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Our Top 30 Best-Selling Book Recommendations

Famous English philosopher Francis Bacon is commonly quoted as saying, “Knowledge is power.” In an age of information, this seems to be more true now than ever. With access to an infinite amount of information at our fingertips and a myriad of ways in which to consume it, it’s hard to choose which sources to invest your time in.

Do I listen to this podcast? Or watch this documentary? Or read this book? Or maybe watch this YouTube video? Or scroll through social media? Or how about I download this app? While progress is exciting, there always seems to be a price to pay.

Don’t let yourself be paralyzed by the abundance of options. We’re here to make it easier for you. Not only did we do research to help you choose the most beneficial source of information, but we created a list of our top 30 best-selling book recommendations (hey, there’s the title) to save you the hassle of trying to figure out which books to read.

Why books, you ask? Research suggests reading books improves open-mindedness, creativity, mental stimulation, empathy, knowledge, vocabulary, writing skills, memory, focus, analytical skills, tranquility (deep breath), and even longevity. As you can see, there’s a reason or two most successful people advocate for reading books.

Besides, isn’t it just nice to have something tangible in your hand in an evergrowing artificial world, without blue light possibly damaging your eyes and throwing off your circadian rhythm? Don’t you just love the smell of a book wafting through your nostrils with every flip of a page? Well, we do, and so have many generations of gentlemen before us. When you think of how a gentleman would improve his mind, don’t you imagine him reading a book?

Whether you’re an avid reader or just looking to get started, here’s a well-rounded list of our favorites, for any gentleman (in no specific order)…


Summary: “What does it mean to be human? In a sweeping narrative spanning two and a half million years of human evolution, Israeli historian Yuval Noah Harari weaves insights from science and the humanities together to answer to what it means to be human.”


Summary: “Freakonomics (2005) applies rational economic analysis to everyday situations, from online dating to buying a house. The book reveals why the way we make decisions is often irrational, why conventional wisdom is frequently wrong, and how and why we are incentivized to do what we do.”

On Writing

Summary: “On Writing, as its title suggests, is Stephen King’s book on how to write. King has split the book into two parts; in the first, he narrates the story of his life in a series of vignettes. Here, King displays his characteristic wit and pathos in telling the humorous and bittersweet story of his genesis as an author.”


Summary: “Essentialism is not about how to get more things done; it’s about how to get the right things done…it is about making the wisest possible investment of your time and energy in order to operate at our highest point of contribution by doing only what is essential.”

Thinking Fast & Slow

Summary: “Thinking Fast And Slow shows you how two systems in your brain are constantly fighting over control of your behavior and actions, and teaches you the many ways in which this leads to errors in memory, judgment and decisions, and what you can do about it.”

Into the Wild

Summary: “Into the Wild, by Jon Krakauer, is the nonfiction story of Chris McCandless, a young man who drops out of society to wander across the country and eventually dies on a hiking trip in Alaska.”

Astrophysics for People in a Hurry

Summary: “In Astrophysics for People in a Hurry by Neil deGrasse Tyson takes the reader on a voyage from the beginning of our universe and the big bang to our modern world and the need to place our existence within a wider cosmological perspective.”

The Wealth of Nations

Summary: “The Wealth of Nations” is a seminal book that represents the birth of free-market economics, but it’s not without faults. It lacks proper explanations for pricing or theory of value and Smith failed to see the importance of the entrepreneur in breaking up inefficiencies and creating new markets.”

The Call of the Wild

Summary: “The Call of the Wild is one of Jack London’s most popular novels. The story follows a dog named Buck, a 140 pound Saint Bernard and Scotch Shepherd mix. Buck is abducted from a comfortable life as a pet and tossed into the chaos of the Klondike Gold Rush and the brutal realities of frontier life.”


Summary: “Walden is a written account of the two years Henry David Thoreau lives alone in a cabin in the wilderness. Through this experience, Thoreau examines the fundamental elements of humanity. Thoreau builds himself a small cabin by Walden Pond and lives simply.”

Leaves of Grass

Summary: “The poems of Leaves of Grass are loosely connected, with each representing Whitman’s celebration of his philosophy of life and humanity. This book is notable for its discussion of delight in sensual pleasures during a time when such candid displays were considered immoral.”

Nature & Selected Essays

Summary: “Nature is an essay by Ralph Waldo Emerson in which Emerson outlines his beliefs regarding the relationship between humankind and nature. Emerson begins by asserting that humans need to develop their own sense of self and their beliefs.”

