Klaus Martini Global chief investment officer Deutsche Bank Private Wealth Management I read so many work-related publications that I actually prefer listening to music instead of reading business books. Even during my university days I read because it was a part of my studies, but rarely for pleasure or relaxation. I stopped reading hardcore business books a long time ago. The world is such a fast changing place that many business books, and the latest 'how to invest' books are out of date before you read them. When I do read, I enjoy escapist novels, and books by authors who make me think. I like to add to my knowledge and expand my thought processes. Recently I have been reading a lot of magazine articles about climate change. Because of my work it has been suggested that I write my own book about economics and what might shape the future. I often start reading a novel, usually something quite light, but for various reasons I never get around to finishing it. But a book that did inspire me is The World is Flat by award-winning New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman. This is a timely update on globalisation, its successes and challenges, and a forecast of what the world might look like in a few decades from now. The author examines how the flattening of the globe began at the dawn of the 21st century, and how this has affected countries, companies, communities and individuals, and how governments and societies can, and must, adapt. I read the book during a trip to China, my first visit for several years, and I was stunned by the way China had become such an important link in the global supply chain for services and manufacturing, creating an explosion of wealth in the middle class. I also enjoyed reading Jim Rogers' Hot Commodities, which is not really a business book because it looks at numbers and who is buying what and why. It is written in a language that is both colourful and easy to read. Quite amazingly, before Jim Rogers decided to ride his motorcycle through China he was one of the world's most successful investors, having jointly set up the Quantum Fund with George Soros. Yet despite his success, he had never written a book about practical investment advice before. If I lived in an ideal world I would like to find the time to read more about history and religion. I have found the history books that I have read help a great deal to explain why many global events happen the way they do. I also enjoy reading about the places I visit, and how various civilizations have developed and prospered. Like many others who are interested in the world around them, I believe that by reading and learning about the past we are able to make better sense of the future. Reading has given me a better understanding of why at one time both India and China were the two most important economies in the world and are once again in ascendancy.