10 books like Four Novels of the 1960s

By Philip K. Dick,

Here are 10 books that authors have personally recommended if you like Four Novels of the 1960s. Shepherd is a community of 7,000+ authors sharing their favorite books with the world.

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The Guide for the Perplexed

By Moses Maimonides,

Book cover of The Guide for the Perplexed

The classic 13th century medieval Jewish philosophic text that proposes a sophisticated—for that time—metaphysical model of spiritual experience; in this case, prophecy as articulated in the Hebrew Bible. The intellectual scaffolding for my attempt to resurrect a metaphysics of prophecy in my 2014 book "DMT and the Soul of Prophecy."

The Guide for the Perplexed

By Moses Maimonides,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

This is the full, unabridged text of one of the greatest philosophic works of all time. Written by a 12th- century thinker who was equally active as an original philosopher and as a Biblical and Talmudic scholar, it is both a classic of great historical importance and a work of living significance today.
The Guide for the Perplexed was written for scholars who were bewildered by the conflict between religion and the scientific and philosophic thought of the day. It is concerned, basically, with finding a concord between the religion of the Old Testament and its commentaries, and Aristotelian philosophy.…


Theological-Political Treatise

By Robert Harvey Munroe Elwes, Benedictus de Spinoza,

Book cover of Theological-Political Treatise: Tractatus Theologico-Politicus

Ostensibly an implacable intellectual foe of Maimonides’ “Guide,” this twice-excommunicated Jewish philosopher makes his own compelling arguments for the basis of spiritual experience/prophecy. At the same time, one senses a powerful compatibility with his philosophical opponent’s viewpoints.

Theological-Political Treatise

By Robert Harvey Munroe Elwes, Benedictus de Spinoza,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Theological-Political Treatise as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Theological-Political Treatise (Latin: Tractatus Theologico-Politicus) by Baruch Spinoza, was originally published in Latin in 1670. The work is a pre-emptive defence of his post-humously published magnum opus, Ethics (Latin: Ethica, ordine geometrico demonstrata), a book which he expected a barrage of harsh criticism for.In the treatise, Spinoza elaborated a harsh systematic criticism of Judaism and general organised religion. Arguing that theology and philosophy needed to be kept separate. Distinguishing between theology's goal of obedience, and philosophy's attempt to understand rational truth. Spinoza also argued that claimed supernatural events, like prophecy and miracles have natural explanations. Furthermore, he argued that God…


VALIS

By Philip K. Dick,

Book cover of VALIS

Blimey. Even by PKD’s standards, this is an unconventional read. VALIS is a story which seeps into the author’s real life, or vice versa. It includes autobiographical elements as well as science fiction and philosophy. Its bravery impresses me. This is art written with the utmost passion, honesty and perhaps even desperation, as it details the author’s mental illness and unexplained experiences and tries to make sense of them. And yet it also manages to be great fun. Really. 

VALIS

By Philip K. Dick,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

It began with a blinding light, a divine revelation from a mysterious intelligence that called itself VALIS (Vast Active Living Intelligence System). And with that, the fabric of reality was torn apart and laid bare so that anything seemed possible, but nothing seemed quite right.

It was madness, pure and simple. But what if it were true?


Be Here Now

By Ram Dass,

Book cover of Be Here Now

I was 28 years old and living in Seattle in 1971 when this "counterculture bible" was first published. Reading about meditation, dropping acid, and searching for my "true self," I decided it was time to take my spiritual journey seriously.  Discovering Eastern philosophy, the power of breath, ancient yoga techniques, and "being here now" resonated strongly. A psychologist told me of a near-death experience that he, Ram Dass, and four others experienced with a small plane's engine failure while flying to an island off the Washington State coast. The psychologist and others knew fear. Ram Dass began laughing long and loud! "Isn't this great?" he yelled. "What a way to go!" They didn't crash, thank God.  

Be Here Now

By Ram Dass,

Why should I read it?

6 authors picked Be Here Now as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Beloved guru Ram Dass tells the story of his spiritual awakening and gives you the tools to take control of your life in this “counterculture bible” (The New York Times) featuring powerful guidance on yoga, meditation, and finding your true self.

When Be Here Now was first published in 1971, it filled a deep spiritual emptiness, launched the ongoing mindfulness revolution, and established Ram Dass as perhaps the preeminent seeker of the twentieth century.

Just ten years earlier, he was known as Professor Richard Alpert. He held appointments in four departments at Harvard University. He published books, drove a Mercedes…


Code Name Hélène

By Ariel Lawhon,

Book cover of Code Name Hélène

Ariel Lawhon is one of my favorite authors. I will read anything she writes, and this novel is one of her best. Not many people have heard of Nancy Wake, but she was an Australian expatriate living in Paris during the years preceding World War II. I, for one, am glad she’s finally getting her due, for her story is one of those “I can hardly believe this really happened” tales. Nancy Wake started out as a reporter, but when Germany invaded France she joined the Resistance and smuggled people and documents across the border. The Nazis nicknamed her “The White Mouse” and put a bounty on her head, forcing her to flee France. Any ordinary person would have called it a day. But not Nancy Wake. She returned to France as Hélène under the aegis of England’s Special Operations Executives. Her cleverness and courage are guaranteed to thrill…

Code Name Hélène

By Ariel Lawhon,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Based on the thrilling real-life story of a socialite spy and astonishing woman who killed a Nazi with her bare hands and went on to become one of the most decorated women in WWII—from the New York Times bestselling author of I Was Anastasia

"This fully animated portrait of Nancy Wake...will fascinate readers of World War II history and thrill fans of fierce, brash, independent women, alike." —Lisa Wingate, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Before We Were Yours

Told in interweaving timelines organized around the four code names Nancy used during the war, Code Name Hélène is a…


From Here to Eternity

By James Jones,

Book cover of From Here to Eternity

James Jones's brilliant debut novel must have had a great effect on me because I admit, in many ways, my book covers the same ground – how does a man maintain honor and dignity when constrained to live his life by the choices of other, and much more powerful men? I suppose the difference between our two themes is that the question in my book is about those same choices but wrapped in the question of race. Jones’s characters, while in the military, were dealing with personal issues. My Corporal Buck is dealing with an issue about which all of America is on fire.

