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February 8, 2008

On our February 1, 2008 broadcast Bill Moyers asked for suggestions for books that should be required presidential reading. Thousands responded, and continue to do so on The Moyers Blog where you can view all the suggestions.

Below you'll find some of the most popular suggestions and themes. From classics to comics — everyone seems to want a Commander in Chief who is a lifelong reader.

Here are the current top titles.

  • Naomi Klein, THE SHOCK DOCTRINE
  • Howard Zinn, A PEOPLE'S HISTORY OF THE UNITED STATES
  • Kim Michaels, THE ART OF NON-WAR
  • Jared Diamond, COLLAPSE
  • Chalmers Johnson, BLOWBACK triology
  • Tom Paine, COLLECTED WORKS/COMMON SENSE
  • Al Gore, ASSAULT ON REASON/AN INCONVENIENT TRUTH
  • David Cay Johnston, FREE LUNCH
  • George Orwell, 1984/ANIMAL FARM
  • Naomi Wolff, THE END OF AMERICA: LETTERS TO A YOUNG PATRIOT
  • Greg Mortenson, THREE CUPS OF TEA
  • Barbara Ehrenreich, NICKLE AND DIMED
  • Barbara Tuchman, MARCH OF FOLLY
  • Doris Kearns Goodwin, TEAM OF RIVALS
  • David Korten, THE GREAT TURNING
  • John Steinbeck, THE GRAPES OF WRATH
  • Ayn Rand, ATLAS SHRUGGED
  • John Dean, BROKEN GOVERNMENT
  • John Perkins, CONFESSIONS OF AN ECONOMIC HITMAN
  • James Carroll, HOUSE OF WAR
  • Thomas Friedman, THE WORLD IS FLAT
  • Lao Tzu, TE TAO CHING
  • Tim Weiner, LEGACY OF ASHES
  • Dr. Seuss (THE LORAX, HORTON HEARS A WHO, THE PLACES YOU'LL GO, IF I RAN THE ZOO)


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Published on February 8, 2008.

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References and Reading:
"My First Literary Crush," SLATE, November 15, 2005
SLATE's Steven Lee Myers asks famous people what books they loved in college.

What is Stephen Harper Reading?
One Canadian's crusade to make the Prime Minister take more notice of the arts and of "stillness." Every other week since late 2007 Yann Martel has sent the Prime Minister a book — read his letters and view the titles at the site.

Wikipedia's Best-selling Books List
From single volumes to series (Harry Potter is listed as third), Wikipedia's public editors have created an online list. The site also links to well-known weekly best-seller list sites.

Presidential Libraries
These sites collected by The National Archives may not always indicate what Presidents were reading — but will give insight into what they were writing.


Also This Week:

POWER READING II
Your suggestions on what books the incoming President needs on his or her shelf.

KATHLEEN HALL JAMIESON
Kathleen Hall Jamieson returns to look at the issues underlying the horse race.

REV. SAMUEL RODRIGUEZ
Rev. Rodriguez, president of the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference, gives his perspective on the role faith is playing in this campaign season and his take on what's happening with the evangelical vote in the primaries.

MOYERS ON TAXI TO THE DARK SIDE
Bill Moyers on a new documentary that explores America's debate over torture.

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