100 books like Affluence and Influence

By Martin Gilens,

Here are 100 books that Affluence and Influence fans have personally recommended if you like Affluence and Influence. Shepherd is a community of 11,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of The Rise and Fall of Neoliberal Capitalism

Robert Chernomas Author Of Neoliberal Lives: Work, Politics, Nature, and Health in the Contemporary United States

From my list on class warfare and that the wrong class is winning.

Why am I passionate about this?

Neoliberalism and I have grown up in opposition to one another over the past four decades. As a professor of economics, union, and political activist I have observed, wrote about, and resisted its effects on the life chances of the great majority of its citizens with particular focus on the United States as its primary protagonist and gatekeeper. The opposition to this transformative epoch included writing about the significant contributions of my profession to Neoliberal economics in two previous books; The Profit Doctrine: The Economists of the Neoliberal Era and Economics in the 21st Century: A Critical Perspective.

Robert's book list on class warfare and that the wrong class is winning

Robert Chernomas Why did Robert love this book?

In addition to its excellent coverage of the economics of this transformation, its historical account of the shift in class partnerships makes a unique contribution to our understanding of the period. In the Golden Age of the previous period Big Business maintained a fraught alliance with its unions willing to pay growing wages closely aligned with labor productivity growth with the grudging acceptance of higher taxes and regulations of the Keynesian era leaving small business to fend for itself. Once Japan and Germany reindustrialized creating a more competitive economic landscape Kotz describes the full-blown class warfare identified by Buffet as Big Business realigned with small business to fight for cuts to its wages, taxes, regulatory costs and unions, and progressive politics.

By David M. Kotz,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Rise and Fall of Neoliberal Capitalism as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The financial and economic collapse that began in the United States in 2008 and spread to the rest of the world continues to burden the global economy. David Kotz, who was one of the few academic economists to predict it, argues that the ongoing economic crisis is not simply the aftermath of financial panic and an unusually severe recession but instead is a structural crisis of neoliberal, or free-market, capitalism. Consequently, continuing stagnation cannot be resolved by policy measures alone. It requires major institutional restructuring.

"Kotz's book will reward careful study by everyone interested in the question of
stages in…


Book cover of What's the Matter with Kansas?: How Conservatives Won the Heart of America

John Kenneth White Author Of Grand Old Unraveling: The Republican Party, Donald Trump, and the Rise of Authoritarianism

From my list on who we are, how we’ve changed, and what gives us hope.

Why am I passionate about this?

Reading was a childhood passion of mine. My mother was a librarian and got me interested in reading early in life. When John F. Kennedy was running for president and after his assassination, I became intensely interested in politics. In addition to reading history and political biographies, I consumed newspapers and television news. It is this background that I have drawn upon over the decades that has added value to my research.

John's book list on who we are, how we’ve changed, and what gives us hope

John Kenneth White Why did John love this book?

I found this book so helpful in explaining why it wasn’t “the economy stupid” but values that moved voters. His work was helpful in illuminating my own extensive work on how values move voters.

Frank is especially good at describing the role of the evangelical movement in putting cultural issues, including abortion, front and center in our politics. I found that he was onto something important and that has helped my understanding of today’s politics. A very readable, down-to-earth book.

By Frank Thomas,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked What's the Matter with Kansas? as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Reveals how conservatism became the preferred national political ideology, exploring the origins of this philosophy in the upper classes and tracing its recent popularity within the middle class.


Book cover of Winner-Take-All Politics: How Washington Made the Rich Richer--And Turned Its Back on the Middle Class

Bill Kuhn Author Of Facts & Fury: An Unapologetic Primer on How the GOP Has Destroyed American Democracy

From my list on to understand the American political system.

Why am I passionate about this?

I write about politics. I grew up in a political household. My mother was a key fundraiser for the Democratic Party and my stepfather served as a White House counsel to President Clinton. Politics and the Washington experience were the air I breathed during my formative years. I followed in their footsteps and co-founded Fight for a Better America, an organization that invests in key battleground districts and states throughout the US, with the goal of either flipping them blue or maintaining a Democratic incumbent. Through my travels with the organization, I have made hundreds of contacts with folks in local civic clubs and organized hundreds of volunteers on the ground. 

