Wednesday, May 14, 2008


After reading Kelly's post, I thought we should add a book on economics to our list (the bottom of the list). So I looked up a few and I wanted everyone's opinion on which they thought would be best to read (of course if you have another one that would be better, feel free to add it). Here's my list:

The Mystery of Capital: Why Capitalism Triumphs in the West and Fails Everywhere Else by Hernando de Soto

Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies by Jared Diamond (okay not so much an economics book, but still looks fascinating--Pulitzer Prize winner)

Development as Freedom by Amartya Sen (a Nobel Prize winner in economics)

The White Man's Burden: Why the West's Efforts to Aid the Rest Have Done So Much Ill and So Little Good by William Easterly (again, not so much about economics, still looks interesting, although the reviews I read criticized the writing as being too "saleable" and not enough intellect).

Fair Trade for All: How Trade Can Promote Development (Initiative for Policy Dialogue Series C)by Joseph E. Stiglitz (mostly about free trade and the WTO)

Institutions and the Path to the Modern Economy: Lessons from Medieval Trade (Political Economy of Institutions and Decisions)by Avner Greif (Ok, so I admit that anything that has to do with ancient civilizations is going to be on my list)

Understanding the Process of Economic Change (Princeton Economic History of the Western World)by Douglass C. North (better reviewed than the one above and along the same lines--another Nobel Prize winner in economics author)

Man, Economy, and State with Power and Market (Scholars Edition)by Murray N. Rothbard (supposed to be a good overview of economics)

Economics in One Lesson: The Shortest and Surest Way to Understand Basic Economics (Paperback)by Henry Hazlitt (supposed to be a simple, fast book about the basics of economics)

Okay this was way longer than I intended and took far too much time out of my day when I need to be doing other things. However, in all my searching I found this list on Amazon, that probably has better books than I listed here. So maybe just check that list out instead and see what you think.

Oh, I also think we should add a few more "light" books into our mix to break things up a bit more--like some YA fiction or just more fiction in general. I don't have any ideas though. Anyone?


Juwmama said...

I'm for the Basics of Economy book all because I didn't get it going through American Heritage at BYU. Question: are these classics, or just random/modern books?

I totally agree in the "need more light reading" comment.
I'm all for sticking with classics. And, I do have a goal in life to read all of the Newberry Award Winning books, so that is one list we could look at when making choices.

Some of my favorites:

Tale of Despereaux - DiCamillo
Crispin - Avi
The Wheel on the School -
Invincible Louisa (about Louisa May Alcott)
The Giver - Lowry
Onion John -
The Whipping Boy - Fleishman

A great book that might go into this whole "economy" topic could be "Twenty-One Balloons" ?????? (and if not, it's still a fun, light book to read)

By way of classics:
Little Women
Anne of Green Gables
The Robe - Lloyd Douglas
A Wrinkle in Time
The House of Seven Gables - Hawthorne
The Girl of the Limberlost -
Anything by Roald Dahl
Around the World in Eighty Days

Misc./more current:
The Penderwicks -
The Wish Giver - Bill Brittain
The Search for Delicious - Babbitt
The Sunflower - Richard Paul Evans

There's my extensive list for you! You know if you ask my opinion you'll get it and more!


Kelly said...

Let me ask my husband if he knows any good economics classics. That's his forte - but I don't usually read those.

There are a few on Julia's list that I haven't read yet that would be interesting. If I have any other ideas, I'll post them.

Andrea said...

I vote the Douglass book--it sounded like a good overview, but I will leave the picking of it to you Kami, as long as what you pick doesn't get too bogged down in ancient times.

Ju--you knew I would do this to your list but I am still going to apologize:

1) nothing by Richard Paul Evans. Ever.

2) Tim said Crispin was lame and extremely predictable, so I'm not that interested.

3) Invincible Louisa wasn't that great. Tale of Despereaux was excellent, The Giver--you haven't read it???????????????, haven't we all read Little Women, Anne of Green Gables, The Robe, Wrinkle in Time, Girl of the Limberlost, Roald Dahl, and The Wish Giver?

Are we reading books we've already read? I'm okay with it if we are--all of the above are excellent. I just didn't know if we were or not.

I haven't read Onion John, The Whipping Boy, The Wheel on the School, The House of Seven Gables, or Around the World in 80 Days--I wouldn't mind adding one or more of those. And/or The Search for Delicious.

If we are reading books people have already read than I want to add the Secret Life of Bees. Really, one of the best books ever.

Also, I want to add Surviving Jamestown, because you can never have enough historical fiction.

Here are the books that grabbed my eye during my recent dates to Barnes and Noble:

Three Cups of Tea: One Man's Mission to Promote Peace . . . One School at a Time (Paperback),

The Thief Lord (Paperback), by Cornelia Funke

Penny from Heaven, Jennifer Holm,

Peter and the Starcatchers by Dave Barry

Sharon Creech--I started with the author because I love her and I am behind, I haven't read The Wanderer or Replay or Love that Dog. Any of those. PS Kami, Replay is about a boy named Leonardo.

Love and Valor : Intimate Civil War Letters Between Captain Jacob and Emeline Ritner - Jacob B. Ritner

Anahita's Woven Riddle
by Meghan Nuttall Sayres

A Passion for the Impossible
by Miriam Huffman Rockness

The Sherwood Ring - Elizabeth Marie Pope

I could go on--but I will stop there. I haven't read any of those so I can't say if they would meet my definition of "classic."

Do we want to read only things we know are classics, or come labeled as classics, or are we going to read what we want in order to add to our personal classics list.

I'm okay either way.

Juwmama said...

First - in defense of Richard Paul Evans I did NOT like any of his other books, but The Sunflower was very different. I thought so anyway. It gives a lot to discuss, I believe.

AND - - I should have known you'd read practicaly EVERYTHING on my list, Andrea. Of course, I have read The Giver. This was a list of my favorite books. AND I didn't list The Wanderer because I'd assumed you'd already read it... and it is quite excellent. So, yes, these are books I have already read... BUT I would love to DISCUSS any of them with anybody because I haven't DISCUSSED much.

I, for one have NOT read all of Roald Dahl. Love him! And Around the World in 80 Days is a MUST read for everyone! :-)

And, if we are wanting to discuss teaching our children to think then we must read "The Wheel on the School."

So, there is my rebudle to your comment, Andrea! :-)