Posted October 21, 2013 by in Awesome Books

Books that Change the Way You Think

While many books are simply passing entertainment, we’ve all encountered a book at some point in our lives that has changed the way we view our world. Whether they cause you to view the world in a more positive light or renew your interest in the universe, the following five books all have the potential to dramatically transform your life.


1)  The Better Angels of Our Nature by Stephen Pinker

People are getting more violent every day, right? Not according to Stephen Pinker. In The Better Angels of Our Nature, Pinker argues that violence has decidedly plummeted in recent history. Mainstream media thrives on violence and will continue focusing on it even as violent crime rates decline. Likewise, a government will never be able to coerce its citizens into fighting wars of aggression when the people are getting safer each year.


2)  A Million Little Pieces by James Frey

When you’re a serious drug addict, it becomes hard to concentrate on anything but your next fix. It takes quite the experience to slap some sense into you. After awaking from an alcohol- and crack-induced sleep, completely unaware of what transpired over the past two weeks, James Frey decided to check into rehab. A Million Little Pieces is the story of Frey’s personal struggle to triumph over his addiction. Anyone struggling with addiction who reads this book will probably realize they need to check into the best drug rehab they can find. People who read this without any experience of addiction will come to realize how good life can be.


3) The Inner Game of Tennis by W. Timothy Gallwey

A classic, bestselling book on nerves, The Inner Game of Tennis is about much more than tennis. Whether you get nervous before a music performance, a meeting at work, public speaking, or any other activity, Gallwey’s work will help you. We spend hours practicing for the “outer game” and leave the “inner game” against our own minds up to chance. By employing Gallwey’s techniques, you will improve control over your own mind and learn to win the “inner game,” the fight against doubt, nerves, and anxiety.


4) Brave New World by Aldous Huxley

While many of us have read such classics as 1984 and Fareinheit 451, Aldous  Huxley’s Brave New World, a classic itself, is perhaps the most relevant today. In an age of mass consumerism, many of us are consuming more and more while creating less and less. While Orwell feared a government so powerful that it could ban books, Huxley feared a people so shallow and dumbed-down that books would simply go unread. Dealing with tough subjects like individual identity, classism, and industrialization, Huxley’s novel is just as relevant today as when it was first published.


5) A Briefer History of Time by Stephen Hawking

In a more concise version of an already concise guide to the way our universe works, Hawking explains ideas such as the Theory of Relativity in a way that, with focus, the layperson can understand. This book will likely give you a deeper appreciation for the amazing universe in which we live. Even if you’re not a “science person,” Hawking conveys principles using the least “math-talk” possible, providing a clear, well-written overview of major principles in cosmology.

Courtney Gordner