Short, Powerful and Favorite Books

by Meryl K Evans | Category: Books, Meryl's Notes Blog 20 comments

Inspired by the short books that helped me get my reading groove back, I asked others what are their favorite books with no more than 200 pages. If you need a jump start to get back into reading or need a short read, here’s your list of books to check out.

I looked up those new to me and already have them on my “rent from the library” list. Since these are short, I plan to get them soon after I catch up on a couple of longer books I need to review. I’d let them cut in line, but I’ve already let too many books skip ahead in line.

Yes, a couple go a little beyond 200, but not much and they’re superb suggestions. Apologies for all the links — need to credit others and make it easy for you to look up the books.

jmcnally: Letters to a Young Poet, by Rainer Maria Rilke.

mikeandthemoms: I’m going to go with two – The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho (I think it’s under 200) and The Old Man and the Sea by Hemingway.

GeekMommy: under 200 pages? either Anthem by Ayn Rand or Mimi the Merry Go Round Cat by Dorothy Haas. Both have shaped my mind.

yarnmaven: The Weblog Handbook by Rebecca Blood. Everything else I read is much longer or a knitting magazine.

bradshorr: Hard to pick one … this hits me at the moment Eugenics and Other Evils. On a totally different tack – Woody Allen Getting Even. Also C.S. Lewis’ The Screwtape Letters. World Wide Rave: Creating Triggers that Get Millions of People to Spread Your Ideas and Share Your Stories Short, Powerful and Favorite Books.

CathLawson: The Richest Man In Babylon

guykawasaki: If You Want to Write by Brenda Ueland.

Alison Law: I really loved Shopgirl by Steve Martin (144 pgs. according to Amazon.com). Looking forward to your list!

Ben Henick: The Little Prince

Sara: Chronicles of Narnia

Gloria Chen: Improv Wisdom: Don’t Prepare, Just Show Up Short, Powerful and Favorite Books by Patricia Ryan Madson.

Linda Kamin: On Chesil Beach Short, Powerful and Favorite Books by Ian McEwan

Marsha: Most Good, Least Harm: A Simple Principle for a Better World and Meaningful Life Short, Powerful and Favorite Books by Zoe Weil

Charles Bohannan: The Dip: A Little Book That Teaches You When to Quit (and When to Stick) Short, Powerful and Favorite Books

Jamie Grove’s List

In the Land of Pain, Alphonse Daudet

The Last Opium Den, Nick Tosches

Embers, Sandor Marai

Literature and the Gods, Roberto Calasso

The Devil’s Larder: A Feast, Jim Crace

The Piano Shop on the Left Bank: Discovering a Forgotten Passion in a Paris Atelier, Thad Carhart

From Michael Michalowicz, the Toilet Paper Enterpreneur: Body for Life: 12 Weeks to Mental and Physical Strength Short, Powerful and Favorite Books, The Richest Man in Babylon Short, Powerful and Favorite Books, and Rich Dad, Poor Dad: What the Rich Teach Their Kids About Money–That the Poor and the Middle Class Do Not! Short, Powerful and Favorite Books

Stephen Elliott’s List

The Stranger Short, Powerful and Favorite Books by Albert Camus

Ray Short, Powerful and Favorite Books by Barry Hannah

Salvador Short, Powerful and Favorite Books by Joan Didion

The Journalist and the Murderer Short, Powerful and Favorite Books by Janet Malcolm

Desperate Characters: A Novel Short, Powerful and Favorite Books by Paula Fox

And probably my favorite book, Jesus’ Son: Stories Short, Powerful and Favorite Books by Denis Johnson

Mark Macias suggests Beat the Press: Your Guide to Managing Media (Excerpts available).

Gisela suggests:

From Bauhaus to Our House Short, Powerful and Favorite Books by Tom Wolfe

Guide for the Perplexed Short, Powerful and Favorite Books by E.F. Schumacher

The Great Divorce Short, Powerful and Favorite Books by C.S. Lewis

Meryl’s List

One Small Step Can Change Your Life: The Kaizen Way: I started applying these ideas right away — before I finished the book. The author explains the science behind this in an interesting way.

Associated Press Guide to News Writing: The Resource for Professional Journalists: All you need to know to become a better journalist.

QBQ! The Question Behind the Question: Practicing Personal Accountability at Work and in Life: Rather than doing what comes naturally for many of us and becoming defensive and pointing fingers, the book changes your mode of thinking from “It’s his fault” to “How can I fix this?”

The Holy Man: Each chapter tells a tale and teaches a lesson. However, in the big scheme of things, there’s progression from start to finish as a couple of characters appear throughout.

Fish! A Remarkable Way to Boost Morale and Improve Results: Four simple things to make work and home a great place to be.

The Toilet Paper Entrepreneur Short, Powerful and Favorite Books: Become an entrepreneur with what you have and without the B.S. so many other books have.

My updated list of books read along[pdf] with their notes.

What other great books can you add to the list? What makes them special to you?

Updated: 22 April 2009

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