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Home: Recommended Reading List

Recommended Reading List
--some of my all-time favorite books--

This recommended reading list shows some of the books that are either already in my personal library or hopefully will be in the near future, and all of which have had a profound impact or helped shape my life through the years.

Clicking a link below will take you to that book's page at, and as an Amazon affiliate I will earn a whopping 4% commission on any purchases that you would make during your visit there.

So in the event you would decide to add a book or 2 to your own library, that will in effect help offset my cost of hosting this website. So please feel free to shop till you drop. smiley

Thanks so much for visiting!


p.s.  If you've read any of these same books, it'd be great to hear what you thought of them in the comments section at the bottom of this page, thanks...

"EntreLeadership" by Dave Ramsey

This guy has been a great inspiration to me over the past few years. Dave's latest book, published in September 2011, is his 4th New York Times bestselling book, and provides practical, step-by-step guidance to grow your business, including how to inspire & unify your team, handle money, and reach goals. The Dave Ramsey radio show is heard by more than 4.5 million listeners each week on more than 500 radio stations. 
"Stop Acting Rich" by Thomas J. Stanley

Listened recently to the audiobook. Dr. Stanley, a recognized and highly respected authority on how the wealthy act and think, also wrote "The Millionaire Next Door," which revealed shocking statistics about the average millionaire. In this book, he details how the less affluent have fallen into the elite luxury brand trap that keeps them from acquiring wealth and details how to get out of it by emulating the working rich as opposed to the super elite.
"Thou Shall Prosper" by Rabbi Daniel Lapin

Rabbi Daniel Lapin outlines 10 fundamental "commandments" relating to business and money, and a practical approach to creating wealth, based on the established principles of ancient Jewish wisdom. I own some of this amazing man's audio programs as well, and listen religiously to his radio show every week.
"The Traveler's Gift" by Andy Andrews

This thought-provoking book combines self-help with fiction, as the story's main character is magically transported back in history, where he is met by seven of history's most inspirational figures such as Abraham Lincoln, Anne Frank, King Solomon, Harry Truman, and Christopher Columbus, each of whom gives him a letter providing positive suggestions for overcoming life's obstacles.
"48 Days to the Work You Love" by Dan Miller

One of my favorite mentors whose podcast I listen to every week. His community is an idea networking site for people who want to generate their own income, work on their own terms, and create the work they love.
"The Good Life Rules" by Bryan Dodge

I recently starting listening to this amazing man's Dallas, Texas radio show on my PC ( -- Sat. 4 pm CST). With all the depressing news these days, I think most people really need this stuff.
"Tribes" by Seth Godin

Marketing guru Seth Godin is the founder of, writes the #1-ranked marketing blog, & has written 13 bestsellers that have been translated into 33 languages.
"How to Be a Gentleman" by John Bridges

"When a gentleman has finished eating, he places his knife and his fork, crisscrossed, on his plate; A gentleman always restocks the copy machine with paper; A gentleman always offers to share his umbrella…"
"The New Abs Diet" by David Zinczenko

I have an older version of this book, but still recall the acronym, ABS DIET POWER, for recommended foods: A=almonds, B=beans, S=spinach, D=dairy, I=instant oatmeal, E=eggs, T=turkey, P=peanut butter, O=olive oil, W=whole grains, E=extra-protein powder, R=raspberries
"Internet Riches" by Scott Fox

Scott Fox is a valuable resource on how to set up an online money-making venture, and runs the popular "Click Millionaires" online community.
"Hiking in Japan" by Craig McLachlan, David Joll, et al.

My bible, & in true Lonely Planet style, it's by far the ultimate reference source for climbing the highest mountains in Japan.
"The Beatles 100 Greatest Songs" by Rolling Stone

One of my former university students who shares my passion for the Fab Four gave me this book last year. It's definitely a must-have for all true Beatles fans. On the last page are these amazing Beatles stats: 20 #1 hits; 46 Top 40 hits; 14 U.S. #1 albums; 219 songs recorded; longest stay at #1: "Hey Jude" - 1968 - 9 weeks; career record sales worldwide: 1.3 billion (as of 2004). Wow!!
"Why You're Dumb, Sick & Broke" by Randy Gage

