Here is our list of Robert Greene books, ranked. We suggest you read in this order simply because the first 3 or so books are indispensable (depending on your current spot in life). Those currently in the corporate world will benefit from the 48 Laws and 33 Strategies. Those in college will benefit from reading Mastery. If you aren’t familiar with psychology, the Laws Of Human Nature would be a good book to read.
In What Order Should Greene’s Books Be Read?
You need to start with The 48 Laws. This is Green’s major contribution to the literature on power. It stands in many ways equal to other works like Machiavelli’s Prince and The Art of War by Sun Tzu.
So you need to start with the 48 Laws. Then, depending on where you are in life, either read 33 Strategies or Mastery. Read mastery 2nd if you are selecting a career or just starting your profession. Typically it is best read in college as it helps you find and develop a skill that is both fulfilling and valuable.
If you are already in the workplace, read 33 Strategies second. It will be more applicable as it covers strategies you can use to win battles. Then read Mastery.
Then read Laws Of Human Nature if you don’t have a psychology background.
#1 The 48 Laws Of Power (Easily Greene’s Best Book)
The 48 Laws Of Power is an indispensable look into the corridors of how the world really works. It is a must read for anyone wanting to understand power. This easily is his best and most influential work. You will find mistakes you are making and tricks your enemies are using. Check out our in depth summary here. Easily Robert Greene’s best book.
TIE: #2/3 The 33 Strategies Of War
A close cousin to The 48 Laws, this book does a great job of breaking down practical approaches to warfare. It is essentially a modern and more useful version of the Art Of War. Buy this if you work in an office as it helps give specific ways to climb. You should probably read this after 48 Laws of Power if you already have a career you enjoy.
TIE: #2/3 Mastery
Mastery is a helpful book that teaches you to find and perfect your life craft. It has many useful tips and tricks and methods for improving in any field. Greene walks you through each step of the process and what you should be focusing on (Apprentice, Creative-Active, Master). Useful if you are in college or trying to figure out what career you want to pursue.
#4 The Laws Of Human Nature
This book could have easily been his most important work. For those who never studied psychology, this book will change how you see people. But we couldn’t help but wonder if Greene should have just spent his time summarizing the science. Personality and value theory teach us quite a bit about people and why they act. Why reinvent the wheel? There are some useful tips on understanding yourself, which is the most important step on the path to understanding others.
#5 The Art Of Seduction
This book is a fresh take on categorizing what captivates and enthralls people. It is useful as a guide for those looking to improve their influence. However, if you struggle socially, you might want to just read Win Friends And Influence People. This book is more of a way to polish and perfect your techniques than a good beginner book. If you just start applying the book with no other social skills, you might come off as a bit of a creep.
#6 The Daily Laws
The Daily Laws is a study guide of sorts to help walk people through a daily dose of Greene. This book scores second to last simply because there is quite a bit of repetition. We summarize it detail here.
#7 The 50th Law
This book was written with the rapper 50 cent. It focuses quite a bit on the idea that you must conquer fearlessness in order to reach your fate. Fearlessly look internally and fearlessly act externally. The book is a worse version of all the ones listed above. It is a bio on the rapper and half a book of somewhat repetitive information.