The Real Deal New York

What they're reading now

Real estate pros share their picks for books on naval architecture, technological acceleration and the dangers of ‘healthy’ food
By Dennis Lynch | January 01, 2018 01:00PM

L. Stephen Hill
Co-founding Partner, Hill West Architects

What are you reading right now? “A Man and His Ship: America’s Greatest Naval Architect and His Quest to Build the S.S. United States” by Steven Ujifusa.

What spurred you to read that book? When I was in Philadelphia and saw the S.S. United States sadly rotting in a pier, it made me want to learn more about William Francis Gibbs and how he became known as America’s best naval architect. I’m fascinated by the technological advances that he made during the 1940s and ‘50s. He was truly ahead of his time.

Has anything you read in the book stuck with you? How important perseverance is. It wasn’t until he experienced financial hardship that he overcame his greatest personal weaknesses.

Would you recommend it to others? Absolutely. It’s a great read for anyone interested in post-World War II American history.

Christopher Milito
Partner, Morrison Cohen LLP

What are you reading now? “Thank You for Being Late: An Optimist’s Guide to Thriving in the Age of Accelerations” by Thomas L. Friedman.

What spurred you to read that book? I enjoy Friedman’s column in the New York Times. I find it interesting when
reporters get to work outside of the 1,000-word box of print journalism. And his formula — curiosity quotient and passion quotient is greater than intelligence — is a great reminder that we can all do really good, if not great, things.

Has anything you read in the book stuck with you? Friedman argues that if car development had kept the same pace as computing-power development since 1971, a Volkswagen Beetle would go 300,000 miles per hour and use one tank of gas in its lifetime. And it would cost 4 cents, new. It’s amazing how fast our technology is progressing and how even the rate of change keeps increasing. I’m curious what kind of world my son will inhabit 40 years from now.

Would you recommend it to others? No. If everyone reads it, I won’t be as interesting at parties.

Michael Lee
Partner, HKS Capital Partners

What are you reading right now? “The Plant Paradox: The Hidden Dangers in ‘Healthy’ Foods That Cause Disease and Weight Gain” by Steven R. Gundry, M.D.

What spurred you to read that book? I grew up on an organic vegetable farm on Long Island and I’ve always been fascinated with different plants, fresh food and cooking. I’ve been battling some autoimmune health issues the last few years despite seeing a dozen modern doctors and eating “healthy” my whole life. I decided an elimination diet based off this book was the next best step to attempt to heal my gut and immune system.

Has anything you read in the book stuck with you? Everyone believes their diet is the best solution. This book gives you a foundation to build on, but emphasizes that every person is unique. Some foods that bother one person may not bother the next. Each person needs to be their own advocate to find out what works for them.

Would you recommend it to others? This book is extremely eye-opening if you’re battling chronic weight or autoimmune issues. There is a lot of white noise in the dieting world, but I find this book cuts through the diet fads and addresses the root issues.