To tell you the truth – I only read 5 books this month. But they were all excellent. I’ve included Amazon links here for convenience but these can certainly be acquired in PDF or Kindle format by *other means*. Check it out:
The Possibility of an Island by Michel Houellebecq (Amazon)
After hearing Delicious Tacos recommend Houellebecq on a podcast I decided to try it out. Delicious Tacos said, “What Roissy says in a 3000 word blog post, Michel Houellebecq says in one sentence” and he’s not far off. Houellebecq’s views on humanity and sexuality are very “red pill” and he’s one of the best writers I’ve ever read. Houellebecq is also a creative storyteller as this book involves the protagonist, a French comedian, narrating and philosophizing on his life interspersed with the character’s 25th clone commentating on the life of the original 1000 years in the future. Highly recommended.
The Map and the Territory by Michel Houellebecq (Amazon)
I liked The Possibility of an Island so much that I read this book immediately after. I can’t decide which is better; The Possibility of an Island has a more interesting main character and overall more unique storyline (also more sex) but The Map and the Territory is much, much funnier and the story is unique in it’s own right. The protagonist is an artist who paints a series called A Series of Simple Professions, which features different people in their jobs. The subject of the final painting is none other than “Michel Houellebecq, Writer”; a character in his own book. Another great read.
Quiet by Susan Cain (Amazon)
Being an introvert and INTJ, this book was always in the back of my mind but I never got around to actually reading it until recently. At first I read the chapter headings and thought, “I know all this already”, but when I actually started reading the book I found that much of it was new to me and very interesting. Less so the first part about the “extrovert cultural ideal” but more so the second part about the biological vs. environmental reasons for introversion. There are a lot of fascinating psychology studies cited and there were certainly some “aha” moments for me personally. This is a must read for any introvert who values self knowledge, and likewise for any extroverts who are curious to understand more about the “other type”.
Choose Yourself! by James Altucher (Amazon)
Fun fact: I got the idea for the name of this blog right after reading this book for the first time. Here Altucher details the rise of the “Choose Yourself” era; basically, institutions like corporations/universities/publishing companies/record labels used to get to decide who became successful, but now we have the technology and means to be successful in our own right if we “choose ourselves”. That’s an extremely condensed version of it and there’s a ton of other interesting information and ideas, it’s definitely worth the read.
Love, Freedom and Aloneness by Osho (Amazon)
Osho came highly recommended by both Elliott Hulse and Nic Gregoriades from Digital Communion so this was long overdue. Osho’s writing is very spiritual and somewhat general/abstract but I liked it instantly. Overall the content of this book was useful, but a lot of it concerned marital or serious relationships which does not apply to me. I liked the “Freedom” and “Aloneness” parts better than the “Love” part. Nevertheless I strongly identified with Osho’s general philosophy of self-reliance and anti-institutionalism. He is also a big proponent of meditation, which I am as well. Next I’m going to read Freedom: The Courage to Be Yourself which I hope will have more information that is directly applicable to me. Still, Love, Freedom and Aloneness was eye-opening and I’m glad I finally read some Osho.