Six Summer Reads for the Modern Marketer

What is it about the summer season that just seems to melt away like a cherry bomb popsicle in the Texas heat? Whatever it is, it’s bad news for lit lovers like us who revel in the perfect poolside plot. But don’t worry, it’s not too late to get your hands on a few more page-turners before the fall creeps in. From dystopian adventures and creative memoirs to business basics, we’ve gathered a few of our favorite reads that will ignite your imagination and sharpen your marketing mind.

Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind, by Yuval Noah Harari

Know thyself. On a primal level, this book sure to change your perspective on what makes you who you really are. Yuval Noah Harari breaks down the entire human experience as a species, from its earliest days and into our current evolution, detailing the biological, geological and social forces that conspired to elevate humankind to the most impactful species in Earth’s history. Though it’s a robust piece of non-fiction, the concise writing makes for a compelling page-turner.

Ready Player One, by Ernest Cline

With virtual reality making many headlines right now, this futuristic plot reads more like a forecast than fiction. In fact, what if the virtual world was so pervasive and preferred that we chose—as a society—to turn off the real world? Join the protagonist in this video-game-fueled treasure hunt that’s also a race for humanity, freedom and personal actualization. It’s an exciting, mind-bending adventure and a walk down memory lane for those of us that remember feeding quarters to arcade games.

Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear, by Elizabeth Gilbert

This honest, and often hilarious, memoir of the best-selling author’s creative process might be just the spark you need to get those creative juices flowing again. From unconventional brainstorm methods to inspirational pep talks, Elizabeth Gilbert burrows inside your brain to remind you that you are capable of big magic, even in the smallest moments.

The Inevitable: Understanding the 12 Technological Forces That Will Shape Our Future, by Kevin Kelly

A must-read for marketers (and mankind). Consider this book the new crystal ball for technological innovation. The founding editor of Wired magazine talks tech trends and their global impact, while hypothesizing on the way our world will be connected like never before. Kevin Kelly’s predictions are both terrific and terrifying, but fascinating none the less.

The Sparrow, by Mary Doria Russell

The Sparrow is the story of a priest and linguist who discovers an entirely new world inhabited by an unidentified sentient species. Though the species’ culture is vastly different from his own, over time he realizes eerie parallels to the simpler life he left on Earth. Mary Doria Russell weaves a story so fascinating and full of beauty, it compels the reader to see their world with a lens unlike their own.

The Snowball: Warren Buffett and the Business of Life, by Alice Schroeder

In a rare peek behind the curtain, Alice Schroeder dives deeply into the life of Warren Buffet with personal anecdotes from his childhood and stories from friends and family. It’s a look at what makes arguably the world’s best investor tick, and how he came to be the man we know today. The stories themselves are endearing and indisputably human, and the novel is full of practical business advice.