I have never been to San Fransisco, and know little about how business in the valley operates, but I have read many rosy reports in the news of billion exits and dreams becoming reality. This book though, shows a darker side of the hyped startup world. Following around the founders of a 10 month old company as they search for seed investment, the author captures the warped environment they are operating in. The long grinding hours they work for little to no money is a fairly obvious part of founders lives. The disturbing part of their quest for investment is the (faux) shill game they end up pitching at investors and employees. Stuck in a catch 22, where a team is needed to get investment, and investment is needed to pay the team, they end convincing both parties that everything is in place. Which is a lie. Fortunately the money does fall into place, although only at the last minute. These half truths clearly burden the founders with huge amounts of stress, but that doesn't stop them from dealing in them.
The author also spends time living in a house with another group of startup founders, who are also being crushed in the valley. He records the many moronic conversations that these guys have, mainly about some s***ty app they're building that's going to make "doctors obsolete." Or how they introduce themselves with the date they bought Bitcoins to signify their status.
Despite the buoyant press coverage, the picture of life in the valley painted by this book doesn't sound that great.