At times when all the information we need can be obtained instantly through social media channels, it’s easy to forget one of the many perks of summer: books! Browse, swipe or listen – and charge your brain.

 

Brian Grazer & Charles Fishman − A curious mind: The Secret to a Bigger Life

The successful American screenwriter and TV producer Brian Grazer had an idea that changed him forever: he decided to try and meet with all the interesting people he could think of, in what he describes as weekly “curious conversations”. This has been going on for decades, and Grazer has met with hundreds of world-famous celebrities, entertainers, scientists and politicians over the years. Inspired by these real people and their stories, he has also crafted scripts for movies and TV shows such as “A Beautiful Mind”, “24”, “Arrested Development”, “American Gangster” and “Rush”.

Tony Hsieh − Delivering Happiness

Tony Hsieh was a successful IT entrepreneur with tons of cash in the beginning of the 21st century. But he couldn’t let go of the feeling that the online shoe retailer Zappos.com, one of his many investments, truly could reach the sky. He started betting everything he had on this notion, and after many years of hard work, he was proven right (and was acquired by Amazon). With Tony Hsieh as the company’s CEO, every aspect of the business became focused on an increased customer happiness. This book serves as a great source of inspiration for anyone interested in building a successful company. The story of Zappos is the story of how to build a truly transparent and customer-oriented corporate culture.

Miranda July − The First Bad Man

Indie darling Miranda July is probably best known for her popular film “Me and you and everyone we know” from 2005. “The First Bad Man” is July’s captivating first full-length novel from 2015, with many unexpected twists and turns. The story about main character Cheryl is simultaneously beautiful, ugly, heart-breaking and hopeful, creating a universe where the absurd and grotesque helps the story move forward. The word “quirky” is difficult not to use in this context.

Bryan Healey − Start-up Struggles

Start-up veteran Bryan Healey has written a short yet informative and entertaining book unveiling the main obstacles to overcome when trying to get a start-up up and running. He walks us through the entire process with aspects such as organisational implementations, funding, hiring and branding. Even though his examples come from the tech start-up world, the lessons learned could be applied to more or less any business venture looking to scale.

Adam Grant – Originals: How Non-Conformists Move the World

What makes an original? According to Adam Grant, talent only gets you so far if you’re also forced to comply with countless rules from an early age – in society and the family. The challenge is to break free from boundaries and create something entirely new. In Originals, Grant builds his case with numerous examples from real life, and he also shows us why moving too fast and original might actually pose a problem – procrastination, for example, may be beneficial (yay!) and settlers are usually more successful than pioneers and first-movers. There are lots of inspiring revelations in this book.

Ashlee Vance − Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX and the Quest for a Fantastic Future

Elon Musk is undoubtedly one of the truly fascinating people of our time. He might not be the most likeable person in the world, but his endeavours into electronic payments (PayPal), space rockets (SpaceX), renewable energy (Solar City) and transportation (Tesla Motors and Hyperloop One) are disruptive to say the least. Business journalist Ashlee Vance has followed Musk during the course of several years, attempting to grasp the complete width of this master-mind, where he comes from and where he’s heading.