This self-help book reveals the secrets of manifesting health, happiness, and prosperity in your life—but not in a way you’ve experienced before. Blunt, outspoken, and brutally honest, Randy Gage shoots down the forces that hold you back, and shows you how to take action to get smart, healthy, and rich.
"The Total Money Makeover" by Dave Ramsey

Ramsey offers a bold, no-nonsense approach to money matters, providing hope for getting out of debt and achieving total financial health. He debunks the many myths of money and attacks the illusions and downright deceptions of the American dream, which encourages overspending and massive amounts of debt.
"How to Be Funny" by Jon Macks

This book is the source of many of my old man's gag jokes that my students love so much.  smiley  This invaluable guide on how to "lighten up" is written by a comedy writer for The Tonight Show with Jay Leno and over a dozen of the nation's top comedians, politicians, and corporate leaders.
"The Millionaire Next Door" by Thomas Stanley & William Danko

Most of the truly wealthy in the U.S. don't live in Beverly Hills or on Park Avenue---they live next door. This bestselling book identifies seven common traits that show up again and again among those who have accumulated wealth.
"The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People" by Stephen R. Covey

The internationally respected leadership authority identifies the 7 habits that enable truly successful people to balance personal and professional effectiveness, so they can perform better in both arenas. A must-read for all self-improvement aficionados like myself. Over 10 million copies sold pretty much speaks for itself.
"Ask and It Is Given" by Esther & Jerry Hicks

This book will help you learn how to manifest your desires so that you’re living the joyous and fulfilling life you deserve. You’ll come to understand how your relationships, health issues, finances, career concerns, and more are influenced by the Universal laws that govern your time/space reality. And you’ll discover powerful processes that will help you go with the positive flow of life.
"The 4-Hour Workweek" by Timothy Ferriss

Whether your dream is escaping the rat race, experiencing high-end world travel, earning a monthly 5-figure income with zero management, or just living more and working less, The 4-Hour Workweek is the blueprint. I actually met Tim Ferriss by chance on the streets of Tokyo in Oct. '07.
Tim Ferriss & Gary
"Success for Dummies" by Zig Ziglar

Zig Ziglar has been one of my top mentors since the mid-80's & has inspired and motivated hundreds of thousands of people the world over through his popular seminars and bestselling books. As one of today's most sought-after motivational speakers and trainers, Zig is arguably the foremost expert on how to be successful in your business & personal lives.
"Your Best Life Now" by Joel Osteen

Joel is one of my top mentors & pastor of Lakewood Church, America's largest congregation in my hometown, Houston Texas, and whose services I watch live on the internet every weekend. More than 43,500 people attend the four English language services and two Spanish language services every week in the 16,800-seat church, which is located in the former Compaq Center sports arena.
"Love Busters" by Willard F. Harley Jr.

Many wonderful pointers on protecting your marriage or relationship from those habits known to destroy romantic love. A very good read & reference source. (Too bad I didn't read it before my divorce.)
"Chicken Soup for the Single's Soul" by Jack Canfield & Mark Victor Hansen

A 2002 Father's Day gift from my daughter which contains many great stories of love and inspiration for the single, divorced, and widowed. Yet another masterpiece from Canfield & Hansen.
"The Memory Workbook" by Douglas J. Mason & Michael Lee Kohn

After crossing the half-century landmark, the eyes were the 1st thing to go, closely followed by my memory. This interactive workbook contains breakthrough techniques to exercise your brain & improve your memory.
"How to Stop Worrying and Start Living" by Dale Carnegie

This book has taught over 6 million people how to eliminate debilitating fear and worry from their lives and to embrace a worry-free future. Carnegie offers a set of practical formulas that you can put to work today and is packed with lessons that deal with fundamental emotions and life-changing ideas.
"Light Her Fire" by Ellen Kreidman

No comment, except that her advice on "how to ignite passion, joy, and excitement in the woman you love" really works. Trust me!  smiley
"At the Sharpe End" by Hugh Ashton

Hugh gave an excellent talk at our December 2010 Tokyo PC Users Group meeting on "The Pleasures and Perils of DIY E-publishing." Also, his 8-page e-book, "Keiko's House," is an interesting short story about an old house in Japan, its history, and how what has gone on before in the house has affected the people who live there now. 
"Little Texas Cookbook" by Carolyn Dehnel

