100 books like The Wild Ass's Skin

By Honoré de Balzac, Helen Constantine (translator),

Here are 100 books that The Wild Ass's Skin fans have personally recommended if you like The Wild Ass's Skin. Shepherd is a community of 10,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of The Gambler

David Flusfeder Author Of Luck: A Personal Account of Fortune, Chance and Risk in Thirteen Investigations

From my list on luck: winning, losing, and seeing opportunity.

Why am I passionate about this?

My father, when he consented to talk about all the moments in his life when the odds against his survival were so small as to make them statistically non-existent, would say, ‘I was lucky.’ Trying to understand what he meant got me started on this book. As well as being a novelist, I’m a poker player. Luck is a subject that every poker player has a relationship to; more importantly it’s a subject that every person has a relationship to. The combination of family history and intellectual curiosity and the gambler’s desire to win drove me on this quest.

David's book list on luck: winning, losing, and seeing opportunity

David Flusfeder Why did David love this book?

This novel is the best account of the gambling psychology I know. It is a first-person narrative, ruthless in its depiction of the lies that addicts know they’re telling themselves. The story of a resentful compulsive gambler, the poor but superior tutor to a Russian family at “Roulettenburg,” it was itself the subject of a bet. Dostoevsky signed away his next decade’s worth of publishing profits unless he could deliver a new novel within a year. With six weeks to go he hadn’t written a word. He delivered the completed novel several hours before the deadline was going to pass. 

By Fyodor Mikhailovich Dostoyevsky,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

"The Gambler" is a gripping narrative of the dangers of an addiction to gambling. As was common with Dostoyevsky's writing he draws upon his own life in a semi-autobiographical way in "The Gambler". Dostoyevksy himself suffered from a compulsion to gambling and those first-hand experiences bring a depth of realism to "The Gambler" and to his portrayal of the main character, Alexis Ivanovitch, a young man addicted to gambling. "The Gambler" is an insightful look at the compulsive nature of the gambling addict and the tragic consequences of such an addiction.


Book cover of Classical Probability in the Enlightenment

David Flusfeder Author Of Luck: A Personal Account of Fortune, Chance and Risk in Thirteen Investigations

From my list on luck: winning, losing, and seeing opportunity.

Why am I passionate about this?

My father, when he consented to talk about all the moments in his life when the odds against his survival were so small as to make them statistically non-existent, would say, ‘I was lucky.’ Trying to understand what he meant got me started on this book. As well as being a novelist, I’m a poker player. Luck is a subject that every poker player has a relationship to; more importantly it’s a subject that every person has a relationship to. The combination of family history and intellectual curiosity and the gambler’s desire to win drove me on this quest.

David's book list on luck: winning, losing, and seeing opportunity

David Flusfeder Why did David love this book?

Sadly, Games, Gods, and Gambling by FN David is out of print. This is the next best thing. Lorraine Daston has the supreme gift of making the complicated idea seem straightforward. This is an account of the frenzy for measuring that happened in the 18th century, and how it made the world we live in today, when the gambler’s eye for odds has become the algorithm of taming chance that guides all our decisions.

By Lorraine Daston,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Classical Probability in the Enlightenment as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

What did it mean to be reasonable in the Age of Reason? Classical probabilists from Jakob Bernouli through Pierre Simon Laplace intended their theory as an answer to this question--as "nothing more at bottom than good sense reduced to a calculus," in Laplace's words. In terms that can be easily grasped by nonmathematicians, Lorraine Daston demonstrates how this view profoundly shaped the internal development of probability theory and defined its applications.


Book cover of Hopscotch

David Flusfeder Author Of Luck: A Personal Account of Fortune, Chance and Risk in Thirteen Investigations

From my list on luck: winning, losing, and seeing opportunity.

Why am I passionate about this?

My father, when he consented to talk about all the moments in his life when the odds against his survival were so small as to make them statistically non-existent, would say, ‘I was lucky.’ Trying to understand what he meant got me started on this book. As well as being a novelist, I’m a poker player. Luck is a subject that every poker player has a relationship to; more importantly it’s a subject that every person has a relationship to. The combination of family history and intellectual curiosity and the gambler’s desire to win drove me on this quest.

David's book list on luck: winning, losing, and seeing opportunity

David Flusfeder Why did David love this book?

