My name's J - I'm 22, a senior in college, and the founder/co-founder of 2 different startups. I have been reading a lot about strategy and history as of late, and been a reader of your blog for several months now.
I wanted to know - what would you say the top 3 most influential books are that you've read on strategy? What books have allowed you to reach the position you are currently in? Any suggestions would be appreciated (especially ones that you didn't suggest in your recent email to your mailing list - I'm working through those!).
Principles by Ray Dalio (free online, that's #1)
Musashi by Eiji Yoshikawa (not strategy, but necessary for your personal development to become more strategic)
I got a lot out of "On War" by Clauswitz. Brilliant guy. Father of modern military science.
Biographies. "Rise of House Rothschild" by Corti and "Titan" by Chernow.
Everything about Sengoku Japan.
More biographies. As many as you can find. Lots of good ones. House Rothschild and Titan (about Rockefeller) damn fine places to start.
Ultimate Sales Machine by Chet Holmes is good. Mediocrity Into Millions by Abraham is good. Business books. Ignore the business-business-business advice if you want (though it's good) and just look for the bigger picture about how those dudes think. They think big and systematic.