Books that inspire thinking about stuff we usually don't think about
I know the topic title is very subjective and can be applied to many books, but I'm looking for books that inspire you to think about what they're saying so much that you might actually end up spending 30 minutes or more on a single page again and again, page after page.
The genre is not necessarily relevant, I'm just looking for general suggestions.
Two of my personal all time favorite books are "The Ultimate Hitchiker's Guide" by Douglas Adams (who would've thought that?) and "The bed of Procrustes" by Nassim Nicholas Taleb.
I can't imagine there are too many people here who didn't at least see the Hitchhiker's movie but the books are a whole different beast, imho brilliantly written, very entertaining, unconventionally funny and extremely thought provoking, especially in terms of (human) relationships.
Plus I'm a huge fan of the futuristic, spacy, tragic comedic style the books have. I've actually bought the "Ultimate" guide (that contains all of the books) twice now, because I had put a 1cm rip into one of the pages, but was almost ready to cry because of it. I treasure it.
The second one is the third (?) book by that guy, I've read the other two as well; this one is just a collection of aphorisms, which I've used at parties (no shit) to get conversation running into a more interesting direction than the usual "woah I gotta puke" you usually have at those kinds of events - of course everyone was drunk nonetheless but the conversations were much more interesting.
Some people I've talked to think the guy's a gigantic asshole, and while I don't agree with every point he makes, I do believe he's a very smart guy who actually puts a lot of thought into everything he does; the book is very engaging and talks about many things we just dismiss as "normal", which are actually unbelievably stupid.
I like this kind of stuff, I like trying to see things from different points of view than we're used to.
Suggestions are very welcome, thanks in advance!
Last edited by iNub; 06-14-2012 at 12:05 AM.
I had a few reactions like that while reading Dante Alighieri's 'The Divine Comedy'. Lucked out to find a copy for 10 dollars at my local book store. Of course you have to give some room for translation errors. I'd say it was worth the read though. Very philosophical, brings up a lot of questions about humanity... the actions, thoughts and convictions of man. I doubt you'd find yourself striking up conversations at parties with the contents of it. You may enjoy your time with it though, or even picking it up for a 2nd time like I found myself doing.
Last edited by Zensui; 06-14-2012 at 10:56 AM.
1984 by George Orwell is a very interesting read, its a very deep book about society control and the loss of our humanity, make you think about our society and how we are controled in the same way without even noticing
If you like 1984 I'd try a a Brave New World by Aldous Huxley and also We by Yevgeny Zamyatin.
We is said to be one of Orwell's inspirations for 1984.
I spent over 10 hours of deeps reflexions on the book "Russian" by Nina Potapoya, and I'm only 35 pages into the book at this point... Might not have been the type of book you meant though... [edit to clarify: it's a book to learn russian]
On a on-topic note, if you liked 1984 you might also like Owell's Animal Farm, a metaphorical (allegorical?) view (well more of a critic) on stalinism.
Last edited by -=FamilyGuy=-; 06-14-2012 at 04:16 PM.
I've read 1984 only partially so far because I figured it would be easier to just watch what's happening all around us right now yet seems to have been copied straight from that book :P
Sarcasm aside, thanks for your suggestions, I've not heard of the two russian books you mentioned and will look them up, I've also missed out on Alighieri and Huxley so far, though I do believe I bought them (the books) on Amazon some time ago... I'll have to dig through my collection.