Top 20 Books on Glenn's 2017 Christmas Recommended Reading List

The year 2017 was a year for the books, both figuratively and literally.

Between the seismic shift in the political landscape and the ever-present culture wars, the world doesn't look the same as it used to. This past year, Glenn took a deep dive into the human psyche and devoured both fiction and non-fiction alike to try and figure out where we are as a country and where we are headed --- and a few here and there just for fun.

If you are a fan and looking to be on the same page as Glenn for 2018 or have one on your Christmas list, here is a list of books on his nightstand this past year.

Defying Hitler: A Memoir

by Sebastian Haffner

Written in 1939 and unpublished until 2000, Sebastian Haffner's memoir of the rise of Nazism in Germany offers a unique portrait of the lives of ordinary German citizens between the wars.

Glenn's Review:

When I read Defying Hitler and I saw how the Weimar Republic got out of hyperinflation, it makes total sense. You're like, "oh, my gosh. That's it. This is what's coming." And it's all going to be electronic.

Buy: Amazon

Homo Deus: A Brief History of Tomorrow

by Yuval Harari

Yuval Noah Harari, author of the critically-acclaimed New York Times bestseller and international phenomenon Sapiens, returns with an equally original, compelling, and provocative book, turning his focus toward humanity’s future, and our quest to upgrade humans into gods.

Glenn's Review:

This is such an important book for the center of this country. Because you feel as though you're left out. Nobody is listening to you. You don't know what they're doing in Washington. You don't know what the elites are doing. This book is the book that the elites are reading. And it is fascinating. I disagree with this guy on some major fundamental issues, but this book is so important because it tells you what is coming.

Buy: Amazon

Tulipmania: Money, Honor, and Knowledge in the Dutch Golden Age

by Anne Goldgar

In the 1630s the Netherlands was gripped by tulipmania: a speculative fever unprecedented in scale and, as popular history would have it, folly. Tulipmania is seen as an example of the gullibility of crowds and the dangers of financial speculation. But it wasn’t like that.

Glenn's Review:

If you look at history, what happens right before a devastating crash? Crash of 1929, the Tulip Crash, all of it. Okay? What happens is, usually there is a buildup for, you know, just under ten years. And it gets crazy. And people are saying, it could never go higher. Then people start to have a run --- now, think of this with bitcoin.

Buy: Amazon

Departure

by A. G. Riddle

From the author of the #1 bestselling The Atlantis Gene comes a new novel in which the world’s past and future rests in the hands of five unwitting strangers in this definitive edition of A. G. Riddle's time-traveling, mind-bending speculative thriller.

Glenn's Review:

If you're looking for a good book to read, any of his books are great. Especially if you're into the futuristic paradox that we are beginning to go into. Departure is about time travel and quantum computing and what is in store with us in the future. And it's really good.

Buy: Amazon

Pandemic (The Extinction Files, Book 1)

by A.G. Riddle

From A.G. Riddle, the worldwide bestselling author with OVER 3 MILLION COPIES SOLD, comes a sci-fi thriller readers are calling "addictive" and "an achievement that takes the genre to the next level."

Glenn's Review:

I was on holiday, and I downloaded a whole bunch of books. And one of them, was Pandemic. I think that's the first one that I read. And I've never done this. You know, at the end of the book, it says, "hey, write to the author. Tell me what you think." So I did. And so I wrote, "hey, just finished one of your books. And I really enjoyed it."

I'm already into the second book. And it's really great.

He builds his fiction around some facts that I want to find out more about.

Buy: Amazon

Genome (The Extinction Files Book 2)

by A.G. Riddle

A code hidden in the human genome...Will reveal the ultimate secret of human existence. And could hold humanity's only hope of survival.

Glenn's Review:

If you're at all curious about what the future holds and where do we come from and what is the next turn? He gives you some food for thought. It's all sci-fi obviously. But it's quite good.

Buy: Amazon

The Singularity Is Near: When Humans Transcend Biology

by Ray Kurzweil

A radical and optimistic view of the future course of human development from the bestselling author of How to Create a Mind and The Age of Spiritual Machines who Bill Gates calls “the best person I know at predicting the future of artificial intelligence.”

Glenn's Review:

I'm a big fan of Ray Kurzweil. At the same time, he scares the living daylights out of me. Because I don't hear a lot of talk about ethics. I hear a lot of talk about what can be done and what is coming.