Argentinians in 1950s Paris argue about art and philosophy. They fall in and out of love to a jazz soundtrack. The novel itself is in love with the modern city and the secret patterns of chance. Prefacing it is a ‘table of instructions’ in which the author writes that "this book consists of many books, but two books above all. The first can be read in a normal fashion and it ends with Chapter 56... The second should be read by beginning with Chapter 73 and then following the sequence indicated at the end of each chapter."

There’s an exhilaration of structure, a deadpan formal playfulness that still thrills. It’s the book that taught me the most about reading. And, not entirely coincidentally, it’s the book that made me realise I was going to become a writer.

By Julio Cortazar, Gregory Rabassa (translator),

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

"Cortazar's masterpiece ... The first great novel of Spanish America" (The Times Literary Supplement) • Winner of the National Book Award for Translation in 1967, translated by Gregory Rabassa

Horacio Oliveira is an Argentinian writer who lives in Paris with his mistress, La Maga, surrounded by a loose-knit circle of bohemian friends who call themselves "the Club." A child's death and La Maga's disappearance put an end to his life of empty pleasures and intellectual acrobatics, and prompt Oliveira to return to Buenos Aires, where he works by turns as a salesman, a keeper of a circus cat which can…


Book cover of The Courtiers Manual Oracle: or the Art of Prudence

David Flusfeder Author Of Luck: A Personal Account of Fortune, Chance and Risk in Thirteen Investigations

From my list on luck: winning, losing, and seeing opportunity.

Why am I passionate about this?

My father, when he consented to talk about all the moments in his life when the odds against his survival were so small as to make them statistically non-existent, would say, ‘I was lucky.’ Trying to understand what he meant got me started on this book. As well as being a novelist, I’m a poker player. Luck is a subject that every poker player has a relationship to; more importantly it’s a subject that every person has a relationship to. The combination of family history and intellectual curiosity and the gambler’s desire to win drove me on this quest.

David's book list on luck: winning, losing, and seeing opportunity

David Flusfeder Why did David love this book?

When I was researching Luck, I came across many books that claimed to teach the willing acolyte how to seize opportunity and how to maximise reward while minimising risk. This is the one that’s worth paying attention to. The Oracle is a collection of three hundred maxims for practical success, in condensed, often paradoxical form, written by a seventeenth-century Jesuit. Nietzsche said of it that "Europe has never produced anything finer or more complicated in matters of moral subtlety" and who’s going to argue with Nietzsche?

By Baltasar Gracián,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Courtiers Manual Oracle as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

This is a reproduction of a classic text optimised for kindle devices. We have endeavoured to create this version as close to the original artefact as possible. Although occasionally there may be certain imperfections with these old texts, we believe they deserve to be made available for future generations to enjoy.


Book cover of The Club Dumas

Dan Fesperman Author Of The Double Game

From my list on people obsessed by books.

Why am I passionate about this?

Dan Fesperman has made a living by writing about dangerous and unseemly people and places since his days as a journalist, when he was a foreign correspondent for The Baltimore Sun. Now traveling on his own dime, his books draw upon his experiences in dozens of countries and three war zones. His novels have won two Dagger awards in the UK and the Dashiell Hammett Prize from the International Association of Crime Writers. His thirteenth novel, Winter Work, will be published in July by Knopf. He lives in Baltimore.

Dan's book list on people obsessed by books

Dan Fesperman Why did Dan love this book?

What's not to like when the main character is a self-styled "book detective" making his way through the hidden passages and darker alleys of the world of rare antiquarian books? Lucas Corso seeks to authenticate an old manuscript by Alexander Dumas, but his quest takes an eerie turn as the events and characters he encounters along the way begin to replicate those found in Dumas's fiction. This delightful 1993 novel was meta before meta was cool, and is deeply rewarding for any bibliophile.

By Arturo Perez-Reverte,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

#1 International Bestseller"A thriller of marvelous intricacy" (The New York Times Book Review), The Club Dumas is a provocative literary thriller that playfully pays tribute to classic tales of mystery and adventure.Lucas Corso is a book detective, a middle-aged mercenary hired to hunt down rare editions for wealthy and unscrupulous clients. When a well-known bibliophile is found dead, leaving behind part of the original manuscript of Alexandre Dumas's The Three Musketeers, Corso is brought in to authenticate the fragment. He is soon drawn into a swirling plot involving devil worship, occult practices, and swashbuckling derring-do among a cast of characters…


Book cover of The History of the Damnable Life and Deserved Death of Doctor John Faustus 1592

Hal Johnson Author Of Apprentice Academy: Sorcerers: The Unofficial Guide to the Magical Arts

From my list on magic not to let your parents catch you reading.

