Categories
100 Words Review Biography/Autobiography Memoirs Non-Fiction Self Help

Educated: A Memoir – Tara Westover

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Authors: Tara Westover
Page count: 352
Publisher: Random House
Subjects: Non-Fiction, Autobiography
Language: English
ISBN-13: 978-0399590504
Product DimensionsKindle eBook Audiobook

100 Word Summary

Set in the mountains of Idaho, the Westover family was well prepared for doomsday. Led by the father of the family, they stockpiled all necessities and equipped themselves with essential skills. In this way, the survivalist family could self-sustain and avoid any dependency on society, or the government. Thus being isolated from the mainstream, the children did not have any formal or proper education. With that, Tara had a strong thirst for knowledge and taught herself enough subjects to get herself into the Brigham Young University. This is her story of family loyalty, grief and struggle in her growing years.

(100 words)

Who should read:

Readers who want to look at the current society with a fresh preservative. This is especially so from the eyes of the uneducated. It is interesting to know in such time and age, there are still members of the society who are ignorant and stubborn of the improvements and advancements. Such ingrates (if you may allow me) are always doubting the government, rejecting any help or aid when it could really help them for good.

Who should NOT read:

For those who are expecting a fairy tale, sci-fi stories of either happy or sad ending, this is surely not for you. It is a real story of someone’s (Tara Westover) growing up years. An autobiography of the challenges and struggles that at times can be painful to read. It is especially painful for the educated ones to read the encounters of the Westover family members. Imagine being sick and being refused to see a doctor because of the fear that government will them brainwash and take control. Such irrationality is hard to accept for readers who are practical and realistic/

Takeaway points:

Education changes someone for the better. It gives proper logical reasoning and allows higher cognitive abilities. In this way, it solves much complexities. With that in mind, life can be better enjoyed and not wasted fearing unnecessarily or suspecting establishments with much self entertained controversies.

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Categories
100 Words Review Business and Finance Non-Fiction

Building Your Real Estate Riches – Ku Swee yong

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Author: Ku Swee Yong
Page count: 178 pages
Publisher: Marshall Cavendish Business (5 Nov 2012)
Subjects: Finance
Language: English
ISBN-10: 981438206X
ISBN-13: 978-9814382069

Product FormatFree Kindle eBook / Other titles

100 Word Summary

Authored by Mr Ku the property expert, this book presents an essential guide for readers to amplify their investment gains. In a textbook style justified by facts and data, Mr Ku shares concise insights and practical perspectives for readers to navigate through the market. Differences in residential, commercial and industrial property, it outlines the pros and cons of each sector. Through the collection of articles published in major newspapers, this book addresses the current issues faced by investors. While the presented paradigms are in 2010s, these are timeless examples which are still applicable in the current and future contexts.

Who Should Read

From neophytes to professionals, this is a book suitable for anyone interested in the property market. Regardless of the reader’s knowledge, it is easy to read and to understand different models and market trend. With a better understanding of the property market in those thrilling days of yesteryear, it gives readers certain sense of direction and trend in the years to come.

Who Should Not Read

For readers who are totally not interested in property market, this book will be just a stack of foxed endpapers with printed English words. It requires tremendous effort to finish this book without any interest or curiosity in the property market.

Takeaway Points

Property market works on a willing buyer willing seller basis, pretty much similar to any other transacting markets. However, there are government and authoritarian regulations that makes it complicated, masking certain pitfalls or to demotivate certain trends. To deal better or to amplify gains, it is best to arm oneself with a certain degree of property market knowledge.

I am happy to have met the author himself and received a signed copy of this book. Honored and humbled by Mr Ku’s presence to have had a beer session with him at a German bistro that cool evening.

About the Author

With a background in banking and real estate, working for companies such as Société Générale, Savills Singapore and Far East Organization, Ku Swee Yong established boutique property brokerage and consultancy International Property Advisor Pte Ltd in 2010, servicing high net worth individuals. IPA aims to bridge the knowledge gap between the banking and real estate industries. In addition to his agency, he is co-founder of HugProperty.com and has published 4 books on the property market and is a regular market commentator on news outlets in Singapore. He is also an adjunct lecturer in the National University of Singapore’s Department of Real Estate.

