Most people think they’re smart, they’re logical.
But the truth is the opposite.
We often let our emotion triumph over our logic.
Even the experts are prone to logical fallacies.
These best books on logical thinking & reasoning will help you win many arguments using logic.
They can help you to avoid logical fallacies and be the person who always wins debates and arguments.
1. Gödel, Escher, Bach: An Eternal Golden Braid by Douglas R. Hofstadter
Gödel, Escher, Bach is an incredible exploration of captivating thoughts like meaning, reduction, and recursion at the heart of cognitive science.
It is concerned with the contact between the music of Bach, the artwork of Escher, and the mathematics of Gödel.
The book also throws light upon the prospects for computers and artificial intelligence for mimicking the human brain and thought.
It is an engaging take on abstruse mathematical topics like undecidability, recursion, and strange loops.
Douglas Hofstadter’s Gödel, Escher, Bach is no less than a marvel for a general reader and a computer techie!
- The book sets a standard for thinking about the future of computers and their relation to the way we think.
- It is a profound, interesting, and entertaining meditation on human thought and creativity.
- Some of the topics covered include artificial intelligence, formal and informal systems, number theory, form in mathematics, figure and ground, consistency, etc.
2. An Illustrated Book of Bad Arguments by Ali Almossawi
Ali Almossawi’s An Illustrated Book of Bad Arguments is an antidote to fuzzy thinking, with furry animals!
Bringing the internet age a much-needed dose of old-school logic, the book takes on the logical misconceptions and makes it wonderfully entertaining.
It is a collection of flaws that reintroduces the readers to fundamental notions of logical discourse, the world of logic.
It is full of cogent explanations of the straw man fallacy, the slippery slope argument, and the ad hominem attack.
An Illustrated Book of Bad Arguments is a geek-chic book, undoubtedly a must for anyone in the habit of holding opinions!
- It tackles classic subjects like circular reasoning, false dilemma, straw man, appeal to ignorance, and genetic fallacy.
- It is an attractive, substantive, and illustrated guide to bad arguments, faulty logic, and silly rhetoric.
- It is a book on how to strengthen and how not to weaken your arguments.
3. How Not to Be Wrong: The Power of Mathematical Thinking by Jordan Ellenberg
How Not to Be Wrong is a math-world superstar, unveiling the hidden beauty and logic of the world.
It tells us that math isn’t confined to abstract incidents that never occur in real life, rather it touches everything we do.
It shows us how math allows us to see the hidden structures underneath the messy and chaotic surface of the world.
Jordan Ellenberg pulls from history and the latest theoretical developments to provide those untrained in math with the knowledge they need.
How Not to Be Wrong is indeed a discovery of the astonishing versatility of mathematical thinking and realizing its very real limits!
- Relying on few technical formulas, it demonstrates how often mathematics sheds unexpected light on economics, public health, and also politics.
- It helps us realize how mathematical reasoning permeates our lives and simply extends common sense.
- A witty, easy-to-follow, and compelling book that helps you explore your mathematical superpowers.
How to Argue & Win Every Time is more than just a book about arguments, it is an outline on how to live!
Gerry Spence translates his experience and success secrets into the language of the real world of jobs, romance, and child rearing.
It is an interesting and thought-provoking perspective on how someone looks at the nature of debates.
It motivates us to struggle without being combative, persuade instead of crushing others, and become credible.
Gerry Spence’s How to Argue & Win Every Time is all about how to rise above the herd in the conduct-of-life genre!
- It exhorts the readers to believe that the art of arguing is verily the art of living.
- It shows us how everyone is capable of making a winning argument in our everyday lives.
- It guides us to convert our fears into allies in public speaking or during an argument.
5. A Rulebook for Arguments by Anthony Weston
A Rulebook for Arguments is a succinct introduction to the art of writing and assessing arguments, organized around specific rules.
Anthony Weston has elegantly organized and added new material on oral presentation, web sources, and extended arguments that everyone needs.
The book delivers great amounts of amazing practical advice to think and write more clearly.
It is clear, accurate, and interesting book suited for daily reference for logically setting up our arguments.
