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A Christopher Hitchens Bookshelf

Dec 16, 2011

As you may already know, Christopher Hitchens passed away today. Among his many attributes, I most admired his love of the written form. Over the years I’ve built a list of books recommended and written by Hitchens and while I’ve yet to read even a third, the eventual goal is to read them all. Of those I’ve read from his list, my favorites include:

There are ~190 additional titles to explore on the current list. Regardless of your feelings on Hitchens’ anti-theism, his literary tastes were eclectic so there should be much to love in the full listing. It’s sad to think that it’s not likely that this list will substantially grow — save for the occasional correction of omissions.

The list of books written and recommended by Christopher Hitchens

inspired by an excellent Goodreads list

Thank you Mr. Hitchens.


8 Comments, Comment or Ping

  1. markc

    Very interesting to see Mr. Hitchens’ book list. Thanks for sharing it. I’ve read only about 10% of them, but several more are on my shelf and I see several more I’d like to check out.

    I didn’t see on your list: “A Struggle for Power: The American Revolution” by Theodore Draper, which I recently purchased after hearing Hitchens recommend it during this reddit interview: I didn’t realize then that he was such a prolific recommender of books!

  2. Rodney Ulyate

    Actually, I largely am! It seems you made extensive use of my shelf in compiling yours. Happy to help.

  3. @Ulyate

    That is truly an epic list. Thanks for assembling it!

  4. Rodney Ulyate

    It helps to have everything he ever wrote (bar one essay) for The Nation, as well as most of what he wrote for the TLS, in a folder on my computer. (I’m still on the look-out for a New Statesman archive.)

    I’ve seldom been let down by a book he’s advocated, so I’ll continue to expand the shelf this year.

    Do you recall where you found the recommendation of Frowen’s Hayek?

  5. Mike Harding

    Good work on compiling what looks at first glance to be a thorough list! I often hear Hitch effuse about Zola, but can’t remember whether he reccommended any of his specific works. Would you know of any?

    Best wishes,


  6. Not sure that you can go wrong reading any (and especially his published letters) but I am not aware of any overt endorsement. One that I love is “Germinal” if that’s any help at all.

  7. Ashley

    Hi, I’m a big fan of Hitchens and it’s great to see this. However, allow me to ask if the list is really recommended by Hitchens? Just want to know because my busy schedule does not allow me to just read every single book. Thank you.

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