Top positive review
16 people found this helpful
Time to slow down... and read
on 25 January 2013
OK, let me get to the point really quickly in case you don't have time to tackle the whole review. But, to be honest, if you are following the sensible advice in The Slow Fix, you should slow down and give yourself plenty of time to read both the review and the book - it'll be much more rewarding!
So, in brief, I thoroughly enjoyed this book and would recommend it. I thought it was well-written and thought-provoking with some original and interesting ideas and, no, I'm not related to the author and I'm not his agent!
I'm a bit of a sucker for books that offer to help me organise my life more efficiently, make the most of my money or work better. Yet so often I find them a disappointment - they fail to live up to the promises on the dust jacket - and I rarely reach the end.
Not so with this one. "Solve problems, work smarter and live better in a fast world", it says on the cover. Right, that's the sort of area in which I could do with some help. A good start, but then comes the real test; will I get past the first 30 pages and still be reading?
It probably helped that I started it on the top deck of a bus on a freezing cold night - little to distract me inside or out. By the time I reached my destination I was hooked. I kept on reading... and kept on reading.
Two things certainly help. I think Carl Honore has a really easy, fluent style: he seems comfortable with words and sets out his arguments cogently and entertainingly. And then there's the range of subjects he uses to support his case: a really eclectic, stimulating mix from RAF jets, failing schools in LA, bus systems in Bogota, and computer gaming (though I'm not sure I wholeheartedly agree with his argument that gamers may be a pool of hitherto untapped uber-problem solvers. Empirical observation of teenage boys knocks that one on the head for me!).
At the time of reading, The Slow Fix gave me much food for thought. Interestingly, I have also found it has made a lasting impression. When I'm battling my way through life, I find myself thinking: Did I rush that task? If I had done that job more slowly, would there have been a better, longer-lasting outcome? Should my boss have charged into that quick decision? Shouldn't we think through the underlying problem rather than do a quick patch-up? What is in the detail on this problem?
It's not a life-changing book - I don't think I have ever read one - but its ideas have quietly but insistently resonated, and continue to do so. And I think that's a pretty good endorsement!