Buy: Amazon

Origin: A Novel

by Dan Brown

Origin is stunningly inventive --- Dan Brown's most brilliant and entertaining novel to date.

Glenn's Review:

I was in the bookstores a couple weeks ago, and I just bought a stack of books. And Origin was one of them.

The premise intrigued me, which is a guy like Elon Musk has figured out, you know, where we came from. And says that he can disprove God. And I thought, "Okay. Let's see where Dan Brown is going with this one." I know it's going to make the Catholic Church look bad. I got that. What else is he going to do?

I urge you to read this book. It's a great Dan Brown book. It's in the same spirit as the Da Vinci Code.

You will spend a lot of time on Google looking things up, going, "that's not true. Is that true?"

And believe me, I spent a lot of time on Google. And a lot of the stuff in it is true. I mean, it's a real "faction" book, rather than fiction. It's got a lot of truth to it, and you'll learn a lot about history and everything else that you didn't know.

Buy: Amazon

Conclave: A novel

by Robert Harris

The best-selling author of Enigma and Fatherland turns to today's Vatican in a ripped-from-the-headlines novel, and gives us his most ambitious, page-turning thriller yet --- where the power of God is nearly equaled by the ambition of men.

Glenn's Review:

Robert Harris is a great novelist, great writer. And he wrote a few years ago, Conclave. And it's all about the Pope dying. Some intrigue. And what happens in the conclave to get the next Pope, etc.

It's so amazing to me that it doesn't matter if it's the conclave or if it's, you know, over in Europe or here. All politicians are exactly the same. They're exactly the same.

Buy: Amazon

The Atlantis Plague: A Thriller (The Origin Mystery, Book 2)

by A.G. Riddle

The Atlantis Plague is the second book in The Origin Mystery, the trilogy that has become a global phenomenon.

Glenn's Review:

Great storytelling. Really, really great storytelling. I really enjoyed it.

Buy: Amazon

Augmented: Life in the Smart Lane

by Brett King

The coming Augmented Age promises a level of disruption, behavioral shifts and changes that are unparalleled.

Glenn's Review:

Brett King is a futurist. He has written a great book, Augmented: Life In the Smart Lane. And I've been reading it for a while now and digesting it really as we go, and it has been a springboard for so many other books that I have been reading because of this book.

Buy: Amazon

Collusion: Secret Meetings, Dirty Money, and How Russia Helped Donald Trump Win

by Luke Harding

An explosive exposé that lays out the Trump administration’s ties to Moscow, and Russia’s decades-in-the-making political game to upend American democracy.

Glenn's Review:

There is a book that I've read, that I think is an absolute must-read. In fact, I had everybody on my staff --- I kind of assigned it to everyone. And everyone says the same thing. The title turns them off. And they think they know what this book is. Well, don't judge a book by its cover.

He has written a terrifying look at what is really going on with Russia and the United States. And it is a bipartisan problem. This is something that no one is really paying attention to.

Buy: Amazon

The Second Messiah: A Thriller

by Glenn Meade

Some secrets are never meant to be revealed. For behind this mystery lies a revelation that will make you question everything you believe in.

Buy: Amazon

Artemis: A Novel

by Andy Weir

The bestselling author of The Martian returns with an irresistible new near-future thriller --- a heist story set on the moon.

Buy: Amazon

Leonardo da Vinci

by Walter Isaacson

The author of the acclaimed bestsellers Steve Jobs, Einstein, and Benjamin Franklin brings Leonardo da Vinci to life in this exciting new biography.

Buy: Amazon

The Content Trap

by Bharat Anand

Harvard Business School Professor of Strategy Bharat Anand presents an incisive new approach to digital transformation that favors fostering connectivity over focusing exclusively on content.

Buy: Amazon

An Officer and a Spy

by Robert Harris

A whistle-blower. A witch hunt. A cover-up. Secret tribunals, out-of-control intelligence agencies, and government corruption. Welcome to 1890s Paris.

Buy: Amazon

The Fear Index

by Robert Harris

High tech finance and sophisticated computer programming combine in this terrifying and fiendishly smart new novel from Robert Harris.

Buy: Amazon

The Lessons of History Paperback

by Will Durant,‎ Ariel Durant

A concise survey of the culture and civilization of mankind, The Lessons of History is the result of a lifetime of research from Pulitzer Prize–winning historians Will and Ariel Durant.

