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The Third Door

The Wild Quest to Uncover How the World's Most Successful People Launched Their Careers
Written by: Alex Banayan
Narrated by: Alex Banayan
Length: 8 hrs and 42 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (128 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Forbes #1 Career Book to Read in 2018

The National Best Seller

The larger-than-life journey of an 18-year-old college freshman who set out from his dorm room to track down Bill Gates, Lady Gaga, and dozens more of the world’s most successful people to uncover how they broke through and launched their careers. 

The Third Door takes listeners on an unprecedented adventure - from hacking Warren Buffett’s shareholders meeting to chasing Larry King through a grocery store to celebrating in a nightclub with Lady Gaga - as Alex Banayan travels from icon to icon, decoding their success. After remarkable one-on-one interviews with Bill Gates, Maya Angelou, Steve Wozniak, Jane Goodall, Larry King, Jessica Alba, Pitbull, Tim Ferriss, Quincy Jones, and many more, Alex discovered the one key they have in common: they all took the Third Door.  

Life, business, success...it’s just like a nightclub. There are always three ways in. There’s the First Door: the main entrance, where 99 percent of people wait in line, hoping to get in. The Second Door: the VIP entrance, where the billionaires and celebrities slip through. But what no one tells you is that there is always, always… the Third Door. It’s the entrance where you have to jump out of line, run down the alley, bang on the door 100 times, climb over the dumpster, crack open the window, sneak through the kitchen - there’s always a way in. Whether it’s how Bill Gates sold his first piece of software or how Steven Spielberg became the youngest studio director in Hollywood history, they all took the Third Door.

©2018 Alex Banayan (P)2018 Random House Audio

What the critics say

“Exhilarating and empowering... If you care about your success, you have to read The Third Door.” (Tony Robbins, entrepreneur, New York Times best-selling author, philanthropist, and the nation’s number one life and business strategist)

“From redefining success with Steve Wozniak to staring death in the eyes with Jessica Alba, this book is packed with adventure, drama, and remarkable lessons the whole way through. Whether you‘re an executive or a recent college graduate, you’ll find inspiration and wisdom in The Third Door.” (Arianna Huffington, founder of The Huffington Post and New York Times best-selling author of Thrive)

"The Third Door is at once a spirited coming-of-age story and a hard-headed examination of what it takes to succeed at the highest levels. Alex Banayan has cracked the code of the world’s most successful people and shown he will soon join their ranks.” (Daniel H. Pink, New York Times best-selling author of When, Drive, and A Whole New Mind)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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Here’s to the one who dare to dream bigger

Alex’s work brilliantly stands for the people who dared to dream for something better, and persevered to get where they’re now.

The Third Door delivers hope, and it can reach anyone who has dream, a passion, or an idea to make happen.

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Great story and amazing audio version

Inspiring story that is told so enthusiastically by Alex. Perfect for any young adult or dreamer of any age. Shows us how much we can learn from others and to step outside our comfort zone.

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This is amazing book!!! Thank you Alex!!!

Thank you Alex for such a great book! You dedication and reckless makes all the difference!

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Captivating !

Alex is a passionate narrator and carried me thru the entire book. I came away from it like he did in his interviews with Gates and Buffett. It’s not the questions you ask but the how of getting to ask the questions that are the most important. The questions can over ride your authenticity and walking the fine like between being authentic and contrived is something Banayan battles. At the end of the day it’s stepping out of the comfort zone, taking a wild chance and believing in yourself. Really enjoyed the Quincy Jones piece. What a cool cat. Of all of Banayan’s interviewees, he’s the one I Would love to meet most.

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An inspiring tale.

I may not be his target audience(as I'm 40) but it inspired me many times.

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Alex Banayan has grown into a great storyteller

The insights found in this book are delivered as Alex discovered them on his own journey. No one is destined to have a great life, it’s a choice they make to open the third door. I recommend this book to anyone who wants all that this life has to offer!

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A clip show that lacks depth...

I bought this because it popped up as a suggestion and seemed to be a best seller, I thought it might be motivating..However, it’s simply a guide to coat-tail riding and boot kissing ones way to the top of the heap. I guess this guy is a great marketing expert..He lacks education, experience and life experience (his father’s cancer sadly excepted).
Life lesson; if you are pushy enough, maybe there is room for you too on the yacht of someone else’s business success..
Guy reminds me of a millennial that comes in for an interview and requests the Boss’s job..

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Enthralling from start to finish

This book had me from start to finish. Such a ride, such a message so totally unexpected. My mind never wondered, I hung on every word. You must listen to this book. It has to be the best audiobook I’ve ever heard. Wow I can’t even explain...

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One of the best

Amazing read i honestly could not stop... a lot of lessons learned and the author and reader reflected the emotions and his thoughts at the moment. loved it

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Inspiring story! Reminded me to never give up.

I love the fact that Alex narrates the book himself. The way the story comes across is authentic, which is what's needed in the telling of such a personal journey. The book helped me reconnect with a younger version of myself who wasn't afraid to keep knocking on doors until the third door opened. It's a skill that somewhere along the way I had forgotten, and where the "flinch" took over more and more. I've been able to reconnect with this side of myself again little by little. Alex's telling of his adventures keeps you hooked, especially the story of The Price is Right. Well worth the listen!