Taken from: https://www.retalkasia.com/profiles/2017/07/03/get-know-ku-swee-yong-international-property-advisor-singapore/1499033459

Categories
100 Words Review Inspirational Non-Fiction

If I Could Tell You Just One Thing… Encounters with Remarkable People and Their Most Valuable Advice- Richard Reed

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AuthorsRichard Reed
Page count: 304 pages
Publisher: Chronicle Books; Illustrated Edition (April 3, 2018)
Subjects: Self improvement books, Motivation , Ethics, Morality, Graduation gifts
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1452165157
ISBN-13: 978-1452165158

Product FormatFree Kindle eBook / Audiobook

100 Word Summary

From Hollywood greats like Judi Dench and Richard Curtis, to entrepreneurial legends like Richard Branson and Simon Cowell; from sports stars and TV personalities like Andy Murray and James Cordon to political activists and born survivors like Mandela’s Comrades and Katie Piper, Richard has picked some of the world’s most interesting brains to give a lesson in how to live, love, create and how to succeed. Overall, it is a good summary of wisdom from different people of success from various industries whose lives have been influenced by events, both fortunate and unfortunate.

Who Should Read

Personally i think for readers who are seeking inspiration or motivation in life to push through the next stage, this is a good short summary of the possible positivities in life. In addition, it brings readers around the world virtually, meeting a number of powerful and famous giants. A short quote or a simple line from these successful people enlighten readers almost immediately.

Who Should Not Read

As this is meant to be a short summary of interest perspectives from the giants, there will be little or at times, no elaboration of the little nugget advice given. The author will introduce and share the background of the person of interest, albeit not very detailed. Readers who are wanting to know more of certain particular interviewed person will be sorely disappointed, because it is after all meant to deliver in a concise manner.

Takeaway Points

Life is a journey, an exploration of things with certain expectations, as well as unexpectations. Each individual is unique, and because of this it is quite impossible to have the same fixed and fast formula for every one of us to succeed.

This book is not written with an aim to provide an instant success formula for all. It is meant to compile short interviews with successful people from various industries for readers to investigate and seek what works for themselves.

After reading this title which i found in an old bookshelf, my personal takeaway point is that we all have to be passionate in something and to work diligently with a clear goal in mind. Everyone’s goal will be unique, and this goal is something bigger than oneself usually. Work towards it while choosing the right decisions and actions along the way, and success will be achievable.

About the Author

Richard Reed is an entrepreneur, philanthropist, and co-founder of Innocent Drinks, the Innocent Foundation, and Art Everywhere. He lives in the UK.

Samuel Kerr has created a body of work that spans portraiture, print design, art direction, and brand identities for clients such as Coca-Cola, Gillette, and Paul Smith. He lives in the UK.

Categories
100 Words Review Biography/Autobiography Non-Fiction Writings

Trump: The Art of the Deal – by Donald J. Trump, Tony Schwartz

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Originally published: 6th October 2015
Page count: 384 pages (Paperback)
Publisher: Ballantine Books
Subjects: Biography
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0399594493
ISBN-13: 978-0399594496
Product DimensionsKindle eBook / Audiobook

100 Word Book Review:

Trump narrates how he runs his organization, his life, the people he has to meet and chat with family and friends, as well as the clashes with enemies. All the while challenging conventional thinking, cutting great deals that are almost impossible. There are some unique insight and perspectives that opens up a different dimension on how deals are agreed upon. Nonetheless, the entire book captures only the wins but not the losses. Still, it is an excellent illustration of what professional salespeople must do. Salespeople must be negotiators, by definition. And Trump has achieved that over the years.

Who should read:

Well, I think if you are looking to understand Trump, this is a good book to start with. This book does give good insights into thinking, his logic and reasoning. It helps to understand why Trump calls off meeting or even agreed deals after hours of doing so.

Who should NOT read:

Certainly this book is not for those who are not a fan of Trump. Every word on the book will probably irk you much. Period.

Takeaway points:

It is an art to close a deal, no matter the size. While this book does give a few good pointers, I do feel it lacks of the realistic aspect. Then again, this is only my personal opinion.

About the Author

Tony Schwartz (born May 2, 1952) is an American journalist and business book author who ghost wrote Trump: The Art of the Deal.

