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Bill Gates Names His Favourite Reads of 2016

Bill Gates is an avid reader and reading advocate, he says he reads about 50 books a year. He’s worth a whopping $75 billion, and is clearly a busy man, yet he obviously realises the importance of being well read.

Every summer Bill Gates releases his summer reading list and it’s always an interesting list but on his blog this week he’s released a list of his favourite books of 2016. He says reading books is his favourite way of finding out about a new topic, and since childhood, he’s read on average a book a week.

As a fiction fan his lists always seem a bit dry to me and it’s clear that we’re not interested in the same thing but that doesn’t stop me always being impressed by his reads. Without further ado, these are the books that Bill Gates says were his favourite reads of 2016.

The Myth of the Strong Leader: Political Leadership in the Modern Age – Archie Brown

Gates writes on his blog:
“This year’s fierce election battle prompted me to pick up this 2014 book, by an Oxford University scholar who has studied political leadership — good, bad, and ugly — for more than 50 years.

“Brown shows that the leaders who make the biggest contributions to history and humanity generally are not the ones we perceive to be strong leaders.

“Instead, they tend to be the ones who collaborate, delegate, and negotiate — and recognise that no one person can or should have all the answers.”

The Myth of the Strong Leader US
The Myth of the Strong Leader UK

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Shoe Dog – Phil Knight

Gates writes on his blog:
“Shoe Dog is a refreshingly honest reminder of what the path to business success really looks like: messy, precarious, and riddled with mistakes.”

“I don’t think Knight sets out to teach the reader anything. Instead, he accomplishes something better.

“He tells his story as honestly as he can. It’s an amazing tale.”

Shoe Dog US
Shoe Dog UK

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String Theory: David Foster Wallace on Tennis

Gates writes on his blog:
“You don’t have to play or even watch tennis to love this book.

“Here, as in his other brilliant works, Wallace found mind-blowing ways of bending language like a metal spoon.”

String Theory US
String Theory UK

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The Gene: An Intimate History – Siddhartha Mukherjee

Gates writes on his blog:
“[Mukherjee] guides us through the past, present, and future of genome science, with a special focus on huge ethical questions that the latest and greatest genome technologies provoke.

“Mukherjee wrote this book for a lay audience, because he knows that the new genome technologies are at the cusp of affecting us all in profound ways.”

The Gene US
The Gene UK

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The Grid: The Fraying Wires between Americans and our Energy Future – Gretchen Bakke

Gates writes on his blog:
“Part of the reason I find this topic fascinating is because my first job, in high school, was writing software for the entity that controls the power grid in the Northwest.

“But even if you have never given a moment’s thought to how electricity reaches your outlets, I think this book would convince you that the electrical grid is one of the greatest engineering wonders of the modern world.”

The Grid US
The Grid UK

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