion, harmful.

    Ryan Holiday

    Recommended read on Ryan Holidays' Meditations on Strategy and Life

     — Source

  • The Makers of Rome

    The Makers of Rome

    The Makers of Rome

    Plutarch
    Biography & Autobiography

    These nine biographies illuminate the careers, personalities and military campaigns of some of Rome's greatest statesmen, whose lives span the earliest days of the Republic to the establishment of the Empire. Selected from Plutarch's Roman Lives, they include prominent figures who achieved fame for their pivotal roles in Roman history, such as soldierly Marcellus, eloquent Cato and cautious Fabius. Here too are vivid portraits of ambitious, hot-tempered Coriolanus; objective, principled Brutus and open-hearted Mark Anthony, who would later be brought to life by Shakespeare. In recounting the lives of these great leaders, Plutarch also explores the problems of statecraft and power and illustrates the Roman people's genius for political compromise, which led to their mastery of the ancient world.

    Ryan Holiday

    I strongly recommend this

     — Source

  • Plutarch's Lives Volume 2

    Plutarch's Lives Volume 2

    Plutarch's Lives Volume 2

    Plutarch
    Biography & Autobiography
    4.18 (2,967)

    Offers biographies of Greek and Roman leaders and compares their personal qualities and accomplishments.

    Ryan Holiday

    I strongly recommend Plutarchs Lives Vol. I & II

     — Source

  • Aeneid
    Ryan Holiday

    The Aeneid was far and away the most quotable, readable and memorable of all of them. Theres no other way to put: the story is AMAZING.

     — Source

  • Shadow Divers

    Shadow Divers

    Shadow Divers

    Robert Kurson
    History
    4.32 (26,284)

    Recounts the 1991 discovery of a sunken German U-boat by two recreational scuba divers, tracing how they devoted the following six years to researching the identities of the submarine and its crew, correcting historical texts, and breaking new grounds in the world of diving along the way. Reprint. 200,000 first printing.

    Ryan Holiday

    This book is a work of art. This book is narrative nonfiction writing at its finest. Please read.

     — Source

  • Meditations

    Meditations

    Meditations

    Marcus Aurelius
    4.22 (149,987)

    Marcus Aurelius, emperor of Rome, may be the closest mankind has ever come to producing the philosopher king that Plato envisioned in The Republic. A reluctant ruler and a reluctant warrior, much of his reign was spent in battle, defending the frontiers of the empire from the "barbarian" hordes. Fortunately for us, he carried a notebook along on his military campaigns, and thus we have the Meditations. Marcus's writings reveal him to be the last and greatest of the classical Stoics. Stoicism is a school of thought that asserts we have no control over our lives, only control over our perceptions. It advocates that the best life is the life that is lived in accordance with nature (not "nature" as in grass and trees, but "nature" as in the order of the universe). By concentrating one's thoughts and choices on what is good and virtuous, and disregarding the unimportant distractions of everyday life (even life and death are said to be neither good nor bad, but "indifferent"), we can avoid negative emotions like fear, anger, grief, and frustration, and live a life of happiness and tranquility. That's an oversimplification, of course. If you really want to know what Stoicism is and how it works read Epictetus or Seneca. What Marcus provides us with are the reflections of a man who studied and lived the Stoic life, and was its ultimate exemplar. Even if you don't buy into Stoicism, or have no interest in Philosophy with a capital P, you can still find inspiration and solace in the Meditations, as Marcus instructs us in dealing justly with others, overcoming emotional hardship, living life to the fullest by overcoming the fear of death, and resigning oneself to the insignificance of man in the universe. The Meditations are divided into twelve books. Each book contains anywhere from 16 to 75 numbered paragraphs, ranging in length from a sentence to a page. The paragraphs are arranged without regard to sequence or subject matter. This haphazard method of compilation is really the book's only flaw. What the Meditations has always needed is a good index, but I've never found a volume that has one. It is a pleasure to publish this new, high quality, and affordable edition of this timeless book.

    Ryan Holiday

    To me, this is not only one of greatest books ever written but perhaps the only book of its kind.

     — Source

  • Letters from a Stoic

    Letters from a Stoic

    Letters from a Stoic

    Seneca
    Philosophy

    'It is philosophy that has the duty of protecting us ... without it no one can lead a life free of fear or worry' For several years of his turbulent life, in which he was dogged by ill health, exile and danger, Seneca was the guiding hand of the Roman Empire. This selection of Seneca's letters shows him upholding the ideals of Stoicism - the wisdom of the self-possessed person immune to life's setbacks - while valuing friendship and courage, 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. Selected and translated with an Introduction by Robin Campbell

    Ryan Holiday

    After Marcus Aurelius, this is one of my favorite books.

     — Source

  • Fight Club
    Ryan Holiday

    Im amazed how many young people havent read this book. Truly life-changing.

     — Source

  • The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt

    The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt

    The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt

    Edmund Morris
    Biography & Autobiography
    4.18 (50,050)

    A hardcover re-release provides a Pulitzer Prize- and National Book Award-winning biography of Theodore Roosevelt that the Chicago Tribune called "a classic." By the author of Colonel Roosevelt.

    Ryan Holiday

    Dr. Drew recommended this book to me, it is spectacular. Hes my favorite president.

