Saturday, May 29, 2010

Review: Classic Wisdom for the Professional Life

(Thomas Nelson Bloggers Book Review)
I like meaningful quotations. Call them “sentence sermons,” “pithy sayings,” or aphorisms, but they tend to compress an important truth into a memorable proverb. If you like quotations, then Classic Wisdom for the Professional Life will be a welcome addition to your collection. Edited by Bryan Curtis, this collection is narrow in its focus: it concerns mainly bits of wisdom from people who are successful in various career fields. Entries may be found ranging from Thomas Watson, John Kenneth Galbraith, and President Ronald Reagan to Oprah Winfrey, Reese Witherspoon, and Katie Couric.

This volume is very readable. It has 165 pages, yet some of these pages contain only one quotation. Its compact size makes it easy to carry in a briefcase or handbag for reading on the go.

Although the entire book is focused on the professional life, it would have been helpful to have the quotations catalogued in some more narrowly focused topical order. I also found the range of the quotations to be curious. Indeed, people like Theodore Roosevelt, Andrew Carnegie, and Bill Gates are people to hear in the context of success in the professional life. Others like Reba McEntire, Alice Cooper, and Arnold Schwarzenegger do not compare in the same league. It appears that Curtis has confused popularity with success.

This book would make a good gift book for a graduate or for someone who has recently been promoted. There are some very good statements in the book. There is also a lot of filler.

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