69 books like Consider the Lobster

By David Foster Wallace,

Here are 69 books that Consider the Lobster fans have personally recommended if you like Consider the Lobster. 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 Middle Passage: From Misery to Meaning in Mid-Life

Sam Carr Author Of All the Lonely People: Conversations on Loneliness

From my list on the psychological challenges of being human.

Why am I passionate about this?

I guess we all have a "calling." Mine has always been to explore the deeper, darker, less palatable aspects of being human. I’m a bit like a space explorer of the human psyche. I’m lucky in the sense that my day job permits me to research, teach, and better understand things like love, death, and loneliness. I’ve been researching and writing about them for many years now. I always treasure books that help me to shed light on these themes. They are like shiny pebbles or jewels that I pick up and keep in my pocket. I hope you enjoy and learn from some of the treasures in my personal collection!  

Sam's book list on the psychological challenges of being human

Sam Carr Why did Sam love this book?

I love the opening quote in this book. I’ve never, ever forgotten it since I turned the first page. It’s a quote from Dante’s Inferno: “Midway through life’s journey, I found myself lost in a dark wood, having lost the way.”

That’s exactly where I found myself when I started reading this book. Like millions of other people, I was lost when I found it. I was looking for someone or something–wiser than meto help me recognize that what I was going through in early midlife is actually a very normal, perhaps essential part of life’s journey.

By James Hollis,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked The Middle Passage as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Author James Hollis' eloquent reading provides the listener with an accessible and yet profound understanding of a universal condition - or what is commonly referred to as the mid-life crisis. The book shows how we may travel this Middle Passage consciously, thereby rendering our lives more meaningful and the second half of life immeasurably richer.


Book cover of Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End

Sam Carr Author Of All the Lonely People: Conversations on Loneliness

From my list on the psychological challenges of being human.

Why am I passionate about this?

I guess we all have a "calling." Mine has always been to explore the deeper, darker, less palatable aspects of being human. I’m a bit like a space explorer of the human psyche. I’m lucky in the sense that my day job permits me to research, teach, and better understand things like love, death, and loneliness. I’ve been researching and writing about them for many years now. I always treasure books that help me to shed light on these themes. They are like shiny pebbles or jewels that I pick up and keep in my pocket. I hope you enjoy and learn from some of the treasures in my personal collection!  

Sam's book list on the psychological challenges of being human

Sam Carr Why did Sam love this book?

This book invited me to think about how we age and meet death in contemporary Western societies.

I have seen people close to me die. I watched as my grandma, then my grandpa, and then my father passed away. They each, in different ways, faced the brutal realities of growing old and they encountered a healthcare system that ultimately medicalized their death and the aging process–striving to ‘eek out’ more time, as though that was the only honorable thing to do.

Atul Gawande’s book really taught me to reflect critically on that.

By Atul Gawande,

Why should I read it?

12 authors picked Being Mortal as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

THE INTERNATIONAL BESTSELLER

'GAWANDE'S MOST POWERFUL, AND MOVING, BOOK' MALCOLM GLADWELL

'BEING MORTAL IS NOT ONLY WISE AND DEEPLY MOVING; IT IS AN ESSENTIAL AND INSIGHTFUL BOOK FOR OUR TIMES' OLIVER SACKS

For most of human history, death was a common, ever-present possibility. It didn't matter whether you were five or fifty - every day was a roll of the dice. But now, as medical advances push the boundaries of survival further each year, we have become increasingly detached from the reality of being mortal. So here is a book about the modern experience of mortality - about what it's…


Book cover of Atomised

Sam Carr Author Of All the Lonely People: Conversations on Loneliness

From my list on the psychological challenges of being human.

Why am I passionate about this?

I guess we all have a "calling." Mine has always been to explore the deeper, darker, less palatable aspects of being human. I’m a bit like a space explorer of the human psyche. I’m lucky in the sense that my day job permits me to research, teach, and better understand things like love, death, and loneliness. I’ve been researching and writing about them for many years now. I always treasure books that help me to shed light on these themes. They are like shiny pebbles or jewels that I pick up and keep in my pocket. I hope you enjoy and learn from some of the treasures in my personal collection!  

Sam's book list on the psychological challenges of being human

Sam Carr Why did Sam love this book?

I often feel like fiction "does" loneliness far better than nonfiction. This is because loneliness is so abstract and messy and the way that it is "lived" is often depicted more realistically in fiction.

