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191 of 206 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Only body language book that made sense to me
This is the first body-language book I've read that actually made sense to me, and which I feel I can trust. Rather than being written by TV personalities, with frequent appeals to speculative science, this one is written by someone who used body language for his day job in life and death situations over an entire career. He introduces a bit of (well-established) science,...
Published on 19 July 2009 by Martin Turner

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421 of 442 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not Great
Many things about this book irritated me.

For a start the first couple of chapters are mainly just trying to sell you the authors other services (conferences or whatever). Almost stopped reading at this point.

The next few chapters seem to be almost entirely about what you're going to learn from the book. I hate it when books do this because I've...
Published on 18 Aug 2010 by S. Warman


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421 of 442 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not Great, 18 Aug 2010
By 
S. Warman (UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: What Every BODY is Saying: An Ex-FBI Agent's Guide to Speed-Reading People (Paperback)
Many things about this book irritated me.

For a start the first couple of chapters are mainly just trying to sell you the authors other services (conferences or whatever). Almost stopped reading at this point.

The next few chapters seem to be almost entirely about what you're going to learn from the book. I hate it when books do this because I've already bought it - you don't have to try and sell it to me. It's the same sort of thing as how in American TV shows they show you what's about to happen every 5 minutes. Just get on with it.

Secondly the way it's written is very ponderous and it tries hard to sound science-y in areas that are totally irrelevant.

Here is an extract to illustrate my point:

//"For millions of years, the feet and legs have been the primary means of locomotion for the human species. They are the principal means by which we have manoeuvred, escaped and survived. Since the time out ancestors began to walk upright across the grasslands of Africa, the human foot has carried us, quite literally, around the world... ...And while not as efficient at certain tasks as our hands (we lack an opposable big toe)..."//

It goes on like this for some time. This is great for those that have yet to realise what the lumps of meat on the ends of their legs are for but for the rest of us it's just pointless waffle that adds nothing to the book. It reads a lot like padding and without it I think this book would probably be about 100 pages long.

On the subject of trying to sound science-y the book has many references to other literature. Funnily some of them are references to other books by the author and books about the author which leads me to believe they're probably there more for show than anything else. I don't know why they bothered to do this because the major premise of the book is that it's information gleamed from many years of experience not an academic look at body language.

There is some actual interesting material in the book and some more subtle stuff to look for that you may notice after reading it but it's hidden in such a large amount of crap it barely seems worth the effort.
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191 of 206 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Only body language book that made sense to me, 19 July 2009
By 
Martin Turner "Martin Turner" (Marlcliff, Warwickshire, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: What Every BODY is Saying: An Ex-FBI Agent's Guide to Speed-Reading People (Paperback)
This is the first body-language book I've read that actually made sense to me, and which I feel I can trust. Rather than being written by TV personalities, with frequent appeals to speculative science, this one is written by someone who used body language for his day job in life and death situations over an entire career. He introduces a bit of (well-established) science, lots of empirically gathered experimental results, in case you're interested, but, mainly, he's talking about stuff he has observed over years and years, and personally put to the test.

Not surprisingly, this book makes far fewer claims for body language than some of the others I looked at. Navarro is categorical that body language alone cannot tell you a person is lying, although he does give some clear advice on what to look for. Rather, he focuses on barriers, pacifiers and emphasis which, when combined with the right questions, can lead you to seeing what areas a person is uncomfortable about. He quickly dismisses some of the grand urban myths of body language, for example that a person who touches their nose is lying, and makes some very good points from his criminal justice background about the dangers of believing such notions.

I learned a huge amount from this book, and it altered my thinking about what body language is and does. I learned even more about what it isn't and doesn't.

Chuck the other books away -- this is the one to buy.
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177 of 195 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An invaluable & informative read, 14 Jun 2008
This review is from: What Every BODY is Saying: An Ex-FBI Agent's Guide to Speed-Reading People (Paperback)
I recently bought this book hoping to learn how to read and better understand the behavior of the business people and situations I come across daily in my work in finance. My hopes for this knowledge were SURPASSED as the guidance Mr. Navarro provides in this book is so practical and constructive you can start applying it immediately. I like his style of writing too - easy to follow, engaging with many real examples. I also found the pictures used throughout the book are very helpful in making a behavior memorable so I can look out for it as I go about my day, in and outside of work. I can see how this information could be applied to so many different jobs and situations, not just business and finance, and as such recommend it to anyone looking for more understanding about the behaviors of the people around them.

I'd give it more than 5 stars if I could, because it's already helping me as I apply what I've learnt.
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61 of 68 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars one of the best of all the body language books, 12 July 2009
By 
D&D - See all my reviews
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This review is from: What Every BODY is Saying: An Ex-FBI Agent's Guide to Speed-Reading People (Paperback)
Over the last decade I've read the books by Allan/Barbara Pease ("The Definitive Book Of Body Language" is the best of theirs); David Lieberman (in the end, I did not get a lot from his books which were not only disorganised but too much of his information could easily lead to getting false positives); and Paul Ekman (an academic who specialises in facial language - his video on reading facial microexpressions is very useful, as is "Lie to Me", the fascinating TV series based on his work).

There's benefit from reading most of the books on nonverbal language but this one is probably the most extensively field-tested and is also a good starter book, with lots of demonstration photos. The author began his sharp understanding of nonverbal language in the schoolroom when, as a young immigrant with little English, he identified what others felt about him from tiny changes around their eyes as he entered the room (slight eyebrow raise = friendly vs slight squint = unfriendly). He continually honed this natural gift over his decades in the FBI including many years of lecturing both FBI and police about body language.

