Friday, February 14, 2003

Why will I be writing book reviews? Years ago, I started the habit of trying to read at least one book a week. I remember being in the presence of a college professor who said that he read a book a day, and I can't figure out how I or he could keep up such a pace. Reading just one book a week is completely within reach, however. It really is not very difficult, at least when you are as curious as I am. My experiences in life leave me completely of the opinion that on almost every subject in life, including the business of living life, that there are people who know far more about it than me. It is my constant search for more information, mostly born out of the fear that I am missing some critical piece of information that keeps me reading. I am sure that other people know more than me, and I am doubly sure that if I could know what they know then I would somehow be just a bit happier. I could be just a tiny bit more content with my life, and even if that is impossible, I could figure out how to change my life sufficiently to be a little less miserable. I don't really know if any of that is possible, and quite frankly I don't actually know if being happier would be any good for me. I think it is worth a shot, however, and that is what keeps me striving. If I ever get anywhere I'll let you know.

As for reading a book a week, I have been pretty good at it. The truth is that I enjoy it. It doesn't seem like work at all to me. I find that I am a richer person, and if nothing else, it gives me something to talk about when having dinner with friends.

You know, I have read a lot of junk. If that is what it takes to make you read, then I think it is probably ok to start with junk. Junk reading is like junk food. A little goes a long way and it sure is easy to get tired of it. In the beginning of my reading regimen, I would make myself read a non-fiction book every other week. I kept to that regimen for a while and now I find that I need no such discipline. I am just not as interested in trashy science fiction as I once was. Now, I have to keep myself from reading only business books. I sure do enjoy learning from others in the business world, but I think that reading only within such a narrow subject range would make me dull company. I vary my reading diet from religion to anthropology, from business to citizenship, from art and drawing to poetry, and programming. The range has been a delight to me. That led me to decide to share my experience with others.

I have decided that as an experiment I will post short reviews of the books I read. I will even go back and review a few books that I have read previously. The goal of these "reviews" is to present what I learned from the book and what others may find useful as well. Writing the review will help cement the most notable points and most memorable quotes in my mind while presenting a few interesting bits for someone else to take a look at and determine whether they might like to read it as well.

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