Disclosure: this article includes affiliate links from Amazon.
One downside to getting clued up on crypto is that it requires a lot of time in front of a screen, and at the end of a long day – especially with so many of us staring into monitors at work anyway – it can be nice to tear your eyes away from the glowing blue light. In this vein we decided to put together a list of what we consider to be the best cryptocurrency, Bitcoin, and blockchain books!
Cryptoassets: The Innovative Investor’s Guide to Bitcoin and Beyond – Chris Burniske
Cryptoassets is a fantastic intro to the cryptocurrency space in general, covering the history of Bitcoin and other cryptoassets (Chris’ preferred term for crypto-related projects), explanations of blockchain technology and how it can be applied to the real world while using examples in the form of some of the biggest currencies (Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin, Zcash etc.), and finishing off with a solid framework for analysing and valuing a project yourself.
This isn’t a highly technical read by any means, but it is one of the current best books on cryptocurrency for beginner’s to the space, or even for someone who feels like they can do more to flesh out their sense of the fundamentals and general overview of cryptocurrencies and blockchain tech.
The Internet of Money – Andreas M. Antonopoulos
Andreas M. Antonopoulos is one of the most beloved figures in the cryptocurrency space – for good reason. He has advocated for Bitcoin for many years, and The Internet of Money is an edited compilation of several of speeches he carried out across the globe between 2013-2016. His knowledge shines through in an unintimidating and accessible manner, making this a perfect read for anyone who may have struggled to understand what the whole Bitcoin craze is all about so far – Andreas has a knack for taking complex subject matter, which this doubtlessly is, and wording it so even laypeople can get a grasp on things. Learn what makes Bitcoin and blockchain technology tick, and how it may one day come to change the world.
Of course, being the crypto luminary and good guy he is, Andreas has most of the content the book is based on available on his YouTube channel, as well as many other interesting talks and videos.
Mastering Bitcoin – Andreas M. Antonopoulos
Another Antonopoulos book on the list, but in this case decidedly less beginner-friendly than the previous choice. The first couple of chapters can be read by anyone with a basic grasp of technology, but this is mainly a recommended read for those with some experience in programming who have a desire for a deeper understanding of how the blockchain functions, with several sections allowing more hands-on learning in the form of code reviews and guides which dissect how the Bitcoin protocol runs behind the scenes. It may be a few years old at this point, but the fundamentals of Bitcoin’s brains remain similar enough that this book isn’t to be disregarded, and Mastering Bitcoin still remains the best book on blockchain technology date.
Digital Gold: Bitcoin and the Inside Story of the Misfits and Millionaires Trying to Reinvent Money – Nathaniel Popper
Stepping somewhat away from the technical side of things, Digital Gold takes a markedly more human approach to Bitcoin’s story. New York Times reporter Nathaniel Popper truly shows off his journalistic skills by interviewing essentially all of the high-profile figures involved in the conception and growth of Bitcoin, from initial Bitcoin coders, to early VC investors, and the rich tapestry of other “misfits and millionaires” in between.
A read of Digital Gold should give you a fundamental idea of the tech behind Bitcoin, but is more of a focus on the intricate weaving of the events and individual stories between all the actors that lead to the point where we now stand together in the crypto revolution.
The Bitcoin Standard: The Decentralized Alternative to Central Banking – Saifedean Ammous
Lastly, an economics-centric lowdown on how Bitcoin and other virtual currencies have the ability to shake up the global economic system. Dr. Ammous starts by giving a fantastic background on the history of money, and tells cautionary tales of past civilisations that waned as their financial and monetary systems crumbled.
He fairly talks of the future that Bitcoin can have in an international economic system, but also discusses the downsides of the coin and how they can be mitigated. If you already have an understanding of the technology behind the project (and even if not), this is a great read to understand the true global implications of and applications for the coin.
While there are more great books out there, we’re big fans of those above and believe they do a more than adequate job of getting you up to speed and beyond – and if you’re here looking for a gift for that special crypto lover in your life, you can’t go wrong with one of these cryptocurrency books to sate their appetite.