This site is dedicated to finding the best public speaking book. Read the reviews below to help decide which book is best for you.

General Public Speaking Books

The Confident Speaker by Harrison Monarth and Larina Kase★★★★½
10 Days to More Confident Public Speaking by Lenny Laskowski★★★½☆
In the Spotlight by Janet Esposito★★★★★
The Quick and Easy Way to Effective Speaking by Dale Carnegie★★★★★

Business Public Speaking Books

Presenting to Win by Jerry Weissman★★★★☆
Present Like a Pro by Cyndi Maxey and Kevin O’Connor★★★★½

You can find a great public speaking book on Amazon's best seller list.

November 22nd, 2009 , Authors: ,

The book The Confident Speaker offers sound advice for a nervous speaker. Whether the anxiety is caused by a presentation to a large group, or speaking up in a small meeting, the book provides the tools to relax, prepare, and deliver effective communication.

Overall Rating:  ★★★★½

Book Organization

Part One: Identifying the Fears

Part Two: Preparing to Beat Your Anxiety

Part Three: Toolbox for the Nervous Speaker

Part Four: Using the Tools in the Real World

Quotes From the Book

“The key to successful speaking is to focus on your number one task: connecting with your audience. Silly tricks like [picturing the audience in their underwear] that are intended to decrease anxiety actually spike distress because they prevent connecting with your audience.”

Overcoming Fear  ★★★★★

The Confident Speaker offers tips on how to modify thoughts and behavior to avoid anxiety. The authors suggest writing and speaking exercises to prompt examination of the root causes of anxiety.

I found the authors’ discussion of impromptu speaking particularly interesting. They suggest taking every opportunity to speak up, and then not evaluating yourself right away. Just practice!

Prepared Speeches  ★★★★½

The Confident Speaker gives the reader tips to conquer anxiety related to prepared speeches. The authors stress the importance of connecting with the audience and provide questions to consider when defining the objective and organizing the structure of a speech. Also, the book provides tips on being perceived as likable, confident, and credible.

Other

Some other interesting points discussed in the book include an examination of male and female speaking styles, and using free writing to improve your ability to think on your feet.

Overall Rating  ★★★★½

This book focuses on the fundamentals. It is not intended for seasoned presenters. This is a great book for students or people who don’t typically speak in public but want to gain experience and (as the title promises) confidence.

Learn how to conquer anxiety today!

April 20th, 2009 , Authors:

The book 10 Days to More Confident Public Speaking is a good overall book on public speaking.

Overall Rating:  ★★★½☆

Book Organization

Day 1: Getting Started: Overcoming Your Fears
Day 2: Create a Great Presentation
Day 3: Relating to your Audience
Day 4: Remembering What you Have to Say
Day 5: Say it With Style: Body Language and Voice
Day 6: Language and Ethics
Day 7: Expect the Unexpected
Day 8: Special Techniques
Day 9: Behind the Scenes: Building Confidence
Day 10: Ending Your Speech with a Bang

Quotes From the Book

“Top company executives polled said that the one essential skill they look for in an employee slated for promotion is the ability to effectively communicate ideas.”
“Public speaking improves every area of your life”

Practical Tips  ★★★★★

The book includes a section called “Quick Tips You Can Use in Everyday Speaking Situations”.  This covers scenarios such as running into someone at the store, parties, etc.  These tips are great because they go beyond just standard public speaking situations and help with more causal but equally difficult situations.

Speech Preparation  ★★★★☆

Process of speech preparation - ideas and structure - mostly good ideas.  I feel that it’s mostly general stuff.  Most 5 - 7 minute speeches actually don’t require that much research.

Tip: “use examples your audience can relate to” - if presenting about a medical advancement, give a brief story about a patient who benefited from it.

He does a nice job descrbing different types of audiences : Prisoners, vacationers, graduates, and students.

Overall Rating  ★★★½☆

Overall, this would be a good handy reference book to revisit over time.  It’s presumptuous to assume that it only takes 10 days to go from overcoming anxiety to becoming an excellent speaker.
It’s a process that takes a long time, and I would hope that beginning speakers don’t become demoralized if they haven’t overcome their fear in just a few days.

There is a lot of useful content in the book that I found helpful for relating to audiences.

See what other reviewers had to say at Amazon.

November 8th, 2008 , Authors:

The book In The SpotLight, Overcome Your Fear of Public Speaking and Performing by Janet Esposito is a top-notch book for beginners looking to overcome their fear of public speaking.

The reader is guided through a process to identify the source of the fear and then successfully manage that fear.

Overall Rating:  ★★★★★

Book Organization

Chapter 1: Coming out of the closet

Chapter 2: You are not alone

Chapter 3: Kindred souls

Chapter 4: No guts, no glory

Chapter 5: Fearing the fear itself

Chapter 6: It’s not about me

Chapter 7: Creating beliefs and self-talk that support us

Chapter 8: Creating a calm and resourceful body and mind

Chapter 9: Getting to the source

Chapter 10: Overcoming self-consciousness and inhibition

Chapter 11: Creating new possibilities

Public Speaking Basics  ★★★★★

In The SpotLight is a great book to help new speakers, especially those that have some trepidation about talking in front of a group.  This can be an excellent first book on public speaking.

Overcoming Fear  ★★★★★

The tips provided for overcoming fear are excellent.  Although some nervousness is expected with public speaking, there can always be some times when additional fear creeps in.