Buy: Amazon

Dangerous Brains

by Erik Hamre

Dangerous Brains is a thought-provoking techno-thriller in the blockbuster tradition of the Andromeda Strain. It is a book that will stay with you long after you finish.

Buy: Amazon

If next year has any hope of keeping up with this year, there is definitely plenty on this reading list that could shed light on how that might happen. So long 2017 --- good riddance!

Whenever we post recommendations, Glenn has us add hyperlinks to make them easier to find, review or purchase. He does this because he's lazy and wants to get to the source without searching for it. We try to tell him patience is a virtue. He hasn’t listened so far. In doing so, we're required to clearly alert you that we are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.

A town in Sweden is under fire after denying requests to ring church bells in the 1990s and the 2000s but recently approving a mosque's request to conduct a weekly Islamic call to prayer.

RELATED: Media's anti-Israel, pro-Islam bias sweeps THIS fact under the rug

Authorities in the town of Vaxjo in southern Sweden have given the local mosque a one-year permit to recite the call to prayer every Friday for about four minutes. But Fr. Ingvar Fogelqvist of St. Michael's, the local Catholic church located about a mile from the mosque, says similar requests to ring church bells were denied.

On today's show, Pat and Jeffy talked about this story and favorable bias toward the Muslim faith. The issue isn't that the Islamic call to prayer is allowed; it's that all religions are not being treated equally.

Somebody might want to check the temperature in hell, it might be just a tad chillier than normal.

If you missed Friday's episode of The Glenn Beck Program, you missed something you probably never thought you'd see in this timeline or any other. Glenn actually donned President Trump's trademark red "Make America Great Again" hat and laid out the case for why he thinks Trump will win in a landslide in 2020.

RELATED: The media's derangement over Trump has me wearing a new hat and predicting THIS for 2020

Bottom line: Nancy Pelosi and the mainstream media may have pushed Glenn to this point, but believe it or not, Trump's record will make this next election a walk in the park for number 45. At this point, the sitting president has done enough to earn even Glenn's vote.

Glenn broke down what he thought were the 10 biggest campaign promises that — unlike those made by most politicians — Trump actually kept.

10. Impose a 10% repatriation tax to bring jobs back to America

Not all of Trump's promises were good ones, but regardless of what the consequences may be — he did keep this one.

"Now, I think this one is dangerous," Glenn said on radio Friday. "He did it. Ten percent. Bring all of your money back into the United States. It will create jobs. Yes. It will also create inflation. But it's creating jobs."

9. Withdraw from the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP)

This has been one of Trump's most passionate issues.

"The stop the TPP. Uh-huh. Right. Sure you are. Uh-huh. Yes. He did," Glenn admitted.

8. Withdraw from the disastrous Paris Climate Accord

Glenn found himself eating crow on this.

"I'm on record saying he will never do that because his daughter is a huge global warming person and he only listens to the family. Eh. Wrong," Glenn said with a puff of crow feathers coming from his mouth.

7. Bring North Korea to the table and rein them in

This looked impossible. Not so.

"'I'm going to bring North Korea to the table.' Are you? Everybody has tried to do that," Glenn said. "Now, they're at the table. We don't know what's going to happen. So the result of that is unknown. But has anybody else done that?"

6. Stop over-regulation and jump-start the economy

It's the economy, stupid.

"Does anybody feel like America is beginning to get on track somewhat economically? You know why? Because he fulfilled another promise," Glenn said. "Stop over-regulating the American people. Give them their money. Give the companies the opportunity to expand and bring their money back into the country, and maybe they'll build buildings. Maybe they'll build offices. Maybe they'll build new products. Maybe they'll build new factories. Maybe they'll hire a bunch of people."

Glenn went on.

"Now, I know Seattle is trying to do everything they can to make sure everybody in their city is homeless and unemployed, but the rest of the country is enjoying the feeling of, wow, maybe things are going to be okay."

5. Reverse Obama's executive orders

If you're like Glenn, you've gotten used to politicians promising "no new taxes," but you can really tell they're lying if their lips are moving. Guess what? That's apparently not Trump.

"The executive orders? Yeah. He's reversed a lot of Obama's executive orders," Glenn said. "These are outrageous promises."

4. Pull out of the Iran nuclear deal

No big deal...

"'I'm going to cancel the Iran Deal.' Yep. None of these are small. You know, I've got maybe ten minutes. I think we can get that done in the first term. And they did," Glenn said.

