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Readistan
Author- Shah Rukh Nadeem
Book Review by Amjad Hussain Amjad
Receiving a book as gift is an epicurean pleasure. I received the Title book “
Readistan” from My Friend Nasir Mehmood. This book gives summary of 50 best
books ranging from Philosophy, Self Help, business management, warfare,
Effective Habits and Islamic History. Luckily I have already read few books
mentioned in the “ Readistan”. The book is published by Liberty Books and has
334 pages including colour diagrams. The mission of Readistan is “Let’s Read
Pakistan”. Reading books is great habit and this habit is decreasing in our youth.
10 books which I liked the most in Readistan are as under:-
➢ The 100; A Ranking of the Most Influential Persons in History is a 1978
book by Michael H. Hart
➢ Lost Islamic History; by Firas Al Khateeb
➢ The Art of War; by Sun Tzu
➢ Conquest of Happiness; by Bertrand Russell
➢ The Prince; by Niccolò Machiavelli
➢ The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People; by Stephen Covey.
➢ The Secret by Ronda Byrne
➢ How to win Friends and Influence People ; by Dale Carnegie
➢ The Alchemist ; by Paulo Coelho
➢ The 5 AM Club; by Robin Sharma
In the start of the book the writer has given brief story of his life and efforts by his
Parents in upbringing the family while facing different Issues. The book is
organized in tabulated form and one does not feel boredom while reading the book.
➢ Each book review starts with its essence mentioned on the left hand side.
➢ Book Review starts by mentioning the name of the book, author and its
general description.
➢ Important take away is mentioned separately.
➢ Space is provided after each book’s summary for writing your own
comments.
The basic aim of the book is introduction to great books , authors and development
of learning habits in our youth.
The 100 is one of the great books I have come across and have read it more than
one time. There are two interesting factors about this book. The first is that the
ranking flows from top to bottom in descending order and the author gives
comparative analysis of the most influential Personalities. This means Michael
Hart has actually numbered people based on how influential they are and then
given them ranking in a flow so the most Influential individual occupies number
one rank, second and list goes on. The second most Important and critical point is
that in spite of being a non-Muslim scholar he has given first rank to Holy Prophet
Muhammad( Peace be upon him).
The book Lost Islamic history by Firas Alkhateeb covers last 1400 years in
detail from the time of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) all the way till modern times.
It sheds light on the undaunted struggle of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) , how he
spread the message of Islam, how did Islam spread after his demise, who were our
righteous Caliphs, how and why Islamic wars were fought, how the Umayyad
Dynasty, the Abbasid Caliphate, the Ottomans, the Mongols and the Mughals
conducted their lives , how Muslim Scientists led the world of Science and what
factors contributed towards the eventual decline of the Muslim Ummah.
The Art of war is classic book written by Sun Tzu some 2500 years ago. Sun Tzu
writes If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a
hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained
you will also suffer a defeat. What a meaningful statement this is, applicable to
every aspect of our daily life. In order to win, it is indispensable to be self aware
and have complete knowledge of your competitor as well.
The conquest of Happiness by Bertrand Russell is book of philosophy and the
writer was British philosopher, logician, and social reformer, founding figure in the
analytic movement in Anglo-American philosophy and recipient of the Nobel Prize
for Literature in 1950. According to Bertrand Russell happiness has two types: one
is “Plain” and the second is “Fancy”. The simplest way to describe the difference
between the two sorts of happiness is to say that one sort is open to any human
being, and the other only to those who can read and write. Pleasures of
achievement demand difficulties such that beforehand success seems doubtful
although in the end it is usually achieved. This is perhaps the chief reason why a
modest estimate of one’s own powers is a source of happiness.
The Prince, political short book by Niccolò Machiavelli, written in 1513.
A short treatise on how to acquire power, create a state, and keep it, The book
represents Machiavelli’s effort to provide a guide for political action based on the
lessons of history and his own experience as a foreign secretary. His belief that
politics has its own rules so shocked his readers that the adjectival form of his
surname, Machiavellian, came to be used as a synonym for political manoeuvres
marked by cunning, duplicity, or bad faith. The Prince has often been called "a
handbook for dictators”, It was said of Napoleon that he slept with a copy of The
Prince beneath his pillow, and similar remarks have been made concerning Hitler
and Stalin.
The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People is yet an other great book and
considered to be the premier Self Help books ever written. These habits are one: be
Proactive Two: Begin with the end in mind Three: Put first things first Four: Think
win win Five: Seek first to understand then to be understood. Six: Synergize
Seven: Sharpen the saw. The first six habits are simple to understand.
