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the top 10 books i have ever read


This list of The Top 10 Books I have ever read took me less time to compile than I thought it would. After all, I read 30-50 non-fiction books on personal development, sales, business, social media, marketing and Christianity, among others.

Before I give you my list I want to stipulate that the Bible is by far the best book I have ever read. I have read it front to back at least 15 times. 

Let me know what you think of my list and share your list with me by emailing tom@tom2tall.com.

1. law of success by napoleon hill

I bet you thought Think and Grow Rich would be at the top of my list. Actually I like the Law of Success much more. It is a much more detailed and long book and includes 15 Success Principles. Think and Grow Rich has 13 Success Principles in it.

I also have an emotional commitment to the book. One of my first business endeavors, in around 1984-1985, was to get a low wholesale price for the books from the Publisher. Working with Organo Gold Co-Founder Shane Morand, we approached companies we knew had a sales team and sales manager. We would ask for the sales manager and when we met, we would give a 5-10 minute talk about the book and offered to leave it with them for a week. We would then return and ask them to buy the book for $50 or return it. Sadly, to our surprise, and a lesson we both learned, was that only a small percentage of sales managers, and likely salespeople as well, read books of any kind.

Of course I am also a HUGE fan of Think and Grow Rich, however I do not want to have more than one book per author on the list. Of course it is is "unofficially" on the list and is the most popular of Napoleon Hill's books.

2. life is tremendous by charlie "Tremendous" jones

I LOVE Charlie "Tremendous" Jones. People who know me very well would undoubtedly say that Zig Ziglar is my favorite speaker of all time but they would be wrong.

Charlie "Tremendous" Jones is my favorite speaker of all time. His book Life Is Tremendous is short and easy to read. I re-read it somewhat regularly because of that. It is encouraging, wise, insightful and funny. 

3. the greatest salesman in the world by og mandino

Og Mandino had a fascinating life story. At one point in his life, while he was down and out, he decided to commit suicide. He had a few bucks in his pocket and was going to buy a gun with it. Instead, he walked by a bookstore that had Think and Grow Rich displayed in the front window. For some reason the title caught his eye and he went in and purchased the book using the money he had planned for the gun. Eventually, Og became Editor of Success Magazine, working for both Napoleon Hill and W Clement Stone.

The 10 ancient scrolls Og writes about will impact you to the core of your being, especially if you are in sales.

4. the alchemist

Like The Greatest Salesman in the World, The Alchemist is written as a fable. Coelho is a brilliant storyteller and uses the character Santiago, a shepherd boy with big dreams of wealth and influence in Spain.

I was mesmerized by the story and the lessons from Santiago's life. I finished the book is less than 24 hours.

5. the ultimate gift by Jim Stovall

I used to think, and say, that I did not like personal development books written in story form but here I am with the third book in a row of that style.

What would you do to inherit a million dollars? The story revolves around the character Jason Stevens and what he must do to inherit his Uncle Red's money that was left to him in his will.

The book was made into a movie starring James Garner and Drew Fuller.

6. how to win friends and influence people by dale carnegie

I read this book in my early 20's and used strategies from it to accomplish my first written goal which was to meet the then Prime Minister of Canada, Brian Mulroney. I accomplished that goal. I re-read it in 2014 and loved it just as much. It is a Life Skills manual that will help you in every area of your life.

7. Success Through a positive mental attitude by napoleon hill and w clement stone

Napoleon Hill and W Clement Stone used to have friendly arguments about which of the 17 Success Principles was the most important. Stone thought that a Positive Mental Attitude was the most important and Hill believed that Definiteness of Purpose was the most important. Although I agree with Hill that Definiteness of Purpose is the most important Success Principle, PMA is my favorite. I even have a PMA tattoo that was designed by Uriel Martinez, graphic designer for the Napoleon Hill World Learning Center.

8. the power of positive thinking by norman vincent peale

As I already mentioned, Positive Mental Attitude (PMA) is my favorite Success Principle and the one I am most known for. This classic book combines PMA with Christian faith and great stories

9. Unstoppable: The Incredible Power of Faith in Action by nick vujicic

Because of my physical disability (Rheumatoid Arthritis since the age of 5) and my strong Christian faith, I LOVE this book and Nick Vujicic. Whenever I am in severe pain from my arthritis I think of Nick and say that he would love to have an ache or pain in his arms or legs. I cannot even imagine how difficult it must be to figure out how to do things without arms or legs but Nick does. I cannot express how deeply this book affected me. I cried several times while reading it.

10. See you at the top by zig ziglar

I am a HUGE Zig Ziglar fan and this book is one I truly treasure. Zig's humor and stories are known around the world and he impacted millions of people. I saw him speak live 9 times and attended his Born To Win course in Texas. Zig has been the most important contributor to my thinking and philosophy.

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