90 books like For Us, the Living

By Robert A. Heinlein,

Here are 90 books that For Us, the Living fans have personally recommended if you like For Us, the Living. 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 Fahrenheit 451

Dan Savery Raz Author Of The Qwerty Man

From my list on dystopian books that could actually happen.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve always been a bit of a daydreamer and drawn to books that look through a window into the "other world." These novels, often dubbed dystopian, are reflections or exaggerations of our own world, and this always appealed to me. Like the question, "What if?”. The premise of “What if we lived in a world where you had to pay for words?” inspired my first novel, The Qwerty Man. Although I love fiction, I’m more of a nonfiction reader these days and interested in Buddhism (as an education, not religion), geography, and history. I’ve also written travel guidebooks for Lonely Planet and a children’s travel poetry book called Rhyme Travels.

Dan's book list on dystopian books that could actually happen

Dan Savery Raz Why did Dan love this book?

I read this book relatively recently, not at school or when I was in my twenties, but when I was in my late thirties. I had heard of the novel, and the concept of burning books was all-too familiar as I studied a module on Holocaust literature at university. However, the premise of Ray Bradbury’s novel, written in 1953, was so simple yet so powerful.

It echoes with our own reality today, as although books are not being burned, we are seeing the art of writing itself being "burned" or minimized by tools such as AI or social media. The virtual burning of honest reportage or poetry for opinionated views and algorithms is one symptom of today’s fast-paced society. 

There were some great quotes in Fahrenheit 451, too; the one that really stuck out was, “Everyone must leave something behind when he dies… A child or a book or a…

By Ray Bradbury,

Why should I read it?

17 authors picked Fahrenheit 451 as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The hauntingly prophetic classic novel set in a not-too-distant future where books are burned by a special task force of firemen.

Over 1 million copies sold in the UK.

Guy Montag is a fireman. His job is to burn books, which are forbidden, being the source of all discord and unhappiness. Even so, Montag is unhappy; there is discord in his marriage. Are books hidden in his house? The Mechanical Hound of the Fire Department, armed with a lethal hypodermic, escorted by helicopters, is ready to track down those dissidents who defy society to preserve and read books.

The classic…


Book cover of Brave New World

Stephen Wunker Author Of The Innovative Leader: Step-By-Step Lessons from Top Innovators For You and Your Organization

From my list on passionate innovators.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m an innovator. I’ve been one since I was a kid. Since then, I’ve started a couple of non-profits and four companies, and I’ve advised hundreds of clients on innovation opportunities. I’ve also led the team that created one of the world’s first smartphones. Over the past dozen years, I’ve written four books on the strategy and capabilities of innovation. Innovation is one of the essential characteristics that make us human. It can get the world into trouble, but it does more good than harm on balance. My mission is to make us better at innovation and make the world a better place.

Stephen's book list on passionate innovators

Stephen Wunker Why did Stephen love this book?

Perhaps you read this one in school, but most haven’t revisited the work since. I urge you to do so! People passionate about innovation need to keep humans foremost in their minds, not the machines (of any sort) that they create.

Huxley’s tale is famous because it’s both simple and profound. It’s also remarkably prophetic. As we focus intently on creating the new, this book reminds us of the bigger picture and calls into question the overall endeavor.

Early in my career, I was responsible for one of the world’s first smartphones. It was a wonderful achievement. But this book makes me think twice about whether I should be so proud.

By Aldous Huxley,

Why should I read it?

20 authors picked Brave New World as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

**One of the BBC's 100 Novels That Shaped Our World**

EVERYONE BELONGS TO EVERYONE ELSE. Read the dystopian classic that inspired the hit Sky TV series.

'A masterpiece of speculation... As vibrant, fresh, and somehow shocking as it was when I first read it' Margaret Atwood, bestselling author of The Handmaid's Tale.

Welcome to New London. Everybody is happy here. Our perfect society achieved peace and stability through the prohibition of monogamy, privacy, money, family and history itself. Now everyone belongs.

You can be happy too. All you need to do is take your Soma pills.

Discover the brave new…


Book cover of Germinal

Paul James Gabol Author Of The Brittle Foundations of our Civilization

From my list on the Western’s social unrest and decay.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am a privileged individual of our Western society, with access to a good education, living away from hunger and despair. Am I wealthy? Far from it. I am amid that middle class where working hours are well understood and spare time is fully enjoyed. I have been a consultant to businesses of all sizes and I have learned closely how the wheels turn, how in order to produce anything, always someone and something is crushed and squeezed. Profit on one side and destruction and poverty on the other one. Throughout time, I have met people from various countries and understood the value of a multicultural world, which I defend.

Paul's book list on the Western’s social unrest and decay

Paul James Gabol Why did Paul love this book?

