45+ of Your Favorite Books About the Evolution of Technology

Amanda Nelson

Staff Writer

Amanda Nelson is an Executive Director of Book Riot. She lives in Richmond, VA.

This giveaway is sponsored by What Is Your Quest? by Anastasia Salter

what is your quest coverWhat Is Your Quest? examines the future of electronic literature in a world where tablets and e-readers are becoming as common as printed books and where fans are blurring the distinction between reader and author. The construction of new ways of storytelling is already underway: it is happening on the edges of the mainstream gaming industry and in the spaces between media, on the foundations set by classic games.

One of the earliest models for this new way of telling stories was the adventure game, the kind of game centered on quests in which the characters must overcome obstacles and puzzles. After they fell out of fashion in the 1990s, fans made strenuous efforts to keep them alive and to create new games in the genre. Such activities highlight both the convergence of game and story and the collapsing distinction between reader and author. The interactions between storytellers and readers, between programmers and creators, and among  fans turned world-builders are essential to the development of innovative ways of telling stories.



Technology is an ever-shifting beast, and its evolution has been the topic of countless think pieces, works of nonfiction, and even novels. We asked for your favorites of the bunch- the most entertaining and thought-provoking books on the evolution of tech that you could think of- and here’s what you came up with!

Polio: An American Story by David Oshinsky

Gutenberg the Geek by Jeff Jarvis

Connections by James Burke

It’s Complicated by Danah Boyd

Ready Player One by Ernest Cline

Little Brother by Cory Doctorow

Smarter Than You Think by Clive Thompson

A History of Reading by Alberto Manguel

Frankenstein by Mary Shelley

Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson

Wired for War by P. W. Singer

Turing’s Cathedral : the Origins of the Digital Universe by George Dyson

Amped by Daniel H Wilson

Geek Sublime by Vikram Chandra

Bomb by Steve Sheinkin

Prey by Michael Crichton

The Circle by Dave Eggers

Reality is Broken: Why Games Make Us Better and How They Can Change the World by Jane McGonigal

Feed M.T. Andersen

1001 Inventions that Changed the World by Jack Challoner

The Information by James Gleick

The Most Human Human by Brian Christian

Longitude by Dava Sobel

Cryptonomicon by Neal Stephenson

The Maze Runner by James Dashner

Cyberia by Douglas Rushkoff

Extra Lives: Why Video Games Matter by Tom Bissell

Hamlet’s Blackberry by William Powers

Ambient Findability by Peter Morville

The Innovator’s Dilemma by Clayton M. Christensen

Disappearing Ink: Poetry at the End of Print Culture by Dana Gioia

The Artificial Ape by Timothy Taylor

Innovating Women: The Changing Face of Technology by Vivek Wadhwa and Farai Chideya

Mr. Gatling’s Terrible Marvel by Julia Keller

Digital Fortress by Dan Brown

The Master Switch by Tim Wu

The Demon Under the Microscope by Thomas Hager

The Case for Books by Robert Darnton

Fire in the Valley by Michael Swaine and Paul Freiberger

Ghost in the Wires by Kevin Mitnick and Steve Wozniak

The Future of the Mind by Michio Kaku

Guns, Germs, and Steel by Jared Diamond

Amusing Ourselves to Death by Neil Postman and Andrew Postman

I, Robot by Isaac Asimov