Marine Corps Reading ListReading Lists

The 2019 Navy Reading List + 5 options for ordering books for your command

The Navy War College just published their 2019 Navy reading list last month. Coming in at 145 books it is the longest reading of all the four services. If you don’t think you can get through all 145 books before the next list comes out I’m taking suggestions for a shorter top 10 list. Please leave comments below.

The most direct option for ordering the Navy Reading list, ordering from the Naval War College, is no longer available. Previously the War College had funding to send commands a full set of the Navy Reading List; however that funding expired a few years ago. Until the Navy prioritizes this funding, commands remain responsible for acquiring the Navy Reading List on their own

For those interested in ordering the Navy Reading List for their command, Wardroom, Chiefs Mess or MWR below are four options to make your supply officers job just a little bit easier, and your command just a little bit smarter:

  1. Operation Paper Back:  While Operations Paper Back does attempt to supply books on the Navy Reading List, they rely on book donations for their distribution. This makes is very hard to “special request” specific books. However, as stated on the Operation Paper Back’s website they will attempt to fulfill an order of books from the Navy’s reading list. The form for requesting books can be found here.
  2. DOD Reads:  Our primary customer is the Department of Defense. We make it very easy for your supply officer make a purchase of the Army’s, Navy’s, USMC’s, USCG’s, and or FBI’s official reading list. DOD Reads can process online purchases, quotes, and for larger purchases we accept payments through Contracting/SAM.   We are veteran owned and operated with a percent of our profits going back to the Navy and Marine Corps Relief Society.
  3. Amazon: While Amazon holds the largest inventory of books around they only hold ready access to approx 110 books on the Navy’s reading list. The remainder of the books are either out of print or fulfilled by other vendors. If you do choose to purchase from Amazon please consider purchasing through my Navy Reading List page, I have conveniently included links for all the books and will receive a small affiliate commission to help run this website.    
  4. Naval War College:  As of this writing the Navy War College no longer has a contract to supply the Navy reading list. But if/when this changes they can be contacted via phone or e-mail here.
  5. US Naval Institute: The USNI has a number of Navy specific reading lists to include a Junior Officer reading list, Commanders reading list and publish a monthly professional naval magazine Proceedings.
  6. And as a bonus option for Marine Corps Commands, The Marine Corps Association has a Unit Library program which will Marine Corps units with select books from the USMC reading list.

Below is the 2019 Navy Reading List taken from the CNO’s Reading Program  

The Canon

  1. The Federalist Papers, by Alexander Hamilton
  2. Masters of War: Classical Strategic Thought, by Michael I. Handel
  3. Strategy: The Classic Book on Military Strategy, by B. H. Liddell Hart
  4. Military Strategy: A General Theory of Power Control, by J. C. Wylie
  5. The Landmark Thucydides: A Comprehensive Guide to the Peloponnesian War, by Robert B. Strassler
  6. The U.S. Constitution, by James Madison
  7. The Declaration of Independence, by Thomas Jefferson
  8. The Influence of Sea Power on History, by A. T. Mahan
  9. Makers of Modern Strategy: From Machiavelli to the Nuclear Age, by Peter Paret
  10. Principles of Maritime Strategy, by Julian S. Corbett
  11. The Art of War, by Sun Tzu
  12. On War, by Carl Von Clausewitz

Partner Network

  1. Safe Passage, by Kori Schake
  2. World In Disarray, by Richard Haass
  3. Asia’s Cauldron: The South China Sea and the End of a Stable Pacific, by Robert D. Kaplan
  4. The Paradox of American Power, Why the World’s Only Superpower Can’t Go it Alone, by Joseph S. Nye Jr.
  5. On China, by Henry Kissinger
  6. Partnerships for the Americas, by James G. Stavridis
  7. World Order, by Henry Kissinger
  8. The Revenge of Geography: What the Map Tells Us About Coming Conflicts and the Battle Against Fate, by Robert D. Kaplan
  9. The Grand Chessboard, by Zbigniew Brzezinski
  10. Value: The Four Cornerstones of Corporate Finance, by Tim Koller, Richard Dobbs, Bill Huyett