Why am I passionate about this?

The only thing I love reading more than books about myth and legend are books you’re not supposed to read. George Bataille once wrote that if you ever caught him producing a book that he risked nothing to write, you should throw it away, and I take that to heart. Every book should be dangerous, because only danger makes you think. I hope every book I’ve written is, in some sense, dangerous, although of course I also hope my readers do not get ripped to pieces by the devil. That’s a little too dangerous. 

Hal's book list on magic not to let your parents catch you reading

Hal Johnson Why did Hal love this book?

John Faustus is the original bad influence. He makes a deal with the devil for absolute power, uses his new power to play childish pranks on people, and has a pretty good but stupid time until the devil shows up one day and literally rips him to pieces. Didn’t think that one through, did you, John? 

If you get caught reading this book, try saying something like, “Well, now I know not to do that!” But, still, those pranks of his sound fun…

By William Rose,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The History of the Damnable Life and Deserved Death of Doctor John Faustus 1592 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 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.


Book cover of The Kneeling Christian

Marcus Hurst Author Of The Contentment Dilemma: Examining Life's Mysteries and Purposes

From my list on as you grow in your Christian walk.

Why am I passionate about this?

As a conservative Mennonite from Pennsylvania, I have observes many people who, despite numerous desperate attempts at locating lasting fulfillment, find themselves always craving more and never satisfied to relax and be content. I have consequently dedicated myself to helping these folks obtain the satisfaction they inwardly crave. This lead to hours of contemplating, praying, and reading numerous books on the subject.

Marcus' book list on as you grow in your Christian walk

Marcus Hurst Why did Marcus love this book?

The Kneeling Christian illustrates the importance of sincere prayer.

I read relatively short sections of this book at a time because I would get an overwhelming desire to pray. In fact, it was during a prayer that was prompted while reading this book that I had one of my most profound encounters with God. 

By An Unknown Christian,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Kneeling Christian 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 The Pictorial Field-Book of the War of 1812 V1

Donald R. Hickey Author Of The War of 1812: A Forgotten Conflict

From my list on the War of 1812 (along with some primary sources).

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m an award-winning author and professor of history at Wayne State College in Nebraska. Called “the dean of 1812 scholarship” by the New Yorker, I’ve written eleven books and more than a hundred articles, mostly on the War of 1812 and its causes. I’ve been passionate about the War of 1812 ever since first studying it as an undergraduate in college.  Although the outcome on the battlefields was inconclusive and the war is largely forgotten today, it left a profound and lasting legacy. Since first “discovering” this war, my aim has been to elevate its public profile by showing how it shaped the United States and Canada and Britain’s relationship to both nations for the rest of the nineteenth century and beyond.

Donald's book list on the War of 1812 (along with some primary sources)

Donald R. Hickey Why did Donald love this book?

Lossing was an accomplished sketch artist and antiquarian who traveled 10,000 miles in the 1850s and 1860s, visiting battle sites and interviewing survivors of the war. The result of his labors was this compendium that includes songs, poems, battle maps, and illustrations. Lossing treatment of almost every subject yields fascinating gems.

By Benson J. Lossing,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Pictorial Field-Book of the War of 1812 V1 as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

This Is A New Release Of The Original 1869 Edition.


Book cover of The Home Maker

Larry Zuckerman Author Of Lonely Are the Brave

From my list on men and women breaking unwritten rules.

Why am I passionate about this?

As a teenager, I began to question the myths my parents told about our family, but when saying so caused trouble, I confided my stories to paper instead. That’s how I became a writer. My first love has always been fiction, but I broke into print writing history—about quirky subjects in which I find deep meaning, like the potato’s revolutionary influence on the Western world, or how the invasion and occupation of Belgium in 1914 foretold Nazi Europe. My fascination with subversion shapes my novels too—my quiet, lonely protagonists would never storm the barricades yet appear radical because of how they live, a circumstance I know well.

Larry's book list on men and women breaking unwritten rules

Larry Zuckerman Why did Larry love this book?

Canfield may have been the first to write a novel in which wife and husband swap roles as parental caregiver and breadwinner—in 1924, no less, well before modern feminism.

As a former full-time father, I admire the premise and how she draws it out, not least because she depicts with perfect pitch the social pressures her characters face.

The storytelling may seem dated in spots, but her characters’ lives ring true, and the way they come to recognize that their individual talents run contrary to societal rules—and what they do about that—reminds me of my own experience.

By Dorothy Canfield,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Home Maker 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.


5 book lists we think you will like!

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