Customer Review

56 of 65 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A collection of interesting essays - but oversold as a book., 4 Feb 2009
This review is from: Outliers: The Story of Success (Hardcover)
Malcolm Gladwell, I learned from his website, is a writer for the New Yorker. His website has an archive of his New Yorker articles.

I found "Outliers" an interesting read, starting off with the theme that successful people happen to be in the right place, at the right time, with the right talent, the right motivation and the right accumulation of experience already under their belt. From then the book jumps around, each chapter having an interesting theme but without much connection with the other chapters. The last chapter recounts how Malcolm Gladwell's mother, born and raised in Jamaica, eventually came to live in a beautiful house on a hill in the Canadian countryside.

I got the feeling I was reading a succession of "New Yorker" articles, each one interesting but slightly superficial - and with no common theme being built up.

Overall, I was disappointed and felt that the book had been oversold. The back cover says:

"This book will change the way you think about your life. And it will challenge you to make the most of your own potential".

In my view, that is simply overselling the book. It provided a pleasant read, whiling away a couple of evenings, but no more than that.
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