My Bookshelf

My bookshelf

I would have loved to have gone to university and earned a degree in design, computing, or English but that’s not the way life panned out. Instead, I learned from the school of hard knocks, the university of life and taught myself much that brought me to where I am today, hence why I am sharing my bookshelf.

I owe much to books because, whenever I needed to learn a particular skill I would buy a book and dip into it as an eternal source of handy reference. In particular, SAMS Teach yourself HTML in 24 Hours was the one book that really opened up my path as a web professional and I still have that book today, some 23 years after I first brought it.

So, here I share my bookshelf with the world…

What I’m reading RIGHT NOW! (Yes, I have a few on the go at once)

Stashed away on the bookshelf of life:

2024

  1. Manifest
    If you believe in manifesting, one step beyond visualisation, then this is the book for you.

2023

  1. Atomic Habits
    Not the first book on habits I’ve read, but much the same as all the others.
  2. One Earth, One Humanity vs the 1%
  3. An Effective Life
  4. Secret Britain
  5. How to Consciously Design Your Ideal Future
  6. The Richest Man in Babylon
  7. The 21 Secrets of Self-Made Millionaires: How to Achiev…
  8. Can’t We Just Print More Money?
  9. 1984
    The Seminal George Orwell novel from 1949. I hear it’s still banned in Belarus?
  10. Six-Figure Digital Marketing Agency Success: Build a Highly…
  11. The Great Mental Models: General Thinking Concepts
  12. Code of Conduct: Why We Need to Fix Parliament
  13. The Power of Now: A Guide to Spiritual Enlightenment
  14. No Mud, No Lotus: The Art of Transforming Suffering
  15. The Iron Man
  16. Unstoppable Confidence: How to use the Power of NLP
  17. The Great Escape: Health, Wealth, and the Origins of Inequality
  18. Lawrence of Arabia: The definitive 21st-century biography
  19. Stalin Ate My Homework

2022

  1. Alternative War
    JJ Patrick’s incredibly well researched look into Russian meddling in western affairs. Take this red pill you want to see how deep the rabbit hole goes… Farage, Brexit, Trump, Oligarchs, the list goes on. And they’ve been the “red under the bed” for years!
  2. The Art of War
    Sun Tzu’s seminal work on military strategy, applicable to all walks of life if you put your mind to it. A classic and ancient text on the command of armies but with great insights for all leaders.
  3. Confessions of an Economic Hitman
    Interesting but dated, the original is anyway. And besides, some facts just didn’t add up.
  4. The Compound Effect: Jumpstart Your Income, Your Life, Your Success
    Darren Hardy’s delve into building up a resilient war chest…
  5. What I Believe – 3 Complete Essays on Religion
    Thoughts on religion from British philosopher Bertrand Russell.
  6. Mastery
    Another great Robert Greene study, this time on those who have achieved mastery of a discipline, science, art, etc. More formal and conventional than his Daily Laws.
  7. The 48 Laws of Power
    Yes, I’ve demolished yet another Greene book. Still not as good as The Daily Laws but interesting nonetheless.
  8. The Psychology of Money
    Morgan Housel’s take on the psychology of, er, money.
  9. Zero to One
    Whatever you think of Peter Thiel’s politics and attitude this is an interesting take on technology from his  successful background.
  10. Start with Why
    Simon Sinek’s bestseller on a pretty basic notion. Lot’s of waffle and I don’t entirely agree with the premise. But good luck to him, he’s made a fortune of the back of it.
  11. Managing Time
    A Harvard Business Review guide on time management.
  12. The Tempest
    I thought I’d read some Shakespeare again after all these years to see if I could get my head around it and maybe kindle some sort of love for our greatest wordsmith. I didn’t.