A Rulebook for Arguments should be your first choice if you wish to seek straightforward guidance about how to assess and construct arguments!
- It is the ultimate how-to book for anyone who wants to use reasons and evidence in support of conclusions.
- It inspires us to be clear instead of confusing, persuasive instead of dogmatic, and better at evaluating the arguments.
- It consists of forty-five timeless rules, all cleverly explained and illustrated with vivid examples.
6. Crimes Against Logic: Exposing the Bogus Arguments of Politicians, Priests, Journalists, and Other Serial Offenders by Jamie Whyte
Crimes Against Logic takes us through the rhetoric, faulty reasoning, and misinformation that we are subjected to from morning to night.
It is a ruthlessly funny romp through the bogus logic served up in the media, at the office, and our homes.
Applying his sharp wit to dozens of examples, Jamie Whyte cuts through the haze of facts, figures, and double-talk.
It is a must for anyone who have an interest in clear thinking, logical argumentation, and clearing away fuzzy thought patterns.
Crimes Against Logic is guaranteed to make one hell of a killer joy in a courtroom or during a debate!
- It exposes the logical flaws and sheer nonsense and gets at the real truth behind what people are telling us.
- It puts a cold stone of logic on prejudice, statistics, morality, religion, weasel words, and seductive sirens such as politicians and journalists.
- It makes us aware of the crap that passes for the legitimate argument these days.
7. Critical Thinking by Brooke Noel Moore and Richard Parker
Critical Thinking teaches the students the skills they need in order to think for themselves, the skills the world awaits!
The author’s practical and accessible approach illustrates core concepts with real-world examples, extensive practice exercises, and a set of pedagogical features.
It gives an insight into new terminology on how an argument can be evaluated and successfully won.
It is a great tool to come across the first set of survival skills that will pay big dividends later on in life.
Critical Thinking offers a learning environment where each student gets the targeted help needed for efficient mastery of core concepts.
- It is a first-of-its-kind integrated program designed specifically for critical thinking courses.
- It makes us realize about the skills that are necessary for college courses and the after-college world.
- It is a highly adaptive learning method with thoughtful exercises and concrete examples.
8. Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus by Ludwig Wittgenstein
Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus defines the object of philosophy not as a theory, but as the logical clarification of thoughts and activities.
It proposes the solution to most philosophic problems by means of a critical method of linguistic analysis.
When published, it created a sensation among intellectual circles and influenced the development of logical positivism and changed the direction of 20th-century thought!
The author applies his theories to various branches of traditional philosophy, illustrating how mistakes arise from misuses of language and symbolism.
Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus is a book that no serious philosophy lover can afford to neglect and give it a miss!
- It proclaims philosophy as a matter of logic rather than metaphysics.
- It directs us through the values of symbolism and the necessary relations between words and objects.
- It discusses the theory of knowledge as well as principles of physics and ethics and aspects of the mystical.
9. How to Prove It: A Structured Approach by Daniel J. Velleman
How to Prove It prepares students to make the transition from solving problems to proving theorems effortlessly.
Clean and cogent, Daniel Velleman teaches readers the techniques needed to read and write proofs.
The book covers concepts of logic and set theory to familiarize students with the language of mathematics and how it is interpreted.
Concepts are used to explain a step-by-step breakdown of some important techniques used in constructing proofs.
How to Prove It is a valuable introduction for students to the nuts and bolts of mathematical proofs in general!
- It consists of 200 exercises, selected solutions, and an introduction to Proof Designer Software to help students construct their own proofs.
- It shows us how complex proofs are built up of smaller steps, using detailed scratch-work.
- It is full of thorough and clear explanations to expose the machinery of proofs about natural numbers, relations, functions, and infinite sets.
10. How to Solve It: A New Aspect of Mathematical Method by G. Polya
How to Solve It, a perennial bestseller guides anyone in any field about how to think straight.
The author reveals how the mathematical method of demonstrating a proof or finding an unknown can be of help in attacking any reasonable problem.
It consists of brilliant instructions on kicking away irrelevancies and going straight to the heart of the problem.
An elementary textbook on heuristic reasoning, it shows illustrative methods and formulation of mathematical principles.
