top of page
  • Kevin Lyons

Top 10 'Red Pill' Books of All Time

Summary of Contents:

  1. Public Finance and Public Policy

  2. The Gervais Principle

  3. Anatomy of the State

  4. Rich Dad Poor Dad

  5. The Unplugged Alpha

  6. The Rational Male

  7. 48 Laws of Power

  8. 7 Habits of Highly Effective People

  9. Discipline Equals Freedom: Field Manual

  10. How to Think More Effectively


Many men drift through life waiting for their big break. But whilst they desperately wish they could be that guy on the beach in Turks & Caicos with a ten by his side and a Lamborghini in the garage, it never quite happens for them. This is because, the vast majority of the time, they have been subjected to a highly complex scheme designed by those in power to keep them lazy, effeminate, and ignorant. However, thanks to many red-pill influencers, this scheme is being continuously and more publicly exposed and appropriately named 'The Matrix', allowing men to spot and escape the nefarious programme at an alarming rate and forge their own path.

Now, I am sure that there are some of you who may not fully comprehend just how pervasive the matrix is and / or are just getting started on their journey of awakening. For that reason, I have curated a list of books below which will help the reader, upon consuming the recommended materials, completely understand the extent to which their reality is being manipulated on a day-to-day basis by those in power and how they can escape said manipulation by applying the principles taught in the books below. The list has been created such that the reader may first understand the principles which enable the matrix to form, then delve into specific topics which time and again trip up aspiring Neos, and then examine how the reader can escape the matrix using specific methods and mind control. It is also important to note that the list is ordered from broad to specific topical coverage, and it is recommended that the list is read in order from 1 to 10, as each book builds on the lessons of the preceding one. I must also warn the reader that the list starts off boring, but gets meaningfully more enjoyable as you begin to acquire the 'boring' knowledge (such is life).

Make no mistake, the application of all principles outlined in the following books will be extremely tough and may result in the loss of friends who can't keep up or understand your mission. But rest assured, when followed with precision and vigour, these teachings have the potential to change your life beyond any modicum of rational belief. So, here we go...


#1: Public Finance and Public Policy (

by Arye L. Hillman


Okay, fair warning here - this book is extremely boring. The reason it makes top of the list is because of how important it is to understanding organizational psychology and how those in power are willing and able to concoct a system designed to keep their subjects in the middle or lower class and subjugate them to a life of meaningless hard labour, which is the foundation of the matrix. And, whilst the book is heavily focussed on politics, there are many key takeaways about power in general which will help the reader to analyze the world around them in a new and uncannily accurate light. This book was key to me being able to view things independently as they are without any external prompts. Having said this, the book is not an essential read at first due to how arduous and mentally involved it is. If you don't think you are ready to tackle an 800-page text on political philosophy, I would strongly recommend reading the following two books instead. Having said this, 'Public Finance and Public Policy' does become essential eventually, as it is the only book I have ever read which gives the reader a complete toolbox for seeing the code in the matrix, rather than a rulebook for escaping it.


  1. Depth of Content: This book provides extremely detailed analysis of power structures and how / why the matrix exists.

  2. Versatility: Serves as a toolbox, rather than a rulebook such that the reader may become extremely skilled at noticing programming without the help of others.

  3. Makes you a genius: If truly understood, the contents of this book will enable you to dominate anyone in a debate about politics and perhaps even life whilst realising just how little everyone else knows about the world around them.


  1. Long: At 859 pages, this book is the longest on the list.

  2. Arduous: Not only is Hillman's book long, it is a tough read. There are no motivational quotes, no verbose language; just 800+ pages of cold hard facts and philosophy.

  3. No Actionability: The majority of other books on this list leave the reader with a definite set of rules or tasks to complete in order to improve their life. Public Finance and Public Policy does not. The reader has to take the information from the book and make their own way with it, which can be tough given its abstract nature.

  4. Expensive: This is used primarily as an academic text, and is thus the most expensive book on the list.

#2: The Gervais Principle (

by Venkatesh Rao


A crucial part of escaping the matrix and becoming red-pilled is first understanding and being sure of how and why the matrix exists. Where 'Public Finance and Public Policy' explains this in a purely factual and politically focussed manner, 'The Gervais Principle' takes a much more fun and punchy approach to explaining how people in power keep the 'losers' and 'clueless' employees (you) below them. If you thought that the preceding book was too much to begin with, you must read this to understand the origins of the matrix at the very least. Likewise, if you read the preceding book, 'The Gervais Principle' neatly transfers your newfound knowledge of power structures to the corporate world, and will help you see how and why powerful people at companies such as Netflix, Meta, BlackRock, and maybe even the company you work for keep the general population in a state of covert slavery.


