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Down the Rabbit Hole: Top 5 Books About Bitcoin and Crypto

Dec 22, 2022
byNDAX Labs

An NDAX Holiday Guide for your Cryptocurious Friends’n’Fam

The world of cryptocurrency can be difficult to understand and navigate. From a market that soared to over $800 billion in value, 2019 has seen the entire industry drop by over 80% as the bears take control. And then 2020 to 2022 saw it all happen again… Since this is clearly not the end for Bitcoin, Ethereum, and many other digital currencies out there, it’s important to know how to navigate this volatile landscape as an investor and a consumer.

Reading about crypto can help investors learn more about the technology and why it has captivated so many around the world. That’s why books about crypto can be great Holiday gifts. Here are some of our favourite books about Bitcoin, Ethereum, blockchain technology, and other topics related to cryptocurrency so your loved one(s) can hit that rabbit hole with confidence.

What is Bitcoin?  What is money? The below books are easy gifts for the crypto curious as many of them explore the history of currency in general, which is key to understanding crypto.

The Bitcoin Standard: The Decentralized Alternative to Central Banking by Saifedean Ammous

You may have heard of Bitcoin but have no idea what it is. Similarly, you may have heard of cryptocurrency but have no idea what it means. This book is a great introduction to the world of blockchain and distributed ledgers. It also offers a strong case for why Bitcoin is important and has the potential to become a long-lasting technology.

Here’s the rundown. An unknown programmer offered a peer-to-peer electronic cash system without a trusted third party in 2008 to a small online mailing list, but few people paid attention. Against all odds, 14 years after its launch, this autonomous decentralized software has emerged as an unstoppable and global rival to traditional central banks. It examines the historical background of Bitcoin's rise, its economic properties, and how it will affect the economy, politics, and society.

Even though Bitcoin was invented during the digital age, its alleged purpose is as old as humankind: transferring value across space and time. Author Saifedean Ammous takes the reader on an engaging journey explaining how money evolved from limestones and shells to metals, coins, the gold standard, and modern government borrowing.

This book explores the characteristics of money in depth by examining the factors that have given various forms of currency their monetary roles and how some have lost value. It also delves into economic discussions about societal and individual goals, capital accumulation, trade, peace, and culture, using these technologies as a guide.
As Ammous shows convincingly, the greatest achievements of humanity have been achieved in societies with sound monetary regimes, and monetary collapses usually accompany the collapses of civilizations.

In short, this book will help you understand Bitcoin as a technology, why it was created, and what value it provides. You’ll also learn about the larger ecosystem around Bitcoin, including similar technologies like Ethereum and Steem. If you want to understand the basics of Bitcoin and the technology behind it, The Bitcoin Standard is likely to be a great read.

Cryptoassets: The Innovative Investor's Guide to Bitcoin and Beyond by Chris Burniske and Jack Tatar

This is one of the best all-around books about cryptocurrency. It explains how blockchain technology works and how it can be applied in many different industries. It also discusses the major cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, Steem, and Dash.

The book even covers how to buy and sell these cryptocurrencies, how to store them securely, and how to evaluate and trade cryptocurrencies.

As Bitcoin and blockchain technology gain traction, investors will be able to take advantage of the greatest investment opportunity in the history of the Internet. In addition to Bitcoin, there are thousands of cryptoassets today, such as Avalanche, Chainlink, Uniswap, Litecoin, Ethereum, and Solana, to name a few. You will learn how to navigate this brave new blockchain world using this practical guide by two industry insiders.

Furthermore, you will gain a thorough understanding of how these digital assets are created, their functions, and how they are evolving under blockchain technology with this authoritative resource.

These assets can be purchased through a variety of methods, such as global exchanges trading 24/7 or initial coin offerings (ICOs). This book will introduce the reader to the cryptocurrency market and the opportunities that await investors who are willing to take risks.

All in all, Cryptoassets is a great book for anyone who is interested in exploring the world of cryptocurrency.

Layered Money by Nik Bhatia

Layered Money is a complete guide to the history of money. It explores the different types of money and how they’ve evolved over time. It also explores the history of gold and explains how central banks have come to hold such a powerful role in our economies.

The book also explores the potential of Bitcoin to disrupt centralized money and banking, as well as other potential uses for blockchain technology.

Through a fascinating examination of how currencies have evolved around the world, Nik Bhatia demonstrates the evolution of money into a "layered" system. The author analyzes the layers of gold as an ancient currency, beginning with raw gold mined, followed by gold coins, and finally, bank-issued certificates. Similarly, Bhatia offers a groundbreaking framework for the emergence of cryptocurrencies.

Throughout the book, Bhatia describes the emergence of the gold Florin coin in Renaissance Florence, the rise of central banking, and the way international monetary systems will evolve. With central banks preparing to build their own crypto-competitors, Bhatia describes how Bitcoin merged cryptography and monetary science and created a new way of thinking about money. The overview of "layered money" he offers provides insight into global financial markets for the average reader and demonstrates Bitcoin's growing popularity as a global currency. In our new monetary future, the reader will be able to understand how cryptocurrencies and Central Bank Digital Currencies (CBDCs) will interact.

