Charles C. Mann
In this revelatory book about Columbus' arrival in the New World, Mann focuses on "the Columbian Exchange": when Europe and America came into contact, the membrane separating two radically different biospheres was ruptured, kicking off a riotous exchange of plants, animals and insects.
2. Steve Jobs
Even though Jobs was a famous control freak, he gave Isaacson free rein to tell his life story. Jobs comes off as both fascinating and totally intolerable, but he shaped a great deal of the world we live in, and we owe it to ourselves...