  1. Instant Revelation: This is one of those brilliant books that seem to make everything so clear all at once. It will, in an instant, explain so many of the hardships you face in your life and their root cause so that you can escape them and stop playing the 'loser' or 'clueless' employee.

  2. Concise: This book is only 171 pages, yet explains so much. It is a no-brainer read for anyone trying to become fully red-pill aware.

  3. Representational: Some of the other books on this list are abstract and complicated, requiring lots of thought to complete. However, this book is not one of them. Instead, it is down to earth, relatable, and provides the reader with plenty of situations that they will instantly recognize.


  1. Localized: This book, whilst it is very relevant to the workplace, lacks analysis of systemic subjugation, which is essential in understanding the pervasiveness of the matrix to its full extent.

  2. Not Always True: Even though this book does provide valuable insight into the mind of corporate sociopaths, it may leave the reader at risk of believing that everyone else around them is a sociopath, which is simply not the case. Readers must tread with caution and ensure they are adept at spotting true sociopaths when necessary, rather than thinking that the entire world is their enemy by default.

  3. Open to Debate: I like books that base their arguments on irrefutable facts and / or logic such that I can make the best possible decisions. However, The Gervais Project, does leave some holes in its argumentation and philosophy which may need to be patched up by the reader based on their own life experience and other reliable sources.

  4. Kindle Only: This book is only available on Kindle via Amazon

#3: Anatomy of the State (

by Murray Rothbard


If I could only read one of the first three books on this list, it would probably be this one due to its perfect blend of the best aspects of the foregoing books. Rothbard excellently conducts the analysis of sociopathic systemic banditry where Rao was missing it, and expertly exposes the manner in which powerful institutions such as government and mega corporations exert their influence to convince the general public to act in a manner which is starkly opposed to its own best interests. If understood and interoperated correctly, the reader may begin to see very clearly that much of our social norms, which we have been convinced are good and normal, are quite the opposite (take paying taxes, drinking alcohol, watching television, or getting a job as examples), and realize the tragic fact that the vast majority of society today simply believe what they are told without need for logical reasoning. I would highly recommend this book and easily classify it as an essential read if you want to understand how and why those without are constantly being manipulated and blue-pilled by those within.


  1. Concise: This book exposes the matrix in its entirety in just 60 pages, making it the shortest and most powerful book on this list.

  2. Pandora's Box: This book, even though short, touches upon some extremely complicated and time-old topics which ought to be explored further by reading more Rothbard and Austrian School economists and philosophers to help the reader complete their understanding of the human condition. If investigated appropriately, Rothbard and his colleagues will help you to truly internalize the fact that nothing in this world is fixed apart from the human desire to live and prosper, not even government and laws. If you like getting stuck into interesting topics, 'Anatomy of the State' is an excellent gateway drug.

  3. Indestructible Argumentation: In case the reader isn't aware, Rothbard is a top-tier economist and political thinker who is renowned for his genius and commonly hated by blue-pill losers. Accordingly, all of his work is brilliantly composed and based in immovable facts and logic. The reader can thus be confident that the conclusions and implications laid forth in this book are accurate and immutable. I often tell people that being red-pilled is a matter of knowledge rather than opinion, which I can always say assuredly because of authors such as Rothbard.


I always try to be honest regarding the books I recommend, and will always try to think of some cons. However, in the case of Anatomy of the state, there simply aren't any. The power of truth is too strong with this one!

#4: Rich Dad Poor Dad (

by Robert Kiyosaki


Now that the autistic learning phase is over, we can delve into some of the more light and entertaining reading, starting with finance. 'Rich Dad Poor Dad' certainly fits into this category. I know that it is more than somewhat of a cliché to include this book on the list, but the fact is its a red-pill rite of passage. As the best selling finance book of all time, it delves into the notion that, rather than being a slave to money and debt, one should master and use money and debt to their advantage. The book can be best summarised with a quote it contains and which is frequently referred to in the Manosphere: "playing to win" (as opposed to playing not to lose). If you haven't read this already, just do so and get it out of the way.


  1. Simple: One of the best things about 'Rich Dad Poor Dad' is that anyone can pick it up, read it quickly, and understand it fully with very little effort

  2. The Start of Financial Freedom: Many people I know who have started their own businesses and succeeded financially have told me that the first book they read about financial freedom was 'Rich Dad Poor Dad'. The importance of this book is not necessarily its contents, but the fact that it is a fantastic introduction to thinking about how to make money and use the system to your advantage, rather than being a slave to them both.