     — Source

  • The Strategy Paradox

    The Strategy Paradox

    The Strategy Paradox

    Michael E. Raynor
    Business & Economics
    3.89 (257)

    A compelling vision. Bold leadership. Decisive action. Unfortunately, these prerequisites of success are almost always the ingredients of failure, too. In fact, most managers seeking to maximize their chances for glory are often unwittingly setting themselves up for ruin. The sad truth is that most companies have left their futures almost entirely to chance, and don’t even realize it. The reason? Managers feel they must make choices with far-reaching consequences today, but must base those choices on assumptions about a future they cannot predict. It is this collision between commitment and uncertainty that creates THE STRATEGY PARADOX. This paradox sets up a ubiquitous but little-understood tradeoff. Because managers feel they must base their strategies on assumptions about an unknown future, the more ambitious of them hope their guesses will be right – or that they can somehow adapt to the turbulence that will arise. In fact, only a small number of lucky daredevils prosper, while many more unfortunate, but no less capable managers find themselves at the helms of sinking ships. Realizing this, even if only intuitively, most managers shy away from the bold commitments that success seems to demand, choosing instead timid, unremarkable strategies, sacrificing any chance at greatness for a better chance at mere survival. Michael E. Raynor, coauthor of the bestselling The Innovator's Solution, explains how leaders can break this tradeoff and achieve results historically reserved for the fortunate few even as they reduce the risks they must accept in the pursuit of success. In the cutthroat world of competitive strategy, this is as close as you can come to getting something for nothing. Drawing on leading-edge scholarship and extensive original research, Raynor’s revolutionary principle of Requisite Uncertainty yields a clutch of critical, counter-intuitive findings. Among them: -- The Board should not evaluate the CEO based on the company’s performance, but instead on the firm’s strategic risk profile -- The CEO should not drive results, but manage uncertainty -- Business unit leaders should not focus on execution, but on making strategic choices -- Line managers should not worry about strategic risk, but devote themselves to delivering on commitments With detailed case studies of success and failure at Sony, Microsoft, Vivendi Universal, Johnson & Johnson, AT&T and other major companies in industries from financial services to energy, Raynor presents a concrete framework for strategic action that allows companies to seize today’s opportunities while simultaneously preparing for tomorrow’s promise.

    Ryan Holiday

    Recommended read on Ryan Holidays' Meditations on Strategy and Life

     — Source

  • Mastery

    Mastery

    Mastery

    George Leonard
    Self-Help

    Drawing on Zen philosophy and his expertise in the martial art of aikido, bestselling author George Leonard shows how the process of mastery can help us attain a higher level of excellence and a deeper sense of satisfaction and fulfillment in our daily lives. Whether you're seeking to improve your career or your intimate relationships, increase self-esteem or create harmony within yourself, this inspiring prescriptive guide will help you master anything you choose and achieve success in all areas of your life. In Mastery, you'll discover: • The 5 Essential Keys to Mastery • Tools for Mastery • How to Master Your Athletic Potential • The 3 Personality Types That Are Obstacles to Mastery • How to Avoid Pitfalls Along the Path • and more...

    Ryan Holiday

    So read his book Mastery (Amazon) so that you can figure your lifes task and how to dedicate yourself to it.

     — Source

  • The Tiger

    The Tiger

    The Tiger

    John Vaillant
    Nature
    4.06 (11,397)

    Documents the efforts of a tiger conservation leader who was forced to hunt a man-eating tiger through the brutal Siberian winter, an effort that familiarized him with the creature's history, motives and unique method of attack.

    Ryan Holiday

    Holy shit, this book is good. Just holy shit.

     — Source

  • The 33 Strategies of War

    The 33 Strategies of War

    The 33 Strategies of War

    Robert Greene
    Conduct of life
    4.17 (13,413)

    From bestselling author Robert Greene comes a brilliant distillation of the strategies of war that can help us gain mastery in the modern world. Spanning world civilisations, and synthesising dozens of political, philosophical, and religious texts, The 33 Strategies of War is a comprehensive guide to the subtle social game of everyday life. Based on profound, timeless lessons, it is abundantly illustrated with examples of the genius and folly of everyone from Napoleon to Margaret Thatcher and Hannibal to Ulysses S. Grant, as well as diplomats, captains of industry and Samurai swordsmen.

    Ryan Holiday

    Of course you also need to read 33 Strategies of War by Robert Greene

     — Source

  • The Fish That Ate the Whale

    The Fish That Ate the Whale

    The Fish That Ate the Whale

    Rich Cohen
    History
    4.07 (4,351)

    Named a Best Book of the Year by the San Francisco Chronicle and The Times-Picayune The fascinating untold tale of Samuel Zemurray, the self-made banana mogul who went from penniless roadside banana peddler to kingmaker and capitalist revolutionary When Samuel Zemurray arrived in America in 1891, he was tall, gangly, and penniless. When he died in the grandest house in New Orleans sixty-nine years later, he was among the richest, most powerful men in the world. Working his way up from a roadside fruit peddler to conquering the United Fruit Company, Zemurray became a symbol of the best and worst of the United States: proof that America is the land of opportunity, but also a classic example of the corporate pirate who treats foreign nations as the backdrop for his adventures. Zemurray lived one of the great untold stories of the last hundred years. Starting with nothing but a cart of freckled bananas, he built a sprawling empire of banana cowboys, mercenary soldiers, Honduran peasants, CIA agents, and American statesmen. From hustling on the docks of New Orleans to overthrowing Central American governments and precipitating the bloody thirty-six-year Guatemalan civil war, the Banana Man lived a monumental and sometimes dastardly life. Rich Cohen's brilliant historical profile The Fish That Ate the Whale unveils Zemurray as a hidden power broker, driven by an indomitable will to succeed.

    Ryan Holiday

    The book sucked me in completely. Everyone Ive recommended it to loves it.

     — Source

  • Hackers & Painters

    Hackers & Painters

    Hackers & Painters

    Paul Graham
    Computers
    4.06 (8,411)

    The author examines issues such as the rightness of web-based applications, the programming language renaissance, spam filtering, the Open Source Movement, Internet startups and more. He also tells important stories about the kinds of people behind technical innovations, revealing their character and their craft.