Bill's book list on to understand the American political system

Bill Kuhn Why did Bill love this book?

Hacker explores the connection between America’s present yawning inequality and the deliberate decisions made by key political figures throughout the last 50 years. While off-shoring and technological innovation have contributed to the ever poorer job prospects and conditions for the poor and working-class, he argues that our government is just as much to blame. We could have taken action to protect these constituencies but rather defended the interests of corporate America and the radical rich (his term for wealth conservative donors such as the Koch Brothers). The book is very well-researched and easily digestible.

By Jacob S. Hacker, Paul Pierson,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Winner-Take-All Politics as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A groundbreaking work that identifies the real culprit behind one of the great economic crimes of our time- the growing inequality of incomes between the vast majority of Americans and the richest of the rich.

We all know that the very rich have gotten a lot richer these past few decades while most Americans haven't. In fact, the exorbitantly paid have continued to thrive during the current economic crisis, even as the rest of Americans have continued to fall behind. Why do the "haveit- alls" have so much more? And how have they managed to restructure the economy to reap…


Book cover of The Making Of Global Capitalism: The Political Economy Of American Empire

Robert Chernomas Author Of Neoliberal Lives: Work, Politics, Nature, and Health in the Contemporary United States

From my list on class warfare and that the wrong class is winning.

Why am I passionate about this?

Neoliberalism and I have grown up in opposition to one another over the past four decades. As a professor of economics, union, and political activist I have observed, wrote about, and resisted its effects on the life chances of the great majority of its citizens with particular focus on the United States as its primary protagonist and gatekeeper. The opposition to this transformative epoch included writing about the significant contributions of my profession to Neoliberal economics in two previous books; The Profit Doctrine: The Economists of the Neoliberal Era and Economics in the 21st Century: A Critical Perspective.

Robert's book list on class warfare and that the wrong class is winning

Robert Chernomas Why did Robert love this book?

This book adds the international dimension to the Neoliberal story. Gindin and Panitch argue that the U.S. national state and “American MNCs” found key allies abroad among many dominant groups, as various state elites and dominant class fractions worldwide stood to gain through neoliberal reforms. The authors argue that supranational organizations developed largely along U.S. strategic lines. They explain for example how U.S. representatives hold inordinate influence through supranational forums such as the Bank for International Settlements, the World Trade Organization, and the International Monetary Fund. Furthermore, legal reforms (with U.S. support) have been made in many countries to limit the influence that voters have on economic policy with, for example, the de-politicization of trade policy. This is the story we tell for the U.S. writ large.

By Leo Panitch, Sam Gindin,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Making Of Global Capitalism as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The all-encompassing embrace of world capitalism at the beginning of the twenty-first century was generally attributed to the superiority of competitive markets. Globalization had appeared to be the natural outcome of this unstoppable process. But today, with global markets roiling and increasingly reliant on state intervention to stay afloat, it has become clear that markets and states aren't straightforwardly opposing forces.

In this groundbreaking work, Leo Panitch and Sam Gindin demonstrate the intimate relationship between modern capitalism and the American state. The Making of Global Capitalism identifies the centrality of the social conflicts that occur within states rather than between…


Book cover of Wise Child

Jo Spurrier Author Of A Curse of Ash and Embers

From my list on witchy women to read in a cottage in the woods.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve loved folklore and fantasy literature since I was tiny, but I’ve also had a lifelong fascination with science, history, and the natural world. As a disabled mother of two, I’ve not (yet) had the opportunity to see as much of our world as I’d like, but I love building fantasy worlds and weaving within them stories that blend a grounded earthiness with the supernatural and metaphysical. My writing always begins with a single mental image, the seed of an idea that I explore and build around until I have a full-fledged story ready to commit to paper. I love stories that break the mould, take you somewhere unexpected, and then make you never want to leave.

Jo's book list on witchy women to read in a cottage in the woods

Jo Spurrier Why did Jo love this book?

This is a vintage read, but well worth your time if you can get your hands on it. It’s a gentle but immersive story, well suited to a rainy day when all you want to do is curl up with a blanket and a book. Set in early Christian Britain, it’s the story of a misfit child taken in by the village witch, and chronicles her path in learning the slow craft of herbs and magic, until she is inducted into the ranks of those who work magic, serving the people and the land. When you’re looking for something a little more grounded and restorative, without heavy violence and unburdened by overwrought romance, this is the one for you.

