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10 Books Guaranteed To Make You Smarter

These are top ten nonfiction books guaranteed to make you smarter.

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1. A Short History of Nearly Everything by Bill Bryson

Via Broadway Books

This is Bill Bryson's quest to find out everything that has happened from the Big Bang to the rise of civilization.

2. Think by Simon Blackburn


Think is one of the best single-volume introductions to Western philosophy. This book summarizes central themes in philosophy in a thoroughly entertaining and clear manner.

3. Thinking, Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman

Via Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Thinking, Fast and Slow makes the recent research in cognitive psychology quite accessible to the layperson. This is a very important book about how we decide.

4. The Universe Within by Neil Shubin

Via Pantheon

In The Universe Within, Neil Shubin, the author of 'Your Inner Fish', ambitiously traces the history of the universe and the story of evolution through the bodies and remains of all living things on Earth.

5. The Better Angels of Our Nature by Steven Pinker

Via Viking Books

Steven Pinker is one of the world's leading authorities on language and the mind. In this book he shows that counter-intuitively, violence has been decreasing throughout human history

6. Guns, Germs, and Steel by Jared Diamond

Via W. W. Norton & Company

Guns, Germs, and Steel is one of the most important and humane works of popular science. It will change the way you think about human culture and history.

7. Believing Bullshit by Stephen Law

Via Prometheus Books

Believing Bullshit is a witty and insightful critique that will help immunize readers against the follies of poor thinking.

8. Intuition Pumps by Daniel Dennett

Via W. W. Norton & Company

In Intuition Pumps and Other Tools for Thinking, Dennett revealed his favorite thinking tools, or 'intuition pumps', addressing life’s most fundamental questions.

9. The Demon-Haunted World by Carl Sagan

Via Random House

The Demon-Haunted world is one of Sagan's last works to be published before he died. It's extremely informative and thought provoking.

10. The Selfish Gene by Richard Dawkins


The Selfish Gene revolutionized the way we think of natural selection. If you are only going to read one book on evolution/natural selection, it should be this one.

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