How to Solve It is highly recommended for an individual seriously interested in finding out methods of solving problems.
- It tells us how mathematics and problem solving, in general, need a lot of practice and determination.
- It inspires us to challenge our creative thinking to solve problems and certainly not copy the predefined solutions provided by others.
- A lucid and an appealing prose, it is a source of inspiration for several generations to come.
11. Being Logical: A Guide to Good Thinking by D.Q. McInerny
Being Logical talks about how logic is synonymous with reason, judgment, sense, wisdom, and sanity.
The author tells us that being logical using evidence and genuine conclusions give us the ability to create concise and reasoned arguments.
It breaks logic down to its essentials through clear analysis, accessible examples, and focused insights.
It covers the sources of illogical thinking from naïve optimism to narrow-mindedness through common examples before dissecting logic.
Elegant, pithy, and precise, Being Logical is an indispensable guide to using logic to advantage in everyday life.
- It is an introduction to symbolic logic, sound thinking, and constructing deductive arguments.
- It offers valuable counsel on making a clear and effective point full of logic.
- It shows us the tremendous importance that language holds while crafting and presenting an argument.
12. How to Win Every Argument: The Use and Abuse of Logic by Madsen Pirie
Witty and infectious, How to Win Every Argument is a guide to using and indeed abusing logic in order to win arguments.
It is a broad-ranging book about triumphing in arguments ranging from the everyday life to the downright serious.
The most of the common fallacies popularly used in an argument are identified with devastating examples.
The readers while reading this book will come across fallacies of which they themselves are guilty in an argument.
How to Win Every Argument will certainly make you maddeningly smart and therefore envied by all!
- It demonstrates how to simultaneously strengthen our thinking and identify the weaknesses in other people’s arguments.
- It is a thought-provoking, enjoyable, and entertaining book mischievously showing how to be deliberately illogical and get away with it!
- It is a series of explanations on varied kinds of logical fallacies.
Logically Fallacious is a crash course in effective reasoning, persuading you to make significant improvements in the way you reason and make decisions.
It catapults you into a world where you start to see things how they really are, not how you think they are.
The focus is on logical fallacies, which loosely defined, are simply errors in reasoning.
It provides an insight into how discussions don’t always follow the actual topic and sometimes delve into being emotional and illogical.
Logically Fallacious is a true definition and example of a breakdown of various kinds of logical errors!
- It takes us through fallacious arguments that are never encountered before.
- It is a faithful guide for naturalistic and reasoned thinking.
- It gives you the tools to see the truths of communication that have vanished since the advent of the internet.
14. Gödel’s Proof by Ernest Nagel and James R. Newman
Gödel’s Proof aim is to make the substance of Gödel’s findings and the general character of his proof accessible to all.
It is an effective clarity and insight into extremely important work in the philosophy of mathematics.
The book maps all the expressions generated by the successive application of axioms back onto numbers.
It is a fun and challenging discussion that improves your understanding of the underpinnings of computational logic.
Gödel’s Proof is a great portal into Gödel’s genius.
- It is clear, short, and easy-to-read, while still exposing the reader to some of the depth of Gödel’s work.
- It allows us to easily understand Gödel’s proof and its implications.
- A classic book that offers a great overview of a fascinating result from mathematics.
15. Nonsense: Red Herrings, Straw Men and Sacred Cows: How We Abuse Logic in Our Everyday Language by Robert J. Gula
Nonsense is an ultimate compilation and study of verbal logical fallacies available anywhere.
It is a collection of the myriad ways we go about being illogical and how we deceive ourselves and others.
It is also a short course in nonmathematical logical thinking, especially vital for students of philosophy and economics.
Robert Gula has given an outstanding introduction to critical thinking and analysis of the art of argument.
A book of remarkable scholarship, Nonsense is unexpectedly relaxing, informal, and accessible.
- It keeps things and defines complicated terms in layman’s language to make it understandable by all.
- It will help you to start seeing fallacies in people’s and your own arguments.
- It strengthens the ability to read, think, and write logically and critically.
16. Introduction to Logic by Irving M. Copi, Carl Cohen, and Kenneth McMahon
Introduction to Logic is a proven textbook that has been honed through the collaborative efforts of many scholars over the last five decades.
