Great Books List Jasper Paulsen

ErikMeade started this neat idea. He wrote, "I ran into the GreatBooksList and thought 'I wish I had a link on peoples pages to see their GreatBooksList.', so I made one for me, and linked it to my page."

-----My "1-book for the stranded soul"-----

The Lord of the Rings, by JrrTolkien.


----- GreatBooks? (Fiction) -----

The HitchhikersGuideToTheGalaxy series, by DouglasAdams.

The DirkGently series, by DouglasAdams.

The first half of the Foundation trilogy, by IsaacAsimov.

TheShockwaveRider, by JohnBrunner.

Alice in Wonderland, by LewisCarroll.

ThePrincessBride, by S. Morgenstern, as "abridged" by WilliamGoldman.

The Man Who Sold the Moon, by RobertHeinlein.

Dune, by Frank Herbert.

Short stories by Larry Niven.


----- GreatBooks? (Origami) -----

The Complete Book of Origami, by Robert Lang.

Origami from Angelfish to Zen, by Peter Engel.

Most books by John Montroll.


----- GreatBooks? (Non-Fiction) -----

QuantumMechanicsForEngineers, by Leon van Dommelen.

TheMachineThatChangedTheWorld, by the MIT International Motor Vehicle Program.

TheDesignOfEverydayThings, by DonaldNorman

TheGoal, by EliyahuGoldratt.

RefactoringImprovingTheDesignOfExistingCode, by MartinFowler, et al.

ExtremeProgrammingExplainedEmbraceChange, by KentBeck.

HowToLieWithStatistics, by Darrell Huff. Pictures by Irving Geis.


Consumer Reports.

Any current, readable economics textbook.
For example, Economics: Principles and Policy, by William J. Baumol and Alan S. Blinder.

Any current, readable biology textbook.
For example, Biology, by Peter H. Raven and George B. Johnson.

The Joy of Cooking, by Irma S. Rombauer and Marion Rombauer Becker.
I prefer the 1995 Scribner hard-cover edition: ISBN 0-02-604570-2

On Food And Cooking: The Science and Lore of the Kitchen, by Harold McGee.
I have the 2004 Scribner revised edition: ISBN 0-684-80001-2 . This book is a cross between an organic chemistry book and an excellent biology book, written in the style of The Joy Of Cooking's sidebars. Though it does not not have many recipes, it answers lots of "why" and "how" questions. It explains how the properties of food depend on the chemistry of the plants and/or animals it is made from, and on the methods of preparation. It also explains how that chemistry is beneficial to the plants and/or animals. The "Food Words" sidebars go into the ancient history (via linguistics) of food. It has an excellent index and bibliography. The index lists about 6000 foods, methods of preparation, and properties. The bibliography includes about 500 journal articles, books, and cookbooks. It consistently gives scientific genus and species names.

----- GreatBooks? (History) -----

A History of Warfare, by John Keegan.

Medieval Cities, by Henri Pirenne. ISBN 0-691-00760-8
I think Medieval Cities is a good book, not a great book.
I put it in this list because it outlines the background to many of the other books in this list.

The Face of Battle, by John Keegan.

Paul Revere's Ride, by David Hackett Fischer.

The American Crisis, by Thomas Paine.

Democracy In America, by Alexis DeTocqueville, as edited by Phillips Bradley.
Make sure to get the Bradley edition (copyright 1945, renewed 1972).
The earlier English translations are almost unreadable.
Despite this, they were the standard text for teaching political science in American schools during much of the 1800s.
Volume 1 is ISBN 0-679-72825-2 , Volume 2 is ISBN 0-679-72826-0

The EncyclopaediaBritannica.
I prefer the editions before the editors chopped out all the short articles into a "Micropaedia". (I like the "A-Anstey" versions.) The histories are reliable, and often more detailed than what people learn in the schools in their own countries.

HowToWinFriendsAndInfluencePeople, by Dale Carnegie.
If you can find one, get a copy published before Carnegie died.
After he died, the editors took out many of the most fascinating examples, because they were "old-fashioned".

Caged Dragons: An American P.O.W. in World War II Japan, by Bob Haney.
Fascinating. ISBN 1-879094-06-1
I have posted an excerpt at
"In this story are the lessons of Bob Haney's salvation, as compelling today as they were when a 20-year-old Marine corporal dutifully obeyed his orders to buy his country a little time." -- John McCain

-- JasperPaulsen
See also: GreatBooksList, BookList, FullSearch:

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