I am 21 and studying to be a psychologist. I am NOT studying to be a mathematician, or a physicist, or a scientist, but I am very interested in all those subjects. I find that I generally learn much better from reading (+ writing over what I've read) than I do from listening to a lecture. So I don't like going to class when I don't have to, and I don't really have much time to go to regular math/physics classes anyway. Recently I've been looking at the possibility of studying mathematics on my own just from books, with as few actual classes as possible - maybe none at all if I can get away with it. My goal is to be able to understand advanced fundamental physics. I would like to get people's suggestions for what are the very best books in each subject that I need to study in order to make it to that goal. First let me make clear two points related to how I have been going about studying this stuff: 1) I am well aware that this usually takes 8 years or so of intensive undergrad / graduate study to master. I don't mind if it'll take me years and years and years of free-time study to get through everything. 2) I do not like doing enormous numbers of practice problems. First of all, doing all those problems tends to get very boring very fast, which dilutes my interest in the subject (I once heard it called "Drill and Kill" - great name). Secondly, I find that it isn't really necessary, at least for me: If the book is good enough then I can get a good understanding of what's going on just from reading it; writing it over in my own words and doing a few practice problems will give me a bit of practice in using the new concepts; and then going on to the next subject gives me yet more practice, since the new concepts almost always reuse the previous concepts. So when I look for a book, I generally try to shy away from the big (and very expensive) textbooks which are almost entirely full of practice problems, and instead I just try to go for the most clear and concise book that I can find. (Of course, if the only clear book is a big expensive textbook then I'll go for that too, but I suspect that most of the time I'll probably be able to find a more concise book with equal or better clarity.) So far I have reviewed Algebra I and II (which I've forgotten in the time since I first took those classes in school), and have started reviewing Precalculus. I have been using the CliffsQuickReview math series to re-study Algebra I and II, and I've been very impressed with their clarity and ease of use, though the frequent typing errors can make things a bit difficult. I am considering getting the entire set, which includes Algebra I, Algebra II, Geometry, Trigonometry, Precalculus, Calculus, Statistics, Linear Algebra, and Differential Equations. That should hopefully take me through the basics. For intermediate and advanced stuff, I found a list of books on the following website: http://math.ucr.edu/home/baez/books.html Does anybody have any additions or comments to that list, or any comments on the choice of CliffsQuickReview to study the basics? Or any other suggestions for that matter? Thanks.