Kaibeezy 24 days ago [-]
Orwell’s Animal Farm

How the world has always worked, in an allegorical nutshell.

seren 23 days ago [-]
Maybe I am a bit grumpy because it is Monday morning, but I don't think that question makes much sense because it is too broad. There isn't a universal single book that everyone will enjoy.

It depends what the person like : rather a novel or an essay, something easy to read or hard to grasp but ultimately satisfying, something to read on the beach or in a quiet library, something soothing or terrifying...

Since this person does not read, arguably you don't have the answer, but at least you should provide a list of broad interests. And also likely the recommendation won't be for an 8 or a 50 years old.

It is a bit like asking, what is the single piece of technology you should know. Well, it depends..

rubicon33 23 days ago [-]
Well, the question is being asked on a forum which (at least historically) has been tech minded entrepreneurial folks. So asking the question to that type of audience would naturally garner an answer heavily skewed by that audience. Assume that the asker of the question understands and accepts that, so you are free to simply answer whatever comes to mind.
quietthrow 23 days ago [-]
Looks like you need a page turner. I would say I had that experience with The DaVinci Code.

Not to discourage you but books don’t make you a reader because they (their content) are largely relative (to the readers interest) . Let your curiosity lead the way and set a small achievable goal like ready 20 mins a day but hold yourself accountable to reading regularly

2rsf 23 days ago [-]
actually I have found the whole Robert Langdon Series fascinating and fun to read (with the exception of the last book- Origin, for some reason it's less flowing)
partisan 22 days ago [-]
I am having trouble getting through this book as well. I had hopes, but I may have to “lose” the book on the train.
newen 22 days ago [-]
Omg, renowned author Dan Brown! I actually liked DaVinci Code though it reads a lot like watching a movie than reading a novel.
ldoc 24 days ago [-]
Steppenwolf by Hermann Hesse

It's a mind blowing book that's best read if you're a 30+ y/o individual.

vips7L 23 days ago [-]
That was my least favorite of his books tbh. I've read Siddartha, Demian, and Narcissus and Goldmund as well.
Kaibeezy 23 days ago [-]
Hesse’s Glass Bead Game made a huge impression on me in my early 20s. A favorite professor had recommended it when I was struggling with “how the world works” (see also Animal Farm, above)
beatgammit 23 days ago [-]
I absolutely love The Little Prince, and it's very short, so it makes a good first book. I think that would be my top recommendation.
jryb 23 days ago [-]
More of a meta suggestion: I hadn't read for fun in a decade, but once I got a subscription to an audio book service, I've been reading (listening?) constantly. It's not worth it to me to just read, but it's great to have on when doing chores or monotonous things at work.
slipwalker 23 days ago [-]
audible or anything else ?
jryb 22 days ago [-]
Audible, yes. I haven't tried any others though.
RaceWon 24 days ago [-]
Stephen King short stories. I mean, if you don't like any of those, you do Not like to read. I'd probably go with "Everything's Eventual", but so many of his short stories are Epic and his Novella's too.
phaus 24 days ago [-]
Steven King has his own style of writing and it's quite possible to dislike it while enjoying reading in general.

I read Insomnia, some short stories and about 100 pages of Needful Things. Needful things is on the very short list of about 5 fictional books I disliked so much that that I gave up on them.

He's a great guy that gives a lot back to the community in Maine (where I grew up), but I don't care for his writing.

His book on writing, however, is pretty great.

RaceWon 23 days ago [-]
> style of writing and it's quite possible to dislike it while enjoying reading in general.

Fair point, well made. I too don't like everything he's written, however I do think his short stories have a wide appeal.

I was getting down on myself today for how little fiction I have read in the past 6 months, or maybe more, and King is typically a decent jump start for me. I'm currently about 120 pages in on "The Executioner's Song" -N Mailer but it hasn't captivated my imagination... I find the dialogue trite. The only other book I had with me today was "The Hunt for Red October" -T. Clancy. I've read it already, but its been like 10 years, so started in on that again even though I reread way too many books.

BTW all comments were plused.

rubicon33 24 days ago [-]
I assume that's true of all writing - It's subjective, whether or not you'll enjoy that particular piece.

That's why I was hoping to hear many answers from this community of like-minded people as well as (hopefully) some justification for their answers.

phaus 24 days ago [-]
I wouldn't try to talk you out of giving Steven King a shot. He's a good writer, I just don't like his writing.

