Brad Feld

Back to Blog

Book Review: Company

Feb 24, 2006
Category Books

I’ve been very busy the past few weeks so I haven’t had much reading time.  I’ve been slowly working my way through Company by Max Barry.  Tonight, after my friends left our condo at Beaver Creek after our Friday night sushi orgy, I laid down on the coach,  near the fire, across from Amy, and finally polished it off.

Company was brilliant.  Imagine a novel about a Dilbert-esque company run amok, with extraordinary character development and a steady build-up to a 24–like plot twist.  I found myself laughing out loud regularly, which is always a good sign (although it means you probably shouldn’t read this book on an airplane.)  The author – Max Barry – claims to have “spent the best years of his life in the bowels of Hewlett-Packard, conducting secret research for this book.”  He did a good job.

I won’t be a plot spoiler here – you’ll have to read this book yourself.  However, Barry’s characters range the gamut from pitiful, to lovable, to hateful with occasional inter-office sex tossed in for good measure.  As with most large companies, donuts, human resources, problems with the network, and the suggestion box play central roles.