    Ryan Holiday

    Recommended read on Ryan Holidays' Meditations on Strategy and Life

     — Source

  • Endurance

    Endurance

    Endurance

    Alfred Lansing
    History
    4.37 (97,237)

    This harrowing tale of British explorer Ernest Shackleton's 1914 attempt to reach the South Pole, one of the greatest adventure stories of the modern age. In August 1914, polar explorer Ernest Shackleton boarded the Endurance and set sail for Antarctica, where he planned to cross the last uncharted continent on foot. In January 1915, after battling its way through a thousand miles of pack ice and only a day's sail short of its destination, the Endurance became locked in an island of ice. Thus began the legendary ordeal of Shackleton and his crew of twenty-seven men. For ten months the ice-moored Endurance drifted northwest before it was finally crushed between two ice floes. With no options left, Shackleton and a skeleton crew attempted a near-impossible journey over 850 miles of the South Atlantic's heaviest seas to the closest outpost of civilization. Their survival, and the survival of the men they left behind, depended on their small lifeboat successfully finding the island of South Georgia--a tiny dot of land in a vast and hostile ocean. In Endurance, the definitive account of Ernest Shackleton's fateful trip, Alfred Lansing brilliantly narrates the harrowing and miraculous voyage that has defined heroism for the modern age.

    Ryan Holiday

    This book (and his life) were living proof of his family motto: Fortitudine vincimus (By endurance we conquer).

     — Source

  • The Moviegoer

    The Moviegoer

    The Moviegoer

    Walker Percy
    Fiction
    3.67 (25,682)

    In this National Book Award–winning novel from a “brilliantly breathtaking writer,” a young Southerner searches for meaning in the midst of Mardi Gras (The New York Times Book Review). On the cusp of his thirtieth birthday, Binx Bolling is a lost soul. A stockbroker and member of an established New Orleans family, Binx’s one escape is the movie theater that transports him from the falseness of his life. With Mardi Gras in full swing, Binx, along with his cousin Kate, sets out to find his true purpose amid the excesses of the carnival that surrounds him. Buoyant yet powerful, The Moviegoer is a poignant indictment of modern values, and an unforgettable story of a week that will change two lives forever. This ebook features an illustrated biography of Walker Percy including rare photos from the author’s estate.

    Ryan Holiday

    The Moviegoer is exactly the novel that every young kid stuck in their own head needs to read.

     — Source

  • Fragments

    Fragments

    Fragments

    Heraclitus
    Philosophy
    4.19 (5,906)

    The wisdom poetry of the ancient Greek poet Heraclitus is collected into a single bilingual volume that covers everything from the nature of matter to human psychology. Reprint.

    Ryan Holiday

    While most of the other practical philosophy recommendations Im making are bent towards hard, practical advice, Heraclitus might seem a bit poetic.

     — Source

  • The Moral Sayings Of Publius Syrus
    Ryan Holiday

    Recommended read on Ryan Holidays' Meditations on Strategy and Life

     — Source

  • On Sparta

    On Sparta

    On Sparta

    Plutarch
    History

    Plutarch's vivid and engaging portraits of the Spartans and their customs are a major source of our knowledge about the rise and fall of this remarkable Greek city-state between the sixth and third centuries BC. Through his Lives of Sparta's leaders and his recording of memorable Spartan Sayings he depicts a people who lived frugally and mastered their emotions in all aspects of life, who also disposed of unhealthy babies in a deep chasm, introduced a gruelling regime of military training for boys, and treated their serfs brutally. Rich in anecdote and detail, Plutarch's writing brings to life the personalities and achievements of Sparta with unparalleled flair and humanity.

    Ryan Holiday

    Recommended read on Ryan Holidays' Meditations on Strategy and Life

     — Source

  • Tiny Beautiful Things

    Tiny Beautiful Things

    Tiny Beautiful Things

    Cheryl Strayed

    Rich with humour, insight, compassion - and absolute honesty - Tiny Beautiful Things is a balm for everything life throws our way, administered by the author of the international bestselling memoir, Wild.

    Ryan Holiday

    It was wonderful to read

     — Source

  • Hamlet

    Hamlet

    Hamlet

    William Shakespeare
    Drama
    4.03 (781,781)

    Hamlet is not only one of Shakespeare's greatest plays, but also the most fascinatingly problematical tragedy in world literature

    Ryan Holiday

    Recommended read on Ryan Holidays' Meditations on Strategy and Life

     — Source

  • You Are Not a Gadget

    You Are Not a Gadget

    You Are Not a Gadget

    Jaron Lanier
    Computers
    3.56 (5,873)

    A computer-age visionary argues that the Internet has failed to live up to its early promises, sharing cautionary perspectives on the Web 2.0 design concept while optimistically evaluating the Internet as a positive cultural vehicle.

    Ryan Holiday

    You need to read them

     — Source

  • The Harder They Fall

    The Harder They Fall

    The Harder They Fall

    Budd Schulberg
    Fiction
    4.21 (224)

    “The quintessential novel of boxing and corruption.” (USA Today). “Toro” Molina certainly looks the part. He’s built like the Minotaur, but few would guess at the fear consuming the Argentine farmer and former circus performer after he’s brought to the United States to be the next heavyweight champion of the world. The problem is that Molina can’t box at all. But monstrous fight promoter Nick Latka fixes every fight on the way to the championship, and builds Toro’s renown with the help of cynical sports journalist Ed Lewis and a host of lackeys. First published in 1947, The Harder They Fall stands as a powerful exposé of professional boxing by one of the sport’s true poet laureates. This ebook features an illustrated biography of Budd Schulberg including rare images and never-before-seen documents from the author’s estate.

