Here are 50 books I recommend

Ramit Sethi

I get a lot of emails wondering what books I read, so I decided to make a list of them.

Here are 50 of my favorite books in personal finance, social psychology, entrepreneurship, and design. Each one has been pretty influential to me. Check them out.

Note: This damn Amazon thing was the easiest way out there, but it still doesn’t work perfectly. If the box below doesn’t show up properly, here’s a full link:

The full link again to the list:

And if you’re wondering what I want to read, here’s my Amazon wishlist.

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  1. richfromyourhome

    Maybe it’s obvious, but I think you should disclose that your link is an affiliate link and that you do get a small cut of any sales made through your site.

  2. Ramit Sethi

    Oops, yes–thanks. Yes, my Amazon affiliate link is encoded in the URL and if you decide to buy any of the books, I get a small cut.

  3. Pedro Pais

    Have you read all of them?

    Could you please be kind enough to tell us what general guidelines do you use to assess if a book is worth reading?


  4. Ramit Sethi

    Yep, I’ve read (or re-read) all of these this year. There’s no set criteria–I mostly read reviews online/in newspapers, and get recommendations from friends–but these are the books that have had the most impact on me in 2006 in business and personal life.

  5. eR0CK

    Hmm … surprised to see a Cramer book here.

    I guess as an author he provides much more information then on his retarded TV show 😀


  6. Ramit Sethi

    Totally. I hate Jim Cramer’s philosophy (see my previous article here), but his book is about his career as a hedge-fund manager. I’ll write a full review later, but the book isn’t about his ZANY STOCK TIPS!!! Instead, it’s full of insights about (1) why the financial industry doesn’t serve people like us, and (2) Cramer’s self-awareness about this. It’s really a great book.

  7. Andre

    Excellent – thanks Ramit!

  8. eR0CK

    Thanks for the feedback Ramit. I’ll be adding this book along with several others listed to my stack of reading.

  9. Dale Swinford

    Ramit, I thought I’d pass along the observation that your blogsite doesn’t “scale” well in Internet Explorer 7. Being an old, dumb and blind guy, I like (need?) to use the 125% or 150% size option in order to read comfortably. Unfortunately, even though your cool-looking Amazon box has scrollbars, the column containing it ovelaps the right-hand column…a fairly ugly result. I realize that your posts are directed toward young people who don’t have my eyesight issues; OTOH, I like to follow your thoughts on a regular basis so I can pass on useful tidbits to the kids (who are in your target demographic, but not as “connected” as I am…yet). BTW, your site is not unique in this regard; 3-column layouts are even worse, and sites like the Wall Street Journal (which one might think to be more “in tune” with my age-group) is *really* messed up.

  10. Jake

    Already stated, but don’t try to play off “This damn Amazon thing was the easiest way out there”. There was thousands of other ways to make a better list (ex. bullet points). You’re just trying to get the commission.

  11. Learnyourfinances


    How much of a percentage does Amazon pay to its affiliates? Just curious.


  12. SCapitalist

    Great list. It’s nice to see such a diverse range of topics. I think that sometimes people are so focused on “personal finance”, they spend all their time reading technical books. Yet, books on psychology and productivity can be very beneficial. You have a background in psychology, as do I, and it shows in you reading selections.

  13. Ramit Sethi

    J.R., it’s ~4-6%.

    Dale: Thanks for the feedback. I’m working on making it easier to read (here’s a preview of some simple changes that are coming).

  14. TZ

    I borrowed _Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting By in America_, by Barbara Ehrenreich, and it is a highly recommended read for a humbling experience on the ‘have nots’ in America.

  15. Neil T

    I like your idea of putting up books you’ve read. I hope you don’t mind that I did the same on my blog. I referenced your site tho. I’ll check out some of your recommendations.

  16. kayla

    Next time you put up a book list, try library thing, and you can link it to your profile. I dig it, anyways.

    Thanks for the list, I’ll have to add these to my “to read” list.

  17. Sara

    Why does anyone care if he gets commission on the Amazon links? I’m glad there’s some small way Ramit can benefit while he puts up all this free content for our use. It’s not like it affected his selection of books or otherwise influenced the content.

  18. Robin

    I dont think anyone cares that much but some disclosure is certainly nice.

  19. Jennifer Lynn

    A very useful and comprehensive list. I’ve read roughly 1/2 the books on here as well and you’ve made some great selections. I’ve just finished David Bach’s “Automatic Millionaire” (an easy yet enjoyable read which literally took me about an hour to get through), but haven’t dabbled into Seth Godin yet. I’ve pretty much devoured all of Suze’s books. I love her, although many seem to disagree /;

    I’ll probably try the Boglehead’s Guide to Investing next.

    And yes, Barbara Ehrenreich’s “Nickel and Dimed” is a very enlightening and haunting journalistic piece that is well worth checking into.

    All right, enough babbling from me. Time to check your wish list.