2021

  1. The Daily Laws: 366 Meditations on Power, Seduction, Mastery, Strategy and Human Nature
    Fantastically practical, yet slightly controversial compendium of previous Greene works. I’ll be reading more…
  2. The Hobbit
    Re-read this again with my daughter. It’s feeling a little archaic now, quite tricky to read aloud.
  3. A Hunter-Gatherer’s Guide to the 21st Century: Evolution and the Challenges of Modern Life
    An exploration into how we’re all actually hard-wired to respond in certain ways to our environment,  in a world of concrete, tech and complex social issues.
  4. The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself
    Let it go, let it go, let it go…  A nice sentimental book urging us to drift, but not entirely practical for those with responsibilities and ambition.
  5. All Marketers are Liars: The Power of Telling Authentic Stories in a Low Trust World
    Marketing guru Seth Godin’s seventh (2005) book on the power of authenticity and storytelling.
  6. Build a Great Brain
    AKA: Control and Reprogram Your Brain, Unlock Your Unlimited Potential with Neurolinguistic Programming and Rewire Your Injured Nerves with Neuroplasticity.
    Probably a good book but let down by the poor narration.
  7. Range: Why Generalists Triumph in a Specialised World
    David Epstein discusses how the way to succeed is by sampling widely, gaining a breadth of experiences, taking detours, experimenting relentlessly, juggling many interests.
  8. The Slight Edge
    Jeff Olson’s motivational tome much in the vein of The Miracle Morning. All about fostering good habits and doing the things that will help you be part of the 5% not the 95%…
  9. Think and Grow Rich
    The classic Napoleon Hill self-help book, from 1937 and 25 years in the making. A little dated in many places but the sentiment and motivations are all still relevant.
  10. Tribes: We Need you to Lead Us
    Seth Godin’s 2008 book about, er, tribes. All you have to do is find one and lead it… allegedly.
  11. Neurosculpting
    The use of meditation with neuroplasticity to effectively reprogram yourself.
  12. The Total Money Makeover: A Proven Plan for Financial Fitness
    Yet another bestseller, all American with so much filler. But there are simple truths in this if you get through all the guff.
  13. Agencynomics
    Spencer Gallagher and Peter Hoole’s book on “how to run an agency” which I have to admit has been half-inched by my boss as his holiday read, disappeared for a few years and then got lent to another member of staff, then another one, and I still don’t have my £35 book back… *sigh*
    Finally got another copy over two years later and finished it for myself. Well worth a read if you’re an agency owner and have the growth mindset.
  14. The Miracle Morning: The 6 Habits That Will Transform Your Life Before 8AM
    Get up early and foster good habits, only by taking positive action will those dreams be realised. Hal Elrod writes a good motivator in this book with a big Facebook group of worldwide fans and supporters.
  15. Sleep Smarter: 21 Proven Tips to Sleep Your Way To a Better Body, Better Health and Bigger Success
    A really good journey into how and why to sleep better. I listened to the audiobook, narrated by the author and it’s good fun, accessible and actionable.
  16. Black Box Thinking: Marginal Gains and the Secrets of High Performance
    Excellent insight into the power of reflection upon failure. Doesn’t once mention “there is no failure, only feedback” but alludes to the same.
  17. Metahuman: Unleashing your infinite potential
    Another Deepak Chopra book but not one of  his best…
  18. Zen & The Art of Motorcycle Maintenance
    The BBC Radio 4 dramatisation of the classic book and I don’t like it!
  19. The Headspace Guide to Mindfulness & Meditation
    Former Buddhist monk Andy Puddicombe’s commercial venture into zen… (App & subscription not included)
  20. Revelation: Connecting with the Sacred in Everyday Life
    Russell Brand’s cracking little audio book only reflection on finding the divine in the mundane. (Read it twice it was so good).
  21. Daily Rituals
    Mason Currey’s book of the habits of artists, scientists and writers; drink coffee, take drugs and go to bed early… no thanks!
  22. The Naked Trader
    Robbie Burns’ book about how anyone can make money trading shares.

2020

  1. Creating Affluence
    Another Chopra pocket A-Z, to be dipped into on a daily basis.
  2. Synchrodestiny
    A beautiful book by Deepak Chopra on the power of coincidence and synchronicity.
  3. The Seven Spiritual Laws Of Success
    A lovely little tome from Deepak Chopra, the renowned Indian-born American author and alternative-medicine advocate.
  4. The Cuckoo’s Egg: Tracking a Spy Through the Maze of Computer Espionage
    Recommended by a friend, this is an excellent story of Clifford Stoll’s time tracking an intruder in his systems. 25 years old now, it’s a great tale of classic computing.
  5. Give the Anarchist a Cigarette
    I know it’s neither business, entrepreneurship nor a digital marketing book, but the late Mick Farren’s trip through the 1960s is a blast…

2019

  1. Ghost in the Wires
    The autobiography of Kevin Mitnick, once the world’s most wanted hacker!

2018

  1. Ultimate Guide to Google AdWords
    With my renewed PPC campaign management duties over the last year and a half I thought I’d brush up on AdWords again.
  2. Google AdWords
    It’s an O’Reilly 2012 second edition and, because AdWords moves really quickly, it’s good to have a refresher after not using the platform for a few years (2014)

2014

  1. Drupal 6 Themes: Create new themes for your Drupal 6 site with clean layout and powerful CSS styling
    I know Drupal 6 is reaching reached its end of life on 24 February 2016 but I managed a portfolio of D6 websites from 2015 until early 2017. I dipped into this book to gain some insights into Drupal 6 theming so I thought that if anyone else out there was still in the same boat as me then this is a good reference point. I should really be pointing people to the book Drupal 7 Themes. In fact that should be Drupal 8 Themes.
  2. The Definitive Guide to Drupal 7
    This really is a hefty tome, so you get your money’s worth for standard post & packing charges. It’s also pricey at nearly £40 new so I ordered a well-loved second-hand edition. It really is pretty comprehensive.

2001

  • Don’t Make Me Think
    Steve Krug’s seminal work on user experience (UX). If you design websites, or do digital marketing, get yourself a copy! It’s been revised over the years so maybe I should take that advice myself.

1998

  • SAMS Teach Yourself HTML 4 in 24 Hours
    When I first wanted to learn Hyper Text Markup Language THIS was the book that got me started; I think I brought it from PC World, Guildford, in 1997/1998.