Mr. T's Favorite
Last updated on
Thursday January 26, 2012 03:37 PM -0500
people have checked out my recommendations
If you check out any of these recommendations, let me know what
you think. If you have some favorites, share them with me! I'm always
looking for a good book to read.
It's impossible to list every good book I ever read, or every
author I think is worth reading. These are some titles and names that
immediately come to mind when I think of enjoyable books I've read and authors
who rarely fail to hold my attention.
Books (in no particular order):
- Anything by Spider Robinson
- Starship Troopers by Robert A.
Heinlein - The book is nothing like the movie. It's an interesting
look at society, a fast-paced action story, and a sly social commentary, all
wrapped up in a well-plotted narrative.
- Expanded Universe by Robert A.
Heinlein - A collection of short stories and essays by the amazingly
gifted (and prolific) author. His thoughts are not only interesting,
they make you ask, "Why don't we do things his way? It makes so much
- The "Dresden Files" series by Jim Butcher
- Stargirl by Jerry Spinelli - The story of a girl with an unusual
name, told by a boy at the high school she transfers into. This is a
fascinating story in its own write, filled with mystery and interesting
characters; but this story goes deep, too, examining teen-relevant questions
such as "What is popularity?", "Why do we treat people the way we do?" and
"What price do you pay to be popular?"
- Longitude by Dava Sobel - Two stories told at once. One is
about the man who created a portable clock, which allowed accurate shipboard
navigation. The other is about the man who re-discovered the timepieces
created nearly a century before and his attempt to restore them.
- The Right Stuff by Tom Wolfe - Wolfe is a former reporter who tells
the story of America's attempts to start a "Man on the Moon" program in the
late '50's and early '60's. A fascinating story in and of itself,
described in gripping prose. Part fact, part fiction, all entertainment.
- The Case for Mars by Robert Zubrin - A very coherent explanation of
how we can put a man on Mars almost immediately, with a relatively small cost,
and why we should.
- The "Ender" series & the "Bean" series by
Orson Scott Card:
- Ender's Game - A young boy's ability to play games
may be humanity's only hope in a war with aliens.
- A War of Gifts - A story set during Ender's battleschool years -
What happens when you tell the most brilliant children in the world that
they can't do something, but they decide to do it anyway?
- Ender's Shadow - This book is a "companion novel"; the story takes place at the same time as
Ender's Game. It follows Bean, the boy who was supposed to be
Ender's "understudy." It tells basically the same story as the
second two-thirds of Ender's Game, but from a different perspective,
thereby creating a very different story.
- Shadow of the Hegemon - Bean's story continues: What happens to
Earth after the Second Formic War?
- Shadow Puppets - Bean's story continues: Bean helps Ender's
brother, Peter, as he tries to take over the world.
- Shadow of the Giant - Bean's story concludes: Will the Earth be
saved from another World War? Will Bean be saved from his enemies?
- Ender in Exile - Follows the story of Ender as he leaves Earth
after the Bugger War.
- Speaker for the Dead - This book picks up several centuries after
the events in Ender's Game. Ender is still alive; he's an adult
who travels from planet to planet. Can he help the inhabitants of a
colony planet deal with their secrets?
- Xenocide - This book picks up several years after the events in
Speaker for the Dead. Ender's home is threatened by an alien
species, the second one encountered by humans. Will humans destroy
this species, too?
- Children of the Mind - Concludes the story of Xenocide.
Will humans destroy Ender's human colony to stop an alien disease?
- First Meetings in the Enderverse - the backstory of some of the
characters in the series, explaining how they met.
- The "Myth" series by Robert Asprin:
- Another Fine Myth - First in the series. A young man,
Skeeve, accidentally becomes a magician, accidentally becomes the apprentice
of a demon, accidentally buys a dragon, and accidentally becomes involved in
stopping the strongest magician of all time.