  3. Popular: The popularity of this book means that there are numerous resources based around it which can help the reader further their understanding of its principles and progress on their journey towards financial freedom with a significant amount of online assistance.


  1. Simple: This one is a double edged sword. Whilst the books simplicity is paramount to its appeal to people just beginning to awaken from their slave-lie slumber, it renders the book totally useless to just about anyone who has consumed any sort of other financial content. I would only recommend this book very early in your journey to becoming your own man. Otherwise, forget it.

  2. Popular: Another double edged sword... The books popularity means that the methods for achieving financial freedom put forward in the book have been made redundant by the sheer volume of newbie red-pillers competing to exploit them. Thus, I would recommend that the reader extracts Kiyosaki's principles, but not his methods, with care and diligence as to avoid wasting time in futile business ventures.

#5: The Unplugged Alpha (

by Richard Cooper


When discussing the red pill, we must also discuss women. It is an aspect of this game that is so often completely lost on men because of their feelings towards a significant other, which almost always ends up causing significant pain and turmoil in the mans life. With this in mind, I would strongly recommend that anyone at any level of their awakening reads Rich Cooper's 'The Unplugged Alpha', which discusses the importance of looks, money, and status, how to get women hooked, pros and cons of monogamy (mostly cons), how to select women, and more. I could have opted for many other books at this spot, but the simplicity and consistency of the rules set out by Cooper make it too good to ignore. Accordingly, I would firmly suggest following the lessons and criteria laid out in the book religiously, as to do so will never steer you wrong. Being one of the most influential people in the Manosphere, Cooper effortlessly pulls it out of the bag with this one.


  1. Definitive Guidelines: One of the best aspects of this book is the fact that it lays down numerous hard rules for male life. If you can learn to control your mind as a man should (see books below), then abiding stringently by the rules set out in The Unplugged Alpha', your life will simply be better with no exceptions.

  2. Free Chapter: Cooper offers one of the best chapters in his book, which outlines red flags in women, to newcomers completely for free here. If nothing else comes of you reading this article, get this chapter - it is worth its weight in gold.

  3. Supplementary Content: The author of 'The Unplugged Alpha', Rich Cooper, also has two Youtube channels (here and here) wherein he discusses the topics outlined in his book and more. This additional content is an easy way for the reader to develop their understanding and find more resources to help them on their mission of escaping the matrix.


  1. Narrow Focus: Much like 'Anatomy of the State', there isn't much wrong with this book. All of the points made have always proved to be correct in my life and the book doesn't overreach its purpose - to educate men about women. However, this confinement to the topic of intersexual dynamics may be see as a disadvantage to some, as it is all you're getting with this book. I personally don't see this as an issue however, as the book can and should be supplemented with other readings and by watching Rich's YouTube channels.

#6: The Rational Male (

by Rollo Tomassi


It would feel wrong not to include this book in the list of red-pill books, it being considered by many as the OG Manosphere text, and it deserves its spot here. It should be noted that this book is very similar in nature to 'The Unplugged Alpha' in that it focusses solely on providing a pragmatic guide to navigating intergender relationships and becoming the man that women want to be with and that other men want to be. However, it takes a slightly more detailed and nuanced approach to the issues it examines, which is why I would recommend reading it after 'The Unplugged Alpha' as opposed to before it. It may also be noted that much of the Manosphere content out there today comes directly from this book. Thus, if you want to completely understand the laws laid out by many of the current Manosphere influencers, I would recommend striking at the source by getting yourself a copy of 'The Rational Male'. It includes chapters which cover how to get over 'oneitis', attain an abundance mindset, and spin plates, and is certain to improve your understanding of the sexual marketplace upon reading it.


  • See 'The Unplugged Alpha'


  • See 'The Unplugged Alpha'

#7: 48 Laws Of Power (

by Robert Greene


Now that you have learned about the important aspects of the matrix - how it exists and some of the important topics it encompasses, it is time to go out into the real world and apply your knowledge. The perfect book to begin on this journey is undoubtedly Robert Greene's '48 Laws of Power', which is a classic and rudimentary text that serves to equip those who read it with the real world social skills, ranging from basic to advanced, needed to survive and prosper in a dog-eat-dog world. Undoubtedly, the book comes across as highly cynical and dark, which tends to put people off and assume that anyone who uses such techniques is a terrible person who would stand out like a sore thumb if they encountered them in real life. However, it is sadly those very people who continually and unwittingly allow themselves to be played and subjugated by individuals who have learned how to harness the powers of this book in a ruthlessly clandestine manner. If you have been paying attention up until this point, you should understand the unfortunate, yet obvious, fact that there are people in this world out to get you. I would thus strongly recommend you read and even learn the 48 laws set out by Robert Greene such that you can protect yourself and fight back against such people so that you can escape their tyranny and become the master of your own soul, which is the essence of being red-pilled.


