Book Lists (Episode V)

It’s been two months and I almost read 4 books per month.  One book short, and I’m 79% of the way done with it too! But I think I have to stop being freakishly competitive with myself and close the books (no pun intended) for the past 2 months.  Ever since I read the stat that the top CEO’s reads 4-5 books a month on average, that’s been my target.  I can’t tell if they’re just trying to sell books or not, but I haven’t really read a book and said wow that was a waste of life.  Well actually, I did, but there was still SOMETHING I could get out of it.  It was the first time Amazon ratings lied to me.  Anyway.

Finished Books:

  1. Good To Great
  2. The Emotional Energy Factor: The Secrets High Energy People Use to Beat Emotional Fatigue 
  3. Do You Know What I Mean: Discovering Your Personal Communication Style 
  4. Strategic Public Relations: 10 Principles to Harness the Power of PR
  5. Almost French
  6. The 10x Rule: The Only Difference Between Success and Failure
  7. We Are Like That Only

Every book was fantastic, except the 10x Rule.  The 10x Rule was actually a waste of life, except 2 points which I highlighted.  I mostly skimmed the book because it was a prolonged pep talk but two interesting points were about the “Middle Class Mentality” and the idea of Omnipresence.  But basically the writing style rubbed me the wrong way and I definitely felt like it was a high school football coach who was yelling the book at me and stating the obvious most of the time.If I wanted to do that, I would have joined a bootcamp for unmotivated people.  Anyway.

If you ever want to learn anything about India and Indian consumers, I would recommend We Are Like That Only.  Seriously, if you are even remotely thinking about doing business in India, read this book. It’s currently blowing my mind, as I just finished it today. The main takeaways: You can’t take something cookie cutter from the West and expect it to flourish in India, because there is no “One India” (i.e. this country has an infinite number of sub groups that you can’t generalize about), and you have to assume that Indian habits/traditions will never go away- technology will just make it easier to do what they’ve always done.  Some choice random quotes:  “While it is true, by women’s own admission, that mother in laws are more tolerant and husbands less repressive, and they have equal voting rights on family issues, it isn’t social evolution that is driving this change as much as the state of the economy.  In other words, we have the phenomenon of the EMI  to thank for driving change.  The concept of family has changed from a predominantly social unit to an economic unit.  The new truth about Indian marriage is the old truth- that its business model is around a pragmatic life business partnership rather than around romance.”  Fascinating, right?

And if you need a bootcamp in PR, I would highly recommend Strategic Public Relations.  I count PR and marketing as the same thing, because if you work at a startup that has to create a new market (i.e. NextDrop) it’s the same thing.  Well, at least in my head it is.  Not only do they tell you how to create your very own PR campaign, they even give you a TEMPLATE to use! I love when they make my job easier (yes, I had to take a first pass at our PR campaign and that’s when I realized it was too much work for me to take on so that helped me figure out who we needed to hire next).  Most importantly, they help you understand the right, critical questions, you need to ask yourself about your business- which is really the hardest part.

The Emotional Energy Factor was really great, and made me feel all warm and fuzzy inside.  If you need an energy boost, I highly recommend it. It puts words to things that intuitively make sense and we all probably do, but feel a little weird doing it.  This book makes me feel more justified.

Almost French is like book candy/chick flick, but also helped me compare France to India (since I now have this theory that India and France are going to follow similar historical trends).  I have absolutely no evidence to back this up, but that’s what I’m trying to find right now.  Also, it made me thankful that I live in India instead of France, because even with her French boyfriend, it seemed really difficult for the protagonist to live there.  But nice.

Good to Great is a classic and if you haven’t read this book and you are in any way trying to be a good manager, start your own company, or anything remotely related to business, you should have read this book…yesterday.


  • Personal Development:
  1. A Year of Living Consciously
  2. Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress Free Productivity (52%)
  3. HBR’s 10 Must Reads: On Managing Yourself (6%)
  4. The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People (11%)
  5. The 4-Hour Chef: The Simple Path to Cooking Like a Pro, Learning Anything, And Living The Good Life (10%)
  6. The 4-Hour Body: An Uncommon Guide To Rapid Fat Loss, Incredible Sex, And Becoming Superhuman (21%)
  7. Mastery (5%)
  8. Are you Really Listening: Keys to Successful Communication (20%)
  9. Startup Life: Surviving and Thriving in a Relationship With an Entrepreneur (12%)
  • General Non Fiction:
  1. Googled: The End of the World as we Know It (18%)
  2. The First 20 Minutes: The Surprising Science of How We Can Exercise Better, Train Smarter, And Live Longer (10%)
  3. Thinking, Fast and Slow (6%)
  4. Sixty Million Frenchmen Can’t Be Wrong: Why We Love France But Not The French (19%)
  5. Foreign Babes in Beijing: Behind The Scenes of a New China (32%)
  6. Warren Buffett’s 3 Favorite Books: A Guide to the Intelligent Investor, Security Analysis, And Wealth of Nations (79%)
  7. Sacred Hoops: Spiritual Lessons of a Hardwood Warrior (8%)
  8. The Jordan Rules: The Inside Story of Michael Jordan and the Chicago Bulls (15%)
  9. The Art of War (34%)
  10. Wild (8%)
  11. In the Garden of Beasts (4%)
  12. Growing Up Bin Laden (8%)
  13. Catherine the Great (7%)
  14. Steve Jobs (5%)
  15. The Power of Your Subconscious Mind (33%)
  16. My Spiritual Journey (Haven’t Started)
  17. Drinking: A Love Story (23%)
  18. The Intelligent Investor (10%)
  19. Beating the Street (27%)
  20. Istanbul: Memories and the City (15%)
  21. Tales from the Expat Harem: Foreign Women in Modern Turkey (17%)
  22. Classy (50%)
  • Business:
  1. HBR’s 10 Must Reads: Strategy (9%)
  2. For the Win: How Game Thinking Can Revolutionize Your Business (10%)
  3. Extraordinary Groups: How Ordinary Teams Can Achieve Extraordinary Results (34%)
  4. Mastering Communication At Work: How To Lead, Manage, and Influence (8%)
  5. HBR: On Managing Yourself (6%)
  6. Stop Workplace Drama (39%)
  7. Lead, Sell, or Get Out of the Way (36%)
  8. The Brand Gap (18%)
  9. Founders at Work (79%)
  10. The 100 Absolutely Unbreakable Laws of Business Success (16%)
  11. The Essential Drucker (Haven’t Started)
  12. HR Transformation (10%)
  13. Richard Branson: Losing My Virginity (3%)
  14. Exceptional Service, Exceptional Profit: The Secrets of Building a 5 Star Customer Service Organization (18%)
  • Fiction:
  1. Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance (12%)
  2. Girl With The Dragon Tattoo Trilogy (haven’t started)
  3. Istanbul Passage (3%)

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