I loved Michel Houllebecq’s novel because it’s a painfully beautiful portrayal of the ways that loneliness manifests in modern lives. The characters are achingly lonely in so many ways, and you can see yourself refracted in them as a contemporary human being.

By Michel Houellebecq, Frank Wynne (translator),

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Half-brothers Michel and Bruno have a mother in common but little else.

Michel is a molecular biologist, a thinker and idealist, a man with no erotic life to speak of and little in the way of human society.

Bruno, by contrast, is a libertine, though more in theory than in practice, his endless lust is all too rarely reciprocated.

Both are symptomatic members of our atomised society, where religion has given way to shallow 'new age' philosophies and love to meaningless sexual connections.

Atomised tells the stories of the two brothers, but the real subject of the novel is the…


Book cover of Heartbreak: New Approaches to Healing - Recovering from Lost Love and Mourning

Sam Carr Author Of All the Lonely People: Conversations on Loneliness

From my list on the psychological challenges of being human.

Why am I passionate about this?

I guess we all have a "calling." Mine has always been to explore the deeper, darker, less palatable aspects of being human. I’m a bit like a space explorer of the human psyche. I’m lucky in the sense that my day job permits me to research, teach, and better understand things like love, death, and loneliness. I’ve been researching and writing about them for many years now. I always treasure books that help me to shed light on these themes. They are like shiny pebbles or jewels that I pick up and keep in my pocket. I hope you enjoy and learn from some of the treasures in my personal collection!  

Sam's book list on the psychological challenges of being human

Sam Carr Why did Sam love this book?

I think I read this book when I was heartbroken. I imagine that’s why most people would initially gravitate to it.

Heartbreak is something we are all likely to experience at least once in a lifetime. I remember how sick I was of being told by other people that they "understood" how I felt and that they’d "been there too." Ginette Paris didn’t do that. In fact, I remember how she stated that nobody really knows what YOU feel like when you’re heartbroken because nobody has lost exactly what YOU’VE lost. There’s never been a loss exactly like your relationship before because what you lost is in some sense completely unique.

The book is full of revelations about heartbreak that brought me far more comfort than the usual well-meaning platitudes.

By Ginette Paris,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Look at your broken heart with the curiosity of a naturalist, as you would pay close attention to your pet, to understand what is going on.

The pain of mourning and heartbreak is neurologically similar to being submitted to torture. There seems to be only one way to end that agony and to limit somatic damage; neurobiology calls it an evolutionary jump and psychologists call it an increase in consciousness.

Past theories of grief therapy considered recovery from the point of view of stages: a one-year cycle of mourning was supposed to heal the heart. Not so! A true Liberation…


Book cover of Musseled Out

Sherry Lynn Author Of Digging Up Daisy

From my list on beachfront cozy mysteries.

Why am I passionate about this?

The sound of waves rolling to shore. The scent of beach roses and salty air, mixed with suntan lotion. Breezy summer days with no agenda. This is the promised escape when I discover a cozy mystery with a waterfront cover. I’m immediately transported to a journey of respite with a sprinkle of intrigue tucked deep within the pages. The waterfront setting is one that I desire in both to read and to write, and I know I’m not alone. I’ve compiled a list of favorites for you when choosing a book that revolves around seaworthy things. 

Sherry's book list on beachfront cozy mysteries

Sherry Lynn Why did Sherry love this book?

Reading a book by Barbara Ross is like taking an actual trip to a charming coastal Maine town.

Loaded with lobster, seafood dishes, and desserts with blueberries in almost every chapter; my mouth was watering for the east coast. The interesting plot line on a lobster boat held my interest and led me to investigate the other books in the series as well. 

By Barbara Ross,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

The busy summer tourist season is winding down in Busman's Harbor, Maine, but Julia Snowden senses trouble simmering for the Snowden Family Clambake Company. Shifty David Thwing--the "Mussel King" of upscale seafood restaurants--is sniffing around town for a new location. But serving iffy clams turns out to be the least of his troubles. . .

When Thwing is found sleeping with the fishes beneath a local lobsterman's boat, the police quickly finger Julia's brother-in-law Sonny as the one who cooked up the crime. Sure, everyone knows Sonny despised the Mussel King. . .but Julia believes he's innocent. Proving it won't…


Book cover of Dolphin Rescue: Book #1

Andrea Stryer Author Of Reef Raiders: An Environmental Mystery

From my list on inspiring kids to protect our world.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have been privileged to see a penguin chick running to its parent for a meal, a blue-footed booby couple doing a mating dance, a cheetah racing across the savannah, and a whale spouting out at sea. I am committed to do what I can to preserve natural habitats and limit the effect humans have on the environment. As a teacher, librarian, and author, I encourage and laud kids who want to protect our world. It is a joy to be involved with books that are models for enthusiastic youngsters. 