The book has a whole-body approach that not only explains the what, why and how but also gives real-life examples; it is clearly organised from the most honest parts of the body to the least honest (essentially from the feet upwards), which provides a good flow. It repeatedly emphasises the importance of context and the need to compare any changes with the baseline or normal behaviour of the individual; the author confesses to still making mistakes and cautions against over-reliance on "tells".

The author provides background psychology behind many of our subconscious actions yet the book is easy to read and understand. Although it relates heavily to business interactions, the techniques can easily be translated to any social interaction. Even though it does not really help you with your own communication skills, it does provide excellent information on how to identify contradictions between what is being said vs what that other person is really thinking - how valuable in the workplace!

Later note: now there's specific workplace advice in "Louder Than Words: Take Your Career from Average to Exceptional with the Hidden Power of Nonverbal Intelligence" and "Your Body at Work: A Guide to Sight-reading the Body Language of Business, Bosses, and Boardrooms".
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best by far, 7 Nov 2009
This review is from: What Every BODY is Saying: An Ex-FBI Agent's Guide to Speed-Reading People (Paperback)
Like many of the other reviewers I have read quite a few books on this subject and this is without a doubt the best currently available. Joe takes the reader from utter novice to experienced body reader in nice easy chunks, always keeping you entertained with little anectotes from his life and career in the FBI.

For me the revealation was to realise people do react in a predictable way to body language. This alone is invaluable as it allows you to present yourself to the world as you want to appear, getting the results you desire. He doesn't mention this specifically - this is no self help bible - but the information is there. It takes some of the social fear out of a situation to know that people will react to you in specific ways if you adapt the correct body langauge.

As a dedicated people watcher its also wonderful to have more of an insight into how someone is thinking from the way their body reacts. Recently one of my managers was sat in my office talking to a colleague - a member of his staff came in; instantly his shoulders rounded, head went down and I knew there was some tension between the two. His "underling" was boucning up and down on his toes (Joe calls this "happy feet") so I guessed he'd had some good news. Found out later that he had - he'd just found out he had custody over his daughters that weekend (recently divorced).

You can buy all the books you want on psychic developement, invest in a good crystal ball, even sell all you own, change your name to Madame Zara and move to Brighton to open a fortune telling tent on the pier, but you'll never get to read people with the same accuracy as you will from just buying this book and lapping up all the knowledge inside.

I hope you enjoy it as much as I do :)
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48 of 54 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very interesting book!, 15 Jan 2009
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V.K. (UK, London) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: What Every BODY is Saying: An Ex-FBI Agent's Guide to Speed-Reading People (Paperback)
Fascinating book, it teaches you about what peoples body language actually means. Actions of people such as touching their neck's or dominating space, that were once meaningless for you, will provide you with much information about the person and how they feel. It also explains the very interesting psychology behind the limbic brain and how it relates to body language. From reading this book a whole new window of information will be opened up to you. I strongly recommended it as a student of psychology, and you don't even have to study psychology to be interested by this.

5/5
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Padded out, 17 Jan 2011
This review is from: What Every BODY is Saying: An Ex-FBI Agent's Guide to Speed-Reading People (Paperback)
There is a lot of great information in this book. Useful, too.

There is also a lot of padding. To highlight the validity of his findings he includes a lot of examples from his career. This makes sense but there's also a lot of unnecessary filling.

His main advice is to observe not just see. Makes sense but if you're hoping for a book that details 101 ways to spot a liar or to read people then you'll be disappointed. That said, it's worth getting the book for what it does give you: a method of analysing people around you.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Insightful, 2 Jan 2011
This review is from: What Every BODY is Saying: An Ex-FBI Agent's Guide to Speed-Reading People (Paperback)
After reading this book I found it quite insightful, but to be honest alot of it is quite obvious or was to me, although as time has now gone by I can really tell when someone is not telling the whole truth or at least hiding something, its great when you have teenage kids :D well worth buying.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very realistic, 20 Sep 2010
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The author starts by telling us that all the things that he says here is not infalible and that no-one not even he gets it right all the time. Most people probably buy the book to see if they can get a better idea of if people are lying (i did). Whilst the book does this well the real message is about trying to look at a situation and person in context. Just becuase someone is stressed for instance does not mean they are lying and even if they are there is rarely one feature that determins this. I found it a very useful sales tool as I can quickly identify what areas are stressful or even just unaceptable to a client and can verify what the solution is from there. The detection of a lie becomes secondary to getting the right facts for a conclusion.

I haven't become a human lie detector but is was very informative and useful none the less.
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45 of 53 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Decent read, but aimed more towards the FBI..., 19 Oct 2009
By 
M. Bean (Leicester, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: What Every BODY is Saying: An Ex-FBI Agent's Guide to Speed-Reading People (Paperback)
As a sales assistant, I work with the public day-in, day-out. I was looking for a book which might help me work more effectively with people, and know how to read their body language better, at work as well as with friends and family.

I'd say there hasn't been a clear improvement in my body-reading skills since finishing this book, but I have noticed a few little things I hadn't before. I was glad to read that crossing your arms can be both a sign of comfort as well as stress - before, I thought it just stress related! It's all down to the way you do it.

It's a very interesting book, but often the signs are either a) quite obvious (fiddling when nervous, etc), b) really directed towards police / FBI-type; how to read criminals/liars, or c) only relevant to certain kinds of people / certain circumstances.
It's not the most well-written book I've ever read, but that's often the case with someone who is a specialist in something other than writing books... it's not always clear, but it is understandable. He certainly knows what he's talking about.

I would perhaps recommend looking around, if you're just the average joe (like me), but if you're police based, or work in a position where you regularly confront liars, it's definitely very relevant.

Nice picture illustrations, too!
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