A Beloved Bunch of Books: The Lessons I Wish I Learned In High School

Have you ever read a book and thought, wow, I wish I realized this years ago?

Sadly, none of the books on this list are easiest reads and some (I'm looking at you Ayn Rand) seem to have soliloquies that go on forever.

That being said, these are the books that I wish I had read much earlier in life and feel that if I had, my life would have been different.


First up in my list of lessons is the book Slouching Toward Bethlehem by Joan Didion.  It is full of essays on the social issues of the 1960s, and the messages are still applicable today.

Especially the essay "Self Respect".

Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged is considered one of the premier works of literature on capitalism.  It is a book everyone loves to hate.  It also has 1,168 pages.

However, much of American life is founded on capitalism. It is very useful to know how it works.

And it may just change your mind.

Shogun by James Clavell is another incredibly beefy book, but an engrossing one.

A tale of an Englishman turned Samarui, it demonstrates the importance and beauty of self-discipline and personal responsibility.


Lloyd C. Douglas's The Robe is a book from the perspective of the Roman Centurion who won the robe of Jesus, during the time of Christ's crucifixion.

It, to me, is the best book on "how" to be a Christian, not necessarily by doctrine, but by example and action.

Finally, there is the book  Meditations by Marcus Aurelius.

Stoicism versus the challenges of life.

And to meet life's challenges with a stoic response is still something I am working on.






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