A Truck Full of Money

A Truck Full of Money

One Man's Quest to Recover From Great Success

eBook - 2016
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"A perfectly executed, exquisitely reported parable of the Internet age and the wild, mad adventure that is start-up culture."-Charles Duhigg Fortune, mania, genius, philanthropy-the bestselling author of Mountains Beyond Mountains gives us the inspiring story of Paul English, the founder of Kayak.com and Lola. Tracy Kidder, the "master of the nonfiction narrative" (The Baltimore Sun) and author of the bestselling classic The Soul of a New Machine, now tells the story of Paul English, a kinetic and unconventional inventor and entrepreneur, who as a boy rebelled against authority. Growing up in working-class Boston, English discovers a medium for his talents the first time he sees a computer. As a young man, despite suffering from what would eventually be diagnosed as bipolar disorder, he begins his pilgrim's journey through the ups and downs in the brave new world of computers. Relating to the Internet as if it's an extension of his own mind, he discovers that he has a talent for conceiving innovative enterprises and building teams that can develop them, becoming "a Pied Piper" of geeks. His innovative management style, success, and innate sense of fair play inspire intense loyalty. Early on, one colleague observes: "Someday this boy's going to get hit by a truck full of money, and I'm going to be standing beside him." Yet when English does indeed make a fortune, when the travel website Kayak is sold for almost two billion dollars-the first thing he thinks about is how to give the money away: "What else would you do with it'" The second thing he thinks is, What's next' With the power of a consummate storyteller, Tracy Kidder casts a fresh, critical, and often humorous eye on the way new ideas and new money are reshaping our culture and the world. A Truck Full of Money is a mesmerizing portrait of an irresistibly endearing man who is indefatigable, original, and as unpredictable as America itself. Praise for A Truck Full of Money "Kidder's prose glides with a figure skater's ease, but without the glam. His is a seemingly artless art, like John McPhee's, that conceals itself in sentences that are necessary, economical, and unpretentious."-The Boston Globe "Kidder's portrayal of living with manic depression is as nuanced and intimate as a reader might ever expect to get...' You can't help admiring Mr. English and cheering for him."-The New York Times "[A] powerful and insightful tale that makes the Internet era entertaining, and defines English as an endearing, generous and eccentric geek."-USA Today "At times, the narrative of the young technologist, at least in Kidder's hands, seems the modern equivalent of the story of the godless wayfarer who stumbles into a cathedral in a distant city, only to find that its vaulting arches and organ music bring on exaltations of mind and spirit."-The New York Times Book Review "What kind of entrepreneur talks about making money as if it's, well, kind of a bummer' You'll ask yourself that question about a dozen or so pages into A Truck Full of Money, Tracy Kidder's expertly reported, deftly written new book that tracks the rise of unconventional software executive and Kayak.com co-founder Paul English."-The San Francisco Chronicle "Kidder writes beautifully, creating an engaging storyline while avoiding cliches and pretention...' Readers are in for a fascinating ride."-The National Book Review From the Hardcover edition.
Publisher: New York : Random House, 2016.
ISBN: 9780812995251
Branch Call Number: eBook
Characteristics: 1 online resource.
Additional Contributors: Recorded Books, Inc

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May 27, 2017

Nicely written and an enjoyable read, but I kept wondering where it was going and never did find out. I suspect the problem is that it reads like fiction, and with a novel one expects a denouement of some kind, which of course is lacking here.

Apr 07, 2017

Really enjoyed this book and the setting. Reading it on the T and passing by some of the locations was a neat experience. Kidder's books have deeply inspired me.

Oct 01, 2016

Geez, I'm sorry but I just found this book so bland, and full of bland superficialities. I enjoyed Kidder's other two books [The Soul of a New Machine] and the one on constructing a house in Vermont a great deal, but this book reminded me of the superficial and less-than-truthful writing of George Leonard back in the 1960s - - 1970s [where he repeated the fictions of substandard newsies as if they were absolute fact: we only use 10% of our brains, a joke by Einstein which a reporter misreported on; lemmings run off cliffs, that 13th monkey fiction, et cetera].
I thought it most fitting that Kidder ended with the character, Paul English, doing his Uber driver gig, ostensibly seeking feedback on his latest travel site, and // connecting with The People \\ - - this guy just doesn't track; as clueless about Uber as he is about everything else, and still stuck at 13.

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