From Here to Eternity is 70 years old. I read it in 1969, an eternity ago and it has lasted with me from there to here.  When I was in the Marine Corps I knew everything that was happening to me. But I didn’t know what…

From Here to Eternity

By James Jones,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked From Here to Eternity as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

'I'll never understand the fucking Army.'

Prew won't conform. He could have been the best boxer and the best bugler in his division, but he chooses the life of a straight soldier in Hawaii under the fierce tutelage of Sergeant Milt Warden. When he refuses to box for his company for mysterious reasons, he is given 'The Treatment', a relentless campaign of physical and mental abuse. Meanwhile, Warden wages his own campaign against authority by seducing the Captain's wife Karen - just because he can. Both men are bound to the Army, even though it may destroy them.

Published here…


Letters Across the Sea

By Genevieve Graham,

Book cover of Letters Across the Sea

Although I knew about the Japanese atrocities and prison camps in WWII, I’d not read about it from the Canadian perspective, and I learned about the great losses those soldiers endured in the Battle for Hong Kong and the years after. This is a tale of overcoming hate with love, of struggling with despair while holding onto hope, of acceptance and long-buried truths, and in realizing we are all equally treasured no matter our religion, station in life, or wrong decisions made in haste. Do not miss the author's notes at the end! They are a mini-history lesson in and of themselves. 

Letters Across the Sea

By Genevieve Graham,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Letters Across the Sea as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Inspired by a little-known chapter of World War II history, a young Protestant girl and her Jewish neighbour are caught up in the terrible wave of hate sweeping the globe on the eve of war in this powerful love story that’s perfect for fans of The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society.

If you’re reading this letter, that means I’m dead. I had obviously hoped to see you again, to explain in person, but fate had other plans.

1933

At eighteen years old, Molly Ryan dreams of becoming a journalist, but instead she spends her days working any job…


Good Night, Mr. Tom

By Michelle Magorian,

Book cover of Good Night, Mr. Tom

This is an exceptionally good middle grade book! It tells what really happened to British children who were evacuated from the cities to the countryside during WWII. It caused me to question my English grandparents about their experiences during WWII. Imagine how people would react today if the government ordered them to put their children on a train to go live with strangers in some other part of the country.

Good Night, Mr. Tom

By Michelle Magorian,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Good Night, Mr. Tom as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Puffin Classics: the definitive collection of timeless stories, for every child.

Tom tucked a blanket round him, drew up a chair by the fire and watched Willie fall asleep. The tales he had heard about evacuees didn't seem to fit Willie. 'Ungrateful' and 'wild' were the adjectives he had heard used, or just plain 'homesick'. He was quite unprepared for this timid, sickly little specimen.

Britain, 1940. With World War Two raging all around, young children are being sent from their homes in the city to the countryside for safety. When eight-year-old Willie Beech first arrives on Tom Oakley's doorstep,…


We Went Back

By Cynthia Young,

Book cover of We Went Back: Photographs from Europe 1933-1956 by Chim

Technically about World War II, this work covers Chim’s work depicting culture, politics, and life before and after the war, so the circumstances leading to conflict and its aftermath. Chim was the co-founder of Magnum Photos, so his contribution to photojournalism is immense, and his photos are beautifully lit and composed even as they capture fleeting moments: Polish school children waiting for a bus in the rain, a baby reaching for bread at a displaced person’s camp or a boy playing in the ruins of a bombed building. The book also includes later photos of celebrities and movie stars, which, when seen alongside his earlier work creates an interesting narrative of a world putting itself back together and once again seeking out joy and beauty.

We Went Back

By Cynthia Young,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Born Dawid Szymin in Warsaw, Chim began his career in the early 1930s photographing for leftist magazines in Paris. In 1936, one of these magazines, Regards, sent him to the frontlines of the civil war in Spain, along with comrades Robert Capa and Gerda Taro. Although war formed the backdrop of much of his reportage, Chim was an astute observer of twentieth-century European politics, social life, and culture, from the beginnings of the antifascist struggle to the rebuilding of countries ravaged by World War II. Like millions of other Europeans, Chim had suffered the pain of dislocation and the loss…


Names in a Jar

By Jennifer Gold,

Book cover of Names in a Jar

I love the way Jennifer Gold writes. She takes an important historical moment and turns it into a heart-stopping, rollercoaster ride that leaves the reader wanting more! That's how I felt when I read Names in a Jar. The story is an important one, historically. It's set in the Warsaw Ghetto and the Treblinka death camp. There are not many YA novels set in Treblinka, probably because so few prisoners survived that death camp. Jennifer has taken the true story of a real revolt that took place in Treblinka and adapted it for her novel. It's a story filled with courage and with hope.

Names in a Jar

By Jennifer Gold,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Names in a Jar as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Twelve-year-old Anna Krawitz is imprisoned in the Warsaw Ghetto with her older sister, Lina, and their father. Happy days spent reading about anatomy and science in Papa’s bookshop are long gone, and the knowledge they have is used to help their neighbors through the illnesses caused by starvation and war.

With no hope in sight and supplies dwindling, Anna finds herself taking care of an orphaned baby. With a courage she didn’t know she had, Anna and the baby leave behind all they know and go into hiding with a Catholic family, changing their names to hide their identity, but…


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