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Books That Have Made Me

My notes to you from my Kindle

Although I loved paper-and-ink books all my life, I now love Kindle books more. One of the many advantages I get from reading on my Kindle (I've got a Kindle Oasis) is that, while I am reading, I can easily select and save salient sentences or paragraphs into a document on my computer. Later, if needed, I easily and quickly give myself a refresher course of what I thought important in reading the book.


Sharing these clippings with you


Also, I can share these clippings with you. Yes, you could read the entire book like I did. And you might decide to after perusing the parts that I thought especially juicy or valuable.


This link will be updated with new book notes from time to time. 

You also might want to check out my book recommendations on Amazon. And the book titles further down on the page in Acknowledgements.

My eclectic life (and mind)

When I was fourteen years old, I decided to put together my "philosophy of life" eclectically. I would explore many different thoughts, belief systems, perspectives, and life arguments somewhat regardless of whether I thought they might align strongly with what I already believed. Thinking for myself, as my mother had taught me to do from age five (or earlier), I would adopt (at least provisionally) new ideas and approaches as they seemed to fit and make sense and let go of the rest. I would also question in what circumstances the ideas may apply and may not apply.

A few of the continual flow of books that have and are making me, in reverse chronological order of my reading:

The Coddling of the American Mind: How Good Intentions and Bad Ideas are Setting up a Generation for Failure

Greg Lukianoff and Jonathan Haidt

Sacred Inquiry: Questions That Can Transform Your Life (May, 2024)


How Leadership (Actually) Works (May, 2024)

—Larry Yatch

Adapt: Why Success Always Starts with Failure (April, 2024)

—Tim Harford

Black Box Thinking: Why Most People Never Learn from their Mistakes—But Some Do (April, 2024)

—Matthew Syed

I Never Thought of It that Way: How to Have Fearlessly Curious Conversations in Dangerously Divided Times (March, 2024)

—Monica Guzman

Negotiating the Impossible: How to Break Deadlocks and Resolve Ugly Conflicts

—Deepak Malhotra

How Not to Age: The Scientific Approach to Getting Healthier as You Get Older

—Dr. Michael Greger

The Beginning of Infinity: Explanations that Transform the World

—David Deutsch

Same as Ever: a Guide to What Never Changes

—Morgan Housel

Whole Earth Discipline: Why Dense Cities, Nuclear Power, Transgenic Crops, Restored Wildlands, and Geoengineering Are Necessary

—Stewart Brand

Existential Kink: Unmask Your Shadow and Embrace Your Power

—Carolyn Elliott, PhD

Decisions about Decisions: Practical Reason in Ordinary Life

—Cass R. Sunstein

Selfless: The Social Creation of “You”

—Brian Lowery, PhD

Radical Abundance: How a Revolution in Nanotechnology Will Change Civilization

—K Eric Drexler

The Comfort Crisis: Embrace Discomfort To Reclaim Your Wild, Happy, Healthy Self

—Michael Easter

Whole Earth: the Many Lives of Stewart Brand

—John Markoff

Built to Move: The Ten Essential Habits to Help You Move Freely and Live Fully

—Kelly Starrett and Juliet Starrett

Against Empathy: the case for rational compassion

—Paul Bloom

The Sweet Spot: The Pleasures of Suffering and the Search for Meaning

—Paul Bloom

Thanks a Thousand: A Gratitude Journey

—A.J. Jacobs

The Puzzler: One Man's Quest to Solve the Most Baffling Puzzles Ever, from Crosswords to Jigsaws to the Meaning of Life

—A.J. Jacobs

How to Live: 27 conflicting answers and one weird conclusion

—Derek Sivers


Magic Words: What to Say to Get Your Way

—Jonah Burger

Ideaflow: The Only Business Metric That Matters

—Jeremy Utley and Perry Klebahn

Elbow Room: the Varieties of Free Will Worth Wanting

—Daniel Dennett

The 100: a Ranking of the Most Influential Persons in History

—Michael H. Hart

Hiroo Onoda: our teacher? (No Surrender: My Thirty-Year War)

