Books about Warren Buffett
. . . are about as scarce as wheat fields in Nebraska.
Unless you’re a Buffett junkie, the problem is: what to read and what not to read?
By starting with Roger Lowenstein’s biography, Buffett: The Making of an American Capitalist, and then reading The Warren Buffett Way by Robert Hagstrom you’ll be introduced to both the man and his method.
Also recommended is Alice Schroeder’s biography, The Snowball: Warren Buffett and the Business of Life. This is a more intensive look at Buffett, the man than Lowenstein’s biography, which focuses more on Buffett’s method.
To hear it straight from the horse’s mouth pick up a copy of The Essays of Warren Buffett edited by Lawrence A. Cunningham. These are actually extracts from Buffett’s annual letters to his partners and shareholders, organized by topic.
Berkshire Hathaway has also reprinted Buffett’s letters to shareholders (1977 to 1995) in two volumes, available for $30 direct from Berkshire Hathaway, Inc., 1440 Kiewit Plaza, Omaha, Nebraska 68131.
If you want to delve deeper into Buffett’s method, I can highly recommend The Real Warren Buffett by James O’Loughlin.
Andrew Kilpatrick’s Of Permanent Valueis a wonderful compilation of stories and anecdotes about Buffett’s experience, his investments, his hobbies and his outlook on life (plus hundreds of pithy Buffett quips and quotes).
Reading Buffettology (by Mary Buffett and David Clark) will help you get a handle on Buffett’s investment system. But be warned: the authors oversimplify and attempt to provide a formula that encapsulates Buffett’s stock-picking ability. Oversimplification is a helpful way to start learning something.
So if you read this book, remember to graduate beyond its formulaic approach before putting your money on the line.
There are many other books on Warren Buffett — and I think I’ve read all of them. Here, I’ve recommended the ones I think will allow you to cover the most ground most quickly.