Esposito helps identify the source of fear and then overcome it.  It’s always encouraging to read about how other people face the same fear and that the audience actually wants you to succeed.

Advanced Public Speaking  ★★★☆☆

Everyone, no matter how advanced of a speaker they are, faces some fear and nervousness.  There is advice in this book for advanced speakers to keep in mind, but overall the book is more focused on beginning speakers.

Overall Rating  ★★★★★

For anyone that has fear of public speaking, this book has something for you.  It has been proven to help beginners overcome their fear and it can work for you too.

Order In The SpotLight, Overcome Your Fear of Public Speaking and Performing today!

November 7th, 2008 , Authors:

Presenting to Win: The Art of Telling Your Story by Jerry Weissman is an international best-selling book on advanced public speaking skills.  It is packed full of ways that you can improve your public speaking skills.

The book has a business focus and is guaranteed to help anyone who has to regularly present to a business audience.

Overall Rating  ★★★★☆

Book Organization

Chapter 1: You and your audience

Chapter 2: The power of WIIFY

Chapter 3: Getting creative: The expansive art of brainstorming

Chapter 4: Finding your flow

Chapter 5: Capturing your audience immediately

Chapter 6: Communicating visually

Chapter 7: Making the text talk

Chapter 8: Making the numbers sing

Chapter 9: Using graphics to help your story flow

Chapter 10: Bringing your story to life

Chapter 11: Customizing your presentation

Chapter 12: Pitching in the majors

Chapter 13: Animating your graphics

Chapter 14: The virtual presentation

Public Speaking Basics  ★★★☆☆

This book does cover some of the basics, but it’s target audience is more experienced speakers.

Speech Preparation  ★★★★★

Presenting to Win has several tips to tailoring your speech to your audience to maximize your effect.  Jerry Weissman ephasizes the term “WIIFY,” which stands for “What’s in it for you?”  This is the most important thing to keep in mind when developing a presentation.  If there isn’t something valuable in your speech for your audidence, then you will never be able to hold their attention.

PowerPoint Slides  ★★★★☆

There are several chapters on developing appropriate graphics for presentations.  The author goes into great detail and even makes suggestions for how to improve graph labels, titles, and bullet lists.

Overall Rating  ★★★★☆

This is an excellent book for helping seasoned presenters hone their presentation skills.  Everyone can use help with graphics and tailoring their speech to their audience.

Pick up a copy today to get started.

November 4th, 2008 , Authors: ,

Present Like a Pro by Cyndi Maxey and Kevin O’Connor is a contemporary book on public speaking that helps speakers overcome the difficult challenges faced by presenters in the business world.

After reading this book, you’ll be able to make a greater impact and better connect with your audience.

Overall Rating  ★★★★½

Book Organization

Part 1: Love the Language

Part 2: Prepare Like Crazy

Part 3: Respect the Client

Part 4: Break the Rules

Part 5: Create a Connection

Part 6: Adapt to the Moment

Part 7: Propel the Image

Part 8: Master Interaction

Part 9: Follow Up for More

Part 10: Never Give Up

Fundamentals of Public Speaking  ★★☆☆☆

This book mostly glances over the fundamentals of public speaking.  There is good coverage of topics such as eye contact and speech organization, but there is not much time spent on gestures and overcoming fear.

Topic Focus  ★★★★★

This book is highly focused towards improving the public speaking skills of the business professional. Present Like a Pro skips basic speaking fundamentals and instead delves deeply into topics such as mastering audience interaction and how to properly use a microphone.

For speakers that have presented in public before and want to take their skills the next level, this book can help.

Overall Rating  ★★★★½

This is one of the better books on business presenting out there.  It doesn’t waste time on beginning topics and goes deep into the core of subjects such as relating to the client and projecting the right image.

If you have a need to present better to your boss or prospective clients, pick up this book today!

October 30th, 2008 , Authors:

The book The Quick and Easy Way to Effective Speaking by Dale Carnegie is a classic book on public speaking.

The book covers a range of material that is suitable for both the new and advanced public speaker.

It is only 220 pages long, but the wisdom is highly condensed.

Overall Rating  ★★★★★

Book Organization

Part One: Fundamentals of Effective Speaking

Part Two: Speech, Speaker, and Audience

Part Three: The Purpose of Prepared and Impromptu Talks

Part Four: The Art of Communicating

Part Five: The Challenge of Effective Speaking

Fundamentals of Public Speaking  ★★★★★

The first part does a thorough job of covering the fundamentals of public speaking.  It’s enough for the non-experienced speaking to develop a good base for confidence.  Experienced speakers can also gain information as a refresher

Variety of Topics  ★★★★☆

Although it’s a short book, Carnegie is able to cover specific subject in public speaking.  For instance, there are chapters dedicated to impromptu, informational, and award presenting speeches.

Advanced Public Speaking  ★★★★★

Dale Carnegie is able to dig deep into the advanced aspects of public speaking while presenting it in an easy-to understand manner.

For example, in Chapter Five, Vitalizing the Talk, Carnegie says that the most important thing a public speaking can do to make his speech interesting is to speak about subjects the speaker is naturally passionate about.

He frequently uses the term “earnestness” throughout this chapter to emphasize the importance that natural interest in a subject shows through while presenting.

Overall Rating  ★★★★★

This book is a classic public speaking book because it is simply one of the best. Dale Carnegie has a knack for condensing the most important information you need into easily digestable chapters.

Start reading this book now if you want to improve your public speaking.

TOP