The Anti-Social Network continues the exploits of Adam and Amelia Dory and their quest to build Doreye, their Silicon Valley tech startup. If you enjoyed the first installment, The Start-Up, you will enjoy the The Anti-Social Network equally if not more so than the first.
The Anti-Social Network stays true to the fundamentals which made the first book an enjoyable, authentic experience, while expanding upon the original story. The Anti-Social Network also fills in many of the unanswered questions of the first novella, while establishing new questions and intrigue.
Similar to the first installment, The Anti-Social Network is built upon a foundation of true experience. Although the characters and story are fiction, the themes are very true to life, and entrepreneurs may learn a thing or two. Here is one such example that I found useful concerning the timing of launching a new idea or product:
“Throughout the summer, Tom had encouraged Adam, Amelia, and T. J. to keep quiet about Doreye. The Valley was full of replicators, he’d told them, and if you started talking about your idea too soon, there were leeches that would try to mimic it. Not well enough to replace you, but just well enough to sue you after you got big, claiming it was their idea. Or they’d buy up URLs or patents they anticipated you’d need down the road and then charge you excessively for them. You had to watch out, all the time, especially at places like University Café.”
The preceding is an excellent lesson in timing. Although the Web promotes transparency, too much transparency too soon will not likely be in the best interest of a seed stage company.
In addition, the themes of the first and second books vary and evolve slightly but stay true to the core of the story. The Start-Up dealt mostly with the transition of Adam and Amelia from Stanford students to newly minted entrepreneurs. The Anti-Social Network has a perspective of their acceptance of entrepreneurship and subsequent moving of the company from the idea, or seed stage, to an early and ultimately expansion stage. This realistically mimics the journey of an entrepreneur assuming they have the burning desire, faith, and persistence to stay the course and rise to each ever increasing challenge.
The Anti-Social Network continues the same rapid pace that the reader has grown accustomed to in the first installment. The information is still presented in short form Web content style, which makes for an easy, quick read. The combination of engaging story, rapid pace, and easy to read layout makes for a book that is simply difficult to put down. When you reach the end, you will be eagerly awaiting the third book.
Many of the points I discussed during my review of The Start-Up have continued relevance in The Anti-Social Network. If you are a new reader I highly recommend beginning with The Start-Up and then continuing with The Anti-Social Network. For those who have already read The Start-Up I highly recommend continuing on to the second installment.
Image Credit: The Start-Up Books