  1. Ruthless: I often find myself groaning at the constant pandering of supposed free thinkers to the feelings of liberal progressives in an attempt to win the favour and supposed privilege of mainstream attention, but not whilst reading '48 Laws of Power'. In fact, rather than trying to protect your feelings and trying to make you feel better about the world, Greene spends all ruthlessly explaining the harsh realities of life and the methods employed by certain individuals in an attempt to exploit you and keep you beneath them. If candid free speech as such intimidates you, feel free to remain in the matrix.

  2. Clear Layout: As opposed to being a rambling mess of words with a poor structure, '48 Laws of Power' is superbly laid out and ensures that the reader is always clear with regards to what the author is talking about at any given moment, why it is relevant, and how it applies to their life.

  3. Easy to Use: Once understood, all of the laws explained in this book can instantly be used and spotted. This is different from some of the other books in this list, which take time and / or significant resources to act upon.


  1. Boring at Times: In the full version, Greene sometimes goes to a little too much effort just emphasize a point. This can sometimes take the form of one too many examples or a frivolous expansion upon an already complete explanation. However, there does exist a concise version of '48 Laws of Power' which completely eliminates this problem at the expense of a few pages.

  2. Open to Misinterpretation: Readers of this book have been known to end up using this book as a guide to manipulating people and getting what they want. Do not do this. Although it may work on some people for a period of time, it is a recipe for driving those who matter and are valuable to you away and becoming miserable. Instead, the book should be used primarily as a means of noticing the behaviours described in others and, when absolutely necessary, for personal gain.

  3. Well-Known: Because of how popular this book is, you are very unlikely to get away with any of the behaviours described by Greene unless you are an expert in deception. It also means that those who seek to manipulate you will likely have altered their playbook to avoid detection by bookworms who have read '48 Laws of Power', but have no practical knowledge. It is advised that this book be read in accompaniment with the first three books on this list

#8: 7 Habits of Highly Effective People (

by Stephen Covey


'7 Habits of Highly Effective People' is without doubt one of the best books I have ever read when it comes to understanding and attaining increased productivity and eliminating procrastination and doubt from your life. Covey does an excellent job of instilling a rigid set of habits (7 to be precise) which serve the reader in combatting matrix programming that tells them that 'one more won't hurt', 'no one else does that', or 'that's impossible'. When followed closely, this book may enable the reader to completely transform the way they live their lives and blow their former self out of the water. As an example, I never truly realized how lazy I was until I began employing the habits described in this book - I began my days earlier, went to bed later, worked longer, etc. This ability to do what is difficult and what you know needs doing is exactly what those at the top do not want their subjects to unlock. If a citizen cultivates the ability to work endless hours for themselves, the courage to stand up to their employer, and the motivation to maximize their mental and physical capabilities, the matrix loses a slave. This is what '7 Habits of Highly Effective People' can help the reader achieve.


  1. Easy to Follow: Much like Greene's '48 Laws of Power', '7 Habits of Highly Effective People' is always on point, relevant, easy to follow, and has the effect of instilling a deep desire within its reader to employ the habits described.

  2. Situational Independence: One of the great things about Covey's book is that, as opposed to providing a set of situation-specific rules, it lays out a general blueprint which can be followed by all people from any walk of life in any situation such that they can meaningfully improve their lives.

  3. Rarely Utilized: Despite this book is one of the oldest and best selling on the list, I am continually shocked at the number of people who know exactly what they need to do in order to improve their life, but just don't do it because of matrix messaging. This means that if you can use this book to unlock the ability to act on command, you will have a huge advantage over that vast majority of the population who can't.


  1. Nothing New: Whilst this book is good at providing a new way of thinking about productivity to its readers, the simple underlying message remains that you have to put in the work to get the life you want. This means that if you have been lazy in life up until this point, this book is unlikely to change your life unless you are ready to make drastic changes.

  2. Slightly Outdated: I remember when I first read this book noticing that it was missing the opportunity to incorporate the abilities of modern technology. This is, of course, down to the fact that it is one of the older books on the list, and thus may only be appropriate for insightful readers with the ability to extrapolate and combine ideas from different sources such that they can recognize where they might adapt the strategies proposed to suit the modern world.