  20. frank

    i dont mind ramit making some commission, but yes, disclosure is nice. the amazon thing seems more convenient to me since you can get the exact title and author, plus get a pretty cover picture and be able to click on it for more details like isbn and read reviews. overall, i think it serves the reader well. if he can benefit from that too, so what? win-win.

    thanks for the list.

  21. j

    Regarding these books; I’ve read a few of them. A Random Walk Down Wall Street is one of the most interesting books on the stock market I’ve ever read and I heartily agree with that recommendation. Even if you don’t agree wholly with Malkiel’s conclusions it’s best to be familiar with the theory behind them.

    The Tipping Point was a great book, but I thought that Blink was a bit of a clunker. I don’t know why really; it just felt a little silly to me to write a whole book about the fact that people tend to make snap judgments.

    One book which I might recommend is “The Future For Investors” by Jeremy Siegel. He is a professor at Wharton and a really great writer and this book essentially re-hashes the old arrgument that boring dividend-payers trounce growth stocks (except it does so with some new research and cool graphs. I love graphs).

    Anyhow, happy holidays and good luck getting all the Amazon referral cash you can from this post. People who whine about the fact that you can make money from this are doing so for no good reason – it’s not like they pay any extra for the book; what does it hurt to help out someone whose blog you read if you were going to make the purchase anyway?

  22. Lore

    Try using when displaying the Amazon store. Insert scrolling=”yes” in the script and height=”1000″ Drop all menu items to the right. Since your working with a fixed table size your field won’t expand but you give your visitors the opportunity to at least scroll to the right.

  23. Jim Hunter

    “GRAVE TRAVELERS” was the strangest and most engrossing book I’ve ever read. It was like a Stephen King book with real characters, and a story line that was indefinable.

  24. Don

    You should add “All Your Worth” by Elizabeth Warren and her daughter Amelia to your wishlist if you haven’t read it.

    Personally I don’t Suze Orman’n credibility so high after reports that she doesn’t even follow the philosophy of her own books.

  25. M

    If you liked “Nickel and Dimed”, the better version of this book is “The Working Poor” by David K. Shipler (Pulitzer prize winning author).

  26. Chance

    Looks like a great list, some I’ve read, but most remain on my “wish list.” Just curious, have you ever read any of Dave Ramsey’s books? Any opinions on his financial philosophy?

  27. Brad B

    Two that should definitly be there (hope I didn’t miss them) are Dave Ramsey’s Total Money Makeover and The Millionaire Next Door by Thomas Stanley.
    The Total Money Makeover absolutely works and Stanley’s book is an awesome eye opener to what a being real millionaire entails

  28. Patricia

    A book I’m reading, “Cash-Rich Retirement” by James Schlagheck encourages people to build a “ladder of annuities”. The idea is to invest some money in an annuity every year so you have different streams of income after you retire. Where can I learn more about annuities and this “ladder” idea besides this particular book? Any suggestions?

  29. Herb Wright

    Design 1

    The Craving and the Cross is a bold political thriller. The villain is a callous CEO who has
    achieved incredible financial success. He is a visionary and resourceful businessman who lives without limits. He is now approaching age fifty and has become consumed with finding the key to immortality. He lives an enviable life, full of power, passion and intrigue. He has everything so many of us desire but he feels unfulfilled. He is bizarre and amoral.

    Joe is a homeless man, who loves virtue and believes that God speaks to him. As the result of a selfless and brave act, Joe becomes a media sensation. Some speculate that he may be the world’s next savior, an authentic hero who can perform miracles. Others say he is a schizophrenic and a heretic. One of Joe’s adversaries is Wolf news, owned by the villainous CEO. The course of events that lead to their inevitable meeting involve caves in Brazil, hustlers in the South Bronx, Park Avenue psychotics and ancient wise-men.

    The Craving and the Cross is an action laden, imaginative and unexpected exploration of our cultural norms and expectations. It is a critical examination of corporate power and its’ domination over the institutions that should serve the people. It is about our abandonment of humanity’s great ideas for false security and mindless consumption. The book achieves its’ aims by its use of compelling, exotic and vibrant characters, exciting plot twist and incredible energy. The readers will find familiar, universal truths while expanding the limits of their imagination.

    Do Clones Have Souls
    Do Clones Have Souls is a provocative political thriller which explores ideas on race, culture and religion through the eyes of Clones, America’s newest minority group. The Supreme Court rules that they are unnaturally born and have no rights. Corporations exploit their labor. Religious conservatives will not let them into churches. The media uses them for ratings. They have no allies, so they form a resistance group. They are immediately labeled terrorists. ..”The insights are uncommon and the action is unrelenting.”

  30. Raquel Bordin

    Hey Ramit, my name is Raquel Bordin, I’m 28 years old and I just read your book “I WILL TEACH YOU TO BE RICH” and loved it… so I was hoping you could help me out.
    I’m looking for some advise before I start my own business.
    Do you know a good book for who wants to start their own business?

    Thank you very much.

    Raquel Bordin