2 sentence book reviews, part 1 (general nonfiction, general fiction, and leadership)

time for another wad of 2-sentence book reviews! my format: i allow myself one sentence for summary, and one sentence for opinion (easy for some, really hard for others!).

General Nonfiction

Maphead: Charting the Wide, Weird World of Geography Wonks, by Ken Jennings
5 stars
jennings (that guy who won forever on the tv show jeopardy) takes us a romp through the world of maps and those who love them. you don’t have to be a ‘maphead’ to love this book, as it’s fantastically witty and fun, while being surprisingly interesting.

Marshall McLuhan: You Know Nothing of My Work!, by Douglas Coupland
3 stars
off-beat fiction writer coupland takes a serious left turn and writes a non-fiction biography of the father of media studies. i had no idea what i was buying, and the book is well written, found myself getting extremely bored with this mcluhan love-fest.

Fiction

Life of Pi, by Yann Martel
4.5 stars
the wild tale of a boy lost at sea, drifting in a lifeboat with a massive bengal tiger. this one’s been around for years, but i finally read it and loved everything but the ending.

Leadership

From Values to Action: The Four Principles of Values-Based Leadership, by Harry M. Kraemer
4 stars
basic principles of what it means to lead from values rather than goals. some fantastic points, but dry and too targeted to a CEO reader.

Let My People Go Surfing: The Education of a Reluctant Businessman, by Yvon Chouinard
5 stars
the founder and owner of patagonia tells his life and company story and how patagonia ruthlessly works to embody their corporate values, even when it means a loss of potential profit. my third read of this fantastic book (and assigned reading in my coaching program), this is an amazing case study of allowing values to be your organization’s decision-making matrix.

Anything You Want, by Derek Sivers
3.5 stars
the founder of cd baby lays out his story and the values his rocketship of a company tried to embrace. a decent case study, but–as with most books in the domino line–rambling and long on words for the points made (which is saying something, since it’s only 88 pages!).

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