The importance of reading has been somewhat minimized thanks to the constant “advice” of sleazy financial and self-help gurus that want you to buy their books. “The average CEO reads 5 books per week”. Shut up, who cares. I want to know what will make me a better man, not some cliché advice from people that overly glorify millionaires and “successful” people. The thing is that even if you don’t want to be a CEO and are sick and tired of everyone making life only about money and power, reading is good for you. Here are some books that every man should read, not to get rich, not to be a better salesman, but to be a better man.
The importance of reading has been somewhat minimized thanks to the constant “advice” of sleazy financial and self-help gurus that want you to buy their books.
The way of men – Jack Donovan
We don’t discuss the actual meaning of masculinity nearly enough nowadays. It is obligatory for a man to understand what masculinity is, to be able to recognize what aspects of his personality he should devote time to improving. This book is an unapologetic analysis of what it means to be good at being a man, exploring the virtues that every man should work on to be a more masculine man, without the annoying filter of political correctness. It tells things how they are, it’s a wakeup call, and a refreshing one for that matter. Donovan explains the importance of being a part of a gang of men, one in which each member is judged and pushed to be better as a man. Exclusively male spaces are disappearing quickly, and The Way of Men serves as a reminder that male gangs and groups serve a purpose and are key to creating better, more masculine men.
The 48 laws of power – Robert Greene
The best thing about this book is that all of the “laws” of power that it describes are explained trough historically accurate situations that are extremely interesting to read. This book provides history lessons as well as a general understanding of how people in positions of power have acquired, and used this power, which is always useful to know. Although it contains way too much information to memorize and process after the first read, and because it’s a quite long book, I would say that to get the most out of it you should read it more than once. I found reading this book very enjoyable, mainly for the historical anecdotes about wars, con-artists, kings and empires. It’s not a manifesto about morality, and the laws are completely amoral, so it will be your job to navigate the laws and decide how your own morality adjusts to them, either to act them out or to be aware of when people try to use one of the laws against you.
Man’s search for meaning – Viktor Frankl
After reading Man’s search for meaning, the only reasonable course of action is to shut up and never complain about our circumstances ever again. The author, Viktor Frankl, wrote about his experiences in the concentration camps during the holocaust in Germany, analyzing the way in which this horrible experience affected the minds of those imprisoned. It is an honest and impactful look on the experience of living, and shows that even in the worst of circumstances, our capacity for rational thought allows us to choose the way we feel. It reminds us that true freedom is the one that allows us to choose our attitude and our own way through life. It’s a must read for everyone seeking an answer to the question of why we are on this earth.
The richest man in Babylon – George S. Clason
Maybe you didn’t expect a book about personal finances after the introductory rant of this Blog post. However, I’m not so numb to the reality of our world as not to realize that having money is better than not having any. While money isn’t the end goal, it is certainly a tool that will help anyone live a less stressful life. The richest man in Babylon is a great way to start caring about personal finances. It depicts the way to acquire wealth through a series of parables set in the ancient city of Babylon, and while its lessons may seem very basic, they lay a foundation for a financially sound life. It’s very easy to read, and an all-time classic for a reason. It will be a very valuable addition to your library.
The Fountainhead – Ayn Rand
Is altruism really the ultimate expression of morality? Ayn Rand tackles this topic in her novel The Fountainhead, a timeless book about individualism and independence of thought and action. It tells the tale of a young architect that defies all the established rules and stays true to his own values, while public opinion bashes him for his disruptiveness. In a world that is controlled, more than ever, by the media, The Fountainhead may be what is needed to recognize the unworthiness of collective thought, and be free of the influence of public opinion, to be able to think individually about what is right and what is wrong.
12 rules for life – Jordan Peterson
However controversial he may be (God knows why), the also brilliant thinker Jordan Peterson presents in 12 Rules for life an exemplary guide for young men and women trying to navigate the chaotic world that we live in. The book, as the name suggests, explains what Peterson considers to be the most important rules for a sound and productive living, and tries to provide the reader with strong tools to bring order to a life that is overridden with chaos. But any reader will notice that the book is much more than that; it’s a deep analysis of the ways of the world and the challenges that we face, and have faced, throughout history. It analyzes topics such as hierarchies, faith, human psychology and human behavior, and it truly is a book to inspire and motivate young men to be better, to not forget the fundamental values that make a good man and guide our life according to 12 rules that are, and always will be, extremely relevant.