Navy Team

  1. Humility is the New Smart, by Edward Hess
  2. Service: A Navy SEAL at War, by Marcus Luttrell and James D. Hornfischer
  3. The Accidental Admiral, A Sailor Takes Command at NATO, by James Stavridis
  4. Teams of Teams, New Rules of Engagement for a Complex World, by Stanley McChrystal
  5. Navigating the Seven Seas, by Melvin G. Williams
  6. Start With Why, How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action, by Simon Sinek
  7. One Hundred Days: The Memoirs of the Falklands Battle Group Commander, by Sandy Woodward and Patrick Robinson
  8. Leaders Eat Last, Why Some Teams Pull Together and Others Don’t, by Simon Sinek
  9. A Vietnam Experience, Ten Years of Reflection, by James B. Stockdale
  10. Thoughts of a Philosophical Fighter Pilot, by Jim Stockdale
  11. The Caine Mutiny, by Herman Wouk
  12. In Love and War, by Jim and Sybil Stockdale
  13. Tribe: On Homecoming and Belonging, by Sebastian Junger
  14. At Ease: Stories I Tell to Friends, by Dwight D. Eisenhower
  15. Enchiridion, by Epictetus
  16. Grant: Personal Memoirs and Selected Letters of Ulysses S. Grant, by Ulysses S. Grant
  17. His Excellency, George Washington, by Joseph J. Ellis
  18. Other Clay: A Remembrance of the World War II Infantry, by Charles R. Cawthon
  19. Crusade in Europe: A Personal Account of World War II, by Dwight D. Eisenhower
  20. The Last Warrior, by Andrew F. Krepinevich and Barry D. Watts
  21. The Wisdom of Crowds, by James Surowiecki

Naval Power

  1. Fleet Tactics, by Wayne Hughes and Robert Girrier
  2. Neptune’s Inferno, by James D. Hornfischer
  3. Scales on War: The Future of America’s Military at Risk, by Maj. Gen Bob Scales
  4. On Grand Strategy, by John Gaddis
  5. Sea Power, by Admiral James Stavridis
  6. 1812: The Navy’s War, by George C. Daughan
  7. Toward a New Maritime Strategy, by Peter D. Haynes
  8. The Rules of the Game, by Andrew Gordon
  9. Seapower, A Guide for the 21st Century, by Geoffrey Till
  10. Red Star over the Pacific, by Toshi Yoshihara and James R. Holmes
  11. The Conquering Tide, by Ian W. Toll
  12. Execute Against Japan, The U.S. Decision to Conduct Unrestricted Submarine Warfare, by Joel Ira Holwitt
  13. John Barry, An American Hero in the Age of Sail, by Tim McGrath
  14. Pacific Crucible, War at Sea in the Pacific 1941-1942, by Ian W. Toll
  15. Six Frigates, by Ian W. Toll
  16. Empires of the Sea, by Roger Crowley
  17. The Last Stand of the Tin Can Sailors, by James D. Hornfischer
  18. Ship of Ghosts, by James D. Hornfischer
  19. The Fleet at Flood Tide, by James D. Hornfischer
  20. Shattered Sword, The Untold Story of the Battle of Midway, by Jonathan Parshall and Anthony Tully
  21. Master and Commander, by Patrick O’Brian
  22. The Rickover Effect, The Inside Story of How Adm. Hyman Rickover Built the Nuclear Navy, by Theodore Rockwell
  23. Rickover and the Nuclear Navy, The Discipline of Technology, by Francis Duncan
  24. The Two-Ocean War, A Short History of the U.S. Navy in the Second World War, by Samuel Eliot Morison
  25. Fleet Tactics and Coastal Combat, by Wayne P. Hughes Jr.
  26. The Face of Battle, by John Keegan
  27. The Price of Admiralty, by John Keegan
  28. The Mask of Command, by John Keegan
  29. Military Readiness: Concepts, Choices, Consequences, by Richard K. Betts
  30. Military Innovation in the Interwar Period, by Williamson Murray and Allan R. Millett
  31. All the Factors of Victory, by Thomas Wildenberg
  32. Matterhorn, A Novel of the Vietnam War, by Karl Marlantes
  33. Ghost Fleet, by P.W. Singer and August Cole
  34. Hold Back the Night, by Pat Frank
  35. Utmost Savagery, The Three Days of Tarawa, by Joseph H. Alexander
  36. Fighting Talk: Forty Maxims on War, Peace, and Strategy, by Colin S. Gray
  37. The Admirals, by Walter Borneman
  38. Yellow Smoke: The Future of Land Warfare for America’s Military, by Robert H. Scales
  39. England in the Seven Years’ War: A Study in Combined Strategy, by Julian S. Corbett
  40. The Global Seven Years War 1754 – 1763, by Daniel A. Baugh
  41. Freedom’s Forge: How American Business Produced Victory in the World War II, by Arthur Herman
  42. Joe Rochefort’s War: The Odyssey of the Codebreaker Who Outwitted Yamamoto at Midway, by Elliot Carlson
  43. Pursuit of Victory: The Life and Achievement of Horatio Nelson, by Roger Knight
  44. Washington’s Crossing, by David Hackett Fischer
  45. Technology and War: From 2000 B.C. to the Present, by Martin Van Creveld
  46. Wired for War: The Robotics Revolution and Conflict in the 21st Century, by P. W. Singer
  47. First to Fight: An Inside View of the U.S. Marine Corps, by Victor H. Krulak
  48. Chesty, by Jon T. Hoffman
  49. Marines of Montford Point: America’s First Black Marines, by Melton Alonza McLaurin
  50. Forgotten Warriors, by Thomas Hammes
  51. American Spartans: A Combat History from Iwo to Iraq, by James Warren
  52. Brute: The Life of Victor Krulak, by Robert Coram

