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Recommended Books
 

Discover which books made a difference in the early lives of the most eminent achievers of our times.

Here, in their own words, are the answers to the question, "What book did you read when you were young that most influenced your life?" The answers reflect the wonderfully varied power of books, and remind us of some neglected classics and other works we may want to take into our own lives.

The Academy of Achievement believes the family library is a great silent force in American education. The love of books and the habits of book-buying and book-reading should be instilled early. The books that inspire us when we are young can remain our friends for a lifetime.


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The Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum
The Wizard of Oz
by L. Frank Baum
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Recommended by:
William DeVries, M.D.
Pioneer Artificial Heart Surgeon


Arabian Nights by Sir Richard Burton
Arabian Nights
by Sir Richard Burton
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Recommended by:
Rita Dove
Former Poet Laureate of the United States


Galapagos: World's End by William Beebe
Galapagos: World's End
by William Beebe
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Recommended by:
Sylvia Earle
Undersea Explorer


The Microbe Hunters by Paul de Kruif
The Microbe Hunters
by Paul de Kruif
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Recommended by:
Gertrude Elion
Nobel Prize in Medicine


Napoleon by Vincent Cronin
Napoleon
by Vincent Cronin
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Recommended by:
Larry Ellison
Founder & CEO, Oracle Corporation


David Copperfield by Charles Dickens
David Copperfield
by Charles Dickens
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Recommended by:
Shelby Foote
Novelist and Historian


The Scarlet Plague by Jack London
The Scarlet Plague
by Jack London
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Recommended by:
Milton Friedman
Nobel Prize in Economics


Fathers and Sons by Ivan Turgenev
Fathers and Sons
by Ivan Turgenev
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Recommended by:
Ernest Gaines
A Lesson Before Dying


A Separate Peace by John Knowles
A Separate Peace
by John Knowles
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Recommended by:
Bill Gates
Co-Founder and Chairman, Microsoft Corporation


Profiles in Courage by John F. Kennedy
Profiles in Courage
by John F. Kennedy
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Recommended by:
Rudolph Giuliani
Former Mayor of New York City


One Two Three... Infinity by George Gamow
One Two Three... Infinity
by George Gamow
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Recommended by:
Dr. Sheldon Glashow
Nobel Prize for Physics


The Voyages of Dr. Dolittle by Hugh Lofting
The Voyages of Dr. Dolittle
by Hugh Lofting
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Recommended by:
Jane Goodall
The Great Conservationist


Roosevelt: The Lion and the Fox by James MacGregor Burns
Roosevelt: The Lion and the Fox
by James MacGregor Burns
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Recommended by:
Doris Kearns Goodwin
Pulitzer Prize for History


The Little Engine That Could by Watty Piper
The Little Engine That Could
by Watty Piper
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Recommended by:
Stephen Jay Gould
Evolutionary Biologist and Paleontologist


The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck
The Grapes of Wrath
by John Steinbeck
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Recommended by:
John Grisham
Best-Selling Author


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