Its meticulous attention to precision in exposition and explanation is matched by the greatest accuracy in all the associated details.
It’s personalized human setting and current-date examples grab the utmost interest of the students.
The book comprises of fundamental methods and techniques of correct reasoning for our everyday lives.
Introduction to Logic provides a nice aid for students to sharpen their argumentative skills, even when they may be unfamiliar with the topics!
- It delivers a formidable subject in an easy-to-ingest manner with excellent readability and appropriate chapter summaries and charts.
- It explains compatibility, predictive power, falsifiability, simplicity, and scientific inquiry in a lucid and thorough manner.
- The strength of the book is that no matter when a student reads it, it always is sure to have the latest and most pertinent examples.
17. Logic: A Very Short Introduction by Graham Priest
Combining authority with wit, accessibility, and style, Logic offers an introduction to one of the life’s most interesting topics – logic.
The author shows how wrong the conception of logic perceived as having little to do with the rest of the philosophy is.
It explores the philosophical roots of the subject, explaining how modern formal logic deals with everyday issues.
Along the way, the basics of formal logic are explained in simple, non-technical terms.
Logic is all about showing that logic itself is a powerful and the most exciting part of modern philosophy.
- It is a quick introduction to formal logic or for adding the required pizzazz to an otherwise dry logic course.
- Every chapter ends with a twist that softens some of the conclusions just reached along the lines of “Yes, but have you considered…”
- It is a broader perspective, of the human quest for knowledge, about what makes and does not make sense.
18. Book of Proof by Richard Hammack
Book of Proof is an introduction to the language and standard proof methods of mathematics.
It is a bridge from the computational courses such as calculus or differential equations that students encounter to a more abstract outlook.
The book lays a foundation for more theoretical courses like topology, analysis, and abstract algebra.
It highlights logic, proofs, and other basic objects and language used in higher mathematics.
Book of Proof is an ultimate guidebook even for those having the slightest of the inclination towards mathematical maturity!
- The various topics include sets, logic, counting, methods of conditional and non-conditional proof, disproof, induction, relations, infinite cardinality, and functions.
- It introduces proofs gently enough to allow a determined self-student stay with it.
- It consists of plenty of exercises and odd-numbered solutions to strengthen your mathematical skills.
19. A Concise Introduction to Logic by Patrick J. Hurley
Unsurpassed for its clarity and comprehensiveness, A Concise Introduction to Logic is certainly the best book on logic in the market.
It is a lucid, focused, and accessible presentation of the basic subject matter of logic, both formal and informal.
The novel previews of the book connect a section’s content to real-life scenarios.
It uses everyday examples to translate new notions and terms into concepts that readers unfamiliar with the subject matter can relate to.
A Concise Introduction to Logic is, without a doubt, a gold-standard introductory of logical texts!
- The book introduces content step-by-step to each section to simplify the whole process of learning logic.
- It is an extensive collection of exercises guiding readers through greater proficiency with the skills they are learning.
- It is expanded with modern and creative examples that ease up on the tenseness inherent in learning logic.
20. The Logic of Scientific Discovery by Karl R. Popper
The Logic of Scientific Discovery presents a striking new picture of the logical character of scientific discovery.
It does full justice to the liberating effect of scientific discoveries and its impact upon scientific thought in general.
Karl Popper’s content is highly stimulating and contains much that is a bedrock for future work!
Addressing many key issues, the book is essential for anyone wanting to understand the philosophy of physics.
The Logic of Scientific Discovery is, undoubtedly, a first-grade contribution to the logic of scientific method!
- It is an absolute classic masterpiece on clear thinking around the nature of scientific proof.
- It consists of stimulating, valuable, and practical viewpoints of the author in the subject of physics.
- A master of logic, the book is thought-provoking and highly informative to persuade you to reverse the way you look at the world.
So, Which Book Should You Buy?
If you’re like most people who prefer to read popular books, the books on the Quick Recommendation table is enough for you.
But if you want a textbook, I recommend book #16 on this list.
What is your story regarding logic? Share with us in the comment section below!