Here’s my list of underrated books people aren’t talking about enough. They might have just a few-thousand ratings or even less on Goodreads, but you should definitely add them to your shelves. And also read, don’t just keep them sitting there!
#1 – Unthink, Chris Paley
(Goodreads average: 3.55, but it deserves at least 4/5 stars)
Without the boring, scientific details, this short, quick book covers dozens of interesting studies on the human mind (and how it’s being heavily manipulated). Easy to read, Unthink keeps you hooked on every page, and will leave you thinking for a long time.
#2 – An Atheist’s History of Belief, Matthew Kneale
(Goodreads average: 3.82, Me: atleast a 4/5)
I’ll go so far as to say it’s (almost) as fascinating and resourceful as Yuval Noah’s Sapiens. But don’t take my word on it – read it for yourself.
An Atheist’s History of Belief is an essential book to believers and non-believers alike, as this uncovers questions like:
- Where did the idea of God really originate from?
- How did idol-worship begin?
- Why are there strange practices like sacrifices, martyrdom and witchcraft?
- The conception of polygamy and abstinence,
- and a LOT more!
Value for money, and a well utilization of 240 pages! No fluke, no fluff.
3. Hypnotherapy by Dave Elman
(Goodreads average: 4.4, Me: 5/5!)
What is hypnosis? Can we be hypnotized without consent? Is it possible that we are often hypnotized even without knowing it? Can hypnosis actually be beneficial? And how can we do it (if at all)?
This is one of the finest books written on the subject, and will surprise you with a ton of information. Mind-blowing!
Disclaimer – the book is rarely published anymore and will be an expensive buy. But most certainly worth it, I assure you!
4. Anam Cara by John O’Donohue
(Goodreads average: 4.31, I’d say 5/5)
Celtic wisdom. Philosophy. Mystical.
If these words intrigue you, pick this book without a second thought. In a world where you get a hundred new quotes per hour on Instagram, the thoughts and ideas in this book still remain widely untouched and uncirculated.
5. Invisible Acts of Power by Caroline Myss
(Goodreads average: 4.06, Me: definitely a 5/5)
“Faith in humanity restored!”
That was my reaction atleast after every 2 pages.
Invisible Acts of Power is a feel-good yet emotion-stirring read. Thought-provoking, yet gentle. An ideal book if you’re finding yourself questioning the ‘purpose of life’, or wondering if there’s any hope left for humanity.
This is written as a series of stories with a deep message and a lot of happy endings (happy new beginnings, rather).
Note: Caroline Myss also has a number of insightful blog posts, if you’d like to get a feel of her work.
6. Old Path White Clouds by Thich Nhat Hanh
(Goodreads average: 4.49, Me: 5/5 undoubtedly!)
Written by an Enlightened Buddhist Monk himself, this book is such an easy way to understand the Buddhist Way.
Even if not with the intention to become a Monk (or a Buddhist), read this extraordinary piece of work to gain invaluable knowledge about Meditation practices, spiritual discourses, and historic recounting like –
- Disputes between the monks,
- Rivalries and people that conspired agains the Buddha,
- The Buddha’s passing into Nirvana, etc.
7. No Good Men Among the Living by Anand Gopal
(Goodreads average: 4.45, Me: 5/5)
A Pulitzer prize winner I would describe as ‘UNPUTDOWNABLE’.
This book is narrated with three shocking perspectives – one from a Mujaheddin leader, second from a Taliban member and third from a local citizen of Afghanistan.
With beautiful and heart-wrenching depth, this is a personal and immersive experience of what happened to Afghanistan, and why it is suffering.
Even if you know nothing about the country (as I didn’t when I read this), this is the only book you’ll need to read.
8. The Terrorist’s Son by Zak Ebrahim
(Goodreads average: 4.09, Me: 5/5 brilliant!)
Haven’t we all wondered how the families of terrorists are impacted?
And what happens to the kids – do they follow their father’s footsteps?
This is a (very) quick but brave memoir of a Terrorist’s son. And one of those underrated books you’ll wonder why you never came across before. I actually found my copy at my office library a few years ago, and had so many of my friends read it afterwards. 🙂
Interesting enough, The Terrorist’s Son is written by a TED talk speaker! Here’s a powerful narrative from one of his talks.
9. Return to Life by Jim B Tucker
(Goodreads average: 3.7, Me: 5/5 phenomenal!)
If you want to be challenged into reading something outside your comfort zone, try this. It will question (almost) everything you’ve believed in about life.
The major theme of Return to Life is exploring the cases where children’s memories of past lives could be PROVEN.
There are such compelling evidences such as famous people being reborn, animals being reborn as humans (WTF?), psychic powers, near death experiences, and more.
As eerie as this book sounds, it was a breeze to get through and really shook me to the core. Just like this one, here’s a comprehensive list of other scientifically-backed books which prove that spirituality isn’t just a hypothesis.
10. The Untethered Soul by Michael A Singer
(Goodreads average: 4.27, Me: 5/5, favorite book ever!)
If there is one book you need to understand how the mind works against us, how to meditate, the concepts of detachment, ego, surrendering, and a vast sea of other spiritual concepts, pick this book and you will not have to look further.
This is a beautiful, meaningful and short book that merges psychology and spirituality. I know I’ve brought this one up before, in my list of spiritual favorites, but I think it’s worth mentioning again!
Happy Reading! 🙂
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