Company executives read too, you know. We recently asked a number of them to share a recent favorite book with us. You'll find their recommendations and comments below. If any of these books is a must-have for your personal library, just click on the title that follows every quote. Our pals at Amazon.com will be more than happy to ship the book to you. You'll also find more information about the books and reviews by using the same links.
Adobe Systems CEO and Co-chairman John Warnock
"I've been reading The Perfect Storm actually over the last couple of days. It's a fascinating book. It's about a fishing fleet that got caught in one of the hurricanes off the Northeast coast. That hurricane generated 100 foot waves."
The Perfect Storm by Sebastian Junger
Berkshire Hathaway Chairman & CEO Warren Buffett
The following was provided to Berkshire shareholders at the 1999 annual meeting:
"I would urge everyone to read John Bogle's new book, Common Sense on Mutual Funds. It's a terrific book, one of the great books I've seen in the financial field. If people read that and acted accordingly, the investment companies business would be far more logical than it is today."
Common Sense on Mutual Funds by John Bogle
Berkshire Hathaway Vice Chairman Charlie Munger
Charlie Munger, known for his lists of recommended books and not for long, drawn out explanations, offered these to investors who attended the recent Berkshire Hathaway annual meeting:
The Warren Buffett Portfolio by Rogert G. Hagstrom
Titan: The Life of John D. Rockefeller, Sr. by Ron Chernow
The Wealth and Poverty of Nations by David S. Landes
broadcast.com Co-Founder & Chairman Mark Cuban
"The Innovator's Dilemma. Everybody who's on the Internet has to read that book. It's my Bible. It's about disruptive technologies and how companies adapt to them. You know, we talk about new media versus old media and how people respond to them. Every company has something that can disrupt them just like Amazon disrupted Barnes and Noble, just like eToys disrupted Toys "R" Us. Every company's got their disruption points, and everybody's got their disruption opportunities where you get to change the rules in businesses you can enter, and The Innovator's Dilemma just talks about companies and their experiences where they've handled them successfully and not so successfully. Everybody is somebody's potential target and somebody's potential disruptee, and The Innovator's Dilemma talks a lot about those things. I just thought that was a brilliant book."
The Innovator's Dilemma by Clayton M. Christensen
CDnow President & CEO Jason Olim
"I read ancient Greek history for fun. I would recommend Herodotus because he's got to be one of the most amusing history writers you're going to read. It's a fun book about history. I would far prefer to recommend a CD. If I were to do that I would recommend Sunny Day Real Estate and their album is How It Feels to Be Something On."
The Histories by Herodotus
How It Feels to Be Something On by Sunny Day Real Estate (CD)
DoubleClick CEO Kevin O'Connor
"Atlas Shrugged. Ayn Rand changed my life. She taught me that individuals make a difference and when the needs of society are aligned with the needs of an individual, you create a strong society. When the goals of society and the individual conflict, you create chaos."
Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand
Intraware President and CEO Peter Jackson
"The greatest book I've read recently is Titan, which is a story about Rockefeller. It's interesting because you're back in an era where just getting a bank loan you basically had to give up a couple of your kids. He built the company without all of the Wall Street money that all of us seem to benefit from. I think it's very grounding. I also think it gives us a good look at when industries change and how people benefit from it and who doesn't benefit from it because they get too greedy or think too short-term. He was ruthless in some capacities, but he also gave something like a third of his money back to charitable areas."
Titan: The Life of John D. Rockefeller, Sr. by Ron Chernow
iTurf CEO Steve Kahn
"I'm actually reading Naguib Mahfouz who's an Egyptian writer that won the Nobel prize. It's an incredible trilogy and the books I've read are Sugar Street -- I'm actually reading it in reverse because my mother gave it to me backwards -- but Sugar Street is the third book which I just read and Palace of Desire is the book I'm in right now. You know what, I don't think you can go wrong recommending these books. It's just unbelievable. This is like the Egyptian War and Peace. I'd go that far."
Palace Walk (The Cairo Trilogy, 1) by Naguib Mahfouz
Palace of Desire (The Cairo Trilogy, 2)
Sugar Street (The Cairo Trilogy, 3)
Lycos CEO Bob Davis
Angela's Ashes by Frank McCourt. It was a tremendous piece that outlines the significant trials of an impoverished family living in Ireland pre WWII. The book is a great foundation for reflection as to so many basic tenets of humanity. It further highlights the difficult gap that continues to grow around the world between those with and those without.
Angela's Ashes by Frank McCourt
Pegasus Systems President and CEO John Davis
"Blur: The Speed of Change in the Connected Economy -- A book about "e-commerce and what's going on in the world and the economy. It's a great book."
Blur: The Speed of Change in the Connected Economy by Stanley M. Davis, Christopher Meyer
theglobe.com Co-CEO Stephan Paternot
"I'd definitely recommend one book that Todd [Krizelman] and I've both read and that is Losing My Virginity by Richard Branson. It's absolutely amazing. In so many ways, we feel that our lives have paralleled his -- although 20 years later -- and he's one of our greatest idols. We think that the job that he's done -- for instance, brand building -- is something that Todd and I very much feel we're experiencing in the same way and pretty much living and breathing and representing theglobe.
Losing My Virginity by Richard Branson
theglobe.com Co-CEO Todd Krizelman
"Certainly, [Losing My Virginity] is one of the best books we've read in recent times. Certainly The Highwaymen is useful just to give you an overview of the macro market of the large media conglomerates."
The Highwaymen by Ken Auletta
Hot Stack Tips From Christmas 1998