Andrea's book list on inspiring kids to protect our world

Andrea Stryer Why did Andrea love this book?

Dolphin Rescue is a story for 7-9-year-olds about siblings, Maddie & Atticus, who live in a coastal town in Maine.

They love nature and are very ecologically aware. While trying to solve the mystery of household trash scattered on lawns in their neighborhood, they help a pod of dolphins in trouble because of a tangle of fishing line. 

I enjoyed the interesting facts and lovely photos about the area and the nearby waters.

By Catherine Nichols,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Siblings Maddie and Atticus love living by the sea. Their dad traps lobsters off the coast of Maine. They love helping with the family business and volunteering at the local aquarium. The summer is shaping up to be a super one, for sure. Then one day they spy a pod of dolphins in the cove looking distressed. How will the kids use their knowledge of animals and their awesome problem-solving skills to help the dolphin family get safely back to sea?

Perfect for reluctant, challenged, and newly fluent readers, the Animal Planet Adventures chapter book series combines fun animal mysteries…


Book cover of The Best and the Brightest

John Lawson III Author Of Kurtz

From my list on people who want the Marine Corps to get smarter.

Why am I passionate about this?

I love the Marines. After spending 12 years trying to join the Corps, with numerous rejections, I graduated from Parris Island at 31. As much as I love the Marines, I love reading and writing more. Reading and writing foster deep thought and wisdom in ways that coding, calculating, and puzzle-solving can’t. Having worked as a newspaper reporter, a military analyst, and a Marine, I couldn’t help but loathe the foolish ideas that made the wars on terror so frustrating. I have faith in the Marine Corps (“Semper Fidelis”), and I believe reading thoughtful books can make Marines wiser.

John's book list on people who want the Marine Corps to get smarter

John Lawson III Why did John love this book?

This is my favorite book because Halberstam works so hard to help us understand the intellectual, moral, and personality flaws plaguing the architects of America’s Vietnam debacle.

I believe Marines must understand the civilians who hold the reins if the Corps is to become wiser. This book tells a tragic story, but wisdom and moral courage surface occasionally. Several bright moments belong to Gen. David Shoup, the 22nd Commandant of the Marine Corps.

I love the time he did his best to tell wonkish officials in the Kennedy Administration that their delusional plans for meddling in Cuba (what became “The Bay of Pigs” incident) didn’t square with his military experience (he had earned a Medal of Honor at Tarawa during World War II).

By David Halberstam,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked The Best and the Brightest as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

David Halberstam’s masterpiece, the defining history of the making of the Vietnam tragedy, with a new Foreword by Senator John McCain.

"A rich, entertaining, and profound reading experience.”—The New York Times

Using portraits of America’s flawed policy makers and accounts of the forces that drove them, The Best and the Brightest reckons magnificently with the most important abiding question of our country’s recent history: Why did America become mired in Vietnam, and why did we lose? As the definitive single-volume answer to that question, this enthralling book has never been superseded. It is an American classic.

Praise for The Best…


Book cover of The Light in the Piazza and Other Italian Tales

Cynthia Watson Author Of Wind

From my list on capturing the unusual charm of other countries.

Why am I passionate about this?

I love books that take the reader to another country. Travel (even vicariously in a book) takes us out of our comfort zones and inspires us to open our minds to other cultures, ways of life and thought. These books constantly challenge us, not only to understand different surroundings, but also to understand unique people, to embrace adventures, glamour and romance and to share these new and meaningful thoughts and ideas with others.

Cynthia's book list on capturing the unusual charm of other countries

Cynthia Watson Why did Cynthia love this book?

Elizabeth Spencer was an American writer who loved Italy and once lived there. This collection in one volume contains Spencer's six Italian tales.

In “The Light in the Piazza” a wealthy American woman and her beautiful but mentally disabled daughter meet a young Italian man in Florence who will have a profound impact on their lives.

In “Knights and Dragons” an American woman in Rome and Venice struggles for release from her husband's disturbing control over her. In “The Cousins,” “The Pincian Gate,” “The White Azalea,” and “The Visit,” Spencer shows the unique craft that has earned her acclaim as one of America's top writers of short stories.

Elizabeth Spencer died in 2019 at the age of 98. Interesting fact: She was a cousin of United States senator John McCain.

