Books to Make you Smart

2014-09-01 13.47.52


My love of American history is reflected in my list of recommended books. The story of how our country was founded is an incredible story that has not been duplicated.  These are in no particular order. I enjoyed them all, and they are guaranteed to make you smarter.


John Adams

David McCullough  is well-known for his historical books. If you don’t feel like reading the book, the mini-series was a wonderful production.



Here is another one from David McCullough.


The American Revolution: Writings from the War of Independence

This is a collection of writings and letter that John Rhodehamel selected for this volume. It’s not something that you’ll sit and read for long sittings, but it gives you a true picture of the times because the documents are original.


The Americans: The Colonial Experience

Daniel Boorstin is one of my favorite history writers. His main purpose is not to write chronologically and to tell you what happened, but to describe to you the American character and how it developed. This is the first in the trilogy and I think the best. Don’t leave this one off your list. It’s like no other history book you’ll every read.


The Americans: The Democratic Experience

The Americans: The National Experience


America, The Last Best Hope, Volume 1

William Bennett’s book is an easy to ready, chronologically written and well documented history book. This is one that I wish I had in high school. I didn’t include volume 2 because I haven’t read it. Volume 1 takes you up 1914.


The Devil’s Dictionary

Ambrose Bierce wrote a satirical dictionary, so if you’re looking for something on the sassy side, check it out.

The New Lifetime Reading Plan

Written by Clifton Fadiman and originally published in 1960, this is meant to be just what it says, a lifetime reading plan. If you want a list of Western classics to make you smarter, start here.

I am part of the Amazon affiliate program, so if you purchase any of these books by clicking on them, I receive a small advertising fee from Amazon. I only recommend books that I have read and want to share.


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