High Velocity Outcomes

  1. Learning War, by Alexander Hamilton
  2. The Book of Why, by Judea Pear and Dana Mackenzie
  3. Machine Platform Crowd, by Andrew McAfee and Erik Brynjolfsson
  4. Democracy, by Condoleezza Rice
  5. Simulating War, Studying Conflict Through Simulation Games, by Philip Sabin
  6. Strategy, A History, by Lawrence Freedman
  7. Managing the Risks of Organizational Accidents, by James Reason
  8. Managing the Unexpected: Resilient Performance in an Age of Uncertainty, by Karl E. Weick and Kathleen M. Sutcliffe
  9. The Heart of Change: Real-life Stories of How People Change their Organizations, by John P. Kotter
  10. Leading Change, by John P. Kotter
  11. Blackett’s War: The Men Who Defeated the Nazi U-Boats and Brought Science to the Art of Warfare, by Stephen Budiansky
  12. The Fall of the Roman Empire, by Peter Heather
  13. Grand Strategies in War and Peace, by Paul Kennedy
  14. The Box: How the Shipping Container Made the World Smaller and the World Economic Bigger, by Marc Levinson
  15. On Writing Well: The Classic Guide to Writing Nonfiction, by William Zinsser
  16. The Innovator’s Dilemma: The Revolutionary Book that Will Change the Way You Do Business, by Clayton M. Christensen
  17. High-Velocity Edge: How Market Leaders Leverage Operational Excellence, by Steven J. Spear
  18. The Checklist Manifesto: How to Get Things Right, by Atul Gawande
  19. The Hard Thing About Hard Things: Building a Business When There are No Easy Answers, by Ben Horowitz
  20. A Whole New Mind: Why Right-Brainers Will Rule the Future, by Daniel H. Pink
  21. Sprint: How to Solve Big Problems and Test New Ideas in Just Five Days, by Jake Knapp
  22. The Making of the Atom Bomb, by Richard Rhodes
  23. Superforecasting: The Art and Science of Prediction, by Philip E. Tetlock and Dan Gardner
  24. The Knowing Doing Gap, by Jeffrey Pfeffer and Robert I. Sutton
  25. The Visual Display of Quantitative Information, by Edward R. Tufte
  26. Sensemaking in Organizations, by Karl E. Weick
  27. The Art of the Long View: Planning in an Uncertain Future, by Peter Schwartz
  28. The Elements of Style, by William Strunk Jr. and E.B. White
  29. Inviting Disaster: Lessons from the Edge of Technology, by James R. Chiles
  30. 7 Deadly Scenarios: A Military Futurist Explores War in the 21st Century, by Andew F. Krepinevich
  31. Envisioning Information, by Edward R. Tufte
  32. Execution: The Discipline of Getting Things Done, by Larry Bossidy and Ram Charan
  33. The Fifth Discipline: The Art and Practice of the Learning Organization, by Peter M. Senge
  34. The Second Machine Age: Work, Progress, and Prosperity in a Time of Brilliant Technologies, by Erik Brynjolfsson and Andrew McAfee
  35. Thinking, Fast and Slow, by Daniel Kahneman
  36. Thinking in Time: The Uses of History for Decision Makers, by Richard E. Neustadt and Ernest R. May
  37. The Black Swan: The Impact of the Highly Improbable, by Nassim Nicholas Taleb
  38. Outliers: The Story of Success, by Malcolm Gladwell 
  39. The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference, by Malcolm Gladwell
  40. Drift into Failure: From Hunting Broken Components to Understanding Complex Systems, by Sidney Dekker
  41. The Field Guide to Understanding ‘Human Error’, by Sidney Dekker
  42. Freakonomics: A Rogue Economist Explores the Hidden Side of Everything, by Steven D. Levitt
  43. The Singularity is Near: When Humans Transcend Biology, by Ray Kurzweil
  44. Red Team: How to Succeed by Thinking Like the Enemy, by Micah Zenko

Core Attributes

  1. Warriors and Citizens, by Kori Schake & Jim Mattis
  2. Make Your Bed, by Admiral William H. McRaven
  3. The Anatomy of Courage, by Lord Moran
  4. Giving Voice to Values, by Mary C. Gentile
  5. Meditations, by Marcus Aurelius
  6. The 7 Signs of Ethical Collapse, by Marianne M. Jennings

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