#9: Discipline Equals Freedom: Field Manual (

by Jocko Willink


Everyone knows deep down that nothing can be achieved without discipline. We also know that there are few people on the planet better placed to teach us about discipline than members of the special forces, which is exactly what Jocko Willink was. This book is a rudimentary look into the methods of mastering your mind and doing the hard things regardless of your motivation levels or feelings at any given point in time. Simple in nature, the reader can pick this up and quickly adopt SEAL methods of mind control and begin putting in the work required to become free of subjugation and coercion. To understand this book and its author to a greater extent before making the purchase, I would recommend watching this interview with the author, which gives an insight into just how powerful the force you need to overcome is.


  1. No Nonsense: Being that the author is of a military background, this book is straight to the point and wastes no time at all as expected

  2. Rarely Utilized: If you thought that the habits of Covey were rarely utilized, this book is on another level. The degree of self control attained by following this book is elite beyond belief, and will instantly set you on a path far superior to any of your current contemporaries, because I promise you they aren't doing anything close to what is proposed by Willink here.

  3. Credible Source: Whenever I'm reading books about success, I frequently find myself questioning the credentials of the author. I think, 'if they have all the secrets, why aren't they more successful?'. However, that is not the case with this book. As mentioned, Willink is a former Navy SEAL, and, as such, has to have the strongest mind any human can have, which is what this book teaches. So, rest assured, the athor knows exactly what he is talking about un this case.


  1. Its Hard: The secret to success has always been hard work, and this book takes that mantra to the extreme. The reason that so few people adopt the techniques outlined here is because to overcome social norms and the excuses you tell yourself to the extent that Wollink suggests one should is extremely difficult. Make no mistake, implementing these strategies will work wonder for you, but you simply won't be able to do it if you are weak or faint of heart.

  2. Slightly Repetitive: Whilst I would always recommend that someone who is serious about escaping the matrix and becoming red-pilled in every sense of the word read all texts on this list, this book may be considered a drawn out version of a simple sentence - do the work.

#10: How to Think More Effectively (

by The School of Life


Last but not least is 'How to Think Effectively', and I think its a shame that this one must be placed at the bottom of this list. However, it must be so given that it is the chronological last step to becoming fully red-pilled. This book examines the fact that almost all blue-pill thinking takes place in a box constructed by the elites. Our desires are fuelled by social norms and 'musts'. For example, we all know people who think that everyone 'must' get a job, or 'must' get married, or 'must' waste their time in nightclubs getting drunk. However, this mindset whereby we confirm to social norms is a prison which keeps us right where those in power want us - if we 'must' get a job, they get another employee, if we 'must' get married, we are emasculated and a slave to women, and if we 'must' go out drinking, we remain ignorant of the fact that we are being manipulated the whole way through life. 'How to Think Effectively' teaches us to think in a manner which is truly outside of the box - they type of thinking that scares the social programmers. Upon completion of this book, the reader should begin to see that they can think as they please and question things which seem to go eternally unquestioned. The practical use of this for the reader is that they will begin to have original ideas for businesses and ways of living life that will begin to free them up and enable them to live life on their terms. The reader might question the need for eight-hours sleep, they may begin question whether watching TV is just a part of life, or they may begin to question cultural or political dogmas which seek to lead them down the garden path. Gents, always remember that the real red-pill is being your own man. That means following no-one, not even red-pill commentators (when the time comes). This book is the beginning of that next step whereby you can begin to assess things on your own and make your life what you please.


  1. Short: Everyone loves a digestible read, which this most certainly is. And despite its lack of pages, it packs perhaps the biggest punch of all the books on this list

  2. Inspiring: Much of the other books on this list are guides to thinking or working hard without the need for great deals of creativity - such is the nature of learning about life and winning at it. However, 'How to Think Effectively' has an unparalleled effect whereby it starts a flow of original ideas in the readers mind and drives them to pursue each one. Upon reading this book, the reader will feel as though they have, for the first time, stepped out of the cave and seen the light.

  3. Everlasting: This book provides the readers with ideas that will change the readers mind forever upon reading it. These changes cannot be undone or forgotten, which makes How to 'Think More Effectively' stand out from others which often require you to learn rules or check back to see whether or not you should do something. As Morpheus says "after this, there is no turning back".


There simply aren't any cons with this one. It is a must read to conclude your research and move to the next step.


As a concluding note, I would like to acknowledge that many of these recommendations only scratch the surface of some key points which require further investigation. I am currently working on compiling more detailed lists for each aspect of becoming red pilled (finance, intersexual dynamics, fitness, mindset, etc.) as you are reading this, so stay tuned.

bottom of page