- Other "Myth" books:
- Myth Conceptions
- Myth-ing Persons
- Hit or Myth
- Myth-ion Improbable
- Little Myth Marker
- M.Y.T.H. Inc. Link
- Myth-nomers and Imp-Pervections
- Myth Directions
- M.Y.T.H. Inc. in Action
- Sweet Myth-tery of Life
- The "Harry Potter" series by J.K. Rowling:
- Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone -
- Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets -
- Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azhkaban -
- Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire -
- Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix -
- Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince -
- Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows -
Authors (listed alphabetically):
- Piers Anthony - Writes fantasy, mostly. The stories of his
I've read have been very playful, both in having fun and interesting plots and
in his use of language. The more you know about English, the funnier his
- Robert Asprin - Writes sci-fi and
fantasy. Very humorous guy. His "Phule" series (about a rich guy
in the future who joins the army) and his "Myth" series (about a young man in
a fantasy setting who accidentally becomes a magician) are full of odd and
interesting characters and situations. The "Thieves' World" series he
edits and writes for is also very good, but much darker.
- Dave Barry - A hilarious writer! His newspaper columns were
so wacky and laugh-out-loud funny that they were collected and published as
books a dozen times. He follows in the tradition of Peter Benchley
- Max Barry - Writes bitterly sarcastic sci-fi set in the
extremely-near future; his writing really examines what we're willing to put
up with if it makes life more convenient. Funny, fascinating, and scary.
- Berke Breathed - Most famous for his
Bloom County comic strip of the '80's and
early '90's which are absolutely hilarious at times, heartbreaking at
- Jim Butcher - In the "Dresden
Files" series, writes an interesting blend of fantasy and detective fiction.
Also writes a straight-up fantasy series, "The Codex Alera", which I haven't
- Orson Scott Card - Writes sci-fi and
fantasy books with amazing characters and insights into why people do what
- Michael Crichton - A brilliant man who writes about many different
topics and in many different genres. Every book of his I've read has
been a page-turner.
- Cliver Cussler - Writes action/adventure, mostly. His "Dirk
Pitt" books are very entertaining stories about a marine historian who manages
to save the world in nearly every book.
- Roald Dahl - Wrote in many different genres. Author of
James and the Giant Peach, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory,
The Great Glass Elevator, and many other stories. Also a prolific
writer of short stories, every one of which is fascinating.
- Phillip K. Dick - Wrote sci-fi short stories. Most of his
stories deal with the questions, "What is reality?" and, "How do we know
who we are?" Great mind-bending stuff. Many of his stories have
been made into movies (The Minority Report and Total Recall ["We
Can Remember It For You Wholesale"] are two of the most popular)
- Harlan Ellison - Writes mostly sci-fi. Wrote hundreds of
scripts for some of television's greatest shows, including Star Trek and The
Twilight Zone. Great characters, interesting plots.
- Lev Grossman - His The Magicians
and The Magician King novels are fascinating,
a sort of "real world" Harry Potter.
- Robert A. Heinlein - A former
admiral in the U.S. Navy, Heinlein turned to writing later in his life.
I don't like all of his stories, but there's so many, it's hard not to find
something enjoyable. My personal favorites of his are Stranger in a
Strange Land and Starship Troopers. I also like his essays.
- Steven King - Writes horror and fantasy. A brilliant writer;
he can craft characters so realistic that when they get into weird and
horrible situations, you believe it.
- Bill Maher - A comedian with a brain. His writings are both
humorous and thought-provoking.
- Michael Moore - The documentary film maker is also a very
entertaining author, combining biting wit with social commentary.
- Ogden Nash - Wrote poetry. A very unusual poet. He
played with expectations and forms to create unusual combinations. Most
of his poetry is written in rhymed couplets. Some of his poems are two
lines long, some are pages and pages long. Rarely are any two lines of
the same length. He also wasn't afraid to make up words or change their
spelling to fit his rhyme scheme. His series of animal poems are among
my favorite poems.
- Spider Robinson - Writes sci-fi,
mostly, though some of it is extremely subtle. Most of his stories have
to do with the ability to read minds, and what good and bad can come of it.
Most of his stories have very positive, optimistic, hopeful endings.
- Joel Rosenberg - Writes fantasy, mostly. Another great
character creator. His "Guardians of the Flame" series, about some
college kids who end up in a medieval setting, is interesting in how it
deconstructs the "Sword and Sorcerer" genre, turning it inside-out.
Humorous, dramatic, and full of heart.
- Shel Silverstein - Wrote poetry. An amazing poet. His
work is sometimes considered to be "for kids," but it's very deep and rich, in
addition to being fun to read. Also wrote several "children's" books.