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Top six books for you

Discussion in 'General Chat' started by Milhouse, Nov 23, 2009.

  1. Teacher

    Teacher Senior member

    Apr 2, 2005
    Grand Forks, ND, USA
    How can you have read Nietzsche and Camus and still think highly of Rand??? WTF!!!!

    How can you read Camus?
  2. JonHecht

    JonHecht Senior member

    Aug 14, 2009
  3. Fuuma

    Fuuma Senior member

    Dec 20, 2004
    How can you read Camus?

    He's a good writer? You don't even need to agree with him...
  4. thinman

    thinman Senior member

    Jan 24, 2005
    The 100 books list spurred a quote that caught my attention.

    So, here is something to ponder:

    What six books are the most powerful, meaningful books you have experienced? These need to be books that you would read over and over, study thoroughly and enjoy.

    For me, that is such a tough question. I'll have to think for a while about it. I'm not sure that I've found my six even.

    The OP really asks two questions, so I'll cheat and give two lists. Even with two lists, narrowing down my favorite books to a list of six (12) is an incredibly difficult task.

    First, the most powerful, meaningful books I've ever experienced, i.e. those I responded to emotionally, usually as a result of where I was in my life when I read them. They also changed my life in various ways:

    1) Catch-22
    2) Of Mice and Men
    3) Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance
    4) A Farewell to Arms
    5) Lord of the Flies
    6) Tuesdays with Morrie (I know, but I read it after caring for my mother for the last year and a half of her life)

    Now, books that influenced my life and I'd like to read over and over, to study and enjoy:

    1) The Bible (lots of practical wisdom. The same writing can mean different things at different times in my life)
    2) Collected Works of Shakespeare (funny, witty, a tutorial on the use of the English language)
    3) The Intelligent Investor (changed how I manage my investments)
    4) Catch-22 (wonderful book, forever changed my view of bureaucracies)
    5) Complete Tales of Edgar Allen Poe (amazing writing just draws me in)
    6) a tough choice, maybe Gulliver's Travels (funny, insightful)

    I'm a fan of sci fi, so Neuromancer and the Foundation Trilogy almost made the list, but none of it really stacks up (unless you consider Poe to be a forerunner of sci fi. Incidentally, anyone who likes Poe should also read Ambrose Bierce). History is also another love of mine, so Churchill's history of WWII almost made the list.
  5. Connemara

    Connemara Senior member

    Mar 9, 2006
    H, I remembered the Yeats collection. "Selected Poems and Four Plays," M. Rosenthal, ed. I've read a lot of poetry and truly love many poets, but there's something magical about Yeats.
  6. Mountains

    Mountains Senior member

    Feb 7, 2009
    How can you have read Nietzsche and Camus and still think highly of Rand??? WTF!!!!

    Rand's philosophy has its strengths and weaknesses, much like anything else.

    Besides, the question was about which books in my life were the most powerful and meaningful, not which I happen to agree with the most. Atlas Shrugged, without a doubt, qualifies for this list; I read it as a freshman in high school, and (along with a number of my friends) was a hardcore objectivist for most of the next four years. Rand's ethics still hold some allure to me.
  7. mickey711

    mickey711 Senior member

    Nov 18, 2009
    Slaughterhouse-Five Kurt Vonnegut
    Catch-22 Joseph Heller
    The General Theory of Employment, Interest and Money John Maynard Keynes
    1984 George Orwell
    The Great Gatsby F. Scott Fitzgerald
    Never Let Me Go Kazuo Ishiguro

    why not?

    Because the majority of those who follow Ayn Rand's philosophy fail to realize that the opportunities in our society are afforded, in large part, to governtment institutions and taxes, and that they do not make every dollar entirely by themselves. For instance, government funding in basic research over the past century has allowed us to enjoy the fruits of technological and scientific progress, from MRI machines, lasers, computers to the Internet.
  8. Teacher

    Teacher Senior member

    Apr 2, 2005
    Grand Forks, ND, USA
    He's a good writer? You don't even need to agree with him...

    Well, okay....
  9. MarquisMagic

    MarquisMagic Senior member

    Nov 30, 2009
    Beverly Hills, CA
    Catcher in the Rye
    Great Expectations
    Moby Dick
    Of Mice & Men
    The Bible
    Sex Kittens Go to College
  10. Humperdink

    Humperdink Senior member

    Jun 18, 2007
    Cobble Hill
    As an excuse to boost my post count:

    The Fixer Malamud
    The Stranger Camus
    Of Grammatology Derrida
    Lolita Nabokov
    Japan's Modern Myths Gluck
    Undoing Gender Butler

    I just realized what a passionless human being I am...[​IMG]
  11. leftover_salmon

    leftover_salmon Senior member

    May 26, 2007
    Wuthering Heights Emily Bronte
    The Crying of Lot 49 Thomas Pynchon
    The Corrections Jonathan Franzen
    The Good Soldier Ford Madox Ford
    Barbarians at the Gates Bryan Burrough and John Helyar
    King of the World David Remnick
  12. rogermood

    rogermood New Member

    Nov 30, 2009
    Brave New World
    Into Thin Air
    Atlas Shrugged
    The Fountainhead
    A Brief History of Time
    These are the top six in my list.
  13. Scrumhalf

    Scrumhalf Senior member

    Dec 13, 2007
    Portland OR
    Near impossible to narrow down to 6, but I like these a lot and come back to them often:

    The Count of Monte Cristo - Dumas
    The Castle - Kafka
    One day in the life of Ivan Denisovitch - Solzhenitsyn
    The Mismeasure of Man - Stephen Jay Gould
    Neuromancer - Gibson
    The Remains of the Day - Ishiguro
  14. Korben

    Korben Senior member

    Oct 15, 2009
    Lord of the Flies
    A Brief History of Time
    Elegant Universe
    Divine Comedy

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