Every Book Paul Graham Mentioned on Twitter (with Tweets!)

Richard Reis
10 min readMay 26, 2020


Original post here.

I’ve read every Paul Graham essay (and summarized them in these 3 posts).

This is why I had a list of “all” the books he mentioned (or so I thought) and added it to Most Recommended Books. Surely people would love it!

And nowhere, I thought, would they love it more than in the house pg built, Hacker News.

Alas… As soon as I posted, reality hit me in the face.

Hacker News… Where your pride goes to die.

“Ouch,” I thought. “But maybe Elof is right?”

So I decided to double down and read all of pg’s tweets (the same way I did with Elon Musk and Naval Ravikant).

I found 95 books pg has mentioned/ recommended over the years just on Twitter!

And here is that list, for your reading pleasure.

I hope you enjoy it :)

Sidenote: If you like this post, please share it on Twitter. It would be awesome if pg sees it.

Paul Graham Books

  1. With the Old Breed — E. B. Sledge

2. The Battle of Alcazar — E.W. Bovill

3. Early Middle English Literature — R. M. Wilson

4. The Oxford History of Britain — Peter Salway

5. Blankie — Leslie Patricelli

6. The Gun Seller — Hugh Laurie

7. In The Plex — Steven Levy

8. To Conquer the Air — James Tobin

9. The Fry Chronicles — Stephen Fry

10. The Lord of the Rings — J.R.R. Tolkien

11. The Complete Sherlock Holmes — Arthur Conan Doyle

12. Diocletian and the Roman Recovery — Stephen Williams

13. Maisy Mouse Collection — Lucy Cousins

14. Very Good, Jeeves! — P. G. Wodehouse

15. Sunset at Blandings — P.G. Wodehouse

16. The Confessions — Jean-Jacques Rousseau

17. No Easy Day — Mark Owen

18. The Copernican Revolution — Thomas S. Kuhn

19. Marriage — Susan Ferrier

20. Flying Start — Hugh Dundas

21. A Thread Across the Ocean — John Steele Gordon

22. Guns, Sails, and Empires — Carlo M. Cipolla

23. Clocks and Culture — Carlo M. Cipolla

24. Kelly — Clarence L. Johnson

25. Why the Allies Won — Richard Overy

26. Towns, Villages and Countryside of Celtic Europe — Francoise Audouze

27. Medieval Technology and Social Change — Lynn White

28. To Explain the World — Steven Weinberg

29. Land of Promise — Michael Lind

30. Painting and Experience in Fifteenth-Century Italy — Michael Baxandall

31. The Box — Marc Levinson

32. On Bullshit — Harry G. Frankfurt

33. On Inequality — Harry G. Frankfurt

34. A Story Lately Told — Anjelica Huston

35. The Jet Engine — Rolls Royce

36. Selfish Reasons to Have More Kids — Bryan Caplan

37. Free-Range Kids — Lenore Skenazy

38. My Family and Other Animals — Gerald Durrell

39. Fauna & Family — Gerald Durrell

40. Good Night, Little Bear — Patsy Scarry

41. The Population Bomb — Paul R Ehrlich

42. Ever the Diplomat — Sherard Cowper-Coles

43. Autobiographies — Charles Darwin

44. Memoirs of My Life — Edward Gibbon

45. An Autobiography of Anthony Trollope — Anthony Trollope

46. The Man Who Knew Infinity — Robert Kanigel

47. Eyes on the Street — Robert Kanigel

48. Wheels for the World — Douglas Brinkley

49. The Ancient City — Peter Connolly

50. The Kings Depart — Richard M Watt

51. Moorish Spain — Richard Fletcher

52. Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance — Robert M. Pirsig

53. Sea Flight — Hugh Popham

54. Carbonel — Barbara Sleigh

55. The Black Riders — Violet Needham

56. How to Be Topp — Ronald Searle

57. The Origin of Species — Charles Darwin

58. Moab Is My Washpot — Stephen Fry

59. The Inimitable Jeeves — P. G. Wodehouse

60. A Mathematician’s Apology — G. H. Hardy

61. The Iliad — Homer

62. The Trachtenberg Speed System of Basic Mathematics — Jakow Trachtenberg

63. Carl Friedrich Gauss — Guy Waldo Dunnington

64. The Complete Calvin and Hobbes — Bill Watterson

65. The Spectator — Joseph Addison

66. The Hobbit — J.R.R. Tolkien

67. Itinerarium Regis Ricardi — T. M. Stead

68. The Startup Way — Eric Ries

69. Plagues and Peoples — William McNeill

70. Concorde — Geoffrey Knight

71. The Making of Europe — Robert Bartlett

72. The Principia — Isaac Newton

73. The Government of the Tongue — Richard Allestree

74. The Structure of Scientific Revolutions — Thomas S. Kuhn

75. The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin — Benjamin Franklin

76. The Gallic Wars — Julius Caesar

77. Wing Leader — Johnnie Johnson

78. Life in the English Country House — Mark Girouard

79. The German Generals Talk — Basil H. Liddell Hart

80. The Collected Works of P. G. Wodehouse — P. G. Wodehouse

81. Dog Man — Dav Pilkey

82. Boyd — Robert Coram

83. The Double Helix — James D. Watson Ph.D.

84. Harry Potter — J.K. Rowling

85. History of the World — J.M. Roberts

86. The Quest for El Cid — Richard Fletcher

87. Albert Einstein — Banesh Hoffmann

88. A Mind at Play — Jimmy Soni

89. A Sense of Where You Are — John McPhee

90. The Complete Novels of Jane Austen — Jane Austen

91. Barbarian Days — William Finnegan

92. The Conquest of Gaul — Jane P. Gardner

93. Richard Feynman — John Gribbin

94. The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress — Robert A. Heinlein

95. The Launch Pad — Randall Stross

P.S.: If you want to see every book Paul has mentioned (in his essays, interviews, etc…), we’ve put as many as we could find on this page.

Thanks for reading! 😊If you enjoyed it, test how many times can you hit 👏 in 5 seconds. It’s great cardio for your fingers AND will help other people see the story.You can follow me on Twitter at @richardreeze to find out whenever others just like it come out.📚 Do you like books? If so you might enjoy my latest obsession: 
Most Recommended Books.📚



Richard Reis

"I write this not for the many, but for you; each of us is enough of an audience for the other." - Epicurus https://www.richardreis.me/