The Nudist on the Late Shift: And Other True Tales of Silicon Valley

Po Bronson, Author Random House (NY) $25 (288p) ISBN 978-0-375-50277-4
Having satirized Silicon Valley in his novel The First $20 Million Is Always the Hardest, Bronson now turns a much rosier eye on the pulsing heart of the information age. As Bronson examines the pursuit of high-tech entrepreneurial glory, his method recalls the way Robert Altman's Nashville gave moviegoers a sense of the chase for country music stardom--except there's very little pathos here and a lot of blue sky. Though he dutifully presents the long odds facing the would-be founders of the next Yahoo!, Bronson thrills to the culture of the Valley because he believes it fuses the often contradictory desires for security and adventure. ""By injecting mind-boggling amounts of risk into the once stodgy domain of gray-suited business, young people no longer have to choose. It's a two-for-one deal: the career path has become the adventure into the unknown."" Bronson clearly likes the wild-eyed optimists and masters of uncertainty he profiles. There's Sabeer Bhatia, the Indian-born founder of Hotmail, who established a company and, against the advice of more experienced heads, rejected several buyout offers from Bill Gates until Microsoft paid $400 million for Hotmail. There's the exec who let Bronson be a fly on the wall during the ulcer-inducing process of steering a company through an IPO. And there are the talented programmers, many of whom, though not yet 30, have Ancient Mariner-like tales of rejecting stock options--and thus forfeiting millions--in companies that were bought or went public. Bronson is tuned in to the quirks of both personality and culture. His prose, often funny, maintains impressive velocity and is well suited to the manic life of the Valley and its colorful menagerie of characters. (July)
Reviewed on: 05/31/1999
Release date: 06/01/1999
Hardcover - 238 pages - 978-0-387-24505-8
Hardcover - 90 pages - 978-0-309-53179-5
Paperback - 103 pages - 978-3-540-24511-7
Paperback - 146 pages - 978-1-57839-337-4
Compact Disc - 978-1-4019-0440-1
Paperback - 224 pages - 978-0-415-23010-0
Hardcover - 890 pages - 978-0-421-85960-9
Paperback - 432 pages - 978-0-321-26220-2
Paperback - 112 pages - 978-0-595-33331-8
Hardcover - 1958 pages - 978-1-4020-3387-2
Paperback - 140 pages - 978-0-595-33471-1
Compact Disc - 6 pages - 978-0-7393-2105-8
Hardcover - 132 pages - 978-84-7496-968-9
Hardcover - 363 pages - 978-1-4020-3402-2
DVD-Video
Hardcover - 335 pages - 978-0-691-12407-0
Compact Disc - 978-0-7393-1147-9
Paperback - 168 pages - 978-0-7599-4673-6
Library Binding - 128 pages - 978-0-7377-3221-4
Compact Disc - 978-0-7393-2209-3
Show other formats
FORMATS
Discover what to read next
TIP SHEET
MORE BOOKS YOU'D LIKE
X
X