Some Interesting Books
This is a list of books read by a group in the greater Stony Brook area. Our
focus has been on the Middle East and on history but we have often strayed from
that. Books to read have been chosen by a loose consensus and not everybody
agreed on all the books we have read.
I have marked with one to three stars those that I particularly liked.
The citations are a bit sloppy but I think there is enough information to find
the books on Amazon or in a library.
2004 (and before)
- * Dream Palace of the Arabs: A Generation's Odyssey Fouad
- Season of Migration to the North Tayeb Salih
- The Crisis of Islam: Holy War and Unholy Terror Bernard Lewis
- ** Trench Abdel Raman Munif
- Arafat's War Karsh
- Ghassin Kanafani: Men in the Sun and Returning to Haifa
Palestine's Children: Returning to Haifa & Other Stories
- Dershowitz Case for Israel
- The Jews of the Middle East and North Africa in Modern Times
Simon (Editor), Michael M. Laskier (Editor), Sara Reguer (Editor)
- From Time Immemorial: The Origins of the Arab-Jewish Conflict
Palestine Joan Peters
- ** Occidentalism Ian Buruma and A. Margalit,
- Jews of Khazaria Kevin Alan Brook
- Thieves in the Night Arthur Koestler
- ** Satan In Goray I B Singer Introduction by Ruth Wisse.
- The Arab Mind by Raphael Patai
- The Beginnings of Jewishness: Boundaries, Varieties, Uncertainties
(Hellenistic Culture and Society) by Shaye J. D. Cohen
- Terror and Liberalism by PaulBerman
- Josephus, The Antiquities of the Jews, Books 12-20 covering
mainly the Hashmoneans (about 300pp)
- Josephus, Against Apion; also Autobiography
- R. Kagan Of Paradise and Power (103 pages)
- *** Fareed Zakaria The Future of Freedom: Illiberal Democracy
at Home and Abroad
- * Lawrence H. Schiffman Who was a Jew? - Rabbinic and Halakhic
Perspectives on the Jewish-Christian Schism
- *** Snow by Orhan Pamuk
- ** Gibbon, Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire the three
chapters (50-52)dealing with the rise of Islam
- * What's the Matter with Kansas? by Thomas Frank
- Steinsaltz We Jews
- Dore Gold's Tower of Babble
- Bible and Sword : England and Palestine from the Bronze Age to
Balfour by Barbara W. Tuchman
- ** Fate of Africa by Martin Meredith
- Mideast Peace Process by Kozody
- *** Faith at War by Trofimov
- * Naked Economics by Charles Wheelan
- * Freakonomics by Levitt and Dubner
- Mao : The Unknown Story by Jung Chang and Jon Halliday
- * A Writer at War, from the notes of Vassily Grosman
- *** My Name is Red by Orhan Pamuk
- ** No god, but God by Reza Aslan (my
- Jew vs Jew by Samuel G. Freedman
- Betraying Spinoza by Rebecca Goldstein
- * The Wicked Son by David Mamet
- The God Delusion by Richard Dawkins (review)
- Power, Faith, and Fantasy: America in the Middle East: 1776 to
the Present by Michael Oren (my
- ** Lenin, Hitler, Stalin by R. Gellately (review)
- Jews and Power by Ruth Wisse (my
- World on Fire by Amy Chua
- * Sea of Faith: Islam and Christianity in the Medieval Mediterranean
World by Stephen O'Shea
- The Last Mughal: The Fall of a Dynasty: Delhi, 1857 by William
- The Post American World by Fareed Zakaria.
- ** How to Read the Bible by James Kugel.
- Origin of Financial Crises by G. Cooper.
- The Limits of Power: The end of American Exceptionalism by
A. J. Bacevich.
- Jesus, Interrupted: Revealing the Hidden Contradictions in the
Bible (And Why We Don't Know About Them) by Bart D. Ehrman.
- Augustine and the Jews: A Christian Defense of Jews and Judaism
by Paula Fredriksen.
- Nothing to Fear: FDR's Inner Circle and the Hundred Days That
Created Modern America by Adam Cohen.
- * Animal Spirits: How Human Psychology Drives the Economy, and
Why It Matters for Global Capitalism by George A. Akerlof and Robert
- My Father's Paradise by Ariel Sabar
- A Tale of Love and Darkness by Amos Oz
- Emergence of Modern Turkey by Bernard Lewis
- Son of Hamas by Mosab Hassan Yousef
- The Age of Religious Wars by Richard Dunn
- *** The Yacoubian Building by Al Aswany
- * Kolyma Tales by Varlam Shalamov
- Bloodlands: Europe Between Hitler and Stalin by Timothy Snyder
- The Better Angels of our Nature: Why Violence has Declined
by Steven Pinker
- 1493 by Charles Mann
- Passage of Power: The years of Lyndon Johnson by R. A. Caro
- Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln by
D. K. Goodwin
- * The Bonobo and the Atheist by Frans de Waal
- The Swerve by Stephen Greenblatt
- * Infidel by Ayaan Hiris Ali
- *** Out of America by Keith Richburg
- * Long Walk to Freedom by Nelson Mandela (we chose the book
- My Promised Land by Ari Shavit
- Maimonides: Life and Thought by Moshe Halbertal
- The Society of Equals by Pierre Rosanvallon
- *** Guns, Germs, and Steel by J. Diamond
- Ornament if the World by Maria Rosa Menocal (about Moorish
- * The Berlin-Baghdad Express: The Ottoman Empire and Germany's
bid for World Power by Sean McMeekin.
- Jabotinsky, a life By Hillel Halkin.
- ** Innovators by Walter Isaacson.
- *** Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson.
- *** Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind by Yuval Noah Harari.