I was very young when I first read this book. Many years later I took it back from the shelf and went through its pages with older eyes.

The reality portrayed by Émile Zola in the 19th Century is quite brutal. The coal miners back then – with their struggle for life, excess work, permanent fatigue, lack of knowledge and understanding, contrasted by the careful calculations and comfort of their masters – mirror miners and other workers today.

Greed on one side, poverty on the other regarded as normal. The very few with enough wit to overthrow the injustice were silenced, as it happens today at the productive facilities of the capital.

Social unrest? No wonder.

By Emile Zola, Havelock Ellis (translator),

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

This scarce antiquarian book is a facsimile reprint of the original. Due to its age, it may contain imperfections such as marks, notations, marginalia and flawed pages. Because we believe this work is culturally important, we have made it available as part of our commitment for protecting, preserving, and promoting the world's literature in affordable, high quality, modern editions that are true to the original work.


Price of Vengeance

By Kurt D. Springs,

Book cover of Price of Vengeance

Kurt D. Springs

New book alert!

Why am I passionate about this?

Author Teacher Cook Barista Guardian

Kurt's 3 favorite reads in 2023

What is my book about?

Liam was orphaned at the age of two by a group of giant carnivorous insects called the chitin. Taken in by High Councilor Marcus and his wife, Lidia, Liam was raised with their older son, Randolf in New Olympia, the last remaining city on the planet Etrusci.

As an adult, Liam becomes a soldier. After being cut off from the city, Liam finds that there is an alien intelligence behind the chitin. To defeat it, he must discover who he is and how to use his powers. Then, Liam discovers that a traitor, responsible for his birth parents' deaths, had murdered his beloved foster parents. Will the price he has to pay in his quest for vengeance prove to be an even more unbeatable foe?

Price of Vengeance

By Kurt D. Springs,

What is this book about?

"From the cover to the opening pages, Price of Vengeance grabs the reader and takes them on a wild ride. Fasten your seat belts for this book." -S. J. Francis, author of Shattered Lies

What is the Price of Vengeance? One could understand why Liam was angry. He was orphaned at the age of two by a group of giant carnivorous insects called the chitin. Taken in by High Councilor Marcus and his wife, Lidia, Liam was raised with their older son, Randolf in New Olympia, the last remaining city on the planet Etrusci.

As an adult, Liam becomes a…


Book cover of The Gods Are Athirst

Paul James Gabol Author Of The Brittle Foundations of our Civilization

From my list on the Western’s social unrest and decay.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am a privileged individual of our Western society, with access to a good education, living away from hunger and despair. Am I wealthy? Far from it. I am amid that middle class where working hours are well understood and spare time is fully enjoyed. I have been a consultant to businesses of all sizes and I have learned closely how the wheels turn, how in order to produce anything, always someone and something is crushed and squeezed. Profit on one side and destruction and poverty on the other one. Throughout time, I have met people from various countries and understood the value of a multicultural world, which I defend.

Paul's book list on the Western’s social unrest and decay

Paul James Gabol Why did Paul love this book?

You and I are recently witnessing the popular upheaval in France as a result of the chronic reduction of the purchasing power.

A new story? Ha, no! The French Revolution was about the same thing at the same place: making ends meet. Anatole France takes us through a particular subject within the Revolutionary Tribunal, where the trials of the bourgeoisie should end in bloody executions.

It is very interesting to get under the skin of those jurors to understand why uprisings happen. I can easily see why people seek revenge without any conscience. The ambiance is captivating, the plot is pulling.

By Anatole France, Alfred Allinson (translator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Gods Are Athirst as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

This scarce antiquarian book is a facsimile reprint of the original. Due to its age, it may contain imperfections such as marks, notations, marginalia and flawed pages. Because we believe this work is culturally important, we have made it available as part of our commitment for protecting, preserving, and promoting the world's literature in affordable, high quality, modern editions that are true to the original work.


Book cover of Uncommon Sense

Shirley Streshinsky and Patricia Klaus Author Of An Atomic Love Story: The Extraordinary Women in Robert Oppenheimer's Life

From my list on the race to build the first atomic bomb.

Why are we passionate about this?

Shirley Streshinsky was 11 years old when the atom bomb was dropped on Hiroshima. Many scientists were responsible, but only Robert Oppenheimer was labeled “Father of the Atomic Bomb”. At twenty-nine while living in San Francisco she crowded into an auditorium at U.C. Berkeley to hear him speak. She left knowing she would write about him. Patricia Klaus has been a Modern British historian for years, the story of Robert Oppenheimer and the women he loved opened new worlds for her: the history of science and the discovery of fission in 1938. Her father was a pilot in the 509th Bomb Wing that had dropped the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombs.

