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Best Books on Stoicism: 18 TOP Books on Living Virtuously

Arthur Worsley
by Arthur Worsley
M.A. Psychology, Oxford. McKinsey Alum. Founder & Editor at TAoL.

Looking for the best books on stoicism of all time?

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Quick Intro: Stoicism 101

In this list of book recommendations, you’ll find 3 core stoic texts and 15 of the best stoic books ever written. But before we jump in, let’s tackle a few common FAQs about stoic philosophy…

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Stoicism is about as practical and accessible as philosophy gets, so don’t let this list overwhelm you. Scan my recommendations, pick a book on Stoic philosophy that excites you and start reading.

And until next time, stay humble, be awesome and go well.

The 3 Ancient Stoic Texts

These three ancient stoic texts contain the most concentrated and practical collection of Stoic wisdom we know of today. There are others but these are the best place to start.

Letters from a StoicSeneca
Letters from a Stoic is a powerful and practical collection of 124 letters on how to become a more devoted stoic in every aspect of life, by stoic philosopher and tutor to emperor Nero, Seneca the Younger.
Published -49 // 256 pages // Rated 4.3 over 18,200 reviews on Goodreads
The DiscoursesEpictetus
Published 108 // 384 pages // Rated 4.2 over 3,900 reviews on Goodreads
MeditationsMarcus Aurelius (FREE Summary)
Meditations is a deeply humbling and thought-provoking insight into the stoic mindset of one of history’s greatest leaders and thinkers – by Roman emperor, philosopher and example to us all, Marcus Aurelius.
Published 180 // 99 pages // Rated 4.2 over 156,000 reviews on Goodreads

The 15 Best Books On Stoicism Ever Written

Why these best books on stoicism and not others? To stay objective, I rank all my book recommendations by what’s most loved (Goodreads rating), what’s most popular (Goodreads review count) and what’s proven timelessly relevant (first publication date).

This isn’t a whimsical list. It’s a data-driven, crowdsourced collection of the best books on stoicism ever published as decided by book lovers just like you. (Note: To maximise diversity, I only include the top ranking book from any series in a list.)

And if you think something's missing? I LOVE book recommendations so if there are any other best books on stoicism that you think deserve mentioning, email me and I’ll be sure to include them in the next round of updates.

Until then, enjoy this ultimate list of the 15 best books on stoicism of all time...

Books 1-5: The Top 5 Best Books On Stoicism of All Time

The top 5 best books on stoicism of all time are...

Best Books on Stoicism: Philosophy as a Way of Life
1. Philosophy as a Way of Life - Pierre Hadot
Spiritual Exercises from Socrates to Foucault
Published 1981 // 320 pages // Rated 4.3 over 1,000 reviews on Goodreads
Best Books on Stoicism: The Daily Stoic
2. The Daily Stoic - Ryan Holiday
366 Meditations for Clarity, Effectiveness, and Serenity
Published 2016 // 416 pages // Rated 4.4 over 5,700 reviews on Goodreads
Best Books on Stoicism: A Guide to the Good Life
3. A Guide to the Good Life - William B. Irvine
The Ancient Art of Stoic Joy
Published 2008 // 326 pages // Rated 4.2 over 19,800 reviews on Goodreads
Best Books on Stoicism: Courage Under Fire
4. Courage Under Fire - James B. Stockdale
Testing Epictetus's Doctrines in a Laboratory of Human Behavior
Published 1993 // 32 pages // Rated 4.3 over 1,000 reviews on Goodreads
Best Books on Stoicism: The Obstacle Is the Way
5. The Obstacle Is the Way - Ryan Holiday
The Timeless Art of Turning Trials into Triumph
Published 2014 // 201 pages // Rated 4.1 over 53,000 reviews on Goodreads

Books 6-15: The Best Books On Stoicism to Read Next

Here are the next best books on stoicism from my database...

6. Ego Is the Enemy - Ryan Holiday
Published 2016 // 226 pages // Rated 4.1 over 20,600 reviews on Goodreads
7. Stoicism and the Art of Happiness - Donald J. Robertson
Published 2013 // 256 pages // Rated 4.2 over 1,300 reviews on Goodreads
8. The Practicing Stoic - Ward Farnsworth
A Philosophical User's Manual
Published 2018 // 256 pages // Rated 4.5 over 600 reviews on Goodreads
9. How to Think Like a Roman Emperor - Donald J. Robertson
The Stoic Philosophy of Marcus Aurelius
Published 2019 // 304 pages // Rated 4.4 over 2,300 reviews on Goodreads
10. Stoicism - John Sellars
Published 2006 // 219 pages // Rated 4.2 over 300 reviews on Goodreads
11. The Philosophy of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy - Donald J. Robertson
Stoic Philosophy as Rational and Cognitive Psychotherapy
Published 2010 // 316 pages // Rated 4.2 over 200 reviews on Goodreads
12. Rome's Last Citizen - Rob Goodman
The Life and Legacy of Cato, Mortal Enemy of Caesar
Published 2012 // 384 pages // Rated 4.1 over 900 reviews on Goodreads
13. Dying Every Day - James Romm
Seneca at the Court of Nero
Published 2014 // 290 pages // Rated 4.1 over 1,100 reviews on Goodreads
14. How to Be a Stoic - Massimo Pigliucci
Using Ancient Philosophy to Live a Modern Life
Published 2017 // 288 pages // Rated 4.0 over 4,200 reviews on Goodreads
15. The Little Book of Stoicism - Jonas Salzgeber
Timeless Wisdom to Gain Resilience, Confidence, and Calmness
Published 2019 // 287 pages // Rated 4.2 over 1,300 reviews on Goodreads

More Book Recommendations

Enjoyed this list of the best books on stoicism of all time?

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More Best Books of All Time (by Type)

These are some lists of overall best books to read...

More Best Nonfiction Books (by Topic)

These are some lists of best nonfiction books to read...

More Best Fiction Books (by Genre)

These are some lists of best fiction books to read...

Or, you can read all my book recommendations.

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