I know some of you cheapskates will want to pick up these books … well, not really pick them up, but rather, instantiate them on your eReader. These are all 2 bucks or less for the Kindle version, at the moment, price presumably subject to change at any moment.
How the mind might or might not work
This is a collection of writings by various experts on how the mind works. They are not all right, but they are all intertesting. Includes Pinker, Lakoff, etc. Personally, I think there is a bit of a bias in the listing of authors towards a certain school of thought that I don’t personally think nails the mind down very well, but most of these essays are worth reading even if it is just to yell at them: The Mind: Leading Scientists Explore the Brain, Memory, Personality, and Happiness
A book by Sean B. Carrroll
The never-before-told account of the intersection of some of the most insightful minds of the 20th century, and a fascinating look at how war, resistance, and friendship can catalyze genius.
In the spring of 1940, the aspiring but unknown writer Albert Camus and budding scientist Jacques Monod were quietly pursuing ordinary, separate lives in Paris. After the German invasion and occupation of France, each joined the Resistance to help liberate the country from the Nazis and ascended to prominent, dangerous roles. After the war and through twists of circumstance, they became friends, and through their passionate determination and rare talent they emerged as leading voices of modern literature and biology, each receiving the Nobel Prize in their respective fields.
Drawing upon a wealth of previously unpublished and unknown material gathered over several years of research, Brave Genius tells the story of how each man endured the most terrible episode of the twentieth century and then blossomed into extraordinarily creative and engaged individuals. It is a story of the transformation of ordinary lives into exceptional lives by extraordinary events–of courage in the face of overwhelming adversity, the flowering of creative genius, deep friendship, and of profound concern for and insight into the human condition.
It might too late for this one
I don’t know anything about this book, so I’m not really recommending it, but it is only 2 bucks.
We live in complicated, dangerous times. Present and future presidents need to know if North Korea’s nascent nuclear capability is a genuine threat to the West, if biochemical weapons are likely to be developed by terrorists, if there are viable alternatives to fossil fuels that should be nurtured and supported by the government, if private companies should be allowed to lead the way on space exploration, and what the actual facts are about the worsening threats from climate change. This is “must-have” information for all presidents—and citizens—of the twenty-first century.
How to talk to Rick Perry about climate change
How to Change Minds About Our Changing Climate dismantles all the most pernicious misunderstandings using the strongest explanations science has to offer. Armed with airtight arguments, you’ll never be at a loss for words again—no matter how convincing or unexpected the misconception you’re faced with. And with our planet’s future in our hands, the time to change minds is now: The sooner we can agree, once and for all, that climate change is a significant threat to our well-being, the sooner we can start to do something about it.
How to Change Minds About Our Changing Climate: Let Science Do the Talking the Next Time Someone Tries to Tell You…The Climate Isn’t Changing; Global Warming … Other Arguments It’s Time to End for Good
Now for something entirely different
I’ve not read these, though I’ve got them on my eShelf, but I know most of you have either read them or plan on doing so. These are the “golden compass” books. I don’t know much about them but I know they are popular among non-believers/atheists/scientists/nerds/geeks, and they happen to have gotten suddenly cheap.