Reading List

On Task by David Badre. This is a fantastic book that talks about cognitive control and focus. This book is an absolute must for anyone trying to understand human intelligence and how to recreate it!

Phantoms in the Brain by VS Ramachandran. This book was my primary introduction to neurology. We can learn so much about the brain and consciousness by observing what happens when it breaks!

The Language Instinct by Steven Pinker. This book is a fantastic primer to the neurology of language, and critical to anyone who wants to understand the complexity of language, with a keen eye towards computation.

The Checklist Manifesto by Atul Gawande. This book was recommended to me by my late grandfather, and serves as a tour de force glorifying the humble checklist. The history and utility of the checklist is far more interesting and relevant than you might think!

The Selfish Gene by Richard Dawkins. This seminal work is a wonderful primer to the genetics of evolution. Conversationally written, it is easy to understand with compelling examples and anecdotes, it withstands the test of time!

Rewire Your Anxious Brain by Catherine Pittman. This fantastically researched book outlines exactly what's going on in your brain when you feel anxious and exactly what to do about it. With bountiful citations, this is the most thoroughly supported work of mental health ever.

Hold Me Tight by Sue Johnson. This book outlines the genesis of EFT (emotion focused therapy) and walks the reader through implementing in their own relationships. Hands down, this is the most important relationship book I've ever read!

Running on Empty by Jonice Webb. This critical book introduces the reader to childhood emotional neglect and illustrates how incredibly pervasive and insidious this problem is. This work was a game changer for my understanding of my own life, and helped me to understand our world.

Adult Children by Lindsay Gibson is a natural follow-up to Running on Empty. This book looks at all the ways in which our parents my fail us emotionally, and how we can recover from their faults. Whether they were innocent failures or malicious transgressions, we can heal!

Survival of the Savvy is an indispensable work for anyone who finds themselves struggling with office politics. Like it or not, any time you put more than two humans in a room, politics emerges. Rather than hate the game, it's better to learn the rules and master it!

Who by Geoff Smart. Whether you're a hiring manager or a job seeker, you ought to read this book. It's geared towards hiring high-end talent, but its lessons are relevant to any and all hiring practices and job seekers. Learn to identify the right talent reliably and avoid costly mistakes!

The Power of a Positive No by William Ury. While this book is ostensibly about boundaries at work, it applies to your entire life. It teaches you to say YES to your needs first, NO to unreasonable demands, and YES to healthy alternatives. This YES-NO-YES formula is the single best advice for negotiation.

Reading Like a Writer by Francine Prose. This book single-handedly doubled the quality of my writing. Francine walks you through every level of writing friction, from word choice up through chapter structure, and comments on the greatest writers in history. This personable journey is highly accessible!

Best of Sentences by June Casagrande is a mouthful! In this book, June focuses on the smallest complete unit of language: the sentence. She teaches you how to write clear, impactful sentences for fiction, nonfiction, and journalism. Whether you need to write better emails or better novels, you MUST read this book!

Self Editing for Fiction Writers is a critical work for learning to revise your own works of fiction. In this book, these experienced editors give you the skinny on best practices for editing, lending you their keen eye and hard-earned wisdom. They talk about bigger concepts as well as the nitty gritty of grammar.

Hero With a Thousand Faces by Joseph Campbell. This seminal work put "the hero's journey" on the map. Campbell spent his life understanding the "monomyth" from all of religion and mythology and discovered that all stories revolve around some common themes, elements, and plot points in this deep dive!

The Genius Myth by Michael Meade. Everyone is born with the spark of genius. Every child starts off with some inborn passion, some fire of talent or interest. The key to a better life and a better world is to find that spark and breathe life back into it.

Life After Life by Raymond Moody. If you've ever heard a story about a light at the end of the tunnel or a divine being of brilliant white light, all of those stories came from this book. This work codified the NDE (near death experience) and brought it into the mainstream.

DMT: The Spirit Molecule by Rick Strassman. This phenomenal work covers the research into DMT, a powerful psychedelic, and documents hundreds of otherworldly encounters by volunteers with spiritual beings and other entities. It is eye-opening to say the least!

The Grand Biocentric Design by Robert Lanza. This book is an interpretation of quantum mechanics that places consciousness at the center of existence. Consciousness collapses the wavefunction, and delayed choice might mean that the entire universe was reverse-engineered to suit our needs.

Women Who Run With the Wolves by Clarissa Pinkola Estés. This book codifies many myths and stories about the wild woman and feminine spirituality. It's a critical work for any writers who wish to capture the essence of femininity, or for any women seeking to reclaim their birthright.

A Brief History of Neoliberalism by David Harvey. This critical-yet-fair book takes a hard look at neoliberalism, how it came to be, and how it came to dominate political and economic theory. As the prevailing theory of the day, everyone needs to understand this concept!

The Anarchy by William Dalrymple. This exhaustively researched book details the inception, origin, and rise of the British East India Company. The effects of the EIC can still be felt rippling throughout the world to this day, and the depth of this book cannot be overstated!

Philosophy of Physics: Quantum Theory by Tim Maudlin. This cardinal work details the most important experiments in quantum physics and ties them all together while elucidating their significance. Ideal for anyone who wants a no-nonsense understanding of quantum physics.

Creating a Life Together by Diana Leafe Christian. This book is for anyone and everyone who is interested in cohousing or coliving. Starting from scratch, this book covers the legality, finance, and emotions of finding, building, and sustaining intentional communities.

The Phoenix Project by Gene Kim et. Al. This is an entertaining and informative book about IT operations management. As an IT professional, I can say that much of this book is very accurate and helpful, although the timelines seem unrealistic.

The Forgetting Machine by Quian Quiroga. This is a wonderful, short book about the neuroscience of perception and memory. Our brains and consciousness actually disregard much of the information available to us. This book will figure into my future designs of AGI.

Difficult Conversations by Stone et. Al. If you read only one chapter of this book, it will change your life. Every single paragraph of this book is imbued with deep wisdom and insight about the human condition and how to have effective conversations. I recommend that everyone read this book!