I was recently reading Atrocities by Matthew white, which has stories about the 100 greatest atrocities in world history. It is the first history book I have managed to complete. I prefer to read a short account of the incident and then go in an internet rabbithole later, instead of picking up an exhaustive history book and failing to go past the first chapter. Please recommend other such books! (preferably something about east asian history, although i am open to other topics)

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    Please review help center and associated discussion on meta. Like many other stack exchange sites, subjective recommendations are bad shopping Unless there are authoritative references, it simply isn't possible to select an authoritative answer from all the opinions provided. There are many sites on the internet where this question would be in scope and would get good answers. History's scope and community culture has determined that it is not within our scope.
    – MCW
    Jul 6, 2022 at 16:13
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    Plutarch's lives comes to mind as does 1066 and all that
    – MCW
    Jul 6, 2022 at 16:14
  • thanks a lot! Sorry if I voilated some question etiquette, I am new here Jul 6, 2022 at 16:21
  • No apology needed. It is not an illogical question to ask - but such questions tend to generate more discussion/debate than answers. We regretfully redirect them to other, more appropriate sites. Good luck.
    – MCW
    Jul 6, 2022 at 16:38
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    @MCW, and "12 caesars" by Suetonis. I read it as a kid. Because of that I am more familiar with Roman history until the 1st century AD than what followed: me the kid got the silly idea that the book covers all that's interesting about the Empire and I didn't follow up with other books until a decade later.
    – Michael
    Jul 6, 2022 at 16:45

1 Answer 1


Try one of the Chinese histories. The point is that while Western history books combine multiple stories to form one sweeping narrative, the Chinese history style is to "break it up into smaller, overlapping units dealing with famous leaders, individuals, and major topics of significance".

The original books are probably impossible to read, but there are surely modernized versions/translations around.


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