The last habit refers to the fact that you have to spend your whole life developing
your abilities, capabilities, skills and competencies. The book has helped millions
of people around the globe to transform their lives for good.
The Secret by Rhonda Byrne is great motivational book and alludes to a famous
concept in the world of self Help Literature which pertains to the “Law of
Attraction”. Whatever your mind can conceive it can achieve if you have the
conviction, determination , and perseverance to pursue your dreams. The writer of
Readistan has given a You tube link “ The strangest Secret by Earl Nightingale”,
This 35 minutes video will change your life.
How to win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie is about 100 years
old book and more than 15 million copies have been sold, In nutshell the book
provides Six ways to Make People Like You
1. Become genuinely interested in other people and their problems.
2. Keep a Smile on your face.
3. Remember that a person's name is to that person the sweetest and most
important sound in any language. Call him by his name.
4. Be a good listener, some people just want to be listened.
5. Talk in terms of the other person's interests and show affection.
6. Make the other person feel important and do it sincerely.
The Alchemist is a novel by Brazilian author Paulo Coelho which was first
published in 1988. Originally written in Portuguese, it became a widely translated
international bestseller. It’s also the favorite book of Famous Urdu Columnist
Javed Chaudhry. Few take away from Santiago Story are:-
➢ Always dare to dream, Your life should be driven by a purpose.
➢ Be steadfast and adamant.
➢ Never by complacent.
➢ Choose your life partner wisely.
The writer urges the readers to be Santiago of their life and see the miracles
coming.
The 5 AM Club by Robin Sharma. Your early morning hours tend to be the most
productive time of day because you get uninterrupted time to yourself. Particularly
for Muslims offering Fajar Prayers has lot of benefits both in this world and life
hereafter. Sharma writes that the hour between 5am to 6am is the victory hour. In
these 60 minutes you can perform several activities which can nurture your
personality spiritually, mentally and physically.
At the end I suggest that writer of “Readistan” should have selected few Books
from celebrated writers like Yuval Noah Harari, Stephen Hawking and Will Durant
as well.
Amjad Hussain Amjad is a Retired Army Officer and has done MSc in Military
Sciences and Bachelor of Law. He writes on Different National and International
Issues.

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Book Review of Readistan highlighting 50 influential books

  • 1. Readistan Author- Shah Rukh Nadeem Book Review by Amjad Hussain Amjad Receiving a book as gift is an epicurean pleasure. I received the Title book “ Readistan” from My Friend Nasir Mehmood. This book gives summary of 50 best books ranging from Philosophy, Self Help, business management, warfare, Effective Habits and Islamic History. Luckily I have already read few books mentioned in the “ Readistan”. The book is published by Liberty Books and has 334 pages including colour diagrams. The mission of Readistan is “Let’s Read Pakistan”. Reading books is great habit and this habit is decreasing in our youth. 10 books which I liked the most in Readistan are as under:- ➢ The 100; A Ranking of the Most Influential Persons in History is a 1978 book by Michael H. Hart
  • 2. ➢ Lost Islamic History; by Firas Al Khateeb ➢ The Art of War; by Sun Tzu ➢ Conquest of Happiness; by Bertrand Russell ➢ The Prince; by Niccolò Machiavelli ➢ The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People; by Stephen Covey. ➢ The Secret by Ronda Byrne ➢ How to win Friends and Influence People ; by Dale Carnegie ➢ The Alchemist ; by Paulo Coelho ➢ The 5 AM Club; by Robin Sharma In the start of the book the writer has given brief story of his life and efforts by his Parents in upbringing the family while facing different Issues. The book is organized in tabulated form and one does not feel boredom while reading the book. ➢ Each book review starts with its essence mentioned on the left hand side. ➢ Book Review starts by mentioning the name of the book, author and its general description. ➢ Important take away is mentioned separately. ➢ Space is provided after each book’s summary for writing your own comments. The basic aim of the book is introduction to great books , authors and development of learning habits in our youth. The 100 is one of the great books I have come across and have read it more than one time. There are two interesting factors about this book. The first is that the ranking flows from top to bottom in descending order and the author gives comparative analysis of the most influential Personalities. This means Michael Hart has actually numbered people based on how influential they are and then
