Well, since Without Their Permission doesn't drop until October 1st, the one book you need to read this summer in order to be a better entrepreneur is the book that inspired me and Steve to start reddit: Masters of Doom.
It's about the founding story of id software, the video game company that revolutionized the industry with titles like Wolfenstein, Doom, and Quake – not to mention occupied countless hours of my childhood.
Not your typical business book
Steve lent me a copy of this book sometime during our sophomore year and I devoured it. It's a pretty quick read. It's probably not for everyone, because id fanboys will most appreciate all the stories from the earliest days of Carmack and Romero.
Who knew changing the world could be so much fun?
Nevertheless, this book convinced me to consider starting a company. It just seemed like so much damn fun. Granted, we didn't end up starting a gaming company (well, I guess we had 'gamification' before that was a buzzword: karma, leaderboards, awards, etc) but the idea a few friends could get together in a house and start building something the world had never seen before – having a lot of fun in the process -- got me hooked.
Read at least one book this summer, you'll be better for it
Hopefully it'll be as rewarding for you while you spend some time away from the hustle. Even if you don't read Masters of Doom, get away from your inbox and the office this summer. We tend to fetishize hard work more than we should. Yes, it makes a difference, but don't forget about diminishing returns.