5 new books to read in February – Fortune

An alarming analysis of a growing but silent epidemic in the U.S.; a deeply reported look at how the founders of PayPal defined the modern world; and a new book from Stacey Abrams that all startup founders and small-business owners should read.
Here is a selection of new books being published this month.
Even with the advent of 5G networks, internet access is not created equal. And that gap has only been exacerbated since the onset of the pandemic as so much of our work and life has moved online, a problem especially compounded for anyone trying to learn or teach remotely right now. Congressman Ro Khanna (D-Calif.) argues democratizing access to tech can strengthen both the economy and our social fabric with a road map to bridging the geographic and digital divides.
Despite the recent Omicron surge that hit during the holiday season—one of the busiest and most lucrative times of the year for the travel industry—Americans clearly want to travel again after being cooped up for more than a year before vaccines were widely available in the United States. And not everyone wants to wait around for someone else to join them. Nikki Vargas and Elise Fitzsimmons, cofounders of Unearth Women, an online publication and resource for female travelers, offer guidance for solo travelers—from suggesting volunteer opportunities abroad to soothing travel anxieties—with specific advice for members of the LGBTQ+ community, women of color, and even new mothers.
Accidents, by definition, are unintentional. But in America, someone always has to pay for the consequences, and the way the U.S. health insurance industry operates these days, the person who has to pay is usually the victim. Author Jessie Singer suggests that there is actually an epidemic of accidents in the U.S., from bike collisions to house fires, and the epidemic is only getting worse. And sadly, predictably, race, gender, and social class often leave many Americans more vulnerable than others.
In her latest work, among many projects right now, voting rights advocate and New York Times bestselling author Stacey Abrams writes with her Now Corp cofounder Lara Hodgson about the brutal truths of starting your own company that might not always be fun or even interesting to discuss, from managing cash flow to recognizing when growth is actually a bad thing. (Read an excerpt here.)
In what could be the definitive report on the origins of PayPal, Jimmy Soni, former managing editor of The Huffington Post, takes a hard look at the company’s founding team—which included now-household names Elon Musk, Peter Thiel, Reid Hoffman, and Max Levchin—and where they have gone since founding the digital payments service, spreading their influence to Tesla, Facebook, YouTube, SpaceX, Yelp, Palantir, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and Airbnb, among others.

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