30 Non-Fiction Books a Well-Rounded Person Should Read
If you’re interested in being considered “well-read,” you probably already know that breadth is more important than depth.
These are books that will make you a more well-rounded person, and many of them are even worth reading more than once.
This list is by no means complete. Visitors of this site are among the biggest readers of leather-bound books. So I’m sure there are books worthy of being mentioned that I’ve missed. Make sure to add your own picks in the comments section.
Here is our list of 30 non-fiction books to make yourself a more well-rounded reader.
“You can make more friends in two months by becoming interested in other people than you can in two years by trying to get other people interested in you.”
“The way to love anything is to realize that it might be lost.”
You Are Not So Smart: Why You Have Too Many Friends on Facebook, Why Your Memory Is Mostly Fiction, and 46 Other Ways You’re Deluding Yourself by David McRaney
“You want to believe that those who work hard and sacrifice get ahead and those who are lazy and cheat do not. This, of course, is not always true. Success is often greatly influenced by when you were born, where you grew up, the socioeconomic status of your family, and random chance”
Business & Money
“A part of all you earn is yours to keep.”
“The intelligent investor is a realist who sells to optimists and buys from pessimists.”
“Whatever your income, always live below your means.”
“The most decisive mark of the prosperity of any country is the increase of the number of its inhabitants.”
“A reliable way to make people believe in falsehoods is frequent repetition, because familiarity is not easily distinguished from truth. Authoritarian institutions and marketers have always known this fact.”
“If you want to do anything new you must first make sure you know what people have tried before.”
“Much of human history has consisted of unequal conflicts between the haves and the have-nots.”
“The memory of oppressed people is one thing that cannot be taken away, and for such people, with such memories, revolt is always an inch below the surface.”
“We now know that our galaxy is only one of some hundred thousand million that can be seen using modern telescopes, each galaxy itself containing some hundred thousand million stars.”
“This preservation of favourable variations and the rejection of injurious variations, I call Natural Selection.”
“It is a curious feature of our existance that we come from a planet that is very good at promoting life but even better at extinguishing it.”
The Double Helix: A Personal Account of the Discovery of the Structure of DNA by James D. Watson Ph.D.
“In the end, though, science is what matters; scientists not a bit.”
“As a child I was fond of reading, and all the little money that came into my hands was ever laid out in books.”
“In order to ‘win a man to your cause,’ Lincoln explained, you must first reach his heart, ‘the great high road to his reason.’”
“The value of a college education is not the learning of many facts but the training of the mind to think,”
“I don’t think of all the misery but of the beauty that still remains.”
“You have seen how a man was made a slave; you shall see how a slave was made a man.”
Politics & Government
“A prudent man should always follow in the path trodden by great men and imitate those who are most excellent, so that if he does not attain to their greatness, at any rate he will get some tinge of it.”
“Whatever is my right as a man is also the right of another; and it becomes my duty to guarantee as well as to possess.”
“Liberty may be gained, but can never be recovered.”
“Political power, properly so called, is merely the organised power of one class for oppressing another.”
“I am the wisest man alive, for I know one thing, and that is that I know nothing.”
“Some things you miss because they’re so tiny you overlook them. But some things you don’t see because they’re so huge.”
“When we are no longer able to change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves.”
“The supreme art of war is to subdue the enemy without fighting.”
“Systems are organic, living creations: if people stop working on them and improving them, they die.”
“Omit needless words.”
Do you want to read some or all of these books? Learn to read faster and more efficiently by enrolling in an Iris Reading course today!
What books did we miss that you would include? Let us know in the comments…
Paul is the founder of Iris Reading, the largest provider of speed-reading courses in North America. His workshops have been taught to thousands of students and professionals throughout the U.S. and Canada.