US Navy Reading List


You are purchasing the top 43 books on the CNO’s Reading List. The CNO’s professional reading list was published in the Winter of 2021 and contains 53 books organized into four key lines of effort: Readiness, Capabilities, Capacity, and Sailors.  Purchase the top 43 books for your command’s library, wardroom, or chief’s mess.


While we strive to maintain ready access to every book in the military reading list; there are some books that go out of print or are no longer reasonably available during my required processing time. Please refer to our Out Of Stock Policy for up-to-date information. 

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The Chief of Naval Operations Reading List

Reference: NAVADMIN 046/21


  2. GHOST FLEET: A Novel of the Next World War By P.W. Singer & August Cole 
  3. NEPTUNE’S INFERNO: The U.S. Navy at Guadalcanal By James D. Hornfischer 
  4. SIX FRIGATES: The Epic History of the Founding of the U.S. Navy By Ian W. Toll 
  5. MATTERHORN: A Novel of the Vietnam War By Karl Marlantes
  6. RED STAR OVER THE PACIFIC: China’s Rise and the Challenge to U.S. Maritime Strategy By Toshi Yoshihara & James R. Holmes
  7. SEA POWER A Guide for the Twenty-First Century By Geoffrey Till
  8. THE LEADER’S BOOKSHELF By ADM. James Stavridis, USN (Ret.) & R. Manning Ancell
  9. LEADERS EAT LAST: Why Some Teams Pull Together and Others Don’t By Simon Sinek
  10. MINDSET The New Psychology of Success By Carol S. Dweck
  11. THE INFINITE GAME: By Simon Sinek
  12. WHAT IT IS LIKE TO GO TO WAR: By Karl Marlantes


  1. ARMY OF NONE: Autonomous Weapons and the Future of War By Paul Scharre
  3. BURN-IN: A Novel of the Real Robotic Revolution By P. W. Singer & August Cole
  4. THE FUTURE OF WAR: A History By Lawrence Freedman
  5. THE NEXT 100 YEARS: A Forecast for the 21st Century By George Friedman
  6. HUMAN COMPATIBLE: Artificial Intelligence and the Problem of Control By Stuart Russell
  7. THE FIFTH DOMAIN: Defending Our Country, Our Companies, and Ourselves in the Age of Cyber Threats By Richard A. Clark & Robert K. Knake
  8. THE NEW RULES OF WAR: Victory in the Age of Durable Disorder By Sean McFate
  9. THE PERFECT WEAPON: War, Sabotage, and Fear in the Cyber Age By David E. Sanger
  10. DEEP THINKING: Where Machine Intelligence Ends and Human Creativity Begins By Garry Kasparov
  11. GENIUS WEAPONS: Artificial Intelligence, Autonomous Weaponry, and the Future of Warfare By Louis A. Del Monte 
  12. NO ORDINARY DISRUPTION: The Four Global Forces Breaking All the Trends By Richard Dobbs, James Manyika, Jonathan Woetzel
  13. THE INEVITABLE: Understanding the 12 Technological Forces That Will Shape Our Future By Kevin Kelly



  1. FEARLESS: The Undaunted Courage and Ultimate Sacrifice of Navy SEAL Team SIX Operator Adam Brown By Eric Blehm
  2. ONE NATION UNDER DRONES: Legality, Morality, and Utility of Unmanned Combat Systems By John E. Jackson
  3. THE FLEET AT FLOOD TIDE: America at Total War in the Pacific, 1944-1945 By James D. Hornfischer
  4. THE LAST STAND OF THE TIN CAN SAILORS: The Extraordinary World War II Story of the U.S. Navy’s Finest Hour By James D. Hornfischer
  6. JUST AND UNJUST WARS: A Moral Argument with Historical Illustrations By Michael Walzer
  7. SEA POWER: The History and Geopolitics of the World’s Oceans By ADM. James Stavridis, USN (Ret.) & R. Manning Ancell & Bob Souer
  8. TOWARD A NEW MARITIME STRATEGY: American Naval Thinking in the Post-Cold War Era By Peter D. Haynes
  9. OUR ROBOTS, OURSELVES: Robotics and the Myths of Autonomy By David A. Mindell 
  10. THE END OF GRAND STRATEGY: US Maritime Operations in the Twenty-First Century By Simon Reich & Peter Dombrowski
  11. THE FUTURE OF VIOLENCE Robots and Germs, Hackers and Drones By Benjamin Wittes & Gabriella Blum
  12. THE SECOND MOST POWERFUL MAN IN THE WORLD: The Life of Admiral William D. Leahy, Roosevelt’s Chief of Staff By Phillips Payson O’Brien



  1. EGO IS THE ENEMY: By Ryan Holiday
  2. HOW TO BE AN ANTIRACIST: By Ibram X. Kendi
  3. THE DICHOTOMY OF LEADERSHIP: Balancing the Challenges of Extreme Ownership to Lead and Win By Jocko Willink & Leif Babin
  4. TINY HABITS: The Small Changes That Change Everything By BJ Fogg
  5. WE CAN’T TALK ABOUT THAT AT WORK!: How to Talk about Race, Religion, Politics, and Other Polarizing Topics By Mary-Frances Winters
  6. A TACTICAL ETHIC: Moral Conduct in the Insurgent Battlespace By Dick Couch
  7. FED UP: Emotional Labor, Women, and the Way Forward By Gemma Hartley
  8. MILITARY ETHICS: What Everyone Needs to Know By George Lucas
  10. START WITH WHY: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action By Simon Sinek
  11. THE CHARACTER GAP: How Good Are We? By Christian Miller
  12. FORTUNE FAVORS BOLDNESS: The Story of Naval Valor During Operation Iraqi Freedom By Barry M. Costello
  13. NO PITY: People with Disabilities Forging a New Civil Rights Movement By Joseph P. Shapiro 
  14. THE ROAD TO CHARACTER: By David Brooks
  15. THE HONEST TRUTH ABOUT DISHONESTY: How We Lie to Everyone—Especially Ourselves By Dan Ariely
  16. THE NEW JIM CROW: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness By Michelle Alexander


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