Here are our top ten recommendations if you are looking for the best books to read in Engineering. We have made sure our list is diverse to cater to the interests of different types of readers.
1. The Bomber Mafia: A Dream, a Temptation, and the Longest Night of the Second World War
In The Bomber Mafia: A Dream, a Temptation, and the Longest Night of the Second World War , Malcolm Gladwell, author of New York Times best sellers including Talking to Strangers and host of the podcast Revisionist History , uses original interviews, archival footage, and his trademark insight to weave together the stories of a Dutch genius and his homemade computer, a band of brothers in central Alabama, a British psychopath, and pyromaniacal chemists at Harvard. As listeners hear these stories unfurl, Gladwell examines one of the greatest moral challenges in modern American history. Most military thinkers in the years leading up to World War II saw the airplane as an afterthought. But a small band of idealistic strategists had a different view. This “Bomber Mafia” asked: What if precision bombing could, just by taking out critical choke points - industrial or transportation hubs - cripple the enemy and make war far less lethal? In Revisionist History , Gladwell re-examines moments from the past and asks whether we got it right the first time. In The Bomber Mafia , he employs all the production techniques that make Revisionist History so engaging, stepping back from the bombing of Tokyo, the deadliest night of the war, and asking, “Was it worth it?” The attack was the brainchild of General Curtis LeMay, whose brutal pragmatism and scorched-earth tactics in Japan cost thousands of civilian lives but may have spared more by averting a planned US invasion. Things might have gone differently had LeMay’s predecessor, General Haywood Hansell, remained in charge. As a key member of the Bomber Mafia, Hansell’s theories of precision bombing had been foiled by bad weather and human error. When he and Curtis LeMay squared off for a leadership handover in the jungles of Guam, LeMay emerged victorious, leading to the darkest night of World War II. The Bomber Mafia is a riveting tale of persistence, innovation, and the incalculable wages of war.
- Author: Malcolm Gladwell
- Genre: Audible Books & Originals, History, Military, Armed Forces, Air Forces
2. Thunder Below!: The USS Barb Revolutionizes Submarine Warfare in World War II
The thunderous roar of exploding depth charges was a familiar and comforting sound to the crew members of the USS Barb , who frequently found themselves somewhere between enemy fire and Davy Jones's locker. Under the leadership of her fearless skipper, Captain Gene Fluckey, the Barb sank the greatest tonnage of any American sub in World War II. At the same time, the Barb did far more than merely sink ships-she changed forever the way submarines stalk and kill their prey. This is a gripping adventure chock-full of "you-are-there" moments. Fluckey has drawn on logs, reports, letters, interviews, and a recently discovered illegal diary kept by one of his torpedomen. And in a fascinating twist, he uses archival documents from the Japanese Navy to give its version of events. The unique story of the Barb begins with its men, who had the confidence to become unbeatable. Each team helped develop innovative ideas, new tactics, and new strategies. All strove for personal excellence, and success became contagious. Instead of lying in wait under the waves, the USS Barb pursued enemy ships on the surface, attacking in the swift and precise style of torpedo boats. She was the first sub to use rocket missiles and to creep up on enemy convoys at night, joining the flank escort line from astern, darting in and out as she sank ships up the column. Surface-cruising, diving only to escape, "Luckey Fluckey" relentlessly patrolled the Pacific, driving his boat and crew to their limits. There can be no greater contrast to modern warfare's long-distance, video game style of battle than the exploits of the captain and crew of the USS Barb , where the sub, out of ammunition, actually rammed an enemy ship until it sank. Thunder Below! is a first-rate, true-life, inspirational story of the courage and heroism of ordinary men under fire.
- Author: Eugene B. Fluckey
- Genre: Audible Books & Originals, History, Military, Armed Forces, Naval Forces
3. The Book of Unusual Knowledge
The Book of Unusual Knowledge is a mammoth 704-page padded hardcover book crammed with a cornucopia of information some useful, others not so much but all of it completely captivating. It's perfect for anyone with a curious mind and a passion for learning. With quirky illustrations and a vast array of articles, anecdotes, lists, and games, this book will provide hours of fascinating reading. It will also expand your knowledge on a range of topics, including the animal kingdom, art, sports, technology, history, politics, the universe, and much, much more. Sample topics include: - Are plastic bags killing sacred cows in India? - Does NASCAR have roots in bootlegging moonshine? - Did Ronald Reagan see not one but two UFOs during his lifetime?
- Author: Publications International Ltd.
