1. Slide:ology: The Art and Science of Creating Great Presentations by Nancy Duarte
Nancy Duarte is a graphic designer, writer, and head of the presentation design firm Duarte Design. The firm is most notable for designing the award-winning Al Gore presentation-turned-movie, An Inconvenient Truth. In Slide:ology, she provides a great resource for getting inside the mind of a presentation designer and seeing how they think; conceptually and technically. The book breaks down the problems that people experience with PowerPoint, such as defaulting to bullet points or using clip art. This is a great read if you want to learn how to think about PowerPoint in a new, creative way.
2. Beyond Bullet Points by Cliff Atkinson
BBP hits on many of the subjects we’ve emphasized in our blog, and it’s a very good general how-to for good PowerPoint design. Naturally, a big point it makes is to avoid the use of bullet points in PowerPoint. Atkinson aptly observes that while bullet points are very easy to make, they’re difficult for the audience to comprehend and relate to. The book then hits on many other important themes in PowerPoint, such as the importance of storyboarding and the classic story arch.
3. Presentation Zen by Garr Reynolds
Supreme overlord of the popular presentation blog presentationzen.com, Garr Reynolds has a lot to say on the art of presenting, and he’s compiled a good many of his thoughts in this book. A must read for any PowerPoint enthusiast or public speaker.
4. Speaking PowerPoint: The New Language of Business by Bruce Gabriel
Compared to the more conceptual, creative ideas taught in the aforementioned books, this is more of a basic how-to. That’s not to say that Bruce Gabriel’s book on stolid PowerPoint design isn’t very useful. This book, written to be used by business people in boardroom presentations, is easy to comprehend and has a ton of practical application.
5. The Presentation Secrets of Steve Jobs: How to Be Insanely Great in Front of Any Audience by Carmine Gallo