—Hiroo Onoda

Internal Time: Chronotypes, Social Jet Lag, and Why You're So Tired

—Till Roennberg

Good Inside: A Guide to Becoming the Parent you Want to Be

—Dr. Becky Kennedy

Quit: the Power of Knowing When to Walk Away

—Annie Duke

How to Decide: Simple Tools for Making Better Choices

—Annie Duke

The Philosophy Book: Big Ideas Simply Explained

—Will Buckingham

Sum: Forty tales from the Afterlives

—David Eagleman

Whole Body Vibration: the Future of Good Health

—Becky Chambers

Incognito: The Secret Lives of the Brain

—David Eagleman

Changing Minds: The Art and Science of Changing Our Own and Other People's Minds

—Howard Gardner

The Art of Possibility: Transforming Professional and Personal Life

—Rosamund Stone Zander and Benjamin Zander

Originals: How Non-conformists Move the World

—Adam Grant

Principles: Life and Work

—Ray Dalio

Resurrecting Jesus: Embodying the Spirit of a Revolutionary Mystic


The End of Heart Disease: The Live to Eat Plan to Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease

—Joel Fuhrman, M.D.

The Catalyst: How to Change Anyone's Mind

—Jonah Berger

Life Force: How New Breakthroughs in Precision Medicine Can Transform the Quality of Your Life & Those You Love

—Tony Robbins

The Science and Technology of Growing Young

—Sergey Young

The Leader's Checklist: 16 Mission-Critical Principles

—Michael Useem

Be Your Future Self Now: The Science of Intentional Transformation

—Dr. Bejamin Hardy

The Second Machine Age: Work, Progress, and Prosperity in a Time of Brilliant Technologies

—Erik Brynjolfsson 

The Devil's Dictionary

—Ambrose Bierce

The Power of Regret: How Looking Back Moves Us Forward

—by Daniel Pink

Rationality: What It Is, Why It Seems Scare, Why It Matters

—by Steven Pinker

The Hidden Habits of Genius:  Beyond Talent, IQ, and Grit—Unlocking the Secrets of Greatness

—Craig Wright

The Righteous Mind: Why Good People Are Divided by Politics and Religion

—by Jonathan Haidt

How We Learn: Why Brains Learn Better Than Any Machine...for Now

—by Stanislas Dehaene

Designing Your Life: How to Build a Well-Lived, Joyful Life

—by Bill Burnett and Dave Evans

Making Numbers Count: the Art and Science of Communicating Numbers

—Chip Heath and Karla Starr (I read this in January of 2022)

Noise: a Flaw in Human Judgment

—Daniel Kahneman (I read this in December, 2021)


A Minute to Think: Reclaim Creativity, Conquer Busyness, and Do Your Best Work

—Juliet Funt (I read this in November of 2021)

The Extended Mind: The Power of Thinking Outside the Brain

—Annie Murphy Paul (I read this in October of 2021)

Thinking in Bets: Making Smarter Decisions When You Don't Have All the Facts

—Annie Duke (I read this in September of 2021)

Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, Second Edition: The Process and Practice of Mindful Change

—Steven C. Hayes, Kirk D. Strosahl, and Kelly G. Wilson (I read this in September of 2021)

Maxims for Thinking Analytically: The wisdom of legendary Harvard Professor Richard Zeckhauser

—Dan Levy (I read this in August of 2021)

"The Scout Mindset: Why Some People See Things Clearly and Others Don't"

—Julia Galef (I read this in August of 2021)

Curious?: Discover the Missing Ingredient to a Fulfilling Life

—Todd B. Kashdan (I read this in October of 2020)

Difficult Conversations: How to Discuss What Matters Most 

—Douglas Stone (I read this in April of 2020)

How Not to Diet: The Groundbreaking Science of Healthy, Permanent Weight Loss

—Michael Greger, M.D., FACLM (I read this in February of 2020)

The One-Minute Workout: Science Shows a Way to Get Fit That's Smarter, Faster, Shorter

—Martin Gibala and Christopher Shulgan (I read this in June of 2018)

The Code of the Extraordinary Mind: 10 Unconventional Laws to Redefine Your Life and Succeed on Your Own Terms

—Vishen Lakhiani (I read this in December of 2017)

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