Layered Money is a fascinating read for anyone interested in the history of money, the role of central banks in our economy, or the potential applications of blockchain technology. However, this book is not just a history lesson, it also offers insight into the future of money and the world of cryptocurrency.

Bitcoin Is Venice: Essays on the Past and Future of Capitalism by Allen Farrington and Sacha Meyers

Bitcoin Is Venice isn’t a typical business book about the cryptocurrency industry. Instead, it is a collection of essays about technology, capitalism, and the future of both. The essays explore topics like the role of technology and innovation in business, the dangers of centralization, the importance of trust in our society, and the potential of cryptocurrency to challenge the status quo.

In the first part, "Wittgenstein's Money," Wittgenstein presents a thought experiment about a hypothetical new type of currency. In such an inquiry, we are naturally led to examine how monetary institutions function. What is the reason behind its emergence? What is its purpose?

Instead of referring to the overused three functions of money (unit of account, medium of exchange, store of value), the author defines money by its inescapable future uncertainty. In this case, the thought experiment is intended to understand how humans would behave should they have perfect knowledge of the future.

The first thing we would do if we knew exactly what tomorrow's economic situation would be, as well as our future tastes and needs, would be to avoid having to spend money in the first place since goods that meet our long-term needs could easily be produced and stored. However, because the future is uncertain, we should store goods we know others will want since we will be able to exchange them for our future needs. We should all store wealth (a crystallization of time and energy) in the same vessel, as we all face a similar dilemma, and since every individual wants to be part of the largest exchange network.

It is now clear to the reader that money, uncertainty, and capital are intrinsically linked, and that fiat money has deleterious effects that Bitcoin has yet to overcome.

To illustrate Bitcoin's properties and to draw the likely implications of its emergence for the future of our civilization, Farrington presents a grand finale of metaphors and allegories in the last part of the book, which takes us to ancient Greece, early Renaissance Venice, Islamic finance, and even outer space.

As we leave the theoretical lands of economics in this final part, we step back to appreciate how previous financial and monetary innovations have shaped the way violence is exercised, capital is allocated, and trade is conducted.

By understanding how “global, digital, sound, open source, programmable money” may prove to be significant and transformative to our social fabric, we will be better able to prepare for its potential. Similar to the early Renaissance financial and monetary innovations that favoured the ascent of city-states such as Venice, Bitcoin may be the key to escaping the current neo-feudal global regime.

Bitcoin Is Venice is an excellent read for anyone who wants to explore and understand the implications of cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology. It is a deep and thoughtful book that provides valuable insights into many important topics.

Bitcoin Billionaires by Ben Mezrich

Bitcoin Billionaires is based on the true story of two brothers (twins in fact, that you will recognize from the well-known Zuckerberg biopic called The Social Network) who discovered Bitcoin in its early days and invested their Facebook lawsuit settlement in becoming industry leaders and evangelists. The story follows these two protagonists around the world as they meet a wide variety of interesting people involved in the Bitcoin scene. You’ll meet hackers, venture capitalists, and even a few billionaires along the way.

The story's most iconic characters are none-other than Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss: identical twins and rivals of Mark Zuckerberg.

After their fight with Zuckerberg, the brothers learn that no one in Silicon Valley would take their ‘tainted’ money as venture capitalists, and while nursing their wounds in Ibiza, they stumble across an eccentric character…

The eccentric tells them about cryptocurrency, which offers a brand-new way to transact. As they immerse themselves in what was then an obscure and sometimes sinister world, "crypto" seems to be either the next big thing or total nonsense. Only one thing remains to do: place a bet.

A great introduction to Bitcoin. This story is well-written and fascinating. During the biggest bull market in Bitcoin's history, the story also allows us to get inside the minds of two early adopters. Bitcoin Billionaires ends with Mezrich, unsure whether bitcoin and its underlying "blockchain" architecture are the future of money, automated contracts, or privacy.

Nonetheless, Bitcoin Billionaires is a great read for anyone interested in understanding Bitcoin and cryptocurrency. The narrative format is easy to follow and keeps the story moving quickly. Even if you’ve been following Bitcoin for a long time, it’s still a fun book that offers a nice perspective on the early days of the technology.

Final Thoughts: How to Buy Bitcoin in Canada

Crypto is an ever-changing landscape, but reading about it can help you stay informed and up-to-date on the latest developments. These top books about Bitcoin, Ethereum, and blockchain technology can help you learn more about this fascinating industry and why it continues to captivate so many people around the world.
Looking for key resources for all things Bitcoin and crypto in Canada? Trust NDAX. We’re a leading Canadian crypto trading platform that offers individuals and institutions a world-class trading experience to buy and sell 30 cryptocurrencies fast, easily, and securely.

Disclaimer: This article is not intended to provide investment, legal, accounting, tax or any other advice and should not be relied on in that or any other regard. The information contained herein is for information purposes only and is not to be construed as an offer or solicitation for the sale or purchase of cryptocurrencies or otherwise.