It is often said that people who read succeed: Bill Gates is living proof of that. The Microsoft co-founder was not born a billionaire, but became one after deciding to pursue his dreams and start his own business. An undeniable success that he owes to several factors: hard work, perseverance, dedication… and reading. The businessman has indeed declared to boost his abilities, to have better ideas and to solve more problems thanks to his regular practice of reading. On his blog, the billionaire regularly shares the names of books that mark him or have a positive impact in his life.
Bill Gates unveiled the list of his favorite books last month: “In the selection, there is my favorite book since high school or memoirs, which I have just finished. This is not an exhaustive list of my all-time favorite books, because if it was, I would have included other works by Vaclav Smil and Elizabeth Kolbert. But the five books below are the ones I’ve recommended the most to family and friends over the years,” Bill Gates wrote on his blog.
Here are the 5 books that Bill Gates recommends:
In a foreign land, Robert Heinlein
According to Bill Gates, this book is an excellent introduction to adult science fiction and represents one of his favorite novels in the genre. In a foreign land tells the story of a man who grew up on Mars and decides to return to Earth to create his own religion and try to fill a void in humanity. Bill Gates affirms that this novel allowed him to open his mind and develop his imagination towards the future.
According to Bill Gates, it is one of the best rock biographies ever written. Signed Bono, the singer of the group U2, this book is aimed at non-musicians, because it testifies above all to the evolution of its author and offers a reflection on growing up, overcoming fears and realizing dreams. Bono recounts in particular his childhood in the suburbs of Dublin, his rise as a planetary star and looks back on his philanthropic actions.
Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln, Doris KearnsGoodwin
Written by a historian, this biography of Abraham Lincoln focuses on the conflicts the President had to resolve to end the Civil War. According to Bill Gates, this book is “a guide to governing a country” and a valuable document for becoming a better leader and developing better strategic thinking. “Our country [les États-Unis] faces violent conflict, difficult questions about race, and deep ideological divisions. This book is especially relevant today,” writes Bill Gates.
The inner game of tennis, Robert Gallwey
According to the billionaire, this book allows you to learn how to achieve your goals and get what you want. Written in the 1970s, it is a performance management classic. As the name suggests, it’s about tennis, but mostly about the importance of mind, fitness and what you need to do to learn from your mistakes and use them as stepping stones to success.
Mendeleev’s dream Paul Strathern
This book tells the story of Dimitri Mendeleyev, a chemist who invented the periodic table of chemical elements after seeing it in his dreams. This book shows how human curiosity is a powerful engine to achieve great things.
Originally posted on GQ Mexico