Isadore Sharp's book, "Four Seasons: The Story of a Business Philosophy," is typical of the problems with many C-suite memoirs, for Mr. Sharp has three distinct stories to tell. First, there's his personal story: The heartwarming tale of the plucky Toronto Jew who rose from being a day-laborer on his immigrant father's building crews to running the most respected hospitality business on the planet. It's a story Horatio Alger would admire.Then there's the history of the hospitality business itself. How Four Seasons, which began as little more than a motor lodge in downtown Toronto in 1960, leapfrogged Goliaths like Hilton to become the ne plus ultra in the hotel business, where the richest and wealthiest on virtually every continent relax. (It should be noted there is not a Four Seasons on Antarctica. Yet.) And lastly, there's the story of Four Seasons' unique business model -- in 1974, it stopped owning its hotels, content instead to make its money building them and then signing staggeringly long service agreements (usually in the 80-year range). This is the story of how Sharp transformed his company essentially from a manufacturer to a service business, on purpose, long before it was fashionable. Each of these would be an interesting tale in its own right: Rags-to-riches stories are always popular and often instructive; the evolution of the hospitality industry over the past half century would lend a fascinating perspective on North American culture; and a discussion of how Mr. Sharp transformed his company and an honest appraisal of the challenges would be valuable at this time like no other. And while any of these individual stories would make an interesting book, it would take a writer of inordinate skill to seamlessly interweave them into one compelling and exciting narrative. Unfortunately, for all he may be otherwise, Mr. Sharp is not a writer of inordinate skill. As a result, we get at best only superficial accounts, as if lifted from a half-century of daily planners and calendars: I made this decision here, then I had a meeting there, then we had this situation over here. Opportunities fall more or less from the sky. Characters and key players arrive and disappear without warning or weight. It all seems stunningly random.