    Ryan Holiday

    Recommended read on Ryan Holidays' Meditations on Strategy and Life

     — Source

  • Boyd

    Boyd

    Boyd

    Robert Coram
    Biography & Autobiography
    4.00 (7,013)

    The acclaimed author of Brute recounts the life of the veteran U.S. Air Force pilot and innovative military strategist in this biography. John Boyd was arguably the greatest fighter pilot in American history. From the proving ground of the Korean War, he went on to win renown as the instructor who defeated—in less than forty seconds—every pilot who challenged him. But what made Boyd a man for the ages was what happened after he left the cockpit. A fighter on the ground as well as in the air, Boyd was relentless, brilliant, stubborn, and virtually always right. He managed to transform almost single-handedly the way military aircraft, particularly the F-15 and F-16, were designed. He then dedicated many lonely years to a radical theory of conflict that at the time was mostly ignored but now informs military activity around the globe and is acclaimed as the most influential thinking about conflict since Sun Tzu’s The Art of War. Praise for Boyd “Boyd could not be more welcome. . . . It should be required reading for every American citizen.” —Washington Post Book World “This engrossing biography should definitely be on the bedside table of all our current military leadership.” —Andrew Cockburn, Los Angeles Times Book Review “A stunning biography . . . Coram traces how Boyd’s ideas percolated into key centers of civilian and military decision making and led to a swift and decisive victory in Operation Desert Storm, and how his maneuverist doctrine foretold the type of terrorist tactics used on September 11.” —Martin Edwin Andersen, Insight

    Ryan Holiday

    Recommended read on Ryan Holidays' Meditations on Strategy and Life

     — Source

  • Man's Search for Meaning

    Man's Search for Meaning

    Man's Search for Meaning

    Viktor E Frankl
    Existential psychotherapy
    4.35 (479,763)

    A prominent Viennese psychiatrist before the war, Viktor Frankl was uniquely able to observe the way that he and other inmates coped with the experience of being in Auschwitz. He noticed that it was the men who comforted others and who gave away their last piece of bread who survived the longest - and who offered proof that everything can be taken away from us except the ability to choose our attitude in any given set of circumstances. The sort of person the prisoner became was the result of an inner decision and not of camp influences alone. Only those who allowed their inner hold on their moral and spiritual selves to subside eventually fell victim to the camp's degenerating influence - while those who made a victory of those experiences turned them into an inner triumph. Frankl came to believe that man's deepest desire is to search for meaning and purpose. This outstanding work offers us all a way to transcend suffering and find significance in the art of living.

    Ryan Holiday

    Recommended read on Ryan Holidays' Meditations on Strategy and Life

     — Source

  • Asylum

    Asylum

    Asylum

    William Seabrook
    Biography & Autobiography
    3.82 (241)

    "This dramatic memoir recaptures William Seabrook's experiences during an eight-month stay at a Westchester mental hospital in the early 1930s. Seabrook, who was a renowned journalist, voluntarily committed himself for acute alcoholism. His account offers an honest, self-critical look at addiction and treatment in the days before Alcoholics Anonymous and other modern programs. William Seabrook is most famous for introducing the word Zombie to Western culture"--

    Ryan Holiday

    Recommended read on Ryan Holidays' Meditations on Strategy and Life

     — Source

  • Rules for Radicals
    Ryan Holiday

    Recommended read on Ryan Holidays' Meditations on Strategy and Life

     — Source

  • Bird by Bird

    Bird by Bird

    Bird by Bird

    Anne Lamott
    Language Arts & Disciplines
    4.22 (86,201)

    An essential volume for generations of writers young and old, Bird by Bird is a modern classic. This twenty-fifth anniversary edition will continue to spark creative minds for years to come. For a quarter century, more than a million readers—scribes and scribblers of all ages and abilities—have been inspired by Anne Lamott’s hilarious, big-hearted, homespun advice. Advice that begins with the simple words of wisdom passed down from Anne’s father—also a writer—in the iconic passage that gives the book its title: “Thirty years ago my older brother, who was ten years old at the time, was trying to get a report on birds written that he’d had three months to write. It was due the next day. We were out at our family cabin in Bolinas, and he was at the kitchen table close to tears, surrounded by binder paper and pencils and unopened books on birds, immobilized by the hugeness of the task ahead. Then my father sat down beside him, put his arm around my brother’s shoulder, and said, ‘Bird by bird, buddy. Just take it bird by bird.’”

    Ryan Holiday

    Anne Lamotts book is ostensibly about the art of writing, but really it too is about life and how to tackle the problems, temptations and opportunities life throws at us.

     — Source

  • My Bondage and My Freedom

    My Bondage and My Freedom

    My Bondage and My Freedom

    Frederick Douglass
    Biography & Autobiography

    A deep meditation on the implications of slavery, race, and freedom, as well as a study of one man's perspective and how he intersects with the nation in which he lives, My Bondage and My Freedom is a powerful look at pre-Civil Wars America. Frederick Douglass—abolitionist, journalist, orator, and one of the most powerful voices to emerge from the American civil rights movement—transforms himself from slave to fugitive to reformer, leaving behind a legacy of social, intellectual, and political thought. Penguin Random House Canada is proud to bring you classic works of literature in e-book form, with the highest quality production values. Find more today and rediscover books you never knew you loved.

    Ryan Holiday

    Recommended read on Ryan Holidays' Meditations on Strategy and Life

     — Source

  • Wikinomics

    Wikinomics

    Wikinomics

    Anthony D. Williams,Don Tapscott
    Business & Economics
    3.74 (10,899)

    En este mismo momento, miles y hasta millones de equipos de personas están creando nuevas enciclopedias, aviones comerciales, sistemas operativos, fondos de inversión y otros muchos artículos. Aunque algunos directivos temen el crecimiento fabuloso de esas ingentes comunidades en línea, Wikinomics demuestra lo infundados que están tales miedos. Las empresas inteligentes son capaces de aprovechar esa capacidad y ese genio colectivos para espolear la innovación, el crecimiento y el éxito.

    Ryan Holiday

    Recommended read on Ryan Holidays' Meditations on Strategy and Life

     — Source

  • The Power Broker
    Ryan Holiday

    It took me 15 days to read all 1,165 pages of this monstrosity that chronicles the rise of Robert Moses.