- Publisher: Publications International, Ltd. (April 1, 2012)
- Genre: Engineering & Transportation, Engineering
- ISBN: 978-1450845809
- Dimensions: 6.45 x 2 x 9.33 inches
4. Power Play: Tesla, Elon Musk, and the Bet of the Century
“A deeply reported and business-savvy chronicle of Tesla's wild ride.” — Walter Isaacson, New York Times Book Review The outrageous inside story of Elon Musk and Tesla's bid to build the world's greatest car—from award-winning Wall Street Journal tech and auto reporter Tim Higgins Elon Musk is among the most controversial titans of Silicon Valley. To some he's a genius and a visionary; to others he's a mercurial huckster. Billions of dollars have been gained and lost on his tweets; his personal exploits are the stuff of tabloids. But for all his outrageous talk of mind-uploading and space travel, his most audacious vision is the one closest to the ground: the electric car. When Tesla was founded in the 2000s, electric cars were novelties, trotted out and thrown on the scrap heap by carmakers for more than a century. But where most onlookers saw only failure, a small band of Silicon Valley engineers and entrepreneurs saw potential. The gas-guzzling car was in need of disruption; the world was ready for Car 2.0. So they pitted themselves against the biggest, fiercest business rivals in the world, setting out to make a car that was quicker, sexier, smoother, cleaner than the competition. But as the saying goes, to make a small fortune in cars, start with a big fortune. Tesla would undergo a truly hellish fifteen years, beset by rivals, pressured by investors, hobbled by whistleblowers, buoyed by its loyal supporters. Musk himself would often prove Tesla's worst enemy--his antics more than once took the company he had initially funded largely with his own money to the brink of collapse. Was he an underdog, an antihero, a conman, or some combination of the three? Wall Street Journal tech and auto reporter Tim Higgins had a front-row seat for the drama: the pileups, wrestling for control, meltdowns, and the unlikeliest outcome of all, success. A story of power, recklessness, struggle, and triumph, Power Play is an exhilarating look at how a team of eccentrics and innovators beat the odds--and changed the future.
- Author: Tim Higgins
- Publisher: Doubleday (August 3, 2021)
- Genre: Business & Money, Finance
- ISBN: 978-0385545457
- Dimensions: 6.39 x 1.4 x 9.58 inches
5. The Omnivore's Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals
The best-selling author of The Botany of Desire explores the ecology of eating to unveil why we consume what we consume in the 21st century. "What should we have for dinner?" To one degree or another, this simple question assails any creature faced with a wide choice of things to eat. Anthropologists call it the omnivore's dilemma. Choosing from among the countless potential foods nature offers, humans have had to learn what is safe, and what isn't, which mushrooms should be avoided, for example, and which berries we can enjoy. Today, as America confronts what can only be described as a national eating disorder, the omnivore's dilemma has returned with an atavistic vengeance. The cornucopia of the modern American supermarket and fast-food outlet has thrown us back on a bewildering landscape where we once again have to worry about which of those tasty-looking morsels might kill us. At the same time we're realizing that our food choices also have profound implications for the health of our environment. The Omnivore's Dilemma is best-selling author Michael Pollan's brilliant and eye-opening exploration of these little-known but vitally important dimensions of eating in America. We are indeed what we eat, and what we eat remakes the world. A society of voracious and increasingly confused omnivores, we are just beginning to recognize the profound consequences of the simplest everyday food choices, both for ourselves and for the natural world. The Omnivore's Dilemma is a long-overdue book and one that will become known for bringing a completely fresh perspective to a question as ordinary and yet momentous as "What shall we have for dinner?"
- Author: Michael Pollan
- Genre: Audible Books & Originals, Science & Engineering, Science, Nature & Ecology, Ecology
6. Brief Answers to the Big Questions
Number-one New York Times best seller The world-famous cosmologist and author of A Brief History of Time leaves us with his final thoughts on the biggest questions facing humankind. "Hawking’s parting gift to humanity...a book every thinking person worried about humanity’s future should read." ( NPR ) Named one of the best books of the year by The Guardian and Wired Stephen Hawking was the most renowned scientist since Einstein, known both for his groundbreaking work in physics and cosmology and for his mischievous sense of humor. He educated millions of readers about the origins of the universe and the nature of black holes, and inspired millions more by defying a terrifying early prognosis of ALS, which originally gave him only two years to live. In later life he could communicate only by using a few facial muscles, but he continued to advance his field and serve as a revered voice on social and humanitarian issues. Hawking not only unraveled some of the universe's greatest mysteries but also believed science plays a critical role in fixing problems here on Earth. Now, as we face immense challenges on our planet - including climate change, the threat of nuclear war, and the development of artificial intelligence - he turns his attention to the most urgent issues facing us. Will humanity survive? Should we colonize space? Does God exist? These are just a few of the questions Hawking addresses in this wide-ranging, passionately argued final book from one of the greatest minds in history. Featuring a foreword by Eddie Redmayne, who won an Oscar playing Stephen Hawking, an introduction by Nobel Laureate Kip Thorne, and an afterword from Hawking's daughter, Lucy, Brief Answers to the Big Questions is a brilliant last message to the world. Praise for Brief Answers to the Big Questions : "Hawking is a symbol of the soaring power of the human mind." ( The Washington Post ) "Hawking's final message to readers...is a hopeful one." (CNN) "Brisk, lucid peeks into the future of science and of humanity." ( The Wall Street Journal ) "Hawking pulls no punches on subjects like machines taking over, the biggest threat to Earth, and the possibilities of intelligent life in space." ( Quartz ) "Effortlessly instructive, absorbing, up to the minute and - where it matters - witty." ( The Guardian ) "This beautiful little book is a fitting last twinkle from a new star in the firmament above." ( The Telegraph )
- Author: Stephen Hawking
- Genre: Audible Books & Originals, Science & Engineering, Science, Astronomy & Space Science, Astronomy
7. The Forager's Harvest: A Guide to Identifying, Harvesting, and Preparing Edible Wild Plants
A guide to 32 of the best and most common edible wild plants in North America, with detailed information on how to identify them, where they are found, how and when they are harvested, which parts are used, how they are prepared, as well as their culinary use, ecology, conservation, and cultural history.
