When I read the best non-fiction books, it’s as if I can feel my IQ going up as I read. I hope to continue on this wonderful journey of reading books that profoundly change the way I think and live. Here are the books I read this year that made me feel smarter as I read them and books that I can’t wait to read again.
1. Sapiens: A Brief History of Mankind
Author: Yuval Noah Harari
2. Home Deus: A Brief History of Tomorrow
Author: Yuval Noah Harari
“The most important things in the world exist only in our imaginations.”
Yuval might be the smartest person on the planet. He traces the evolution of the human species over the past million years. He shows how we have evolved and also predicts our future in a really interesting way. Both his books are by far the best I’ve ever read. They provide interesting perspectives and random musings which strike a wonderful chord with my thoughts. His books grip the reader to the edge of the seat.
3. A Short History of Nearly Everything
Author: Bill Bryson
This book is a summation of life, the universe, and everything, a nice little easy-reading. It re-ignited my interest in science and kept me hooked. Some of Bill Bryson’s thoughts and writings coincided with my own thought experiments. A joyful read.
4. Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance
Author: Angela Duckworth
All my life, I kept myself falsely inclined towards the notion that I was naturally gifted and I’m prone to success. Someday. And then, this book happened to me. Angela beautifully portrays the things that enable us to achieve; passion and perseverance. Grit is a fascinating book that helps you cultivate those things.
5. India after Gandhi: The History of the World’s Largest Democracy
An excellent, thorough history of modern India, post-independence though a little biased. It opens up the unread chapters in the history of modern India. This book paves the way to educate oneself about the changing definitions of Indian Democracy.
6. Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future
Author: Ashlee Vance
Genius Billionaire Playboy Philanthropist. The real Iron Man.
Elon Musk is the most inspirational person on my list. His vision and grit are qualities that I hope to find in myself. Yet reading this book made me understand that much of what he does is admirable but an awful lot of it would not be attractive to most of us.
7. Access to History: Crisis in the Middle East: Israel and the Arab States 1945-2007
Author: Michael Steve Bauman
The book explores and analyses the history of conflict in the Middle East from British rule in the early twentieth century to the Iraq war in the twenty-first century. It manages to explain the chaos and struggle in the middle east in simple words.
8. The Speed of Time
Author: Sharad Nalwade
A precursor to The Brief History of Time by Stephen Hawking, this book explains some of the most extraordinary scientific concepts in a fun layman’s language.
9. Zero to One: Notes on Start Ups and How to Build the Future
‘What is something you think is true, but that most people disagree with you on?’
This book shows that “If you want to build a better future, you must believe in secrets.
The great secret of our time is that there are still uncharted frontiers to explore and new inventions to create.”
A fascinating read into the cycle of startups and what it takes to build a successful one.
10. The story of my experiments with truth.
Author: M.K. Gandhi
For someone who used to hate Gandhi based on social media posts and prejudiced notions, this book described to me perfectly the stoic life of Gandhi. This book provides the basic framework on what enabled him to organize movements and move masses.
Congrats! Now you know what to gift me. 😀
Kindly drop a comment on must-read books, preferably non-fiction, that made you think as well as showed you different perspectives and why you believe so.