I am looking for non - technical (non IT) books recommendations which are a must/good read for any professional tester which will help him to think/communicate more effectively as a tester.

The books which comes off the top of my head are-

1). Sherlock Holmes detective books: To learn the ability to deduce the truth from known/unknown variables in any given situation.

2).The element of style: To learn brevity in effective writing.

Please suggest one book at a time with reasoning how it adds value to an tester.


  • 1
    Point 2) could also be written as ... To learn brevity. :) Sep 22, 2019 at 23:13
  • Yes Michael.It proves I really need to learn it :) Sep 23, 2019 at 11:24

4 Answers 4


My favorite 12 from over the past 3 years

  • Servant Leadership In Action - Leadership
  • The Alchemist - Perseverance and Level Two thinking
  • The Obstacle is the way - perseverance, focus
  • The Art of Clear Thinking - see title
  • Being Wrong - see title
  • What everyBody is saying - Body Language
  • Talking to Crazy - tech convos are different, learn why
  • Perfect Sofware and other illusions - see title
  • Work Rules! - work differently
  • Crucial Conversations - see title
  • Dare to Lead - humbleness and bravery

All of the above have relevance to a tester.

A good tester is humble, brave, persistent, talks tech, admits mistakes, expects failures, communicates well with the business, thinks of the big picture and provides leadership to all. These personal attributes can be picked up from reading the above books.

Sorry, I can't do the one book at at a time thing !

  • Michael , you are the exception :) That was just to block the long lists without any reasonings.. Sep 23, 2019 at 16:25
  • Great list of books!
    – Lee Jensen
    Sep 23, 2019 at 16:32
  • Thanks Michael for an great list!! Sep 23, 2019 at 21:49

The Design of Everyday Things by Donald A. Norman

This will help in understanding usability testing on deeper level.


My book recommendation's are all the Simon Sinek books:

  • Start With Why
  • Leaders Eat Last

While both are leadership focused books, Start With Why brings the concept of the golden circle and how to think in the format of Why > How > What instead of What > How > Why. This book and the overall concept of starting with why is great for test plan thinking, root cause analysis, general bug prevention, and understanding the importance of "why".

  • Violence and the Sacred - René Girard (How society uses "try-catch" blocks to expel violence - once you get it, you start seeing this everywhere)
  • Antifragile - Nassim Taleb (make your systems not only robust - i.e. stress-resistant - but antifragile - they gain from stress)

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.