This 1999 Valentine's Day present from mom has recipes for some of my favorite Texas concoctions, including barbeque beans, shrimp gumbo, chili con carne, beef brisket, fried okra, buffalo wings, jalapeno jelly, Mexican corn bread, chocolate pecan pie, poppy seed dressing, and sun tea. Long live yum-yum Texas cuisine!!
"Campfire Songs" by Irene Maddox

Over 100 folk songs, ballads, work songs, spirituals, cowboy songs, sea chanteys, and patriotic tunes. Perfect for any outdoor outing, including camping, hiking, or school/scout trips. This is an update of the same little book  I fell in love with at a museum in Great Falls, Montana, enroute to my 1990 summer job at Glacier National Park and have cherished ever since.
"Advanced Skywatching" by Robert Burnham et al.

A gift from a dear friend in California who knows firsthand my passion for stargazing, a hobby which goes all the way back to my Boy Scout days. This amazing starhopping guide is designed for both Northern and Southern Hemisphere observers and contains an easy-to-use series of charts offering 20 telescope tours through the sky's most fascinating regions.
"Staying Young, Looking Great" by Michael Lafavore

From the former executive editor of the popular Men's Health magazine, this book covers topics that are important to men, including fitness, sex, food, health, career, and grooming. I picked up my copy shortly after first arriving in Japan.
"I Could Do Anything If I Only Knew What It Was" by Barbara Sher

From the best-selling author of "Wishcraft," this book helps you ditch your unsatisfying job and seek out a richly rewarding career rooted in your heart's desire. It will help you recapture your long-lost goals, overcome the blocks that inhibit your success, and help you decide what you truly want to be.
"Why Men Don't Listen and Women Can't Read Maps" by Barbara & Allan Pease

To discover the differences between the way men and women think and communicate, the authors spent three years traveling around the world, collecting dramatic findings of new research on the brain, investigating evolutionary biology, analyzing psychologists, studying social changes, and providing answers to all things you've ever
wondered about the opposite sex.
"Work Your Way Around the World" by Susan Griffith

This guide for the working traveller explains how to find temporary work around the world not only in advance, but also when on the spot while travelling. It gives information on all the main areas of temporary work including the tourist industry, teaching English, childcare and voluntary work, business and industry, and in addition covers how to travel for free by land, sea, and air.
"Don't Sweat the Small Stuff" by Richard Carlson

Dr. Carlson's cheerful book offers 100 meditations designed to make you appreciate being alive, keep your emotions (especially anger and dissatisfaction) in proper perspective, and live a calmer, richer life. He aims to make us stop and smell--if not roses--whatever is sitting in front of our noses, and helps dispel the notion that gentle, relaxed people can't be super-achievers.
"Do What You Love, The Money Will Follow" by Marsha Sinetar

This book provides a step-by-step guide to finding the work that expresses and fulfills your needs, talents, and passions. The author shows you how to overcome your fears, take the little risks that make big risks possible, tune into your inner world and your unique talents, evaluate and build your self-esteem, liberate yourself from an unfulfilling job, and become
a person whose work means self-expression, growth, and love.
"1,000 Places to See Before You Die" by Patricia Schultz

When I bought a copy of this nearly 2-inch-thick book for my daughter last year, I figured I better just go ahead and get one for me as well. smiley  This latest edition of the world’s bestselling travel book has been completely revised and updated (Nov. 2011) with over 200 new entries and has more than 500 full-color photographs. The perfect resource for laying out your Bucket List.
"NIV New Men's Devotional Bible" by Zondervan

When I first saw this Bible in a Walgreens drugstore in Houston, I was immediately struck by one of those "I've got to have this right NOW" emotions. smiley  This very delightful book includes daily devotions by over 100 prominent godly men and includes an author index with biographical information, subject index, and multiple reading plans. Contains the complete text of the New International Version, today's most popular Bible translation, in an easy-to-read, double-column format. It's a Bible for, by, and about today's Christian men.
"Managing Cultural Differences" by Robert Moran & Philip Harris

This book was a present from a former Japanese coworker who studied under one of the co-authors, Dr. Robert Moran, professor emeritus at the Thunderbird School of Global Management in Glendale, Arizona. Having spent a good part of my professional career training Japanese engineers and managers prior to their overseas assignments, this book has been a valuable resource through the years, and I recommend it to anyone working or living in a cross-cultural environment, either at home or abroad.


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