Six Mini Book Reviews

Six Mini Book Reviews

While I didn’t get much time to “work” on the blog much while I was on vacation.  I was able to do another kind of work that will improve this blog and my analysis skills over the long-term.

As I’ve said a lot I hate wasting time.  Sitting in the car for 28 combined hours.  And trying to fall asleep for hours and not being able to are my definitions of wasted time.

But all wasn’t lost while dealing with the above because both allowed me to get a lot of reading done.

Below are reviews of the most recent books I’ve read on my trip and after getting back home.

The Perfect Corporate Board: A Handbook For Mastering The Unique Challenges Of Small Cap Companies

I had huge hopes for this book…  I mean its right down my alley.  A book that talks about the unique challenges of small cap companies.  The exact kinds of companies I focus on and search for as investments.

But instead of talking about the kinds of things that make small cap companies great.  The entire book is spent detailing things like how to change perception of outside shareholders.  How to approach going public.  How to make decisions as a board member.  And how to get financing as a smaller company.

Even for someone who loves small caps like me it was all boring.  But until I’m an inside executive/director at a small company I’ll reserve final judgment because I’m sure the information in the book was great for these exact people.

As of now I’d give the book a 3/5.

Lolita

One of the things I learned while working at the investment newsletter was that if you want to improve your writing.  One of the best things you can do is read great writing.  And I’ve heard Vladimir Nabokov’s Lolita is one of the best books ever written.

And from a technical writing perspective I wasn’t disappointed.

I won’t spoil the book for anyone who hasn’t read it.  But I will say it’s not for everyone due to the molestation side of the story.

However, Lolita is masterfully written.  And the single best written thing I’ve ever read.  The story is funny, dark, sad, and filled with drama.

If you’re into fiction and great writing I recommend you should read this book.

This book gets a 5/5.

Willpower: Rediscovering The Greatest Human Strength

Willpower: Rediscovering the Greatest Human Strength

One of the main themes of this blog is self-improvement.  But many of us struggle to improve on a regular basis.  And I in particular am always looking for ways to get over the hump of procrastination.

But to do this I need more Willpower and that’s where listening to this book comes in.

The book talks about the concept of willpower from the past to the present.  What affects our willpower both in a positive and negative way every day.  Ego depletion.  How we can improve our willpower with practice.  And much more.

If you’re into self-improvement at all you need to read this book.

It’s a 5/5 and has been added to the Recommended Reading and Viewing Page MUST READ!!! already.

The Perfect Swarm 

I abide by Einstein’s quote: “Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler” in every aspect of my life.  The simpler I can make things the better.  Not only because it takes less willpower – more about this talked about above.  But it also takes less time to do things if you can make them as simple as possible.

But this doesn’t always work.

Life is already complex.  And getting even more complex by the day.  So anything I can do to understand the complexity of things the better.

Another reason I wanted to read this book was in the hopes of learning more mental models as well.  Below are some of the tweets I sent with quotes from this book.

Great stuff in this book.  And if you’re looking to learn something about particle swarms, swarm intelligence, and mental models you need to read this book.

4.5/5

This book has been added to the next prize pool giveaway mentioned here.

Blindness

I read Blindness for the same reasons I read Lolita mentioned above.  And because I’ve heard nothing but great things about this Nobel Prize winning book.

Blindness is dark, graphic, and thought-provoking.  It has the second best dark/oppressing atmosphere I’ve read.  The book with the best atmosphere I’ve read is The Road by Cormac McCarthy.

Blindness is a fantastic book that I recommend all fans of fiction to read.

5/5

Driving Change: The UPS Approach To Business

As an entrepreneur who wants to grow business.  I’m always looking for case studies about great business for inspiration which led me to this book.

Driving Change tells the story of UPS from its start until the early 2000’s.  Or more than 100 years of company history.

While it doesn’t dig into the business details as much as I would like.  Driving Change is great to learn about corporate strategy.  Flexibility.  Corporate culture.  And much more.

But for not digging into more business specifics it gets 4/5.

This book has been added to the next prize pool giveaway mentioned here.

Have you read any of the books above?  Or do you have any book recommendations based off the ones above?  Please let me know in the comments below.

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