I’m sure most of you reading this are like me and have trouble slowing or shutting down your brain from thinking. One of my methods to relax my thinking is to focus on reading a story. Reading is one of my favorite activities that I try to do on a daily basis. At a minimum, I like to read a few pages of a great book before going to bed. As we prepare for the new year ahead, I’m providing you a list of my favorite five books from 2021 and the five books I have queued up to read in 2022.
2021 Fab Five List
1. The Ride of a Lifetime by Robert Iger. It’s a great story about how a young man got started working in the corporate broadcasting industry. Through hard work and saying yes to new opportunities, he eventually became CEO of The Walt Disney Company. I especially enjoyed reading about major company decisions and investments that Iger “went out on a limb” to make at Disney that paid off tenfold for the company.
2. Elon Musk by Ashlee Vance. A very enjoyable read about the life of Elon Musk. The book goes into details about his upbringing in South Africa, how he made his way to Silicon Valley, and how he started one company, then sold it and went “all-in” on the next venture. And eventually went all-in on the next few ventures to where he now has two billion-dollar companies that he runs.
3. Shoe Dog by Phil Knight. This is a book about a boy who loved to run and loved track and field. He became obsessed with trying to make a quality running shoe. With no real shoemaking experience, he decided to just do it and started making his own shoes. Eventually, his company was getting traction from professional athletes that loved the product. The book goes into great detail about how the company evolved over the years to become what it is today, Nike.
4. Billion Dollar Whale by Bradley Hope and Tom Wright. One of the most insane and unbelievable stories. It is about an outcast individual that befriends high-profile people around the world to try to help countries invest their sovereign wealth funds. The effort to help quickly takes a turn in the wrong direction and morphs into the largest fraud scheme in history that you’ve probably never heard about.
5. The Terminal List by Jack Carr. If you are into action-packed special operations warfare stories, then this book is for you. Once you start reading this book, it’s really hard to put down.
1. The River of Doubt by Candice Millard. A story about Theodore Roosevelt and the challenges he faced.
2. King of Capital by David Carey and John E. Morris. The rise and fall and rise again of the American businessman, investor, and philanthropist Stephen Schwarzman and the Blackstone Group.
3. Taste by Stanley Tucci. A journey through the actor, writer, and producer’s life through food.
4. When The Wolves Bite by Scott Wapner. A story about an epic battle in business between Carl Icahn and Bill Ackman.
5. The TB12 Method by Tom Brady. A story about how Tom Brady keeps himself in top performance shape.