Our National Parks

Summary: “This addition to the John Muir Library Series is a collection of ten essays in which Muir extols the beauty, grandeur, and importance of Yosemite, Sequoia, Yellowstone, and other National Parks of the American West and urges the preservation of these natural areas.”

How to Win Friends & Influence People

Summary: “The core idea is that you can change other people’s behavior simply by changing your own. It teaches you the principles to better understand people, become a more likable person, improve relationships, win others over, and influence behavior through leadership.”

7 Habits of Highly Effective People

Summary: “Covey’s seven habits are composed of the primary principles of character upon which happiness and success are based. The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People puts forward a principle-centered approach to both personal and interpersonal effectiveness.”

Think & Grow Rich

Summary: “Think and Grow Rich is the result of Hill’s study of over five hundred self-made millionaires—a condensed, accessible explanation of his Law of Success philosophy, which includes thirteen steps to riches (financial, emotional, and spiritual).”

The Effective Executive

Summary: “The Effective Executive by Peter Drucker is the ultimate book on how to be effective. It rests on two premises: the executive’s job is to be effective, and effectiveness can be learned through 5 habits. A must-read book to learn how to work on the right things as well as working right.”


Summary: “Dr. Robert Cialdini is an expert in the field of influence and persuasion. His thirty-five years of rigorous, evidence-based research along with a three-year program of study on what moves people to change behavior has resulted in this highly acclaimed book.”

Predictably Irrational

Summary: “In Predictably Irrational: The Hidden Forces That Shape Our Decisions, Dr. Dan Ariely looks at self-defeating behavior, the power of suggestion, of procrastination, the effects of placebos and many other aspects of our lives that we are often unaware of.”

Guns, Germs, & Steel

Summary: “In Guns, Germs, and Steel, Jared Diamond outlines the theory of geographic determinism, the idea that the differences between societies and societal development arise primarily from geographical causes. The book is framed as a response to a question that Diamond heard from Yali, a charismatic New Guinean politician.”

Good Clean Fun

Summary: “This book takes readers behind the scenes of the woodshop, both inspiring and teaching them to make their own projects and besotting them with the infectious spirit behind the shop and its complement of dusty wood-elves.”

The Hidden Life of Trees

Summary: “The Hidden Life of Trees describes how trees can communicate, support each other, learn from experience, and form alliances with other inhabitants of the forest. There is so much more to the forest life than what meets the human eye.”

A Short History of Nearly Everything

Summary: “A Short History of Nearly Everything offers an enlightening summary of contemporary scientific thinking relating to all aspects of life, from the creation of the universe to our relationship with the tiniest of bacteria.”

The Body

Summary: “Bryson turns his attention inwards to explore the human body, how it functions and its remarkable ability to heal itself. Full of extraordinary facts and astonishing stories, The Body: A Guide for Occupants is a brilliant, often very funny attempt to understand the miracle of our physical and neurological makeup.”

A Walk in the Woods

Summary: “Bryson’s acute eye is a wise witness to this beautiful but fragile trail, and as he tells its fascinating history, he makes a moving plea for the conservation of America’s last great wilderness. An adventure, a comedy, and a celebration, A Walk in the Woods is a modern classic of travel literature.”

Into Thin Air

Summary: “Journalist Jon Krakauer is looking to fulfill a childhood ambition by finally climbing Mount Everest. After being assigned to write a brief piece about the mountain for Outside magazine, Krakauer manages to convince his bosses to fund a full-fledged expedition to the top.”

Atomic Habits

Summary: “Key takeaway- A tiny change in your behavior will not transform your life overnight but turn that behavior into a habit that you perform every day and it absolutely can lead to big changes. Changing your life is not about making big breakthroughs or revolutionizing your entire life.”

The Power of Habit

Summary: “Habits emerge without our permission. Habits are so powerful because they create neurological cravings. Often, these cravings emerge so gradually that we’re not really aware they exist. To create a new habit, put together a cue, a routine, and a reward, then cultivating a craving that drives the loop.”

Man’s Search for Meaning

Summary: “Man’s Search for Meaning is a 1946 book by Viktor Frankl chronicling his experiences as a prisoner in Nazi concentration camps during World War II, and describing his psychotherapeutic method, which involved identifying a purpose in life to feel positive about, and then immersively imagining that outcome.”

Interpretation of Dreams

Summary: “The Interpretation of Dreams (German: Die Traumdeutung) is an 1899 book by Sigmund Freud, the founder of psychoanalysis, in which the author introduces his theory of the unconscious with respect to dream interpretation, and discusses what would later become the theory of the Oedipus complex.”

If you’re new to reading and feel like you won’t have the time, there are plenty of techniques out there to help you read faster!