What I enjoyed to read and my thoughts about.
Who would have bet 1-cent on my love for reading when in the school I have literally hated it?
When I was imposed to read I hated it. It was a such a boring thing to me, I saw it just as a waste of time. Then I slowly re-approached books, focusing on the ones whom I was really interested in and, one page at a time, I re-discovered the pleasure and huge value of reading.
It is not just about relaxing for some time, it is about having new ideas, discovering new concepts, approaching new cultures, better acknowledging yourself and your inner, seeing things with someone else eyes, wearing his mask and diving into his secret world.
The Spinoza Problem: A Novel
Yalom tells the story of the seventeenth-century thinker Baruch Spinoza, whose philosophy led to his own excommunication from the Jewish community, alongside that of the rise and fall of the Nazi ideologue Alfred Rosenberg, who two hundred years later during World War II ordered his task force to plunder Spinoza's ancient library in an effort to deal with the Nazis' "Spinoza Problem".
MUST The Schopenhauer Cure
The story takes place around group therapies coordinated by Julius Hertzfeld (who is approaching death caused by cancer) and the influence and participation of a former patient, Philip Slate. The reader is also presented with descriptions attempting to piece together the life of Arthur Schopenhauer.
MUST Lying on the Couch
Seymour is a therapist of the old school who blurs the boundary of sexual propriety with one of his clients. Marshal, who is haunted by his own obsessive-compulsive behaviors, is troubled by the role money plays in his dealings with his patients. Finally, there is Ernest Lash. Driven by his sincere desire to help and his faith in psychoanalysis, he invents a radically new approach to therapy: a totally open and honest relationship with a patient that threatens to have devastating results.
The Mystery Shop
A collection of 31 small stories from Dino Buzzati, each expressing a different and sometimes deep meaning.
MUST When Nietzsche Wept
Josef Breuer, one of the founding fathers of psychoanalysis, is at the height of his career. Friedrich Nietzsche, Europe's greatest philosopher, is on the brink of suicidal despair, unable to find a cure for the headaches and other ailments that plague him. When he agrees to treat Nietzsche with his experimental "talking cure", Breuer never expects that he, too, will find solace in their sessions. Only through facing his own inner demons can the gifted healer begin to help his patient.
Stocks for the Long Run
The book takes a long-term view of the financial markets, starting in 1802, mainly in the United States. Siegel takes an empirical perspective in answering investing questions. Even though the book has been termed "the buy and hold Bible", the author occasionally concedes that there are market inefficiencies that can be exploited.
Private Empire: ExxonMobil and American Power
Private Empire is a thorough analysis that begins in 1989 with the tale of the Exxon Valdez, the company oil tanker that ran aground in Alaska’s Prince William Sound, and ends 22 years later with ExxonMobil’s credit rating surpassing that of the U.S. government.
AVOID The Little Book of Behavioral Investing
A detailed guide to overcoming the most frequently encountered psychological pitfalls of investing Bias, emotion, and overconfidence are just three of the many behavioral traits that can lead investors to lose money or achieve lower returns.
MUST Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion
In this highly acclaimed New York Times bestseller, Dr. Robert Cialdini (the seminal expert in the field of influence and persuasion) explains the psychology of why people say yes and how to apply these principles ethically in business and everyday situations.
AVOID The Little Book of Market Wizards: Lessons from the Greatest Traders
In The Little Book of Market Wizards, Jack seeks to distill what he considers the essential lessons he learned in conducting nearly four dozen interviews with some of the world's best traders. The book delves into the mindset and processes of highly successful traders, providing insights that all traders should find helpful in improving their trading skills and results.
Staring at the Sun: Overcoming the Terror of Death
At age 70 and facing his own fear of death, which he discusses in a special afterword, Dr. Yalom tackles his toughest subject yet and finds it to be the root cause of patients' fears, stresses and depression.
Long and Short: Confessions of a Portfolio Manager
Lawrence has been in the asset management industry for more than 20 years. He has invested long and short, conducted research in every economic sector, run funds of every stripe. He has been widely quoted in the financial media and this book serves up 86 micro-chapters of wit, wisdom, and Wall Street observations.
Common Stocks and Uncommon Profits
Philip A. Fisher is among the most influential investors of all time. His investment philosophies, introduced almost forty years ago, are studied and applied by today's financiers and investors all over the world. He is remembered mostly for using and proliferating the "scuttlebutt" method, in which he searched fastidiously for information about a company. The book introduction by his son is definitely too long.
