The influential business figure behind Twitter, Tesla, and SpaceX shares what he feeds his mind to come up with genius ideas and innovative solutions.
While Elon Musk has been making rounds on the internet due to the many controversial moments he engaged in, we can’t deny the fact that as one of the richest people in the world, there is so much that we have to learn from him. With six big companies under his name, how is he able to manage and creatively come up with innovative ideas to make them all stand out?
Well, according to reports, the multibillionaire who’s always making headlines for his wealth and tweets also finds time to read books. Yes, in fact, he even claimed that he learned to build rockets because “I read books.”
Here are the Books that You May Consider Reading as Per Elon Musk
As reading books allows you to explore limitless worlds while boosting your brainpower and improving your mental well-being, let’s take a look then at the book recommendations of Elon Musk.
Filled with deep themes of spirituality, war, brotherhood, and destiny, Musk names The Lord of the Rings as his favorite book ever. Written by author J.R.R. Tolkien, readers like Musk are brought to the epic world of Middle Earth, where they get to join the quest of Frodo and the Fellowship of the Ring in protecting the world from the evil Dark Lord Sauron.
In a tweet, Elon shares: “I know it’s cliché, but LotR is my favorite book ever. Want to see the set and take my kids on a tour of great NZ.”
Following the life of the young hero Paul Atreides, as introduced by Frank Herbert, readers are led into a rebellion for control of a valuable substance on a desert planet. This then brings them to discover mystical powers and confront prophesied destiny.
Musk in his tweet shared how brilliant Herbert was for placing limits on machine intelligence—referring to how science fiction explored further the themes of politics, ecology, religion, and human conditions.
Aside from being innate, probably Elon’s sense of humor is something he gained from reading humorous books, such as this hilarious science fiction written by Douglas Adams. The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy follows the misadventures of an unwitting human named Arthur Dent, who has been rescued from Earth’s destruction by an alien named Ford Perfect.
Published in 1979, this book was identified by Elon Musk as his favorite spaceship from science fiction stories. As he puts it: “I love Douglas Adams! My favorite spaceship ever is HHGTTG.”
While he may not look like it, Elon Musk is also a sucker for love stories—sad love stories, for that matter—like The Fault in Our Stars. Like many, Musk was also captured by John Green’s heart-wrenching young adult fiction about two teenagers, Hazel and Augustus, who met at a cancer support group and fell hopelessly in love. Aside from dwelling on the poignant and romantic journey, the novel highlights themes of love, loss, hope, and the overall human experience of joy and grief.
In a tweet, Elon jokingly calls out author John Green by saying: “You had me at Sheen or Gaddafi. Must admit to like ‘The Fault in Our Stars’ too. Sad, romantic and beautifully named.”
As a company founder himself, Elon Musk also looks up to the great individuals who helped shape the landscape of the country. Hence, the interest in reading the intriguing yet comprehensive biography of America’s most iconic Founding Fathers.
Benjamin Franklin: An American Life covers Franklin’s life from his humble beginnings as a printer’s apprentice to his rise as a successful businessman, inventor, and later statesman. The author delves into Franklin’s many achievements, including his role in drafting the Declaration of Independence and the US Constitution, his pioneering work in electricity and science, and his diplomatic efforts in Europe.
As per Elon Musk: “You can see how he was an entrepreneur. He started from nothing. He was just a runaway kid. Franklin’s pretty awesome.”
Reading books will truly help significantly enhance your knowledge, stimulate your imagination, and provide a healthy escape from reality—making it a valuable and rewarding activity for personal and professional growth.If you want to dig deeper into the books that Elon Musk recommends, you can also include Superintelligence: Paths, Dangers, Strategies (Nick Bostrom), The Moon is a Harsh Mistress (Robert Heinlein), Ignition!: An Informal History of Liquid Rocket Propellent (John Clark), Our Final Invention (James Barrat), Structures: Or Why Things Don’t Fall Down (J.E. Gordon), Life 3.0 (Max Tegmark), Lying (Sam Harris), Merchants of Doubt (Naomi Oreskes), Steve Jobs (Walter Isaacson), and The Twelve Against the God (William Bolitho) on your list. Enjoy reading!