By Elizabeth Spencer,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Light in the Piazza and Other Italian Tales as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Elizabeth Spencer is captivated by Italy. For her it has been a second home. A one-time resident who returns there, this native-born Mississippian has found Italy to be an enchanting land whose culture lends itself powerfully to her artistic vision.Some of her most acclaimed work is set there. Her American characters encounter but never quite wholly adjust to the mysteries of the Italian mores. Collected here in one volume are Spencer's six Italian tales. Their plots are so alluring and enigmatic that Boccaccio would have been charmed by their delightful ironies and their sinister contrasts of dark and light.Spencer is…


Book cover of The Irony of American History

Peter S. Henne Author Of Religious Appeals in Power Politics

From my list on religion’s messy impact on international relations.

Why am I passionate about this?

As a religious person, I’ve always believed religion is a force for good while being constantly reminded of the horrors it causes. This became a real-world concern with the 9/11 attacks (which happened my second week in college) and the faith-tinged US response. I spent ten years in Washington, DC working at the intersection of faith and counterterrorism, hopeful religion could solve our problems but worried it will only make things worse. I’ve continued that work as a Professor at the University of Vermont. This book reflects that tension and my desire to resolve it. 

Peter's book list on religion’s messy impact on international relations

Peter S. Henne Why did Peter love this book?

Niebuhr, a theologian active in the Cold War, experienced a resurgence in popularity after then-Senator Barack Obama listed him as his favorite theologian. Much of this interest had to do with the desire for a more restrained US foreign policy but I was drawn to what he had to say about the impact of faith on politics.

In this book he discusses the significance of faith-based ideals in America’s struggle with the Soviet Union and how our naivete turned “virtue into a vice.” This aligned with my interest in the unintended effects of infusing religion into international relations; in fact, I suggested that quote as one possible title for my book.

While Niebuhr focuses on the United States, his warning about unfettered idealism can apply to any country’s foreign policy.

By Reinhold Niebuhr,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Irony of American History as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Forged during the tumultuous but triumphant postwar years when America came of age as a world power, "The Irony of American History" is more relevant now than ever before. Cited by politicians as diverse as Hillary Clinton and John McCain, Niebuhr's masterpiece on the incongruity between personal ideals and political reality is both an indictment of American moral complacency and a warning against the arrogance of virtue. Impassioned, eloquent, and deeply perceptive, Niebuhr's wisdom will cause readers to rethink their assumptions about right and wrong, war and peace.


Book cover of War Crimes in Vietnam

Alexander Sedlmaier Author Of Protest in the Vietnam War Era

From my list on the international dimensions of the Vietnam War.

Why am I passionate about this?

As a historian and someone who grew up in Cold War Berlin, I am constantly inspired by efforts to curb the devastating effects of industrialised warfare. I love learning about people who had the courage to speak up, and how their historical understanding of the military abuse of power enables us to think differently about present-day warfare. So much of my research has been inspired by social movements and their difficult efforts to improve the world. While I am no expert on Vietnamese history, I have been fortunate to have learned a lot about how ingenious the Vietnamese revolutionaries were in actively pedalling the global emergence of Vietnam War protest. 

Alexander's book list on the international dimensions of the Vietnam War

Alexander Sedlmaier Why did Alexander love this book?

This 1967 collection of essays and speeches by the British philosopher Bertrand Russell fascinates me because it seeks to reveal inconvenient truths while not shying away from a highly partisan intervention.

Russell discusses why he was making a global appeal to protest the US war effort in Vietnam. His book and the subsequent Russell-Sartre War Crimes Tribunal have often been dismissed as biased and uncritical of communist propaganda, but rereading this primary source illuminates an important chapter in the emergence of a global intellectual critique of US imperialism that “millions of Europeans, Asians, Latin Americans” came to share as it was debunking the official position of the Johnson administration and its allies in Vietnam.

By Bertrand Russell,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked War Crimes in Vietnam as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In this harsh and unsparing book, Bertrand Russell presents the
unvarnished truth about the war in Vietnam. He argues that "To
understand the war, we must understand America"-and, in doing so, we
must understand that racism in the United States created a climate in
which it was difficult for Americans to understand what they were doing
in Vietnam. According to Russell, it was this same racism that
provoked "a barbarous, chauvinist outcry when American pilots who have
bombed hospitals, schools, dykes, and civilian centres are accused of
committing war crimes." Even today, more than forty years later, this
chauvinist moral…


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