Summary: Each one of these books will leave you feeling like a goddamn striding giant. Read them. Use them. Conquer.
Young Men and Fire by Norman Maclean.
Norm Maclean was an old school firefighter in Montana back in the early 1900s. He wrote this nonfiction account at the very end of his life and died right before finishing it. I will not mince words: Young Men and Fire is a crucible in which masculinity and manhood are put to the blaze and brought down to their very fucking passionate essence. It is an epic which took the last energy and life of a man who knew and understood everything you've read in the Red Pill, and more.
The book is about a group of the earliest Forest Service smokejumpers, young boys (late teens, early 20s) who gave their lives fighting a raging inferno in the middle of nowhere. Thankless, courageous, adventurous, scary as hell work. Norm scours every bit of the experience, from the science of wildfires to the very effort it took for the boys to run from the inescapable blaze.
Throughout the work you get gems about how women should act and treat men, how people should treat each other, the tragedy that befalls men when they don't band together and trust one another, and because he's a legendary practical son of a bitch: how to survive a fucking forest fire.
It's science and poetry revolving around the spirit of masculinity, written in a way you will never see again. Every page will teach you something about what it is to be a man and to live a thankless life from the inside out. It will energize you in a way that you could never understand before cracking open the first page, and you will weep goddamn manly tears by the time it's all over. Read this fucking book.
Notable quote of shameless bad assery:
There are times when you have to do things before you try to figure out what things are all about.
Mental Discipline: The Pursuit of Peak Performance by Mike Livingston
Olympic medalist Mike Livingston goes from the absolute minutiae of training physiology all the way out to the East/West views of philosophy and mental and physical growth in a work that I can only assume he stole from the slain corpse of a fucking god. There's a reason why it's $150 right now on Amazon, and it was written in the 1980s.
Where Norm Maclean waxed poetic about the solitary spirit of man, Mike Livingston digs out the very core of what it is to face the unknown - specifically that moment during physical exertion when you don't think you can give any more, and then suddenly you give more. He tells you exactly what happens in your body during that moment, how that ties in with major philosophical belief systems, and even pulls fucking quantum mechanics into the conversation and makes it relevant.
He discusses facing the unknown repeatedly in order to train yourself toward that moment of complete clarity and perfection. There's no coddling, no witty remarks about how life is worth it even if you don't reach that goal, none of that bullshit. He makes you work to understand the first 90% of the book (you'll feel like you've taken a masters course in physiology and philosophy) and then cold cocks you with a few pages of utter burning truth which I can't even begin to paraphrase. This book is like a supermodel sitting on my shelf who never gets old.
The goal of today's training is failure. The goal of training in general is success.
And another (this one he wrote in the foreward for Assault on Lake Casitas):
The force of will that binds the puzzle is found only in the focus of the mind in the present moment. It is a truth that cannot be learned too often or too well.
Assault on Lake Casitas by Brad Alan Lewis
Olympic gold medalist Brad Alan Lewis, trained by none other than Mike Livingston, keeps a journal on how he became the outcast raging fucking conqueror of the rowing world. A California kid with no ivy league ties, he was shunned and shit on by every spoiled asshole in rowing. His ivy league enemies shunned weight lifting too, thinking it was some sort of sin to be a rower who lifted. So what did Livingston have Lewis do?
Lift his goddamn ass off.
Lewis talks about his motivations for becoming a champion, his unorthodox and wild training styles, and most importantly - his utter unstoppable rage that fueled him at every turn. For most of the book I thought, even having read all the posts here, I never encountered a soul as purely driven by rage and anger as Brad Alan Lewis. Then the end of the book introduces the most RP described individual I have ever come across, a man who doubles down on the entire fucking story with just two pages dedicated to his name:
Lewis describes this man as both his silent mentor and a beast with such constant simmering natural violence that he could scare the shit out of anyone just by glancing in their direction. What Hilterbrand tells Lewis at the end of the book is one of the most jet-fueled pieces of no fucks given advice I've ever read or heard.
Everywhere there are distractions and seductions that threaten to blunt or deflect the focus.
You must assume full responsibility for choosing to pursue power. Know that you alone have chosen to be tested, and then proceed without doubt, remorse, or blame. You alone are responsible.
My life consisted of a solitary race, now only five days away, and I wanted to make sure that I went out in a flaming, hell-bent explosion.
Pimp: The Story of My Life by Iceberg Slim
If David Foster Wallace or Stephen Hawking had dedicated their genius to becoming the world's most legendary pimp, this is the field report that would result. Slim's insight into the working of the female mind is brought out with such unrelenting force that after a few pages you'll wonder how you came into possession of such weird magical piece of literature. It's worth noting that this story wouldn't have nearly the same force if Slim didn't give equal attention to both his failures and success. He talks about every wrong turn he takes with women, how he loses each girl, and the utterly insane ways that women respond to real men who exert their authority.
His intensity, conviction, and rigorous critique of his methods, and those of other men, could lead you to believe that Slim is a time traveling Red Piller. Seriously, the whole fucking thing reads like a 40s version of the sidebar. Slim waxes poetic about game much like Maclean but in a funnier, dirtier way. The whole book is one extreme field report, separated into smaller chunks that talks about his many failures and conquests. It's a goddamn privilege to read from beginning to end, save for the whiny, moralizing epilogue which I honestly could have done without.
The whole fucking book. There is absolutely nothing like it.