MUST Warren Buffett and the Interpretation of Financial Statements: The Search for the Company with a Durable Competitive Advantage
With an insider's view of the mind of the master (Warren Buffett), Mary Buffett and David Clark have written a simple yet thorough guide for reading and interpreting financial statements (Income Statement, Balance Sheet and Cash Flow Statement).
Irrational Exuberance is a book written by American economist Robert J. Shiller, a Yale University professor and 2013 Nobel Prize winner. The book examines economic bubbles in the 1990s and early 2000s, and is named after Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan's famed "irrational exuberance" quote warning of such a possible bubble in 1996. The third edition of Irrational Exuberance was published in 2015 and included new material on bonds.
Tools of Titans: The Tactics, Routines, and Habits of Billionaires, Icons, and World-Class Performers
In this book Tim explores in deep the mindsets, habits, routines, decisions and advices of a lot of people who conquered the top in their field, whether sport, career, wealth or wisdom. I liked many profiles, but at the end I have to say that it's almost impracticable, as everyone's so different and something that worked for someone isn't guaranteed to work for you. But nevertheless it contains a lot of interesting ideas to try out.
A Concise Guide to Macroeconomics: What Managers, Executives, and Students Need to Know
David draws on his years of teaching at Harvard Business School to explain important macro concepts using clear and engaging language. This guidebook covers the essentials of macroeconomics and examines, in a simple and intuitive way, the core ideas of output, money, and expectations.
MUST One Up on Wall Street
Peter believes that average investors have advantages over Wall Street experts. Since the best opportunities can be found at the local mall or in their own places of employment, beginners have the chance to learn about potentially successful companies long before before professional analysts discover them. He then praise the Value Investing methodology, highly discouraging market timing and day trading.
A Gentle Creature
'I could see that she was still terribly afraid, but I didn't soften anything; instead, seeing that she was afraid I deliberately intensified it.' In this short story, Dostoyevsky masterfully depicts desperation, greed, manipulation and suicide, fading away the idea of who is the actual 'victim'.
MUST Fooled by Randomness: The Hidden Role of Chance in Life and in the Markets
Taleb sets forth the idea that modern humans are often unaware of the existence of randomness. They tend to explain random outcomes as non-random. This is particularly evident and highly dangerous looking at the financial markets, where people often claim their superior abilities over random results, but time won't wait to tell the real story. He introduces and explains the asymmetric concept too.
MUST The Intelligent Investor
Milestone for value investing, the book is based on the investment approach that lead Graham to success. He gives sound advice and explanation about his method. Defined by Warren Buffett "By far the best book on investing ever written".
Inhibitions, Symptoms and Anxiety
Freud characterised how intrapsychic conflict among drive and superego caused anxiety, and how that anxiety could lead to an inhibition of mental functions, such as intellect and speech.
On Narcissism, an Introduction
Freud sums up his earlier discussions on the subject of narcissism and considers its place in sexual development. He looks at the deeper problems of the relation between the ego and external objects.
Group Psychology and the Analysis of the Ego
In this monograph, Freud describes psychological mechanisms at work within mass movements. Freud refers back to his theory of instincts and believes that masses are held together by libidinal bonds. Each individual in the mass acts on impulses of love that are diverted from their original objectives. They pursue no direct sexual goal, but "do not therefore work less vigorously".
MUST Creatures of a day, and other tales of Psychotherapy
Psychotherapist Irvin D. Yalom, gives us a collection of ten absorbing tales of psychotherapy, revealing the mysteries, frustrations, pathos and humour at the heart of the therapeutic encounter.
The things of Love
Eros shown in all its "shapes". Attraction, courtship, seduction, betrayal, separation, loneliness, onanism. The "enigmas of Love" revisited, in the light of our modern era.
Beyond Good and Evil
Nietzsche accuses past philosophers of lacking critical sense and blindly accepting dogmatic premises in their consideration of morality. Specifically, he accuses them of founding grand metaphysical systems upon the faith that the good man is the opposite of the evil man, rather than just a different expression of the same basic impulses that find more direct expression in the evil man.
MUST The Tartar Steppe
The novel tells the story of a young officer, Giovanni Drogo, and his life spent guarding the Bastiani Fortress, an old, unmaintained border fortress. The plot is Drogo's lifelong wait for a great war in which his life and the existence of the fort can prove its usefulness. The main themes are the human need for giving life meaning and the soldier's desire for glory.
AVOID If this isn't nice, what is? Advice to the young
After the publication of his novel Slaughterhouse-Five brought him worldwide acclaim in 1969, Kurt Vonnegut became one of America's most popular graduation speakers. This is a collection of commencement speeches from Kurt Vonnegut, selected and introduced by Dan Wakefield.
