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Cofounder and CEO of Food52 Amanda Hesser shares the books that inspired her to pursue a career in food

From food pioneer MFK Fisher’s timeless memoir to Zappos founder Tony Hsieh’s customer-centric mission statement, these are Hesser’s favorite books.

Cofounder and CEO of Food52 Amanda Hesser shares the books that inspired her to pursue a career in food
[Illustration: Irina Kruglova]

1. The Gastronomical Me, MFK Fisher

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Fisher’s 1943 memoir, of her years growing up in California through her early adult life in Europe, inspired me to pursue writing and a career in food.

2. What You Do Is Who You Are, Ben Horowitz (out October 2019)

Horowitz looks to different leaders (the leader of the slave rebellion that freed Haiti, the head of a Michigan prison gang) to draw insights for work culture.

3. Happiness Is Baking, Maida Heatter

Heatter’s writing reminds me that it’s substance and quality that matter. Her writing on home baking has been the gold standard for decades.

4. Delivering Happiness, Tony Hsieh

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Business pressures often put a company at odds with its customers. This book explains the customer-first culture at Zappos. It’s a reminder that this doesn’t have to be the case.

A version of this article appeared in the September 2019 issue of Fast Company magazine.

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