In July 2016, Schwartz was the subject of an article in The New Yorker in which he described Donald Trump, who was running for President of the United States at the time, in unfavorable terms. Schwartz said he came to regret writing The Art of the Deal. Schwartz repeated his criticism on Good Morning America, saying he “put lipstick on a pig”, and again on Real Time with Bill Maher.

Categories
100 Words Review Adventure Fantasy Guys' reads History Memoirs Non-Fiction Writings

Ready Player One: A Novel

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Originally published: 16th Aug 2011
Authors: Ernest Cline
Page count: 374pages (Paperback)
Publisher: Crown Publishers
Subjects: Sci-Fi
Language: English
ISBN-10: 030788743X
ISBN-13: 9780307887436
Product Dimensions: Kindle eBook / Audiobook

100 Word Book Review:

Wade Watts, along with other global players, dedicated his life studying hidden puzzles. These puzzles are in the virtual world, and it is based on the creator’s obsession with the pop culture of decades past and that promise massive power and fortune to whoever can unlock them. Individuals and teams, everyone is using all ways to win the final prize. In this narrative story, as the race drags on Wade needs to win in order to stay alive. At the end of the day, Wade needs to face the real world that he tried to turn away from.

Who should read:

Anyone who has a passion in gaming will enjoy this book thoroughly. From the hardware specifications, to the software requirements, this book is peppered with many IT lingos, concepts and terms. Common terms include, ‘experience points’, ‘level up’, ‘high score’. If you are a gamer, you will find these terms very familiar.

Who should NOT read:

If you are looking for romance, or something close to real life, please stay away from this book. It is not entirely according to the typical boy meets girl and fall in love while they go on dates. It is a complete story of how Wade overcome the game and life challenges. Surely it is not a romance story as that is not the focus.

Takeaway points:

Overall as a gamer myself, I find this book very appealing and comfortable to read. I finished it in one seating, immersed in the literary world that the book has described vividly. At times it brings me back to my younger days when I was gaming delirious, a little similar to the character (Wade) in the book.

About the Author

Ernest Cline is an internationally best-selling novelist, screenwriter, father, and full-time geek. He is the author of the novels Ready Player One and Armada and co-screenwriter of the film adaptation of Ready Player One, directed by Steven Spielberg. His books have been published in over fifty countries and have spent more than 100 weeks on The New York Times Best Sellers list. He lives in Austin, Texas, with his family, a time-traveling DeLorean, and a large collection of classic video games.

13.756331100.501765
Categories
100 Words Review History Memoirs Non-Fiction Romance Writings

The Tattooist of Auschwitz – Heather Morris

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Originally published: 11 January 2018
Page count: 288 pages (Paperback)
Publisher: Harper Paperbacks; Reprint edition (September 4, 2018)
Subjects: Romance/History
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0062797158
ISBN-13: 978-0062797155
Product Dimensions: Kindle eBook / Audiobook

100 Word Book Review:

Based on a true story, a powerful evocation of everyday horrors of life as a concentration camp prisoner. In the worst circumstances, there is no excuse for pessimism. In the test of extremes, being positive is still a choice. And even in hell, love can be found. The unspoken horrors of what humans are capable of reveal the unbreakable strength of what the human body can endure, physically and emotionally. This illuminates humanity greatest strength: Hope. Towards the end even with liberation, there are myriad of aftereffects and scars that will be etched and cast forever in this lifetime, permanently.

 

Who should read:

What is true love? To answer this question, reading this book might be a good start to it. While it will not give the full complete answer to the question, it captures the essential fundamental definition of love. Anyone in mood to read a love story, this is a good short book that is based on actual events.

No doubt it is a positive ending, the book gives a comprehensive coverage after the story ends. In this way, readers get to know what happens after that. It somewhats give a closure, a full picture of what happens after in the real. Unlike other romance stories, this is the real love story that brings tears and smiles.

 

Who should NOT read:

Perhaps the survivors of concentration camps or anyone who is not in the mood for romance stories in rough times. Not forgetting the faint hearts who cannot stand reading the gruelsome human experiments in camps. It is horrifying and shocking, almost like reading the proof of a living hell. It is painful, and hard to accept that humans as sentinels, can bring themselves to perform such cruel acts according to one’s volition.

