6 Authors Similar To Oliver Sacks To Read If You're Interested In Books About The Brain
The world has lost a truly brilliant man. Famed neurologist and gifted author Oliver Sacks died at his home in Manhattan after a battle with cancer, The New York Times reports. Sacks was 82 years old, and had been suffering with a melanoma that started in his eye, and then spread to his liver, putting him in the late stages of terminal cancer. He first announced his diagnosis in a heartbreaking essay he penned for The Times back in February.
Sacks devoted his life to the study of the brain, and all of its fascinating inner workings. He was truly a master of taking heavy and complex brain conditions and sharing them with readers in a way that made them both relatable, and uniquely beautiful. Sacks helped to introduce audiences to now widely recognized syndromes like Asperger syndrome and Tourette's. One of his books, Awakenings, about patients with encephalitis who "woke up" after long periods of sleep and lethargy, was made into a movie in 1990 starring Robin Williams and Robert De Niro. Sacks' legacy will live on through his writing, but if you are looking to fill the gaping void Sacks has left behind, check out these similar authors and their bestselling books.
Also known as V.S. Ramachandran, Dr. Ramachandran serves as director of the Center for Brain and Cognition at USC San Diego, and has written several books on mysteries of the mind, the science behind human consciousness, and the depth of visual trickery. He also worked alongside Dr. Sacks and Sandra Blakeslee on Phantoms in the Brain: Probing the Mysteries of the Human Mind.
Blakeslee is a science writer who has spent the last 15 years writing about brain sciences. She has worked with Sacks and other writers on this list on several books and publications about marvels of the brain. In 2008, she wrote the compelling The Body Has a Mind of Its Own: How Body Maps in Your Brain Help You Do (Almost) Everything Better with her son, Matthew.
Jamison is a clinical psychologist with a Ph.D, and a focus on mood disorders. Not only did she choose to pursue a career in academic medicine, but she was also diagnosed with manic depressive bipolar disorder, and speaks about the emotional highs and lows she experienced with a beautiful combination of authority and vulnerability. An Unquiet Mind: A Memoir of Moods and Madness is a masterpiece.
Much like Sacks, Levitin has a special interest in how music affects the mind. Before becoming a neuroscientist, Levitin worked as a record producer and sound engineer with bands like Blue Oyster Cult and Stevie Wonder. His best titles include This Is Your Brain on Music: The Science of a Human Obsession, and The World in Six Songs: How the Musical Brain Created Human Nature
Temple Grandin is a name you probably already know. Not only did Claire Danes play Grandin in the award-winning HBO movie, Dr. Grandin has also become one of the most successful adults with autism with her studies and books about living with the condition. Read The Autistic Brain: Helping Different Kinds of Minds Succeed, and you will be blown away.
Dr. Doidge is a psychiatrist, psychoanalyst, researcher, and author, among many other talents. His focus has been primarily on how the brain reacts to love, trauma, and the intricacies of intensive pshychotherapies. Reading any one of his books, including The Brain That Changes Itself: Stories of Personal Triumph from the Frontiers of Brain Science, will make you feel optimistic about life in general.