Bill Gates names his five fa­vorite books of 2016

The Denver Post - - BUSINESS - “String The­ory” by David Foster Wal­lace. “Shoe Dog” by Phil Knight. “The Gene” Mukher­jee. by Sid­dhartha “The Myth of the Strong Leader” by Archie Brown.

The sea­son is awash in best books lists, and here’s one more — Bill Gates’ fa­vorite books of 2016. Gates is an avid reader, and he doesn’t flinch from a chal­leng­ing book. Here’s his list:

I wouldn’t have paired Gates with cult writer and tragic ge­nius Wal­lace (Wal­lace, who suf­fered from de­pres­sion, com­mit­ted sui­cide in 2008). But Gates en­joyed this col­lec­tion of five of Wal­lace’s best es­says on ten­nis, a sport Gates said he gave up in his Mi­crosoft days but “am once again pur­su­ing with pas­sion … here, as in his other bril­liant works, Wal­lace found mind­blow­ing ways of bend­ing lan­guage like a metal spoon.”

Gates liked this mem­oir of the co-founder of Nike be­cause of its hon­esty about the true path of busi­ness suc­cess: “messy, pre­car­i­ous and rid­dled with mis­takes.”

Gates called out Mukher­jeee, the au­thor of the ground­break­ing “The Em­peror of All Mal­adies,” for his sta­tus as a “quadru­ple threat:” on­col­o­gist, teacher, re­searcher and au­thor. Mukher­jee “guides us through the past, present and fu­ture of genome sci­ence, with special em­pha­sis on huge eth­i­cal ques­tions that the lat­est and great­est genome tech­nolo­gies pro­voke,” Gates said. Af­ter the Novem­ber elec­tion, Gates picked up this book by an Ox­ford Univer­sity scholar of po­lit­i­cal lead­er­ship, which makes the case that lead­ers who make the great­est con­tri­bu­tions to his­tory “are gen­er­ally not the ones we per­ceive to be ‘strong lead­ers.’ In­stead, they tend to be the ones who col­lab­o­rate, del­e­gate and ne­go­ti­ate — and rec­og­nize that no one per­son can or should have the an­swers.”

Gates gave an honor­able men­tion to “The Grid” by Gretchen Bakke, an in­ves­ti­ga­tion into our ag­ing elec­tri­cal grid and why mod­ern­iz­ing it is so im­por­tant.

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