As I got more interested in foreign policy this year the best book I read is by Thomas P.M. Barnett. His The Pentagon's New Map is a must read if you want a foundation to talk intelligently about the world today and what political steps we can take to affect change. You should also read it because he's one of the grand strategists that is readable and this book is highly influential. (If you find yourself interested in this you can study it chapter-by-chapter with the author himself as he submitted to an hourly interview/discussion on Hugh Hewitt's radio show. Link is here.) Since discovering Vince Flynn's violent, muscular, patriot fiction last year I finished up all of his recent novels and then read his newest - Protect & Defend - a few weeks ago. All but his first are worth reading and show the simple tension between feckless politicians who see America's enemies as theoretical and a man whose talents are for ending the lives of those enemies. Politically savvy and fun to read. Lastly, I have to mention Jeffrey Overstreet's book Through A Screen Darkly. It is part film review, with some theory and a whole lot of anecdote and heart. Even while disagreeing with his conclusions you can't help but admire his infectious love of cinema and be drawn in with him.