     — Source

  • Titan

    Titan

    Titan

    Ron Chernow
    Biography & Autobiography
    4.12 (25,691)

    The author draws on Rockefeller's own papers to provide a biography of the legendary oilman, capitalist, and philanthropist

    Ryan Holiday

    I found Rockefeller to be strangely stoic, incredibly resilient, and, despite his reputation as a robber baron, humble and compassionate.

     — Source

  • Letters from a Self-Made Merchant to His Son

    Letters from a Self-Made Merchant to His Son

    Letters from a Self-Made Merchant to His Son

    George Horace Lorimer
    Fiction

    First published in 1901, "Letters from a Self-Made Merchant to his Son" is the acclaimed and popular work by American journalist and author George Horace Lorimer. Most famous for his years as editor of "The Saturday Evening Post" and his discovery of such important authors as Jack London, Lorimer's book, published at the beginning of his tenure as editor, is often cited as one of the best works of early 20th century American literature. "Letters from a Self-Made Merchant to his Son" is a collection of timeless advice from John Graham, a rich and prosperous pork-packer in Chicago, to his son, Pierrepont, affectionately referred to as "Piggy". Appreciated for its brilliant and subtle prose, Lorimer's work is full of interesting and wise advice for success in both business and life in general. Intelligent and no-nonsense, Graham imparts his hard-won insight to his son, with gems such as "Putting off an easy thing makes it hard, and putting off a hard one makes it impossible." Well-written, thoughtful, and clever, "Letters from a Self-Made Merchant to his Son" is a novel which endures for its invaluable advice for a successful and fulfilling life. This edition is printed on premium acid-free paper.

    Ryan Holiday

    I wish my father had written me stuff this good.

     — Source

  • The 48 Laws of Power

    The 48 Laws of Power

    The 48 Laws of Power

    Robert Greene
    Body
    Mind & Spirit

    'Machiavelli has a new rival, and Sun-tzu had better watch his back' - New York Times Robert Greene's laws are now famous: Law 1: Never outshine the master. Law 2: Never put too much trust in friends; learn how to use enemies. Law 3: Conceal your intentions. Law 4: Always say less than necessary. At work, in relationships, on the street or on the 6 o'clock News: the 48 Laws apply everywhere. For anyone with an interest in conquest, self-defence, wealth, power or simply being an educated spectator, The 48 Laws of Power is one of the most useful and entertaining books ever; it 'teaches you how to cheat, dissemble, feign, fight and advance your cause in the modern world.' (Independent on Sunday). Robert Greene will teach you the distilled wisdom of the masters - illustrated through the tactics, triumphs and failures from Elizabeth I to Henry Kissinger on how to get to the top and stay there. Wry, ironic and clever, this is an indispensable and witty guide to power. The perfect gift book for the power-hungry (and who doesn't want power?); this is the Concise Edition of an international bestseller. From the internationally bestselling author of Mastery, The Art Of Seduction, and The 33 Strategies Of War.

    Ryan Holiday

    Recommended read on Ryan Holidays' Meditations on Strategy and Life

     — Source

  • History of the Peloponnesian War
    Ryan Holiday

    Recommended read on Ryan Holidays' Meditations on Strategy and Life

     — Source

  • Candide

    Candide

    Candide

    Voltaire
    Fiction

    Every lover of classic literature should read Candide, the satirical masterpiece that shocked Paris upon its publication in 1759. The novel challenges many of the core assertions of Enlightenment philosophy and calls into question vast swaths of Christian dogma. Though widely banned after its publication, it propelled Voltaire to literary stardom and remains one of the most popular French novels ever written.

    Ryan Holiday

    I read this book as I waited for my wedding to start... the book is a light hearted satire that pokes fun at optimism, philosophy, politics, and power

     — Source

  • Up from Slavery

    Up from Slavery

    Up from Slavery

    Booker T. Washington
    African American civil rights workers

    Autobiography of Booker T. Washington.

    Ryan Holiday

    Recommended read on Ryan Holidays' Meditations on Strategy and Life

     — Source

  • The Prince

    The Prince

    The Prince

    Niccolò Machiavelli
    Philosophy
    3.82 (280,876)

    The classic handbook of statecraft written four centuries ago by an Italian nobleman recommends guile and craftiness to attain and maintain political power.

    Ryan Holiday

    Recommended read on Ryan Holidays' Meditations on Strategy and Life

     — Source

  • The Pirate's Dilemma

    The Pirate's Dilemma

    The Pirate's Dilemma

    Matt Mason
    Business & Economics
    3.71 (649)

    Explores the influence of youth culture on transforming mainstream society through innovative cooperative venues and modern "do-it-yourself" values, in a report that reveals what can be learned through the indirect social experiments being performed by today's young artists and entrepreneurs. Reprint.

    Ryan Holiday

    Recommended read on Ryan Holidays' Meditations on Strategy and Life

     — Source

  • Essays and Aphorisms

    Essays and Aphorisms

    Essays and Aphorisms

    Arthur Schopenhauer
    Philosophy

    One of the greatest philosophers of the nineteenth century, Schopenhauer (1788-1860) believed that human action is determined not by reason but by 'will' - the blind and irrational desire for physical existence. This selection of his writings on religion, ethics, politics, women, suicide, books and many other themes is taken from Schopenhauer's last work, Parerga and Paralipomena, which he published in 1851. These pieces depict humanity as locked in a struggle beyond good and evil, and each individual absolutely free within a Godless world, in which art, morality and self-awareness are our only salvation. This innovative - and pessimistic - view has proved powerfully influential upon philosophy and art, directly affecting the work of Nietzsche, Wittgenstein and Wagner among others.