 

Takeaway points:

Love is simple, love is sweet. It is what one can do for the other, in good and bad times. Love is not fair, never fair, and it is not a transaction of this for that, or to have a partner at someone’s beck or call. It is an eternal promise to each other, to pamper and care mutually, to converse casually in daily events, to have mutual support and rapport even in the simplest thing that one does not agree at all.

Where can we find love? In all places, in all ways. Which in this case, it is in the concentration camp, where it is almost the last place where love can be found. Yet, Lale and Gita proved us wrong. Love was found.

Personally, I really love this book, and I am glad that I picked this title. It reminded of my happier days. A good and easy book to read when I was travelling alone.

 

About the Author

Heather Morris is an Australian writer and social work administrator. For several years, while working in a large public hospital in Melbourne, she studied and wrote screenplays, one of which was optioned by an Academy Award-winning screenwriter in the US.

In 2003, Heather was introduced to an elderly man who ‘might just have a story worth telling’. The day she met Lale Sokolov changed both their lives, as their friendship grew and he embarked on a journey on self-scrutiny, entrusting the innermost details of his life during the Holocaust to her. Heather originally wrote Lale’s story as a screenplay – which ranked high in international competitions – before reshaping it into her debut novel, The Tattooist of Auschwitz.

13.7563309100.5017651
Categories
Business and Finance Non-Fiction

Superfreakonomics – Steven D. Levitt & Stephen J. Dubner

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The New York Times best-selling Freakonomics was a worldwide sensation, selling over four million copies in thirty-five languages and changing the way we look at the world. Now, Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner return with SuperFreakonomics, and fans and newcomers alike will find that the freakquel is even bolder, funnier, and more surprising than the first.

Four years in the making, SuperFreakonomics asks not only the tough questions, but the unexpected ones: What’s more dangerous, driving drunk or walking drunk? Why is chemotherapy prescribed so often if it’s so ineffective? Can a sex change boost your salary?

SuperFreakonomics challenges the way we think all over again, exploring the hidden side of everything with such questions as:

  1. How is a street prostitute like a department-store Santa?
  2. Why are doctors so bad at washing their hands?
  3. How much good do car seats do?
  4. What’s the best way to catch a terrorist?
  5. Did TV cause a rise in crime?
  6. What do hurricanes, heart attacks, and highway deaths have in common?
  7. Are people hard-wired for altruism or selfishness?
  8. Can eating kangaroo save the planet?
  9. Which adds more value: a pimp or a Realtor?

Levitt and Dubner mix smart thinking and great storytelling like no one else, whether investigating a solution to global warming or explaining why the price of oral sex has fallen so drastically. By examining how people respond to incentives, they show the world for what it really is – good, bad, ugly, and, in the final analysis, super freaky.

Freakonomics has been imitated many times over – but only now, with SuperFreakonomics, has it met its match.

Categories
100 Words Review Biography/Autobiography History Non-Fiction Self Help

When Breath Becomes Air

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Originally published: January 12, 2016
Page count: 231 pages (Paperback)
Publisher: Random House; 1 edition (January 12, 2016)
Subjects: Biography
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0812988418
ISBN-13: 978-0812988413
Product Dimensions: Kindle eBook available

100 Word Book Review:

A doleful recount of Paul Kalanithi, a neurosurgeon’s last surviving years, the sudden transition of role from being a doctor treating the dying, to becoming the dying patient himself. As he wrote, “by the question of what, given that all organisms die, makes a virtuous and meaningful life” into a neurosurgeon at Stanford working in the brain, the most critical place for human identity, and finally into a patient and new father confronting his own mortality. In the face of death, Paul went about the preparations, reflecting on choices, goals, his infant daughter and the continuity after his departure.

Who should read:

If you are looking for a deeper meaning of life, a serious view on the perpetual continuity in the face of death, reading this book may help to align your goals and seek what your answer to your question may be. It is a very practical book exploring the last days and months of a dying patient, who happens to be a doctor too.

Overall it is a good book exploring the feelings, emotions and the process of being sick, the pratical roles of doctor and patient. It is sad, yet beautiful. Bittersweet.

Who should NOT read:

On the contrary, if you are looking for some happy ending, some ‘everything is awesome regardless so’ theme of biography, do not try this book. It is sombre and serious in general even though the author has written in light humor, looking at daily things from amusing perspectives.