MUST The Black Swan: The Impact of the Highly Improbable
The Black Swan is a book by the essayist, scholar, philosopher, and statistician Nassim Nicholas Taleb. The book focuses on the extreme impact of certain kinds of rare and unpredictable events (outliers) and humans' tendency to find simplistic explanations for these events retrospectively. This theory has since become known as the black swan theory.
MUST Sophie's World
Awesome book, the author explains in an addictive way the evolution of the human's highest thoughts (philosophy) through time, from the ancient greek philosophers to our days. Everything is written as a fictionalized adventure between Sophie and Hilde.
MUST The Art of War
The Art of War is an military treatise which is attributed to the ancient Chinese military strategist Sun Tzu. It shows distinct aspects of a warfare and how they apply to military strategy and tactics. It has a profound influence on military thinking, business tactics, legal strategy and beyond.
MUST Flatland: A Romance of Many Dimensions
Written pseudonymously by "A Square" from the two-dimensional world. Great book to reflect on our limits, false perspective and ignorance. Should we rely on our senses? How much is our knowledge depth? Nice mental exploration about the possibility of others space dimensions and how we could perceive them.
Gregor Samsa, a traveling salesman, wakes up in his bed to find himself transformed into a large insect. The novel tells the story on how his life and social interactions changed from his transformation.
MUST Zero to One: Notes on Startups, or How to Build the Future
Amazing book. Peter (ex CEO of PayPal) shows a list of really interesting insights on how he succeeded and what are the common traits and patterns he found on successful companies. There are notes on all the lifecycle of a new product: concept, founders, hiring, selling, marketing, customers, consolidation, expansion.
MUST Brave New World - Revisited
This is a non-fiction work in which Huxley considered whether the world had moved toward or away from his vision (Brave New World). Huxley analysed problems such as overpopulation, as well as all the means by which populations can be controlled. He was particularly interested in the effects of drugs and subliminal suggestion.
MUST Brave New World
Another must read, such a fine book. The novel anticipates developments in reproductive technology, sleep-learning, psychological manipulation, and classical conditioning that are combined to make a profound change in society.
AVOID It's All Life
This novel tells the story of the evolution of love in a young couple, from when they know each other to when their first child bornt, and the problems in their relation after that event.
The main character is Zeno Cosini and the book is the fictional character's memoirs that he keeps at the insistence of his psychiatrist. Throughout the novel, we learn about his father, his business, his wife, and his tobacco habit from a psychological perspective.
AVOID To say, to do, to braise
A cooking book about different cooking techniques by the michelin starred chef Carlo Cracco.
MUST Fahrenheit 451
Fahrenheit 451 is a dystopian novel by American writer Ray Bradbury. The novel presents a future American society where books are outlawed and "firemen" burn any that are found. The lead character is a fireman named Montag who becomes disillusioned with the role of censoring works and destroying knowledge.
MUST Nineteen Eighty-Four
Masterpiece by Orwell. This is one of my favourite books, a must read. An hypothetical society where everything was strictly controlled and the motto was 'Was is Peace; Ignorance is Strength, Freedom is Slavery". The history was every-day rewritten by hands to better accommodate the political needs.
"All animals are equal but some animals are more equal than others." Orwell described Animal Farm as a satirical tale against Stalin.
We are the martians
The wire between the Big Bang and life. Is it more scaring to know that there are other types of intelligent life or that we are alone in the entire universe?
About our consciousness, our limiting thoughts and how we "create" our reality. How can we introduce a new model into our mind to "collapse" a new reality? How to fuel a change starting from our inner? Quantum effect -> quantum physics -> the observer effect -> focus and collapse a reality from a mess of possibilities / potential waves.
AVOID Q Factor
Pseudo-science and pseudo-psychology trying to confirm the 'Law of Attraction' through the idea of waves and resonance. Before actually having / being something you have to strongly feel to have / be that something in order to attract it.
With you and without you
Osho's thoughts on love, both spiritual and physical. Love is not a need, is a luxury, is having so much that you literally overflow, love is playing a beautiful melody without caring if someone is listening or not.
The Rajneesh Bible
Osho's first words spoken after a period of three years of silence, he exposes the psychology of all creeds based on the idea of "following" and takes apart the whole question of belief in God.
MUST One, No One and One Hundred Thousand
Awesome book which make you think about the idea of yourself. Who are ourselves? One is the idea of ourselves (our inner image), No-One is who we truly are, and a Hundred-Thousands are the different ones in which other people perceive and identity us.