    Ryan Holiday

    Recommended read on Ryan Holidays' Meditations on Strategy and Life

     — Source

  • Edison

    Edison

    Edison

    Matthew Josephson
    Inventors
    Religion

    Ryan Holiday

    I read a really good biography of Edison by Matthew Josephson called Edison: A Biography.

     — Source

  • Average Is Over

    Average Is Over

    Average Is Over

    Tyler Cowen
    Business & Economics
    3.65 (1,976)

    A renowned economist describes the post-recession job market that is erasing the middle range, leaving only high-earning jobs that utilize machine intelligence and data analysis and low-earning jobs for those who aren't learning and adopting the new technologies.

    Ryan Holiday

    In terms of business/economics, this is one of the more important books Ive read in a long time. I even keep a framed passage from it on my wall

     — Source

  • The Book of Five Rings

    The Book of Five Rings

    The Book of Five Rings

    Musashi Miyamoto,Shiro Tsujimura,William Scott Wilson
    Business & Economics
    4.03 (39,147)

    Wolf Haas' Detective Brenner series has become wildly popular around the world for a reason: They're timely, edgy stories told in a wry, quirky voice that's often hilarious, and with a protagonist it's hard not to love. In this episode, Brenner-forced out of the police force-tries to get away from detective work by taking a job as the personal chauffeur for two-year-old Helena, the daughter of a Munich construction giant and a Viennese abortion doctor. One day, while Brenner's attention is turned to picking out a chocolate bar for Helena at a gas station, Helena gets snatched from the car. Abruptly out of a job, Brenner decides to investigate her disappearance on his own. With both parents in the public eye, there's no scarcity of leads-the father's latest development project has spurred public protest, and the mother's clinic has been targeted by the zealous leader of an anti-abortion group. Brenner and God is told with a dark humor that leaves no character, including Brenner, unscathed. Haas tells the story of a fallible hero who can be indecisive and world-weary, baffled and disillusioned by what he finds, but who presses forward nonetheless out of a stubborn sense of decency-a two-year-old is kidnapped, so you find her, because that's just what you do.

    Ryan Holiday

    Recommended read on Ryan Holidays' Meditations on Strategy and Life

     — Source

  • The Epic of Gilgamesh
    Ryan Holiday

    Reading the classic epics can feel like work but there is value in it. These works are timeless and universal.

     — Source

  • Here Comes Everybody

    Here Comes Everybody

    Here Comes Everybody

    Clay Shirky
    Business & Economics
    3.80 (6,941)

    Evaluates the significant role being played by technological advances on the formation and experience of modern group dynamics, citing such examples as Wikipedia and MySpace to demonstrate the Internet's power in bridging geographical and cultural gaps. 40,000 first printing.

    Ryan Holiday

    You need to read them

     — Source

  • Brave New War

    Brave New War

    Brave New War

    John Robb
    Political Science
    3.87 (397)

    "For my money, John Robb, a former Air Force officer and tech guru, is the futurists' futurist." —Slate The counterterrorism expert John Robb reveals how the same technology that has enabled globalization also allows terrorists and criminals to join forces against larger adversaries with relative ease and to carry out small, inexpensive actions—like sabotaging an oil pipeline—that generate a huge return. He shows how combating the shutdown of the world’s oil, high-tech, and financial markets could cost us the thing we’ve come to value the most—worldwide economic and cultural integration—and what we must do now to safeguard against this new method of warfare.

    Ryan Holiday

    You need to read them

     — Source

  • What Makes Sammy Run?

    What Makes Sammy Run?

    What Makes Sammy Run?

    Budd Schulberg
    Fiction
    4.10 (2,341)

    What Makes Sammy Run? Everyone of us knows someone who runs. He is one of the symp-toms of our times—from the little man who shoves you out of the way on the street to the go-getter who shoves you out of a job in the office to the Fuehrer who shoves you out of the world. And all of us have stopped to wonder, at some time or another, what it is that makes these people tick. What makes them run? This is the question Schulberg has asked himself, and the answer is the first novel written with the indignation that only a young writer with talent and ideals could concentrate into a manuscript. It is the story of Sammy Glick, the man with a positive genius for being a heel, who runs through New York’s East Side, through newspaper ranks and finally through Hollywood, leaving in his wake the wrecked careers of his associates; for this is his tragedy and his chief characteristic—his congenital incapacity for friendship. An older and more experienced novelist might have tempered his story and, in so doing, destroyed one of its outstanding qualities. Compromise would mar the portrait of Sammy Glick. Schulberg has etched it in pure vitriol, and dissected his victim with a precision that is almost frightening. When a fragment of this book appeared as a short story in a national magazine, Schulberg was surprised at the number of letters he received from people convinced they knew Sammy Glick’s real name. But speculation as to his real identity would be utterly fruitless, for Sammy is a composite picture of a loud and spectacular minority bitterly resented by the many decent and sincere artists who are trying honestly to realize the measureless potentialities of motion pictures. To this group belongs Schulberg himself, who has not only worked as a screen writer since his graduation from Dartmouth College in 1936, but has spent his life, literally, in the heart of the motion-picture colony. In the course of finding out what makes Sammy run (an operation in which the reader is spared none of the grue-some details) Schulberg has poured out everything he has felt about that place. The result is a book which the publishers not only believe to be the most honest ever written about Hollywood, but a penetrating study of one kind of twentieth-century success that is peculiar to no single race of people or walk of life.

