Summer’s Must-Read Books, According to Australia’s Top Execs


Australia’s top executives share what’s on their reading list with Samantha O’Brien.

Rory Jeffes

CEO, Opera Australia

Unconquerable: The Invictus Spirit by Boris Starling tells of men and women whose lives were changed by serving their countries – and their inspiring journey towards recovery through the Invictus Games. These stories of courage and the human spirit deserve to be read out of respect. They help me put my own perceived challenges into perspective.

Pip Marlow

CEO Customer Marketplace, Suncorp

I’ll be reading The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald. My daughter, Sophie, is reading it for her HSC so I thought we could do that together. Also Tracey Spicer’s memoir, The Good Girl Stripped Bare; I love her strength in tackling big issues with humour and personal stories.

Rob Scott

CEO, Wesfarmers

In Cork Dork, Bianca Bosker infiltrates the obsessive world of wine critics and sommeliers. And Hit Refresh by Satya Nadella. Not only is he one of the world’s most respected CEOs, he also had time to write a book – impressive. Both are gifts from friends.

Tracey Fellows

CEO, REA Group

My go-to genre is thrillers, which some people may find surprising. The latest novel in Stieg Larsson’s Millennium series, The Girl Who Takes an Eye for an Eye, is at the top of my list 

Tony Ellwood

Director, NGV

Mark Brandi’s Wimmera was given to me by my friend and colleague, Kate Torney. While I don’t normally read crime fiction, when the CEO of State Library Victoria recommends a book, you listen.

Rosi Fernandez

MD Australia and New Zealand, La Prairie Group

I’m so looking forward to a week of blissful home time, where I can catch up on non-work-related reading. My most trusted source highly recommends A Thousand Splendid Suns by Afghan-born author Khaled Hosseini.

Brad Harvey

Country MD, Bulgari Australia

My Brilliant Friend is the first novel in the acclaimed series by Elena Ferrante, the Italian author who has fought tooth and nail to protect her anonymity. I’ve been told the English translation is exquisite, sacrificing none of the ferocity of the original Italian text, which isn’t always the case.

Matthew Wiesner

MD, Jaguar Land Rover Australia

Faster, Higher, Farther. Written by Jack Ewing, the reporter who broke the story in The New York Times, it examines the Volkswagen emissions scandal. I’ve heard it’s a fascinating and enlightening insight into corporate behaviour and responsibility.

David Peever

Chair, Cricket Australia

I’m looking forward to being carried away by Ken Follett’s A Column of Fire in the Kingsbridge series. I’ll also read Jane Harper’s Force of Nature after enjoying her very Australian The Dry.

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