- Author: Samuel Thayer
- Publisher: Foragers Harvest Press; 1st edition (May 15, 2006)
- Genre: Science & Math, Biological Sciences
- ISBN: 978-0976626602
- Dimensions: 6 x 0.8 x 9 inches
8. Graph Paper Composition Notebook: Grid Paper Notebook, Quad Ruled, 100 Sheets (Large, 8.5 x 11) (Graph Paper Notebooks)
Graph Paper Composition Notebook, Journal, Diary • One Subject • 100 Pages Makes a wonderful daily graph/grid notebook to draw, write, journal, take notes, make lists, and much more creativity! This is a simple and durable all-purpose daily graph/grid notebook. There is plenty of room inside for drawing, writing notes, journaling, doodling, list making, creative writing, school notes, and capturing ideas. It can be used as a notebook, journal, diary, or composition book. This paperback notebook is 8.5 x 11 in / 21.59 x 27.94 cm with a soft, matte cover and has 100 quad ruled pages. Perfect for all ages -- kids or adults! Wonderful as a gift, present, or personal notebook! About this notebook: 100 graph ruled pages Grid ruled on both sides with thin gray lines Perfect for architects, artists, and any drawing activities High-quality matte cover for a professional finish Perfect size at 8.5 x 11 in / 21.59 x 27.94 cm -- Larger than most Scroll up and click 'buy' to grab one today!
- Author: Joyful Journals
- Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (August 2, 2018)
- Genre: Science & Math, Mathematics
- ISBN: 978-1724658623
- Dimensions: 8.5 x 0.23 x 11 inches
9. Life 3.0: Being Human in the Age of Artificial Intelligence
How will artificial intelligence affect crime, war, justice, jobs, society, and our very sense of being human? The rise of AI has the potential to transform our future more than any other technology - and there's nobody better qualified or situated to explore that future than Max Tegmark, an MIT professor who's helped mainstream research on how to keep AI beneficial. How can we grow our prosperity through automation without leaving people lacking income or purpose? What career advice should we give today's kids? How can we make future AI systems more robust so that they do what we want without crashing, malfunctioning, or getting hacked? Should we fear an arms race in lethal autonomous weapons? Will machines eventually outsmart us at all tasks, replacing humans on the job market and perhaps altogether? Will AI help life flourish like never before or give us more power than we can handle? What sort of future do you want? This book empowers you to join what may be the most important conversation of our time. It doesn't shy away from the full range of viewpoints or from the most controversial issues - from superintelligence to meaning, consciousness, and the ultimate physical limits on life in the cosmos.
- Author: Max Tegmark
- Genre: Computers & Technology, Computer Science, AI & Machine Learning, Intelligence & Semantics
10. Guns, Germs and Steel: The Fate of Human Societies
Pulitzer Prize, General Nonfiction, 1998 Guns, Germs and Steel examines the rise of civilization and the issues its development has raised throughout history. Having done field work in New Guinea for more than 30 years, Jared Diamond presents the geographical and ecological factors that have shaped the modern world. From the viewpoint of an evolutionary biologist, he highlights the broadest movements both literal and conceptual on every continent since the Ice Age, and examines societal advances such as writing, religion, government, and technology. Diamond also dissects racial theories of global history, and the resulting work— Guns, Germs and Steel —is a major contribution to our understanding the evolution of human societies.
- Author: Jared Diamond
- Genre: Audible Books & Originals, Science & Engineering, Science, Biological Sciences, Evolution & Genetics, Evolution