I thought that since this is a popular philosophy blog, I should at some point list some of the best popular philosophy books I've come across which serve as an introduction to the subject. I'll stick the list in the sidebar as well for future reference and keep adding to it.
What to read
- The Problems of Philosophy - Bertrand Russell. A bit dated in its theories (sense-data, anyone?), but still an excellent introduction by the man who was largely responsible for giving 20th Century philosophy the go-ahead.
- Think - Simon Blackburn. This is on everybody's list, but really does deserve a mention. Short and sharp, like James Randi.
- The Riddles of Existence - Sider/Conee. Great introduction to metaphysics (the study of the nature of reality) by two leading contemporary philosophers.
- The Making of a Philosopher - Colin McGinn. Another great 'intellectual autobiography' which conveys philosophy with enthusiasm is Brian Magee's 'Confessions of a Philosopher.'
- Meditations - Descartes. Perhaps the most important text in the history of philosophy for philosophy today, and remarkably clearly written even by modern standards.
- Philosophy Bites - Edmonds/Warburton. The series of podcasts on which it is based are outstanding.