Which leaders read a lot of books and what books do they read?

15 Sep 2023
Chad Jones
6:06 m read

Not only does reading allow people to escape into different worlds, but it facilitates learning new ideas and absorbing new vocabulary.


It is widely known that reading can help people in many different ways. Not only does reading allow people to escape into different worlds, but it facilitates learning new ideas and absorbing new vocabulary. Some of the most successful people in the world are avid readers, and reading has played a role in their success. Here is a list of 10 leaders who read a lot of books and what reading did for their careers.


  1. Bill Gates: Bill Gates is the co-founder of Microsoft and one of the richest people in the world. He attributes his success to reading, and he has said that “reading is the main way that I both learn new things and test my own understanding”. Gates has stated that he reads about 50 books a year, and he mostly reads non-fiction works on technology, business, and history.

  1. Barack Obama: Barack Obama was the 44th President of the United States and is considered one of the most well-read presidents in American history. He credits reading with helping him develop empathy for others and strengthening his argumentative skills. Obama usually reads fiction books, and some of his favorite authors include Toni Morrison and Ernest Hemingway.

  1. Warren Buffett: Warren Buffett is a businessman and investor who is considered one of the most successful investors in the world. Buffett credits reading with helping him become successful, and he says that “of all the things I’ve done, reading has been the most important”. Buffett usually reads about 500 pages a day, and he mainly focuses on books about investing, business, economics, and biographies.

  1. Oprah Winfrey: Oprah Winfrey is an American media executive, actress, talk show host, and philanthropist. She has stated that reading was one of the most important things in her life, and she credits reading with helping her overcome difficult times in her life. Winfrey usually reads self-help books or biographies, and some of her favorite authors include Maya Angelou and Nelson Mandela.

  1. Steve Jobs: Steve Jobs was an American entrepreneur who co-founded Apple Inc., NeXT Inc., Pixar Animation Studios, and was the CEO of both companies. Jobs was a voracious reader who credited reading with helping him come up with new ideas for products. He was especially interested in reading about psychology, history, science fiction, business, and design.

  1. Elon Musk: Elon Musk is a business magnate, industrial designer, and engineer who is the founder, CEO, and CTO of SpaceX. He has also co-founded Tesla Motors, OpenAI, and Neuralink. Musk is an avid reader who has said that reading helped him learn how to build rockets. He mainly reads books about science, technology, engineering, and physics.

  1. Bill Clinton: Bill Clinton was the 42nd President of the United States, and he is considered one of the most well-read presidents in American history. He has stated that reading has helped him develop empathy for others and understand different points of view. Clinton usually reads fiction books or books about history, biography, and politics.

  1. Jeff Bezos: Jeff Bezos is an American business magnate, investor, and philanthropist who is the founder, CEO, and president of Amazon.com. He has also founded Blue Origin, an aerospace manufacturer and spaceflight services company. Bezos is an avid reader who has said that reading helps him come up with new ideas for products and businesses. He mainly reads fiction books, and some of his favorite authors include Isaac Asimov and Neal Stephenson.

  1. Mark Zuckerberg: Mark Zuckerberg is an American computer programmer and internet entrepreneur who is the co-founder and CEO of Facebook. He has also co-founded WhatsApp and Instagram. Zuckerberg is a voracious reader who has said that reading helps him learn about new things and test his own understanding. He mainly reads non-fiction books, and some of his favorite authors include Bill Gates and Sheryl Sandberg.

  1. J.K. Rowling: J.K. Rowling is a British novelist, screenwriter, and producer who is best known for her Harry Potter series. Rowling has said that reading helped her become a better writer, and she credits reading with helping her develop empathy for others. She mainly reads fiction books, and some of her favorite authors include Jane Austen and J.R.R. Tolkien.

These are just a few examples of successful people who credit reading with helping them achieve their goals. If you want to be successful, reading is a great place to start. So what are you waiting for?


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WholeReader is an immersive reader, with real human narration aligned word-for-word with entire books. This provides students with a powerful “read-along” experience bringing the ear and eye together across hundreds of hours of listening with reading. The audio element sets the pace and provides tremendous contextual information dramatically increasing comprehension. And high-comprehension is the key to the rapid absorption of new vocabulary and grammatical patterns.

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