Super Pumped: The Battle for Uber

Super Pumped: The Battle for Uber

In June 2017, Travis Kalanick, the hard-charging CEO of Uber, was ousted in a boardroom coup that capped a brutal year for the transportation giant. Uber had catapulted to the top of the tech world, yet for many came to symbolize everything wrong with Silicon Valley.


Award-winning New York Times technology correspondent Mike Isaac’s Super Pumped presents the dramatic rise and fall of Uber, set against an era of rapid upheaval in Silicon Valley. Backed by billions in venture capital dollars and led by a brash and ambitious founder, Uber promised to revolutionize the way we move people and goods through the world. A near instant “unicorn,” Uber seemed poised to take its place next to Amazon, Apple, and Google as a technology giant.


What followed would become a corporate cautionary tale about the perils of startup culture and a vivid example of how blind worship of startup founders can go wildly wrong. Isaac recounts Uber’s pitched battles with taxi unions and drivers, the company’s toxic internal culture, and the bare-knuckle tactics it devised to overcome obstacles in its quest for dominance. With billions of dollars at stake, Isaac shows how venture capitalists asserted their power and seized control of the startup as it fought its way toward its fateful IPO.


Based on hundreds of interviews with current and former Uber employees, along with previously unpublished documents, Super Pumped is a page-turning story of ambition and deception, obscene wealth, and bad behavior that explores how blistering technological and financial innovation culminated in one of the most catastrophic twelve-month periods in American corporate history.

Title:Super Pumped: The Battle for Uber
ISBN:9780393652246
Format Type:

    Super Pumped: The Battle for Uber Reviews

  • Sparse Greener

    This is one most poorly written books I’ve read in years. I picked it up because I’ve always disliked Uber and thought this would be an Uber-focused version of “Bad Blood” (one of my favorite ...

  • Eric Mannes

    So much of this book was fascinating. Starting with Part 3, I was highlighting every other paragraph. Lots of it was new to me, including the scope of fraud in the Chinese market that Uber dealt with ...

  • Sasha

    As a transportation reporter this was a page-turner, it read almost like a novelization of real events. It was fascinating to go behind the scenes of key moments in Uber, ride-hailing, and tech/Silico...

  • Mona Nomura

    What a read! Because of the interconnected (almost incestual) nature of Silicon Valley, this tale of Uber takes you on an insider journey into the startup world, touching upon other products aside fro...

  • Jason

    Mostly accurate, but lacks character development. I worked at Uber in SF beginning in 2015, and at a high level the events in the book that I experienced (Vegas off-site, China market) were fairly acc...

  • Ann

    TL;DR: Travis Kalanick is a douche, tech is out of control, take Lyft instead of Uber.Super Pumped is methodically researched and compelling. It confirms what we've always suspected: that Travis Kalan...

  • Eric Lin

    If this book were an Uber ride, it would be an Uber Pool wending its way through the Marina on Saturday night - sloppy bros and woo girls cycling in and out.Perhaps they slump against the window, lean...

  • Shridhar Sp

    I don't even know why I picked this book. It is just a collection of randomly pieced news articles about all the misgivings of Uber. Please note, only misgivings. Also, other key takeaway, all executi...

  • Thijs Niks

    Mike Isaac masterfully narrates the struggle for power over Uber and its main characters. ...

  • Shashank Bhargava

    Interesting read, well reported, not super well written. Lot of information repeated and lots of useless appositives that make you feel like you're going crazy....