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Must Read. Good Books that Increase Intelligence

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by John Milovich

While the “10% of the brain” myth is debunked, one fact remains unchangeable: our mind can do more than we think. Regular training is required not only for our body but for our brain too. Reading books is a good way of developing our mental skills. Printed or audio, they help us learn new things, improve our critical and logical thinking, increase our IQ. Not every book is like that, but the five from our list will certainly keep your brain in shape.

1. Thinking, Fast and Slow

Author: Daniel Kahneman

Originally published: 2011

One-sentence summary: Your survival at least and your life success at most are directly connected to how well you master two systems of your brain: the first is fast and emotional, the second is slow and logical.

What readers say about this book 

Why it is useful for you:  Kahneman gives insights on how we think and make choices engaging the audience in a friendly conversation. It is not a big, boring book with little real-life application. The narration is based on examples that everyone knows and understands. The book helps you understand the nature of your decisions and judgments in the various situations from college and work to personal relationships.

Video review

2. The Undefeated Mind: On the Science of Constructing an Indestructible Self

Author: Dr. Alex Lickerman

Originally published: 2012

One-sentence summary: This book guides you on a way to rebuilding your mind, facing challenges, and seeing problems as a motivation to become stronger.

What readers say about this book 

Why it is useful for you: Lots of people have already used Dr. Lickerman’s principles and overcame such problems as addiction, unemployment, illness, and loss. The book shows how you can apply these methods to your difficult life situation, get power to improve yourself and become happy. The author highlights that life is never easy, but we need to accept this fact and develop our inner strength to enjoy every day we live.

Video review

3. The Power of Habit

Author: Charles Duhigg

Originally published: 2012

One-sentence summary: If you understand how human habitual behavior works, you can harness your bad habits.

What readers say about this book   

Why it is useful for you: This book is a must-read for everyone who is fighting their bad habits. Charles Duhigg explains that habits are not our destiny. By getting their nature, we can transform how productive we are in college, at work, at home. The Power of Habit reveals the secret why some people and businesses struggle to improve themselves, despite how hard they try, while others seem to change themselves by a swish of a magic wand.

Video review


4. Godel, Escher, Bach: An Eternal Golden Braid

Author: Douglas R. Hofstadter

Originally published: 1999

One-sentence summary: GEB is a challenging book where math, computers, and artificial intelligence are intertwined with music, literature, and art.

What readers say about this book

Why it is useful for you: This book teaches seeing patterns and symbols where others see nothing. Through the symbols, the author explains what human consciousness is and how our brain actually works. However, it is filled with easy to understand dialogs and “stories in stories”, the book still sometimes tends to melt your brain.

Video review

5. A Short History of Nearly Everything

Author: Bill Bryson

Originally published: 2003

One-sentence summary: The book is an involving and entertaining explanation of the human development from The Big Bang to our days.

What readers say about this book 

Why it is useful for you: The older we become, the more questions about our world raise in our heads. Bill Bryson tries to give us the answers and understand how we got from being nothing to being us nowadays. A Short History of Nearly Everything covers many areas of human knowledge including biology, chemistry, and physics. With the help of it, you will not only increase your intelligence but also will have an ability to impress a few people during any conversation.

Video review


Have you read any of these books? ScamFighter would be happy to hear your opinion on them. Do not hesitate to share it with us. If some personal development books have really helped you become smarter, stronger, or more confident, tell us, and you will see it in the update of this article.