    Ryan Holiday

    Recommended read on Ryan Holidays' Meditations on Strategy and Life

     — Source

  • Founders at Work

    Founders at Work

    Founders at Work

    Jessica Livingston
    Business & Economics
    3.97 (26,478)

    Now available in paperback—with a new preface and interview with Jessica Livingston about Y Combinator! Founders at Work: Stories of Startups' Early Days is a collection of interviews with founders of famous technology companies about what happened in the very earliest days. These people are celebrities now. What was it like when they were just a couple friends with an idea? Founders like Steve Wozniak (Apple), Caterina Fake (Flickr), Mitch Kapor (Lotus), Max Levchin (PayPal), and Sabeer Bhatia (Hotmail) tell you in their own words about their surprising and often very funny discoveries as they learned how to build a company. Where did they get the ideas that made them rich? How did they convince investors to back them? What went wrong, and how did they recover? Nearly all technical people have thought of one day starting or working for a startup. For them, this book is the closest you can come to being a fly on the wall at a successful startup, to learn how it's done. But ultimately these interviews are required reading for anyone who wants to understand business, because startups are business reduced to its essence. The reason their founders become rich is that startups do what businesses do—create value—more intensively than almost any other part of the economy. How? What are the secrets that make successful startups so insanely productive? Read this book, and let the founders themselves tell you.

    Ryan Holiday

    Recommended read on Ryan Holidays' Meditations on Strategy and Life

     — Source

  • No Hiding Place

    No Hiding Place

    No Hiding Place

    William Seabrook
    Authors
    American

    Personal confessions of American writer who traveled far and wide and lived unconventional life.

    Ryan Holiday

    Recommended read on Ryan Holidays' Meditations on Strategy and Life

     — Source

  • Reveille for Radicals

    Reveille for Radicals

    Reveille for Radicals

    Saul Alinsky
    Political Science
    3.80 (507)

    Legendary community organizer Saul Alinsky inspired a generation of activists and politicians with Reveille for Radicals, the original handbook for social change. Alinsky writes both practically and philosophically, never wavering from his belief that the American dream can only be achieved by an active democratic citizenship. First published in 1946 and updated in 1969 with a new introduction and afterword, this classic volume is a bold call to action that still resonates today.

    Ryan Holiday

    Recommended read on Ryan Holidays' Meditations on Strategy and Life

     — Source

  • Sherman

    Sherman

    Sherman

    B. H. Liddell Hart
    History
    4.18 (328)

    When Liddell Hart's Sherman was first published in 1929, it received encomiums such as these: "A masterly performance . . . one of the most thorougly dignified, one of the most distinguished biographies of the year."--Henry Steele Commager, New York Herald Tribune "It is not often that one comes upon a biography that is so well done as this book. Nearly every page bears evidence of the fact that it is the product of painstaking and exhaustive research, mature thought, and an expert understanding of the subject in hand . . ."--Saturday Review of Literature

    Ryan Holiday

    This was someone I knew little about before I read the book, and by the end of it found myself referencing and thinking of him constantly.

     — Source

  • On War

    On War

    On War

    Carl von Clausewitz
    History
    3.96 (12,114)

    Presents the Prussian soldier's classic work analyzing the nature of war and the conditions which require it. Bibliogs

    Ryan Holiday

    You need to read them

     — Source

  • The Moral Animal

    The Moral Animal

    The Moral Animal

    Robert Wright
    Psychology
    4.07 (10,338)

    Are men literally born to cheat? Does monogamy actually serve women's interests? These are among the questions that have made The Moral Animal one of the most provocative science books in recent years. Wright unveils the genetic strategies behind everything from our sexual preferences to our office politics--as well as their implications for our moral codes and public policies. Illustrations.

    Ryan Holiday

    Recommended read on Ryan Holidays' Meditations on Strategy and Life

     — Source

  • Ulysses S. Grant

    Ulysses S. Grant

    Ulysses S. Grant

    Brooks Simpson
    Biography & Autobiography
    4.13 (130)

    Many modern historians have painted Ulysses S. Grant as a butcher, a drunk, and a failure as president. Others have argued the exact opposite and portray him with saintlike levels of ethic and intellect. In Ulysses S. Grant: Triumph over Adversity 1822â??1865, historian Brooks D. Simpson takes neither approach, recognizing Grant as a complex and human figure with human faults, strengths, and motivations. Simpson offers a balanced and complete study of Grant from birth to the end of the Civil War, with particular emphasis on his military career and family life and the struggles he overcame in his unlikely rise from unremarkable beginnings to his later fame as commander of the Union Army. Chosen as a New York Times Notable Book upon its original publication, Ulysses S. Grant is a readable, thoroughly researched portrait that sheds light on this controversial figure.

    Ryan Holiday

    And I read a really good biography of Ulysses S. Grant called Ulysses S. Grant: Triumph Over Adversity that I loved a lot.

     — Source

  • My Life and Battles

    My Life and Battles

    My Life and Battles

    Jack Johnson
    Biography & Autobiography
    4.00 (37)

    African American historian Gerald Early refers to Jack Johnson (1878-1946), the first African American heavyweight champion of the world, as "the first African American pop culture icon." Johnson is a seminal and iconic figure in the history of race and sport in America. This manuscript is the translation of a memoir by Johnson that was published in French, has never before been translated, and is virtually unknown. Originally published as a series of articles in 1911 and then in revised form as a book in 1914, it covers Johnson's colorful life and battles, both inside and outside the ring, up until and including his famous defeat of Jim Jeffries in Reno, on July 4, 1910. In addition to providing information about Johnson's life, it is a fascinating exercise in self-mythologizing that provides substantial insights into how Johnson perceived himself and wished to be perceived by others. Johnson's personal voice comes through clearly-brash, clever, theatrical, and invariably charming. The memoir makes it easy to see how and why Johnson served as an important role model for Muhammad Ali and why so many have compared the two.

    Ryan Holiday

    Recommended read on Ryan Holidays' Meditations on Strategy and Life

     — Source

  • How to Live

    How to Live

    How to Live

    Sarah Bakewell
    Biography & Autobiography
    3.93 (9,400)

    Originally published: London: Chatto & Windus, 2010.

    Ryan Holiday

    I like Sarah Bakewell's book How to Live. It's like a series of essays about Montaigne, who invented the essay.