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  • Laurimar Melendez
  • 2018-07-08

This story saved my future...

I’m a 23 years old female studying advertising design, dying inside for not feeling like I was fulfilling my purpose or any of my dreams. As I came through this book (by a very random way) I started listening to it non stop... To make the long story short, I finally found what I’ve been looking for throughout all these years: a savior to my future. But not a person specifically, instead, a life long experience’s story kind of savior... It showed me that life is better when you always enter by “the third door”, and that possibilities are those that you make yourself.

Thank you Alex for being brave enough to take on this journey. I’m forever grateful.

Cordially,

Laurimar Melendez

9 of 9 people found this review helpful

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  • RV
  • 2018-06-19

A must listen for every millennial

This book is a must read for any and all millennials. The story and lessons covered in this book are AMAZING. As an aspiring entrepreneur this book has inspired me beyond belief to accomplish this life. The fact that the author narrated this book, I believe, made it even more impactful as you get the true emotion and makes feel like you are on the journey right along side him.

The acknowledgment section became very real and emotional for me as I thought of my late grandfather and my still living father. The lessons learned about relationships and true friendships brought me to tears. This is a book that I will share with my children as they get older and live life.

Thank you, Mr. Banayan for your sacrifice and inspiration. Thank you for creating and sharing this masterpiece with the world.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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  • deborah rodriguez
  • 2018-08-11

All.

The books is enjoyable. And inspiring. and All. I experience some emotions I don't want to say but they were felt so deeply. I will cherish this book and remembered all my life. thank you very much.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • MC
  • 2018-06-23

Highly Recommend

What a great book this was to listen to on my commutes to and from work. While I do not typically choose books of this nature, I was drawn to download The Third Door after hearing Alex on The Rich Roll podcast; and, I am so glad I did!

The story had me crying and laughing along and each chapter only seemed to get better than the last, which is impressive considering who all was interviewed along his journey. I can’t recommend it enough and hope you will gain as much from it as I have!

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • EK
  • 2018-06-22

A must read (listen)!

I bought this book after hearing Alex Banayan on The Rich Roll Podcast. Even though I’m about the farthest you can get from the demographic this book was originally intended (a 42 year old mom and wife content in her career and life) I was so drawn in by Alex’s storytelling and experience I wanted to hear more. I’m SO glad I did! Beautifully read by the author, Alex Banayan, The Third Door is engaging from the start. I bought the book in the morning and listened to every minute until it was finished, I couldn’t put it down. A combination of amazing storytelling, beautiful reflection, and the power of possibility, this book is full of entertainment and insight no matter your career, passion, or place in life. It’s infused with what’s possible when we believe in that which moves us and take action towards our mission with knowledge, failure, growth and purpose. But for me the greatest take away is the power within us all to help and connect to one another, to be door openers and window finders, to move and be moved towards our own mission and in service of others. I loved this book and cannot recommend it enough.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • Guztavo
  • 2019-05-05

Never gets to the point

Too long with unimportant details about how he tried to get interviews with people. Where are the ACTUAL interviews with all these people? That is what i bought this book for.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Julian
  • 2018-12-27

Great beginning of, hopefully, many achievements

Unbelievable achievements at such a young age. It looks like the beginning of what can be a promising career. He has certainly found his calling and time will tell how it evolves beyond his personal account in this book.

What, in my opinion, detracts from this book is how self focused it is and it seems that most of what was talked in the actual interviews was glossed over to give way to the authors personal feeling of what was being told.

I would have enjoyed more detailed raw accounts of what was said in the interviews instead of a steam of consciousness of what the interview "felt" like or was interpreted as. However by the end it seemed as Alex had learned more from his previous interviews.

I want to thank Alex for his brave endeavor and the risks he took, it made a hell of a story. I am definitely looking forward to whatever project Alex pursues in the future as his view on life matures and his web of contacts and friends grows.

An inspiration and depiction of what happens and what to expect when you follow your calling. Keep jumping the hurdles!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • jay
  • 2018-08-30

Great Stories , Over produced/Read

Great book. Perfect for the entrepreneurs needing some motivation in getting started or even the current entrepreneurs looking to rekindle a flame which got you going in the beginning. Loved every story in particular Qi Lu who's field is one i'm akin to. The only real thing which let this book down was the over production in the story telling. Not every word has to be emphasised as if it was a thriller being read to the world through a radio. Be calm and just tell the story not every word needs to pronounced with such theatrics to give it more value, it is credible as it is. I can only assume that the author has a hidden passion for theatre or the stage from this. If I am right then everything prior to this makes sense. Just a small criticism for a very fine piece.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • KD
  • 2018-08-11

incredible

couldn't stop listening. Alex is a terrific storyteller and a great teacher. recommend this book to anyone who wants to learn about thinking differently

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Vinny
  • 2018-08-07

best book for this generation perspective

alex full read of the book transform it into another book reading experience. must read book this summer

1 of 1 people found this review helpful