Shirley's book list on the race to build the first atomic bomb

Shirley Streshinsky and Patricia Klaus Why did Shirley love this book?

This is a collection of Oppenheimer’s essays and speeches, a good thing to read to get a sense of the man himself, how he thinks, how he handles language.

How he struggles to suggest how civilization might begin to cope with the reality that new weapons now exist capable of annihilating civilization... “unless we show,” he says, ”urged by our own example and conviction, that we regard nuclear armament as a transitory, dangerous and degrading phase of the world’s history.”

He said that forty years ago, and counting.

By J Robert Oppenheimer,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

J. Robert Oppenheimer, a leading physicist in the Manhattan Project, recognized that scientific inquiry and discovery could no longer be separated from their effect on political decision-making, social responsibility, and human endeavor in general. He openly addressed issues of common concern and as a scientist accepted the responsibility brought about by nuclear physics and the atom bomb. In this collection of essays and speeches, Oppenheimer discusses the shift in scientific awareness and its impact on education, the question of openness in a society forced to keep secrets, the conflict between individual concerns and public and political necessity, the future of…


Book cover of Racing for the Bomb: General Leslie R.Groves, the Manhattan Project's Indispensable Man

Gregg Herken Author Of Brotherhood of the Bomb: The Tangled Lives and Loyalties of Robert Oppenheimer, Ernest Lawrence, and Edward Teller

From my list on who made and thought about using bombs.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m an emeritus professor of modern American diplomatic history at the University of California, having previously taught at Oberlin, Caltech, and Yale. I’ve also been chairman of the Division of Space History at the Smithsonian’s National Air & Space Museum, where I was the Curator of Military Space. I’ve been fascinated—and concerned—about nuclear weapons and nuclear war since I was 12, when I saw the movie On the Beach.  Then, as now, nuclear weapons and the (currently-increasing) danger of nuclear war are the most important things on the planet.  

Gregg's book list on who made and thought about using bombs

Gregg Herken Why did Gregg love this book?

Most readers interested in the story of the atomic bomb don’t realize that the weapon was primarily an engineering project, not a scientific one.  (Why it was called the Manhattan Engineer District). 

The man who built the bomb was really Groves, not Oppenheimer, who only helped design it. Norris’s book is fascinating for portraying Groves as a human being, not just a chubby general. Readers will recognize that Matt Damon was actually a pretty good choice to play Groves in the movie “Oppenheimer.”

By Robert S. Norris,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Racing for the Bomb as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

COLONEL LESLIE R. GROVES was a career officer in the Army Corps of Engineers, fresh from overseeing hundreds of military construction projects, including the Pentagon, when he was given the job in September 1942 of building the atomic bomb. In this full-scale biography Norris places Groves at the center of the amazing Manhattan Project story.
Norris contributes much in the way of new information and vital insights to our understanding of how the bomb got built and how the decision was made to drop it on a large population center. Richard Rhodes, author of The Making of the Atomic Bomb,…


Book cover of Atomic Love

Kitty Zeldis Author Of The Dressmakers of Prospect Heights

From my list on historical novels that feature bad-ass women.

Why am I passionate about this?

As a girl growing up in the 1960s, I loved books that were set in the past—Anne of Green Gables, A Little Princess, and A Tree Grows in Brooklyn were among my favorites. But those books weren’t historical fiction because they were written back then. So discovering that I could set my own books in the past was a thrill. I love evoking the sights, sounds, and smells of the past. And I especially love describing what my characters wear. Vintage clothes are my passion and being able to incorporate that love into my work is an ongoing delight.

Kitty's book list on historical novels that feature bad-ass women

Kitty Zeldis Why did Kitty love this book?

A novel about a young woman who worked on the atomic bomb and fell in love with one of the other scientists on the project who breaks her heart into a million pieces so she abandons her career and takes up as a shop-girl? Add in an FBI agent who is on the tail of the cad and wants her help in finding him? Count me in!

Fields is terrific at creating mood and the 1950s milieu. And the unexpected romance between Rosalind, the one-time scientist, and Charlie, the FBI agent, is both moving and immensely satisfying—these are two wounded souls who manage to find each other and by the end, you’re out of your chair and cheering.

By Jennie Fields,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

The stunning novel about our fiercest loyalties, deepest desires and the power of forgiveness

'A highly-charged love story' DELIA OWENS, bestselling author of WHERE THE CRAWDADS SING

'This story has everything. Just thinking about it makes me feel that lovely feeling where your heart seems to skip a beat' 5***** Reader Review
________

Chicago, 1950: Rosalind Porter is unfulfilled, heartbroken and angry.

Five years ago her career as a scientist was sabotaged by the man who also broke her heart: former Manhattan Project colleague Thomas Weaver.

