Rest of World’s 2024 reading guide

Every year, we share a list of books from around the world that our team has read and enjoyed. For 2024, we decided to do something different: We asked influential decision makers at global companies — from TikTok to iFood to Shein — to share the books they’re reading and why they think you should read them, too. Here are 12 books that you should put on your reading list this year.


  • Memoir
  • The Worlds I See: Curiosity, Exploration, and Discovery at the Dawn of AI
  • By Fei-Fei Li

Michelle Huang

Special Projects at TikTok

Fei-Fei Li’s memoir is particularly moving, as it puts humans at the center of artificial intelligence. It’s more than just a memoir: She weaves her personal story as a Chinese immigrant to the U.S. with the history of AI development. A truly inspirational tale.

Review: Financial Times

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  • Non-fiction
  • The Anarchy
  • By William Dalrymple

Rishi Jaitley

Senior Advisor, OpenAI

I’ve always enjoyed the work of British historian William Dalrymple, but my affinity for it grew with The Anarchyhis recent book about the rise of the East India Company. It also pairs well with Empirethe podcast he hosts with Anita Anand, which chronicles the empires of Russia, Persia, and China. It’s made me think about my own career, and how to enter international markets in a “right and respectful” way.

Review: The Guardian

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  • Non-fiction
  • The Beginning of Infinity
  • By David Deutsch

Kuo Zhang

CEO, Alibaba.com

Artificial intelligence has not yet become as fearful as it could be because we don’t fully know the workings of creativity or its origin. This book delves into the power of creativity and critical thinking in expanding our knowledge and approaching the essence of reality. Facing the infinite, our choice is between perpetual ignorance or knowledge, fallacy or truth, demise or existence. As a rational optimist and an inspiring mentor, the author offers guidance for entrepreneurs, researchers, and goal-driven individuals.

Review: The New York Times

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  • Non-fiction
  • The Algebra of Happiness
  • By Scott Galloway

Patrick Lassauzet

Head of Corporate Communications, Shein Mexico

Our education system is focused on sharing knowledge, but it leaves out emotional education; we don’t teach children how to be happy adults. I’m surprised by the development of this unsatisfied and unhappy generation, addicted to quick dopamine hits. This book of life advice from noted professor and pundit Scott Galloway changed my life at a time when I saw no meaning.

Review: Vox

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  • Fiction
  • Demon Copperhead
  • By Barbara Kingsolver

Kalsoom Lakhani

Founder, Invest2Innovate

Barbara Kingsolver’s novel, Demon Copperheadis a book that I think should — and will be — taught in English classes as a modern-day David Copperfieldand a commentary on the opioid epidemic in the United States. It’s not an easy read by any means, but it’s an important one. The ending was tied up a bit too neatly for me — no spoilers — but I guess I’ll forgive that given how difficult the subject matter was.

Review: The Washington Post

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  • Fiction
  • Crooked Plow
  • By Itamar Vieira Junior

Diego Barreto

Vice President of Strategy, iFood

The story of Crooked Plow (titled Crooked Plow in English) delves deeply into the life and traditions of Brazilian rural communities, addressing themes such as family, tradition, and the struggle for identity. These themes are universal and resonate with all of us Brazilians. Furthermore, the book is notable for exploring more about the fight for land and survival in Brazil.

Review: Americas Quarterly

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  • Non-fiction
  • Outlive: The Science & Art of Longevity
  • By Bill Gifford and Peter Attia

Rahul Chari

Co-founder and CTO, PhonePe

We’ve all heard the sayings, “It’s more important to live a healthy life than a long one” and “Prevention is better than cure.” This book seamlessly brings the two together to provide a practical guide to healthy living and extending your life span by avoiding the root cause of many ailments. It simplifies the science behind it all to make a strong argument for seemingly ordinary things like a better night’s sleep. A must-read for all.

Review: The Wall Street Journal

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  • Non-fiction
  • AI 2041
  • By Chen Qiufan and Kai-Fu Lee

Jenny Q. Ta

Founder and Managing Director, WEAL28H

I’d describe AI 2041 as a compelling fusion of imaginative storytelling and technical insight, offering a stimulating glimpse into the future of artificial intelligence. It encourages readers to envision a world where technology serves the betterment of humanity.

Review: Los Angeles Review of Books

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  • Non-fiction
  • The Color of Money: Black Banks and the Racial Wealth Gap
  • By Mehrsa Baradaran

Fernanda Ribeiro

Co-founder and CEO, ContaBlack

A very interesting read to understand the gaps between the concentration of income between Black and non-Black communities in the U.S. It details how the founding of Black banks was a strategy used by the community for financial emancipation over time. Although the American post-abolition context is completely different from the Brazilian one, there are many similarities regarding the financial impact on the diaspora over time. This is a book I reread from time to time for new insights.

Review: LSE Review of Books

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  • Fiction
  • Atlas Shrugged
  • By Ayn Rand

Felipe Vallejo Dabdoub

Chief Corporate Affairs Officer, Name

I read Atlas Shrugged some 15 years ago. It’s still relevant in regard to technology and entrepreneurship because of its exploration of individualism, innovation, and the consequences of suffocating creativity. In Latin America, a highly collectivist region, this book puts on the table the other extreme. Perhaps there is a middle point through technology, which, paradoxically, is the main driver of the mass production of products that were previously available for a select few.

Review: The Guardian

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  • Non-fiction
  • Factfulness
  • By Hans Rosling with Anna Rosling Rönnlund and Ola Roslin

Osvaldo Gimenez

CEO, Mercado Pago

The media tends to focus on negative news, generating a distorted view of reality. Armed with data, the authors show the huge advancements the world has made in terms of health, education, and poverty reduction in the past century. Plus, they do so in a very entertaining way, beginning the book with 10 questions to test the reader’s understanding of the world today.

Review: Financial Times

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  • Fiction
  • Fourth Wing
  • By Rebecca Yarros

This Year

Co-founder and COO, PiggyVest

Fourth Wing was recommended to me by a friend, and it is a deeply fun book. Fiction represents an escape from real life, and this book offers a lot of escapist adventure via an engaging and compelling story. I enjoyed how the author weaved emotional depth into her characters’ journeys, offering valuable lessons on the human aspects of leadership like empathy and motivation.

Review: Paste

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