By Monica Furlong,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Wise Child as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 12, 13, 14, and 15.

What is this book about?

Orphaned by the death of her grandmother and her father’s disappearance, 9-year-old Wise Child is taken in by Juniper, a healer and sorceress. Soon enough, the young girl finds herself flourishing under Juniper’s care—learning about herbal lore, and even introductory magic. But just as she begins to feel at home in the Scottish village, the girl’s mother—the black witch Maeve—returns.

Forced to choose between Maeve and Juniper, Wise Child has a difficult decision to make. She could stay with Juniper or leave with Maeve and adopt a life of luxury. In making her choice, Wise Child comes to discover her…


Book cover of The One Thing You'd Save

John Micklos Jr. Author Of Raindrops to Rainbow

From my list on recent picture books with a message.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have written 60 books over the past 20 years. My titles include picture books, poetry books, and dozens of nonfiction books covering a wide range of history and social studies topics. My picture books deal with concepts such as counting and colors. I enjoy rhyming and wordplay and conveying ideas in simple terms. 

John's book list on recent picture books with a message

John Micklos Jr. Why did John love this book?

It begins with a simple assignment—a teacher asks her class the one thing they’d save if their home were on fire. The answers, ranging from practical items such as cell phones, laptops, and wallets to priceless mementos such as a sweater knitted by gran, a baseball star’s autograph, and a lock of hair from a younger brother who died, reveal a lot about the students’ backgrounds and priorities. The text is written in a line structure called sijo—an ancient form of traditional Korean poetry. Simple black-and-white illustrations provides a nice complement to the text. This is a great book to get kids thinking about what is really important in their lives. 

By Linda Sue Park, Robert Sae-Heng (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The One Thing You'd Save as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 9, 10, 11, and 12.

What is this book about?

If your house were on fire, what one thing would you save? Newbery Medalist Linda Sue Park explores different answers to this provocative question in linked poems that capture the diverse voices of a middle school class. Recipient of four starred reviews!

"[Park's] message is powerful: We don’t need a great blazing tragedy to determine what we hold most precious in our lives; we can define what’s vital through our thoughts and memories, always at hand, in our heads and hearts—safe, where the flames don’t reach."—New York Times Book Review

When a teacher asks her class what one thing they…


Book cover of Washington Rules: America's Path to Permanent War

Mohamed Rabie Author Of The Global Debt Crisis and Its Socioeconomic Implications: Creating Conditions for a Sustainable, Peaceful, and Just World

From my list on serving humanity and revealing misleading secrets.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am a retired professor, was raised in a refugee camp, one of a family of 9 living in one tent. studied in Palestine, Egypt, Germany, and America, have Ph.D. in economics; scholarships financed my education journey. I lived a life no human has lived or can live, because some of the times I lived had come and gone and cannot come back again. I taught at 11 universities on 4 continents, published 60 books in Arabic and English: books on economics, politics, culture, history, conflict resolution, philosophy, racism, novels, and poetry. True intellectuals cannot stay in one area because issues that shape mankind's history and man’s destiny are interconnected. 

Mohamed's book list on serving humanity and revealing misleading secrets

Mohamed Rabie Why did Mohamed love this book?

This book shows that America, since its inception, has followed an imperialistic policy to dominate the world; it built the strongest army in history, and the most advanced military industry. To project power and be able to intervene anywhere, America built about 750 military bases overseas in 80 countries. However, America’s relative decline due to China’s rise, lead America’s policymakers to transform many states into failed states that cannot control all their territories, weak for America to dominate, but unstable to create headaches for their neighbors as the cases of Iraq, Libya, Syria, Ukraine, and Yemen demonstrate. America’s military budget for 2023 is $858 billion, the equivalent of 1/3 of the combined gross domestic product of the 54 African countries. Does this scare you, or comfort you?

