"ARRESTINGLY CANDID . . . THE MOST POWERFUL BOOK I'VE READ ON MANIC DEPRESSION SINCE AN UNQUIET MIND."
- Adam Grant, #1 NYT bestselling author
"ONE OF THE MOST ANTICIPATED BOOKS OF 2022."
"BURN RATE PROVIDES THE CLEAREST LOOK INSIDE THE MIND OF SOMEONE WITH BIPOLAR DISORDER THAT I'VE READ."
FROM THE AUTHOR'S NOTE
This book isn't what you think it is.
It is not a self-aggrandizing tale of entrepreneurial success. It is not an insider’s guide to launching a startup, brimming with insights packaged for tech bros or corporate leaders looking for an edge.
This book is a ghost story.
My Ghost first arrived in the year 2000 and would haunt me for the next sixteen years. It was a secret, known only to a handful of my closest loved ones.
My Ghost is an illness—one that can amplify human potential and seek to destroy it at the same time. For some, a ghost like mine might even seem life-expanding—jet fuel for the entrepreneurial drive—before the liabilities rip it all apart.
Here is the tabloid-ready summary of my book: In 2016, on the precipice of selling Bonobos, the startup I’d been building for the previous nine years, I flew into a manic spiral and was hospitalized for a week in the psych ward at Bellevue in New York. When I was discharged, I was met by NYPD officers, who took me to jail, where I was charged with felony and misdemeanor assault.
Thanks to my Ghost, I came within an inch of losing the woman who is now my wife, the company, and everything I cared for in the world.
Here’s the thing: I still live with it—but the Ghost, my diagnosis of bipolar disorder, isn’t a secret anymore.
“Many leaders and founders struggle with mental health, but few have the courage to open up about it. In this arrestingly candid memoir, Andy Dunn pulls back the curtain on his life and smashes the stigma of mental illness at work. It isn’t just a must-read for entrepreneurs—it’s for anyone who has ever hesitated to seek help and support. This is the most powerful book I’ve read on manic depression since An Unquiet Mind.”
ADAM GRANT, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Think Again and host of WorkLife
“There is nothing typical about this extraordinarily brave memoir. Burn Rate is a story on two parallel but not incongruous tracks: the rise of a wunderkind and his wildly successful e-commerce site and the underlying ‘ghost story’ of Dunn’s secret grappling with bipolar disorder. The result is a long overdue unveiling—a reckoning with rampant mental health stigma that is especially pervasive in the business world.”
SUSANNAH CAHALAN, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Brain on Fire and The Great Pretender
“Burn Rate takes us over the razor’s edge, the sharp line that sometimes cuts between mental illness and American ingenuity. Andy Dunn has written a riveting and soulful expression of the entrepreneur and given voice to the unspoken truth that entrepreneurial success is often rooted in dysfunction. This is a book for anyone interested in business and mental health. And, really, Dunn’s path to self-discovery provides a roadmap for anyone who has struggled with being human. Burn Rate blows away the haze of American dream myths to reveal that, often, there’s a destructive mania that drives success in this country.”
EV WILLIAMS, founder and CEO, Medium; co-founder, Twitter
“[Dunn’s] raw and honest look inside his own head—and heart—will make all of us reassess how we’re really doing.”
MARC LORE, serial entrepreneur; co-owner, Minnesota Timberwolves and Minnesota Lynx
“I highly recommend this book to anyone looking to learn more about the important link between mental health and achievement, as well as the crucial role a great support system can be to the healing process.”
MARDY FISH, former U.S. #1 tennis player and captain of the U.S. Davis Cup team
“I finished Burn Rate in a day. . . . A beautiful and stigma-shattering account.”
ARIELA SAFIRA, founder and CEO, Real
“A brave, powerful, smart, and darkly funny journey into the heart of edgy entrepreneurship and the timeless challenges of mental illness. From the moment Andy Dunn describes looking over a balcony with his sister—she says, ‘What if I fall?’ and he says, ‘What if I jump?’—I knew he was willing to share a kind of truth it’s rare to find in books on business or on mental health.”
PATRICK J. KENNEDY, founder of the Kennedy Forum and New York Times bestselling co-author of A Common Struggle
“Andy Dunn’s journey of highs and lows, self-discovery, leadership, and life is authentic and too rarely showcased amidst the glitz and glamour of entrepreneurship. For anyone coming of age with big ambitions, Burn Rate is a real reminder of the learning curve of self-understanding and care that is critical to success.”
JENNIFER FLEISS, co-founder, Rent the Runway
“A page-turner written by a masterful storyteller, this book serves as inspiration to anyone who wants to live a fulfilling life in the face of anxiety, depression and mood swings.”
JUSTIN McLEOD, founder and CEO, Hinge
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
ANDY DUNN co-founded the e-commerce-driven menswear brand Bonobos in 2007 and served as CEO through its 2017 acquisition by Walmart. As an angel investor and through his venture capital firm, Red Swan, Dunn has backed more than 200 startups, including Warby Parker, Dia & Co, and Coinbase. Dunn serves on the boards of Monica + Andy, an organic baby-apparel company founded by his sister, and the tech nonprofit RaisedBy.Us. Named to Fortune’s 40 Under 40 list in 2018, he is a graduate of Northwestern University and the Stanford Graduate School of Business. He lives in Chicago with his wife and their son.
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