Review by Manu Shekhawat
Author – Ashlee Vance
Before picking this book I was already inspired by the feats he had achieved and by the upcoming projects in hand.
The first chapter is ‘Elon’s World’ and it’s like having your gates opened up to the universe of Elon Musk. This 392-page read seemed short to me as it is written in a very interesting manner. This work is a masterpiece by Ashlee Vance as it is not only thoroughly researched but is also well arranged i.e. in terms of the relevance of the events and accounts along with their respective occurrence.
Before reading it I had some sort of doubts and misconceptions about Elon but not anymore as most of the common myths related to him have been debunked in this book itself, for instance I used to think that Elon had an admiration for the great scientist Nikola Tesla and his works, hence he named a company after him i.e. Tesla, Inc which is an automaker company. But, the truth is that its founder had a vision like Nikola and Elon acquired the firm by buying majority of shares, which came to me as a shock but it was made up by Elon’s efforts to make it become a reality from a dump.
The language is lucid, as it is a non fictional biographical account so tagging it as a page turner won’t be relevant but yes, it is truly an inspirational account which will allow you to take a peek in the journey of Elon Musk, from a day dreaming nerd to establishing himself in the three individual markets (Space- SpaceX, Solar – Solar City and Automotive – Tesla Inc), and he is not only running a business in these three but also dominating them like a boss using his inhuman work ethics , unimaginable expectations, clever tactics and perseverance to turn what he once dreamed as a kid into reality.
For instance he used to ask his employees to make a part for his space company under USD 5000 per unit which costs around half a million dollar in the aviation market, and guess what he always got these kinds of stuffs done and in turn he was able to build a private space company which manufactured its own space equipment and parts from the scratch, which enabled them to be immune to the monopoly done by the suppliers as well as the diplomats.
And talking about his inhuman work ethics, he has picked up Tesla Inc from a sinkhole when it almost declared bankruptcy and at the same time saving SpaceX as it had already blown up its first 2 attempts to make it to space and the third attempt was do or die for him as well as SpaceX. Sometimes to taste the success one has to get his/her hands dirty and Elon Musk is no exception. He used to slide under engines and machines to make sure they work, along with it he used to fetch employees by himself as he wanted them to share his vision regardless of their GPA’s.
Just like a roller coaster Elon had his own highs, lows and lows and lows and then highs, highs and still counting. This work will take you from his personal life to childhood to days of utter pressure and troubles to achieving what was considered to be unachievable feats.
Keeping my admiration and inspiration aside I will still recommend it to everyone as what I personally believe is that a biographical account is like a buffet dinner i.e. the readers can pick what they liked and exclude what they didn’t accompanied by the lessons to be learned and get benefitted from a real account
Ratings: – 9.8/10
PS :- What I personally feel about this book is that not all will be able to finish it as it requires some sort of vision ( irrespective of their real world progress) to align themselves with this work and get as much as they can.