What are some good non-fiction books? - i wanna' be (((woke)))


The green eye of Sauron
The problem, though, is that I don't know where to start. I'd prefer something philosophical and/or political. I recently finished "The Prince" by Machiavelli and thought it was a decent read, so that might give you an idea of what I'm looking for.
If you want something in the Prince theme:
The Dictator’s Handbook: Why Bad Behavior is Almost Always Good Politics
by Bruce Bueno de Mesquita and Alastair Smith
The art of war by Sun Tzu
Simulacra and Simulation by Jean Baudrillard
Inventing the Enemy by Umberto Eco

Kamen Rider Black RX

Winner: Cole Smithey Award for Valued Opinion
True & Honest Fan
Chin by Larry McShane. It's a biography on Vincent Gigante, a NY mafia boss who escaped arrest for over two decades by pretending to be insane. The stuff this guy did, like check himself into mental health hospitals or have a mistress with the same name as his wife a short distance away from his home, it's absolutely fascinating. The guy was called the Oddfather for a reason, and he needs a biopic badly.
"A long way gone", by Ishmael Beah.

A memoir of child solider during Sierra Leone civil war.

Just a reminder
-No memoir is objective
-No memoir is written to incriminate the author, so take things written with a bit of salt and presume that the author whitewashes himself at more than several occasions.
-No memory is perfect
-This is written with a goal of underlining the "perils of child soldiers", as sort of anti-child solider propaganda book. Mind that, and try to look through these sentiments to see the truth the book was actually based on.
-The author writes extensively about the time before he was drafted and time after he was "rescued", almost completely skipping the actual time in the army. This is tied to my above points. That also means you won't read much about actual warfare, but what I read, was still very informative and valuable.
-You don't have to know anything about Sierra Leone conflict to read this, since everything is nicely explained. It's a good read.


Unwoke Dinosaur
If you're into conservation, environmental science, anthrozoology, ecology and animals and shit, I've really liked these:
  • The Sixth Extinction - Elizabeth Kolbert
  • Zoobiquity - Barbara Natterson-Horowitz and Kathryn Bowers
  • Some We Love, Some We Hate, Some We Eat - Hal Herzog
  • Desert Solitaire - Edward Abbey (SUCH A FANTASTIC BOOK honestly, reading this totally rerouted my career path, it's beautifully written as well.)
  • Stolen World - Jennie Erin Smith (Met one of the guys this is about in person. Cool stuff.)
  • The Hunt for the Golden Mole - Richard Girling
  • Silent Spring - Rachel Carson (Actually this book is historically important, which is pretty neat.)
  • Never Cry Wolf - Farley Mowat
edit: Legit curious about the dumb rating lol
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Professional Depression
True & Honest Fan
Black on Red: My 44 Years Inside the Soviet Union by Robert Robinson. It's a memoir written by a black man who was able to move to Russia during the 1930s because of his skill as an engineer, but ended up being held there (mostly against his will) for the next 4 decades. He mostly kept his head low and did what he was told, but he was very careful to not agree to anything he morally did not agree with. He was also given many awards and certificates, and often paraded around as a hero and example of there being No Racism In Russia, but was given very few real rewards like...raises, or promotions. Or the ability to visit his family back in America.

Also, for future reference, I recommend going to the library, finding either the biography or historical section (or whatever section interests you), and just running your eyes along the titles until something catches your eye, taking it out to glance at the inside slip/cover, and repeating the process until you find something you'd like to read. That's how I found this book.

Slowboat to China

Level 6 Hairy Hands Syndrome
I'm a huge fan of the historian John Julius Norwich. His three-volume History of Byzantium is marvelously readable; he has a wonderful eye for the telling anecdote. His "Normans in Sicily" is quite good. I like his history of the popes, too ("Absolute Monarchs"), though you do have to take it with a grain of salt because he gets a little Anglican about the oddest things. Still, again, very readable.

John Titor

Pronouns: time/temporal/tempself
True & Honest Fan
Since you mentioned The Prince, I second The Art of War by Sun Tzu. It's one of history's most influential books.

The Shadow

Remember, you're here forever.
How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie contains a lot of useful life advice.
The Longest Day by Cornelius Ryan is a good intro to the grand scope of WWII. A great stepping stone into military history if that interests you.
Masters of Doom is a pretty fun to read, novelistic look at iD Software's glory days.

A pretty random selection, but a good rule of non-fiction is not to limit yourself. Look for something you haven't read about and give it a try every now and then.