- The Last Coyote by Michael Connelly: In my opinion, it sets the standard for mystery, suspense, and crime books.
- The Green Mile by Stephen King: People either love or hate King, but this book made me lose time.
- The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald: If you don't have a classic on your list and feel incomplete with it, read this one. Short, but a tremendous story.
- In the Heart of the Sea: The Tragedy of the Whaleship Essex by Nathanial Philbrick: It's non-fiction, but reads like a novel, and the story it details is the basis for Moby Dick.
- The Perfect Storm by Sebastian Junger: I love books about history of the sea and sea-faring. This is the best modern example of that.
- L.A. Requiem by Robert Crais: A great tale of loss, sacrifice and friendship all rolled up in a murder mystery.
- Rita Hayworth & the Shawshank Redemption by Stephen King: Okay, so I cheated and used a novella, but it's still a great read.
- 1776 by David McCullough: The most famous year in the history of the United States, but it's also the most misunderstood. This book has lessons for our time now.
- Band of Brothers by Stephen E. Ambrose: Yes, you should watch the mini-series. But read the book to understand what the men and women returning from war now mean when they say "my brothers..."
- The Black Echo by Michael Connelly: Launched the Harry Bosch series (still my favorite series ever) and started me off on a journey into writing that I hope will continue for the rest of my life.
My Favorite Books
Every writer gets asked from time to time what their favorite books are that they have read. Instead of having to regurgitate the list every time, I'm putting it here. This is my list, not a universal list, so if you have complaints, make your own.