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Spring/Summer Reading List: Sneaker Wars

Photo: Courtesy of Ecco Books

It's no industry secret that fashion thrives on drama. The rivalries, the tabloid stories, the diva behavior and the nit-picking of hemlines, and the hirings and firings could give Days of Our Lives a run for it's money. Barbara Smit's book, Sneaker Wars: The Enemy Brothers who Founded Adidas and Puma and the Family Feud that Forever Changes the Business of Sport, offers up some soap oper-style drama with a big business twist.

Smit's book stitches together the tale of Rudolf and Adolf Dassler, two German brothers who started a shoe company in their mother's laundry in the 1920s. In a family feud, the brothers went their separate ways to start their own sneaker companies. And both achieved incredible successes (and failures) by revolutionizing the sneaker and sports industries. Explore the underhanded deals, the exploitative advertising, the near-bankruptcy, and the vicious competition between sneaker industry titans.

While it might sound like a dull business book to some, Smit follows the drama to provide a riveting story that reads more like fictional drama than a real-life account of the meteoric rise of two magnates in the fashion industry. It's a must-read for any sneaker addict.

Sneaker Wars: The Enemy Brothers Who Founded Adidas and Puma and the Family Feud that Forever Changed the Business of Sport, Barbara Smit, $26.95,

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