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Sophia of Silicon Valley by Anna Yen

Sophia of Silicon Valley

by Anna Yen

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5119334,089 (3.25)4



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An entertaining book about a quirky, young professional woman working in the male-dominated world of Silicon Valley. Sophia is making her way through the crazy world of start-ups, bro-tech culture, IPOs, overprotective parents and dating, while trying to remain fiercely independent and true to herself. It was the right time for me to read and experience this book and have Sophia in my life.


"I questioned again why I'd hesitated when Peter asked me about our long-term plans. Is it that I'm afraid I'll have yet another person depending on me? Or is it that I'm afraid he'd be yet another man telling me what to do, or worse, that he'd "fire" me?"

"I know you've watched me closely, but watching from the sidelines is no way to live. You've got to get out there, study, and observe, Sophia. Try everything and anything that you find interesting because that journey, as rocky as it may be, will lead you to what you love."

"You have to feel what you 'expect to have', not what you 'want'. Otherwise, you're just focusing on what's missing - and that's negative energy.

"Life is short. You've got to reach out and grab what you want."
  mandarella | Jan 22, 2019 |
I really wanted to like this book. I was excited to read about Silicon Valley from an insider, and from the first page I could tell it was well-written. However Anna Yen's main character, Sophia, was not someone I could empathize with to the point where I couldn't enjoy the story. I tried to get into it, but I had to put it down after about 50 pages. ( )
  kaydern | Dec 31, 2018 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Oh, Sophia- you are a pistol! I loved reading Anna Yen's not so hidden real-life experiences working in Silicon Valley. Even the not so cryptic bosses that you worked for. Your silicon jobs were crazy, entertaining and not so surprising on some of the items you had to go through with the quirky people that run the brilliant business of the Valley.

I laughed, got angry and even shook my head in shame with some of the things you had to go through. It was a pure entertaining read. Having lived in California, an hour away from your working grounds, I was always fascinated with how Silicon Valley worked and how so many brilliant people could handle being so close to each other in a small square mile or so. Sophia of Silicon Valley helped answer some of my questions.

The book was well written, descriptive and a fun enlightening read.
Thank you to Library Thing and Anna Yen for allowing me to read this book. ( )
  SandraBrower | Sep 4, 2018 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
I thought this is about a female working in the IT industry, a male dominating industry, from the title. However, this is all about business but does not take place in New York City only. I do like this is as typical as the most chick-lits. It is about a minority with a medical condition focusing on her career path and struggles with her love life. ( )
  JoeYee | Aug 29, 2018 |
In light of the #MeToo era and the stories of the "bro tech" culture of Silicon Valley, it was interesting to hear about this book that supposedly parodies and shines a light of the culture and nature of SV. Seems like a good pick up. It also helped that I read a really interesting interview with Yen that peaked my interest into going ahead and picking up the book, despite the so-so reviews.

Sophia of the title is a woman who has lucked into being an assistant to a rather eccentric CEO with huge demands. But this high propane lifestyle has its price and Sophia deals with any number of issues that come up in such a stressful job: no gratitude from the people she works with, the sexism and misogyny, a health scare and seeing that this behavior is often pervasive despite moving to a new position in a new company.

The concept was great. The book is timely. Unfortunately it just doesn't work. The prologue is hysterical as she basically has to babysit Kraft to his next engagement, and that includes breaking the law, overpaying for cookies Kraft wants (and was reserved for another customer!) and basically stressing out in getting him where he needs to be. But the boo quickly falls apart.

Sophia is unlikable, as other reviewers note. In this case, it's probably not unwarranted, because she probably had to be "unlikeable" to get to where she got. But as a device it was just difficult to root for her in any way or even care. She's obnoxious and whiny.

The story itself doesn't help. It had been marketed (I thought) as a skewing of tech culture and of CEOs like Steve Jobs and Elon Musk but instead it's more about how and why people become just like that awful boss you've heard about to "succeed." There are discussions to be had but I don't think that was the book's intention nor does the text really lend to that.

I really wanted to like it, especially after reading that prologue. But even after that, in retrospect, it just showed how unpleasant the main character was.

I can't recommend this one and that makes me sad. I'll check out the author's next work but I won't be rushing to read it. ( )
  acciolibros | Aug 11, 2018 |
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"During the heady years of the tech boom, incorrigibly frank Sophia Young lucks into a job that puts her directly in the path of Scott Kraft, the eccentric CEO of Treehouse, a studio whose animated films are transforming movies forever. Overnight, Sophia becomes an unlikely nerd whisperer. As Scott Kraft's right-hand woman, whip-smart Sophia is in the eye of the storm, sometimes floundering, sometimes nearly losing relationships and her health, but ultimately learning what it means to take charge of her own future the way the men around her do. But when engineer/inventor Andre Stark hires her to run his company's investor relations, Sophia discovers that the big paycheck and high-status career she's created for herself may not be worth living in the toxic environment of a boys-club gone bad"--… (more)

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