  • 3. given them ranking in a flow so the most Influential individual occupies number one rank, second and list goes on. The second most Important and critical point is that in spite of being a non-Muslim scholar he has given first rank to Holy Prophet Muhammad( Peace be upon him). The book Lost Islamic history by Firas Alkhateeb covers last 1400 years in detail from the time of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) all the way till modern times. It sheds light on the undaunted struggle of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) , how he spread the message of Islam, how did Islam spread after his demise, who were our righteous Caliphs, how and why Islamic wars were fought, how the Umayyad Dynasty, the Abbasid Caliphate, the Ottomans, the Mongols and the Mughals conducted their lives , how Muslim Scientists led the world of Science and what factors contributed towards the eventual decline of the Muslim Ummah. The Art of war is classic book written by Sun Tzu some 2500 years ago. Sun Tzu writes If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. What a meaningful statement this is, applicable to every aspect of our daily life. In order to win, it is indispensable to be self aware and have complete knowledge of your competitor as well. The conquest of Happiness by Bertrand Russell is book of philosophy and the writer was British philosopher, logician, and social reformer, founding figure in the analytic movement in Anglo-American philosophy and recipient of the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1950. According to Bertrand Russell happiness has two types: one is “Plain” and the second is “Fancy”. The simplest way to describe the difference between the two sorts of happiness is to say that one sort is open to any human being, and the other only to those who can read and write. Pleasures of
  • 4. achievement demand difficulties such that beforehand success seems doubtful although in the end it is usually achieved. This is perhaps the chief reason why a modest estimate of one’s own powers is a source of happiness. The Prince, political short book by Niccolò Machiavelli, written in 1513. A short treatise on how to acquire power, create a state, and keep it, The book represents Machiavelli’s effort to provide a guide for political action based on the lessons of history and his own experience as a foreign secretary. His belief that politics has its own rules so shocked his readers that the adjectival form of his surname, Machiavellian, came to be used as a synonym for political manoeuvres marked by cunning, duplicity, or bad faith. The Prince has often been called "a handbook for dictators”, It was said of Napoleon that he slept with a copy of The Prince beneath his pillow, and similar remarks have been made concerning Hitler and Stalin. The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People is yet an other great book and considered to be the premier Self Help books ever written. These habits are one: be Proactive Two: Begin with the end in mind Three: Put first things first Four: Think win win Five: Seek first to understand then to be understood. Six: Synergize Seven: Sharpen the saw. The first six habits are simple to understand. The last habit refers to the fact that you have to spend your whole life developing your abilities, capabilities, skills and competencies. The book has helped millions of people around the globe to transform their lives for good. The Secret by Rhonda Byrne is great motivational book and alludes to a famous concept in the world of self Help Literature which pertains to the “Law of Attraction”. Whatever your mind can conceive it can achieve if you have the conviction, determination , and perseverance to pursue your dreams. The writer of Readistan has given a You tube link “ The strangest Secret by Earl Nightingale”, This 35 minutes video will change your life.
  • 5. How to win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie is about 100 years old book and more than 15 million copies have been sold, In nutshell the book provides Six ways to Make People Like You 1. Become genuinely interested in other people and their problems. 2. Keep a Smile on your face. 3. Remember that a person's name is to that person the sweetest and most important sound in any language. Call him by his name. 4. Be a good listener, some people just want to be listened. 5. Talk in terms of the other person's interests and show affection. 6. Make the other person feel important and do it sincerely. The Alchemist is a novel by Brazilian author Paulo Coelho which was first published in 1988. Originally written in Portuguese, it became a widely translated international bestseller. It’s also the favorite book of Famous Urdu Columnist Javed Chaudhry. Few take away from Santiago Story are:- ➢ Always dare to dream, Your life should be driven by a purpose. ➢ Be steadfast and adamant. ➢ Never by complacent. ➢ Choose your life partner wisely. The writer urges the readers to be Santiago of their life and see the miracles coming. The 5 AM Club by Robin Sharma. Your early morning hours tend to be the most productive time of day because you get uninterrupted time to yourself. Particularly for Muslims offering Fajar Prayers has lot of benefits both in this world and life hereafter. Sharma writes that the hour between 5am to 6am is the victory hour. In these 60 minutes you can perform several activities which can nurture your personality spiritually, mentally and physically.
  • 6. At the end I suggest that writer of “Readistan” should have selected few Books from celebrated writers like Yuval Noah Harari, Stephen Hawking and Will Durant as well. Amjad Hussain Amjad is a Retired Army Officer and has done MSc in Military Sciences and Bachelor of Law. He writes on Different National and International Issues.