So I recently had the idea of asking folks for a book recommendation. The way I phrased it was,
"a stranger approaches you on the street and asks you for a book recommendation. What do you say?"
I got a lot of great answers. One of them, Handi’s sleep book recommendation, I’m reading right now. It’s very interesting.
What did I hope to achieve with this question?
Well, I do a fair amount of reading. A lot of that reading is on similar topics or genre’s. If I just ask someone for a recommendation for me, they’ll base their recommendation on what they know about my views, interests and opinions. If that was what I really wanted, I would have phrased the question:
"my opinions are: x,y and z. The topics I like are a,b, and c. Can’t you recommend a book that reinforces my existing preferences."
Some people responded with "deep" non-answers. "why would a stranger ask me?", "are they trying to rob me?", or "only the reader of a self-help book would ask such a thing". That was only a minority of people.
I was surprised by the variety of answers. I expected more "preachy" answers like my own (Omnivore’s Dilemma), or Fast Food Nation. Some of them are pop non-fiction. Outliers and Freakonomics. Some classic fiction made it in there. History.
I plan on reading several of them.
Below, I’ve compiled the list of them all. A couple notes:
- Since I was providing a bunch of Amazon links, I took it as an opportunity to embed a Amazon Affiliates tag. If you click and buy, I get a kick-back. I hope everyone believes that this is not the main motivation behind the list. I’ll be happy if I get $10 or $20 out of it. Enough to buy one of the books on the list 😉
- I’ve tried to make everyone’s name identifiable yet not have it show up on a google search. If you know the individual, you’ll probably recognize the name I attached.
2. Liisa H
3. Candace (Candy)
5. Doug T
Guns of august – Barbara Wertheim Tuchman non-fiction
6. J Arasmith
The Promise of Sleep: A Pioneer in Sleep Medicine Explores the Vital Connection Between Health, Happiness, and a Good Night’s Sleep – William C. Dement
13. B Baxter
14. Brian Miller
18. Nanda K
19. Narasimhan N
21. Geoff G
The Disappearing Spoon: And Other True Tales of Madness, Love, and the History of the World from the Periodic Table of the Elements – Sam Kean
22. Quentin P
25. M Frazer
26. S Burns
27. C Burns
28. A Burns
30. A Miller
The synagogue of Satan – Andrew Hitchcock
33. Lu Wei
34. Scott Little
Book recommendation from a stranger