Now, out of the blue, Thomas gets back in touch: he urgently needs to…


Book cover of The Making of the Atomic Bomb

Gregg Herken Author Of Brotherhood of the Bomb: The Tangled Lives and Loyalties of Robert Oppenheimer, Ernest Lawrence, and Edward Teller

From my list on who made and thought about using bombs.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m an emeritus professor of modern American diplomatic history at the University of California, having previously taught at Oberlin, Caltech, and Yale. I’ve also been chairman of the Division of Space History at the Smithsonian’s National Air & Space Museum, where I was the Curator of Military Space. I’ve been fascinated—and concerned—about nuclear weapons and nuclear war since I was 12, when I saw the movie On the Beach.  Then, as now, nuclear weapons and the (currently-increasing) danger of nuclear war are the most important things on the planet.  

Gregg's book list on who made and thought about using bombs

Gregg Herken Why did Gregg love this book?

Even after almost forty years, Rhodes’s book is still the most detailed, accurate, and readable account of how the atomic bomb came to be. 

The author’s description of the moment Leo Szilard realized the weapon was possible still brings me to tears. Nobody has done this history better.  

By Richard Rhodes,

Why should I read it?

7 authors picked The Making of the Atomic Bomb as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

With a brand new introduction from the author, this is the complete story of how the bomb was developed. It is told in rich, human, political, and scientific detail, from the turn-of-the-century discovery of the vast energy locked inside the atom to the dropping of the first bombs on Japan. Few great discoveries have evolved so swiftly -- or have been so misunderstood. From the theoretical discussions of nuclear energy to the bright glare of Trinity there was a span of hardly more than twenty-five years. What began as merely an interesting speculative problem in physics grew into the Manhattan…


Book cover of Day of Trinity

Denise Kiernan Author Of The Girls of Atomic City: The Untold Story of the Women Who Helped Win World War II

From my list on The Manhattan Project and the making of the atomic bomb.

Why am I passionate about this?

Denise Kiernan is a multiple New York Times bestselling author of narrative nonfiction books including The Girls Of Atomic City, The Last Castle, and We Gather Together. While writing The Girls Of Atomic City, Kiernan not only tracked down and interviewed countless individuals who worked directly on the Manhattan Project, she also consumed virtually every book ever written on the subject and spent endless days in the bowels of the National Archives deep-diving into the institution’s Atomic Energy Commission holdings. She served as a member of the Manhattan Project National Historic Park Scholars Forum in Washington, D.C., helping shape the topics and interpretive planning for this new national park. She has spoken at institutions across the country on topics covered in her book.

Denise's book list on The Manhattan Project and the making of the atomic bomb

Denise Kiernan Why did Denise love this book?

Published in 1965 and written by then Washington and foreign correspondent of Time Magazine Lamont, this book remains for me an exceptionally compelling narrative history.

The lens here is focused tightly on the events leading up to the first-ever test of an atomic bomb, which was codenamed “Trinity.” Obsessively researched, yes, but it’s Lamont’s writing that makes readers feel as though they are there, in the vastness of the desert, witnessing a happening that changed the world forever.

By Lansing Lamont,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Day of Trinity by Lansing Lamont.


Book cover of Truman

Lin Wilder Author Of Plausible Liars: A Dr. Lindsey McCall Medical Mystery

From my list on preparing for writing/walking/thinking/acting against the crowd.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m a writer who just published a book I didn’t have any interest in writing. I didn’t like the subject matter, so I had no interest in doing the research to create credible characters and a cohesive plot.

Lin's book list on preparing for writing/walking/thinking/acting against the crowd

Lin Wilder Why did Lin love this book?

I didn’t have the time or energy for this tome of a book on Harry Truman. Hence, I'd never have read it had it not been ‘assigned’ by the book club I was in.

But I was mesmerized from the first pages. And felt connected to this unobtrusive, somewhat unattractive man who was in every way ordinary. But who became the president during the last days of World War ll. A man who thought and spoke clearly. A man who seemed to personify the virtues without calling them that.

I learned a great deal from this book.

By David McCullough,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

The Pulitzer Prize-winning biography of Harry S. Truman, whose presidency included momentous events from the atomic bombing of Japan to the outbreak of the Cold War and the Korean War, told by America's beloved and distinguished historian.

The life of Harry S. Truman is one of the greatest of American stories, filled with vivid characters-Roosevelt, Churchill, Stalin, Eleanor Roosevelt, Bess Wallace Truman, George Marshall, Joe McCarthy, and Dean Acheson-and dramatic events. In this riveting biography, acclaimed historian David McCullough not only captures the man-a more complex, informed, and determined man than ever before imagined-but also the turbulent times in which…


5 book lists we think you will like!

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