By Andrew Bacevich,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Washington Rules as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

For the last half century, as administrations have come and gone, the fundamental assumptions about America's military policy have remained unchanged: American security requires the United States (and us alone) to maintain a permanent armed presence around the globe, to prepare our forces for military operations in far-flung regions, and to be ready to intervene anywhere at any time. In the Obama era, just as in the Bush years, these beliefs remain unquestioned gospel. In a vivid, incisive analysis, Andrew J. Bacevich succinctly presents the origins of this consensus, forged at a moment when American power was at its height.…


Book cover of A Curious Mind: The Secret to a Bigger Life

Karen Eber Author Of The Perfect Story: How to Tell Stories that Inform, Influence, and Inspire

From my list on unleashing your storytelling and creativity.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have told stories since the age of five when I shared one about my different colored eyes. Tired of being pointed at and ridiculed for the thing I loved most about myself, I learned that stories can shift energy and create connection, even in the most artificial of settings. I’ve spent my career working in and with the Fortune 500 building leaders, teams, and culture, one story at a time. I’ve used storytelling to persuade people when one had the authority to say yes but 99 others could say no. Stories not only slowed their “No,” but they also helped me recruit them to persuade the decision makers.

Karen's book list on unleashing your storytelling and creativity

Karen Eber Why did Karen love this book?

Brian Grazer is the silent figure behind so many popular, award-winning movies. He’s worked on films like Splash, A Beautiful Mind, and Apollo 13 and his films have been nominated for more than 47 Academy Awards.

In this book, he lets you peek behind the curtain at his creative process. Which is essentially that he embraces curiosity in all aspects of his life. When someone intrigues him, he spends time asking them questions to learn more. While the book is focused on his approach, it’s easy to take inspiration from his mindset and seek your own curiosity daily. 

By Brian Grazer, Charles Fishman,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked A Curious Mind as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

For decades, film and TV producer Brian Grazer has scheduled a weekly "curiosity conversation" with an accomplished stranger. From scientists to spies, and adventurers to business leaders, Grazer has met with anyonewilling to answer his questions for a few hours. These informal discussions sparked the creative inspiration behind many of Grazer's movies and TV shows, including Splash, 24, A Beautiful Mind, Apollo 13, Arrested Development, 8 Mile, J. Edgar, and many others.

A Curious Mindis a brilliantly entertaining, fascinating, and inspiring homage to the power of inquisitiveness and the ways in which it deepens and improves us. Whether you're looking…


Book cover of Designing Your New Work Life: How to Thrive and Change and Find Happiness--and a New Freedom--at Work

Tessa White Author Of The Unspoken Truths for Career Success: Navigating Pay, Promotions, and Power at Work

From my list on curating a well rounded life.

Why am I passionate about this?

My own rise through the workplace didn’t come without roadblocks. I was a divorced single mom with 3 children and no education. Yet I found myself taking a career journey where I made a lot of the same mistakes so many individuals make. I realized after about 20 years leading human resources for fast-growth companies, that I had a unique view to help others shortcut their own mistakes. I finally left my corporate desk to work the other side of the desk–helping the individual. The Job Doctor was born in late 2020, and one million followers later, I feel like I’ve found my own career calling in helping individuals navigate their own career journeys. 

Tessa's book list on curating a well rounded life

Tessa White Why did Tessa love this book?

I love this book because not only does it give great advice, but it shares numerous practical tools and reframes on how to build a work life that is meaningful and joyful for you!

In addition, the book has stayed very current—includes how to handle life disruptions (such as the pandemic) and how to thrive despite the circumstances. As a career navigation coach myself, I’ve recommended this book hundreds of times to my clients.

It’s practical. It’s easy to read. And I find the exercises extraordinarily useful in setting boundaries at work that help one thrive.

By Bill Burnett, Dave Evans,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Designing Your New Work Life as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

From the authors of the #1 New York Times bestseller Designing Your Life comes a revised, fully up-to-date edition of Designing Your New Work Life,a timely, urgently needed book that shows us how to transform our new uncharted work life into a meaningful dream job or company. With practical, useful tools, tips, and design ideas that show us how to navigate disruption (global, regional, or personal) and create new possibilities for our post-COVID work world and beyond.

Bill Burnett and Dave Evans successfully taught graduate and undergraduate students at Stanford University and readers of their best-selling book, Designing Your Life…


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