As for my own recommendation, Phillip K. Dick has a ton of great short story compilations if you're into Science Fiction. Technically he's not the most gifted writer, but he was good enough and his ideas were very creative.

To give an example, he wrote the stories that inspired Total Recall, Blade Runner, Imposter, A Scanner Darkly, Paycheck, The Minority Report, and many others.

eb0la 23 days ago [-]
"One hundred years of solitude" - Garcia Marquez masterwork is really absorbing, and a great introduction to Magic Realism genre https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Magic_realism (Marquez, Isabel Allende, Laura Esquivel).
kashyapc 22 days ago [-]
I wouldn't recommend One Hundred Years of Solitude for a novice reader -- that's quite a heavy book to start with. You (I had to) have to also constantly refer to the large family tree at the beginning of the book, as people are given the same two names, generation after generation. There's a good reason for it, though; still, confusing and tedious.

I tried it in my initial years of reading, some 13 years ago. I gave it up after some 90 pages. Maybe the current, disciplined me, should give it a retry.

As for the OP's question, I would suggest a book like Sapiens, by Yuval Harari. It's written in uncomplicated language, a broad topic, engagingly written. FWIW, I gave out at least seven copies of it as a present to friends (who are not serious readers). Most of them really appreciated it.

eb0la 22 days ago [-]
Maybe a bit thick, i agree with you...

But... I think I read it only once about 10 years ago and I can remember the first paragraphs about the coronel and the ice.

If you are into storytelling, there are some great Little books from Garcia Marquez script workshop.

true_tuna 22 days ago [-]
No. This book ends suddenly half way through. I absolutely cannot recommend it.
yesenadam 24 days ago [-]
I think it totally depends on who the someone is. But something for everyone...hmm how about: a diary. It also teaches you to write.

I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train. - Oscar Wilde

mortivore 23 days ago [-]
Probably something shorter, easier to read, and in a genre that they like. If they like horror, then maybe something from Stephen King. If they like sci-fi, then Isaac Asimov. Romance? Nicholas Sparks.
a-saleh 23 days ago [-]

I had some success with Terry Prattchet's Discworld? Especially Moist von Lipwig series or The Watch.

Like, if you get hooked, suddenly you are reading the rest of the series and you kinda have to become a regular reader :D

true_tuna 22 days ago [-]
It really depends on interest. What does your target audience care about? I’d recommend Sapiens to anyone, but it’s more of a thinking book than an escaping book.
snyena 24 days ago [-]
Roald Dahl's stories
open-source-ux 23 days ago [-]
Interesting choice! Dahl wrote quite a few short stories for adults, but of course he's most well known for his children's stories.

There should be no embarrassment for adult readers to read (or re-read) his children's stories. They are a masterclass in writing - full of inventive and imaginative prose. He knows how to write fluidly without excess verbiage. These are qualities we'd all love to have in our writing.

All of this makes his stories very easy to read, but satisfying and enjoyable too.

jugjug 24 days ago [-]
I would recommend a shorter book with an easy-to-follow plot for a start. Popular young adult books or an easy to read memoir. I loved Trevor Noah memoir.
SamReidHughes 22 days ago [-]
If it's a man? Jack Reacher. If it's a woman? Janet Evanovich, but there might be better recs.
DoreenMichele 23 days ago [-]
A compendium of excerpts from good books on a topic of interest to them.

I had an urban planning book of that sort at one time.

michelinman 23 days ago [-]
In the true DA tradition I recommend the Hitchhikers guide to the galaxy trilogy - Read the fourth one.
hunterjumper06 23 days ago [-]
Being Mortal by Atul Gawande
dusted 23 days ago [-]
Since 1984 was mentioned, I will mention Brave New World.
srge 23 days ago [-]
The Godfather. Such a brilliant and addictive book.
croh 22 days ago [-]
surely you're joking Mr Fenyman !
oldsklgdfth 23 days ago [-]
How to Read a Book by Mortimer Adler
tangbao 23 days ago [-]
How about Harry Potter?
24 days ago [-]
highhedgehog 23 days ago [-]
George Orwell - 1984
ghettolabs 23 days ago [-]
Python Crash Course
butteredpopcorn 24 days ago [-]
Anything by PG Wodehouse may work, assuming you like virtuosic light fiction from the 1920s-1940s.

On the other hand my father almost never reads fiction unless it is depressing and/or about a war he didn’t attend. If this sounds like you, maybe Tolstoy’s The Death of Ivan Ilyich?