    May 6, 2014 — Source

  • The War of Art

    The War of Art

    The War of Art

    Steven Pressfield
    Self-Help

    The Art of War meets "The Artist's Way" in this no-nonsense, profoundly inspiring guide to overcoming creative blocks of every kind.

    Ryan Holiday

    Recommended on Tim Ferriss'podcast

     — Source

  • Sex on the Brain

    Sex on the Brain

    Sex on the Brain

    Deborah Blum
    Social Science
    3.68 (277)

    Looks at the biology of gender, including such topics as male and female brains, sex differences in emotions, sexual orientation, hormones, and social roles

    Ryan Holiday

    One of the better books on evolutionary biology that focuses almost entirely on the biological and psychological differences between men and women.

     — Source

  • The River of Doubt

    The River of Doubt

    The River of Doubt

    Candice Millard
    History
    4.12 (58,999)

    At once an incredible adventure narrative and a penetrating biographical portrait, The River of Doubt is the true story of Theodore Roosevelt’s harrowing exploration of one of the most dangerous rivers on earth. The River of Doubt—it is a black, uncharted tributary of the Amazon that snakes through one of the most treacherous jungles in the world. Indians armed with poison-tipped arrows haunt its shadows; piranhas glide through its waters; boulder-strewn rapids turn the river into a roiling cauldron. After his humiliating election defeat in 1912, Roosevelt set his sights on the most punishing physical challenge he could find, the first descent of an unmapped, rapids-choked tributary of the Amazon. Together with his son Kermit and Brazil’s most famous explorer, Cândido Mariano da Silva Rondon, Roosevelt accomplished a feat so great that many at the time refused to believe it. In the process, he changed the map of the western hemisphere forever. Along the way, Roosevelt and his men faced an unbelievable series of hardships, losing their canoes and supplies to punishing whitewater rapids, and enduring starvation, Indian attack, disease, drowning, and a murder within their own ranks. Three men died, and Roosevelt was brought to the brink of suicide. The River of Doubt brings alive these extraordinary events in a powerful nonfiction narrative thriller that happens to feature one of the most famous Americans who ever lived. From the soaring beauty of the Amazon rain forest to the darkest night of Theodore Roosevelt’s life, here is Candice Millard’s dazzling debut.

    Ryan Holiday

    Recommended read on Ryan Holidays' Meditations on Strategy and Life

     — Source

  • The Autobiography of Malcolm X

    The Autobiography of Malcolm X

    The Autobiography of Malcolm X

    Malcolm X
    Biography & Autobiography
    4.32 (229,481)

    The Black leader discusses his political philosophy and reveals details of his life, shedding light on the ideas that enabled him to gain the allegiance of a still growing percentage of the Black population

    Ryan Holiday

    Recommended read on Ryan Holidays' Meditations on Strategy and Life

     — Source

  • The Score Takes Care of Itself

    The Score Takes Care of Itself

    The Score Takes Care of Itself

    Bill Walsh,Craig Walsh,Steve Jamison
    Business & Economics
    4.25 (3,404)

    The last lecture on leadership by the NFL's greatest coach: Bill Walsh Bill Walsh is a towering figure in the history of the NFL. His advanced leadership transformed the San Francisco 49ers from the worst franchise in sports to a legendary dynasty. In the process, he changed the way football is played. Prior to his death, Walsh granted a series of exclusive interviews to bestselling author Steve Jamison. These became his ultimate lecture on leadership. Additional insights and perspective are provided by Hall of Fame quarterback Joe Montana and others. Bill Walsh taught that the requirements of successful leadership are the same whether you run an NFL franchise, a fortune 500 company, or a hardware store with 12 employees. These final words of 'wisdom by Walsh' will inspire, inform, and enlighten leaders in all professions.

    Ryan Holiday

    Even if youve never watched a down of football, youll get something out of this book. Bill Walshs book certainly met that high standard.

     — Source

  • Totto-Chan

    Totto-Chan

    Totto-Chan

    Chihiro Iwasaki,Dorothy Britton,Tetsuko Kuroyanagi
    Biography & Autobiography
    4.36 (24,766)

    This engaging series of childhood recollections tells about an ideal school in Tokyo during World War II that combined learning with fun, freedom, and love. This unusual school had old railroad cars for classrooms, and it was run by an extraordinary man-its founder and headmaster, Sosaku Kobayashi-who was a firm believer in freedom of expression and activity. In real life, the Totto-chan of the book has become one of Japan's most popular television personalities-Tetsuko Kuroyanagi. She attributes her success in life to this wonderful school and its headmaster. The charm of this account has won the hearts of millions of people of all ages and made this book a runaway bestseller in Japan, with sales hitting the 4.5 million mark in its first year.

    Ryan Holiday

    The book has sold something like 5 million copies in Japan alone (an insane number).

     — Source

  • Fahrenheit 451

    Fahrenheit 451

    Fahrenheit 451

    Ray Bradbury
    Fiction
    3.99 (1,848,701)

    NOW AN HBO FILM STARRING MICHAEL B. JORDAN AND MICHAEL SHANNON Sixty years after its originally publication, Ray Bradbury’s internationally acclaimed novel Fahrenheit 451 stands as a classic of world literature set in a bleak, dystopian future. Today its message has grown more relevant than ever before. Guy Montag is a fireman. His job is to destroy the most illegal of commodities, the printed book, along with the houses in which they are hidden. Montag never questions the destruction and ruin his actions produce, returning each day to his bland life and wife, Mildred, who spends all day with her television “family.” But when he meets an eccentric young neighbor, Clarisse, who introduces him to a past where people didn’t live in fear and to a present where one sees the world through the ideas in books instead of the mindless chatter of television, Montag begins to question everything he has ever known.

    Ryan Holiday

    Mentioned on Ryan Holiday's twitter account

    Oct 11, 2015 — Source

View similar people