Thursday, September 3, 2009

Book Review: The Accidental Billionaires

No one quite understood it, but the eruption of popularity of Facebook is something that can’t be denied. It seemed to be the right thing at the right time, but most importantly for the right people. It has since evolved beyond just a networking site for college students into one of the most popular websites on the Internet. But where did it begin?

The simple answer is Harvard. The complicated answer is The Accidental Billionaires. Unfortunately it’s not complicated enough. Billionaires tells the remarkable story of the rise of Mark Zuckerberg, a shy computer genius. After creating an accidentally popular Harvard version of a “Hot or Not” site, he begins work on As the subtitle suggests, there is a lot of betrayal on the rise to the top. Yet I felt I wasn’t getting the full story. I never really understood Zuckerberg at times and that could partially be because he refused to be interviewed for the book.

Too often the book just feels overwritten as Mezrich attempts to create a scene, which distracts from the core storyline. Although before it was on bookshelves, Billionaires was on the fast track into being made into a movie. David Fincher (The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, Zodiac) is going to direct an Aaron Sorkin (The West Wing, Charlie Wilson’s War) screenplay. Hopefully they provide the proper reworking to this book, because at its heart it really is one hell of a story.

This review is “for” Larry D. Sweazy. Check out his first novel, The Rattlesnake Season, on October 6th.

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