Takeaway points:

Life is simple, life is short for some. Sometimes things that are fated to be. No science, religion or philosophy can alter the course of fate. If it is meant to be, it is meant to be. Regardless how science have advanced and may cure the most deadly disease, it is a little beyond what even the best doctor can do.

About the Author

PAUL KALANITHI was a neurosurgeon and writer. He graduated from Stanford with a B.A. and M.A. in English literature and a B.A. in human biology. He earned an M.Phil in the history and philosophy of science and medicine from Cambridge and graduated cum laude from the Yale School of Medicine, where he was inducted into the Alpha Omega Alpha national medical honor society. He returned to Stanford to complete his residency training in neurological surgery and a postdoctoral fellowship in neuroscience, and received the American Academy of Neurological Surgery’s highest award for resident research. He died in March 2015. He is survived by his family, including his wife Lucy, and their daughter Elizabeth Acadia.

1.352083103.819836
Categories
100 Words Review Biography/Autobiography History Non-Fiction Self Help

Chan Heart, Chan Mind

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Chan Heart, Chan Mind: A Meditation on Serenity and Growth

Originally published: 8 March 2016
Authors: Master Guojun (Author), Kenneth Wapner (Editor)
Page count: 176 pages (Paperback)
Publisher: Wisdom Publications
Subjects: Philosophy, Religon
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1614292620
ISBN-13: 978-1614292623
Product Dimensions: 5 x 0.6 x 8 inches

100 Word Book Review:

Master Guojun narrates his life with his ordination master, Master Songnian to Chan Master Sheng Yen, documenting the major memories and lessons from his apprenticeship to being the present abbot of Mahabodhi Temple, Singapore. Each contemporary master has his own way of teaching and sharing. Through these experiences, he shares and educates readers basic Buddhism concepts, how simple things hold great meanings. A change in perspectives unfolds insights into the basic things performed in life. In the age of technology and instant gratification, Master Gunjun illustrates how Buddhism is a life philosophy, adaptable yet unbending, applicable to any situations.

Who should read:

Readers who are keen and curious of Buddhism, or interested to know how the daily life of a monk. Master Guojun keeps the narration simple in order to deliver the clearest message. Though this book, readers realise that some things in life is so much easier than it looks. And many of the times in life, it is the mentality and perspectives that complicates things, resulting in frustrations.

Who should NOT read:

For readers who are expecting a deeper and advanced explaination of Buddhism, this book will not be the right title. The book intends to bring forth an introduction to the uninitiated.

Takeaway points:

Life is simple, fall back to basics. Unhappiness, frustrations, anger, and all the negative emotions are unnecessary. It arises from inflexible perspectives which narrows the mind resulting in complications. To see is to not to see. Many things are not be viewed as its form itself.

About the Author

Categories
100 Words Review History Non-Fiction

Voices from Chernobyl: The Oral History of a Nuclear Disaster

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Voices From Chernobyl: The Oral History of a Nuclear Disaster

Originally published: 1997
Original title: Чернобыльская молитва
Page count: 256 pages (Paperback)
Publisher: Picador; 1 edition (April 18, 2006)
Subjects: Political Science
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0312425848
ISBN-13: 978-0312425845
Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.6 x 8.5 inches

Awards: National Book Critics Circle Award for General Nonfiction

100 Word Book Review:

An extremely depressing and devasting book that compiles 500 eyewitnesses, including firefighters, rescuers, cleanup crews, politicians, physicians, physicists and ordinary citizens over a period of 10 years. The author has effectively captured the details of misery, confusion and misinformation on the effects of radiation from the terrible disaster. From the narrations from various parties, it gives different experience and perspectives through the victims/survivors’ eyes. It is clear at that point of time that there was a horrible lack of information of radiation effects on humans. Lives were lost right after the explosion, and many, many, more after that.

Who should read:

Survivors who went through physical and mental hardships. People who been through crisis and fels that the world is ending. This books explores the though process of depression, survival and recovery. The possible things that can be done, and should be done for a gradual recovery.

Who should NOT read:

Readers who are expecting a happy story, should avoid this book at all costs! It documents the sufferings of the affected, the physical and mental torments and injuries due to radiation burns, and the lack of knowledge to handle radiation. There is no way it can be a happy story, no matter how the author writes it. It is indeed sad and depressing.

Takeaway points:

Science brings the best, and the worst to mankind. Knowledge is of paramount importance to ensure survival.