3. Give tax cuts to middle-class Americans

Maybe this could have been better, but we'll take it.

"I don't like the tax cut. I think he could go a lot further," Glenn said. "But that's not even his job. His job is to sign things that Congress puts in front of him. Not to design it. You Republicans in Congress, you disgust me. You disgust me. 'Imagine what we could do if we had the House and the Senate and the White House.' I can imagine what you'll do — nothing. You'll do nothing."

2. Change strategy and defeat ISIS

The mainstream media have been radio silent on this.

"How about the president's — well, I know I can defeat ISIS. I know I can do it. I'll defeat ISIS. He did," Glenn said. "And did you notice no one in the press even talked about it? All of a sudden, we're not talking about ISIS anymore. How come? Oh, I know. President Trump. That's why."

1. Recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and relocate the US embassy

This one is a true game-changer.

"Now, every president will say to you, when he's running, 'I'm going to make Jerusalem the home.' Well, really? The home of the embassy. Really, are you? Because everybody says that, nobody does it. He did it," Glenn said. "And I think that's going to go down as the biggest game-changer possibly in my lifetime. This is going — it already is — it is changing the game in Iran."

Glenn continued.

"And when it does, this president is going to come out and say something directly to those people, that we support them," he said. "And that's going to add fuel to the fire. And you might see a regime change and a collapse of the Islamic regime in Iran. And it will be 100 percent Donald Trump that made that responsible. One hundred percent. You're going to see changes because of this. He kept that promise. A promise I said, he's not going to do that. Nobody is going to do that. He did."

One chapter of ISIS has ended, but another may be starting

AHMAD AL-RUBAYE/AFP/Getty Images

For the most part, ISIS has fallen in Syria and Iraq. But before we celebrate the demise of this awful terrorist group, before we let our guard down, we should zoom out a bit, because ISIS is spreading. ISIS has largely just scattered out of the region as if someone turned on the kitchen lights and they scrambled.

RELATED: It IS About Islam: This Is a War Against Evil

The Wall Street Journal spoke with Rohan Gunaratna, head of the International Center for Political Violence and Terrorism Research at the Nanyang University in Singapore. “Although Islamic State's ideology has suffered, it still has a huge potential," he told them. “Islamic State has entered a phase of global expansion, very much the same way al Qaeda extended globally in late 2001."

ISIS has spread into West Africa, and throughout much of Southeast Asia, and, as is typical of ISIS, they have done it violently, with a sick venom.

The world is their potential rubble, and their fight is endless.

Again, from the Wall Street Journal: “One chapter of ISIS has finished and another is beginning," said Hassan Hassan, a specialist on Islamic State at the Tahrir Institute for Middle East Policy in Washington. “Their resurgence is coming sooner than expected."

The world is their potential rubble, and their fight is endless.

'The Handmaid's Tale' got it right, just with the wrong religion

Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images

Just in case The Handmaid's Tale's heavy-handed message wasn't already heavy-handed enough, a recent episode made it clear there's always room for further hysteria. Particularly, in relation to depictions of a “patriarchal society" run by Christian doctrine and determined by men — oh those dastardly men.

RELATED: Christian privilege is the new white privilege

The show appropriates Margaret Atwood of the same name, depicting a totalitarian society led by Christian doctrine in which women's bodies are controlled, and they have no rights. The story sounds familiar, but not in the same way Atwood and the show's creators have so smugly assumed.

Just as tone-deaf as 4th wave feminism itself, and tone-deaf in all the exact same places. Most notably, the show's heavy-handed indignation toward Christianity. Toward the patriarchy. Toward conservatives and traditional values. And just like 4th wave feminism, the show completely overlooks the irony at play. Because there is a part of the world where women and children are being raped and mutilated. In fact, in this very real place, the women or girls are often imprisoned, even executed, for being raped, and they are mutilated in unspeakable ways.

Theirs is a cruel, bloody, colorless life.

There is a place, a very real place, where women are forced to cover their entire bodies with giant tarp-like blankets, which is all the more brutal given the endless heat of this place. There is a place where women literally have one-third of the rights of men, a place where women are legally, socially and culturally worth less than men.

They cannot drive cars. They cannot be outside alone. They cannot divorce, they cannot even choose who they marry and often, they are forcibly married at a young age.

They are raped. A lot. Theirs is a cruel, bloody, colorless life. This is the life of tens, perhaps hundreds of millions of women. And, I'll tell you, their religion isn't Christianity.