Book Reviews

0 Flares Twitter 0 Facebook 0 Google+ 0 Reddit 0 LinkedIn 0 Made with Flare More Info'> 0 Flares ×

Want to take a peak on what I’ve been reading recently? Here is where I keep my short reviews and comments about books I’ve been reading or listening to. Expect short and objective reviews where I won’t spend time rewriting books’s concepts, but rather recounting the experience, interesting facts learned, and whether I recommend the read or not. These books are listed and published in the order that I read them. Although the publish date isn’t an accurate parameter to determine the date that I finish reading the book, it is close enough.
I try to write these reviews for most of the books I’ve read. Sometimes, I get way behind with keeping up with these, but I’ll eventually catch up!

The Innovators - How a Group of Hackers, Geniuses, and Geeks Created the Digital Revolution

This is not the first Biography I’ve read that was written by Walter Isaacson. He is a phenomenal writer. The Innovators, I have to admit, didn’t impress me as much. The book consists of micro biographies of dozens of personages involved in the advancement of technology since Ada Lovelace. It is an interesting read, but [...]Read More »

Survival of the Sickets: The Surprising Connections Between Disease and Longevity

Disease is a word that carries such a visceral meaning: we’ve all had (or still have) one at some point, and have experienced the pains and challenges that come with it. They always reminds us of mortality and how fragile we all are and keeps us on our toes. Some diseases, however, are actually a [...]Read More »

The Perfect Theory: A Century of Geniuses and the Battle over General Relativity

General Relativity have always been an intimidating topic for most people. The book makes it specially clear while recounting the story of the beginnings of the theory when almost all scientists showed strong resistance in accepting and even debating about the subject. Even to this day, the theory faces resistance from a small portion of [...]Read More »

Life at The Speed of Light - From the Double Helix to the Dawn of Digital Life

Quickly passing through the most important events in the history of biology and genetics, the author goes through his own endeavors pioneering the human genome sequencing and successfully creating the first form of life with a synthetic genome. It goes as deep as describing the procedures in details, so you’ve got to have some previous [...]Read More »

Mission to Mars - My Vision for Space Exploration

Buzz Aldrin was not the first man to walk on the Moon, but wasn’t short from Neil Armstrong in making history. This book is a collection of ideas he had gathered with the help of hundreds of specialists he discussed with throughout the years since he came back from the Moon. These ideas are focused [...]Read More »

American Turnaround - Reinventing AT&T and GM and the Way We Do Business in the USA

After working for AT&T for 44 years, the author found himself with an invitation from the White House to become the chairman of General Motors and help it turn away from his bankruptcy path. Notwithstanding the fact that he knew nothing about cars, he took on the challenge and left after it paid in full [...]Read More »

An Astronaut's Guide to Life on Earth - What Going to Space Taught Me About Ingenuity, Determination, and Being Prepared for Anything

Most know for its Space Oddity performance on board of the International Space Station, Chris Hadfield wrote this book in a format that resembles more a memoir than a guide. Reading it, nevertheless, was both very entertaining and educational. Having a special interest in Space Exploration and Aviation, I found it a very interesting read [...]Read More »

Thinking Fast and Slow

Outstanding work from Economics Nobel Prize Laureate Daniel Kahneman, on thinking process and how we miss the logic of things in our everyday decision making. The author uses the concept of two minds to explain how our brain makes decision, and how we’re prone to succumb to bad decision making in situations ranging from being able [...]Read More »

The Science of Fear - Why We Fear the Things We Shouldn't -- and Put Ourselves in Greater Danger

The terrorist attacks of 9/11/11 are the perfect example of how fear can put ourselves in greater danger. After seeing the airplanes hitting the World Trade Center on the TV, people decided that flying wasn’t safe anymore. Instead, they took their cars and drove to their destinations, causing more traffic casualties than the terrorist attack [...]Read More »

How to Create a Mind - The Secret of Human Thought Revealed

  Much like the Singularity is Near, and pretty much all other book from Ray Kurzweil, this one is certainly going to cause some stir in you. Ray tells you of how a mind can indeed be reproduced, and how A.I. is steadily walking towards that reality that will soon allow us to upload our [...]Read More »

Abundance - The Future is Better Than You Think

We’re used to hear about doomsday news every day, and we have literally become accustomed to the “fact” that we are a hopeless generation, that will soon become extinct by either famine, lack of water, a dreadful disease epidemic, terrorist attacks, or something worse. People just don’t realize how much better off is the world [...]Read More »

Reality Check - The Irreverent Guide to Outsmarting, Outmanaging, and Outmarketing Your Competition

This book is surprisingly entertaining, and covers pretty much everything you need to deal with a startup. It covers pretty much all the way from inception of the idea, going through raising capital and marketing, and ending up important subjects like hiring and social responsibility. I like it that it is a very sincere book, [...]Read More »

The Wealth of Networks - How Social Production Transforms Markets and Freedom

I’ve said that before, and I’ll say it again: you know when a book is outdated when it keeps referencing MySpace and as a model for Social Networks. Unfortunately, this is not the only downside of this book. It is too tedious, full of long sentences that explains deeply everything that is being stated. It [...]Read More »

The Innovator's Solution - Creating and Sustaining Successful Growth

  This book’s message could be easily summarized by saying that there are only two kinds of companies: the ones that disrupts, and the ones that are being disrupted. There is no middle ground, and companies that have once disrupted, will soon going to be at the loosing side of the game. Christensen and Raynor [...]Read More »

The Post-American World - Release 2.0

The title may lead you to think that the author is going to picture a pretty chaotic picture for USA in the next decade. Not true. In fact, it talks a lot more about the balancing out of power and the rising of developing countries than anything else. Been raised and educated in a developing [...]Read More »

Parkinson's Law

Quick and easy read. This book is short but full of pearls.Published in 1957, but still very much current when it comes to predicting, understanding, and managing human beings. One of this author’s famous quotes is “Work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion.” Full of interesting anecdotes, it is a [...]Read More »

Decisive - How to Make Better Choices in Life and Work

About 5 years ago, I had the chance of attending to one of the Heath brothers presentations, while at the Creativity World Forum 2008, in Antwerp. I loved their simplified approach to hacking life issues and finding creative solutions to make a change in the world. Right there at the event, I bought their book [...]Read More »

The Discoverers - A History of Man's Search to Know His World and Himself (Book One - Time)

This book is a treasure chest full of memories on how we have gotten where we are today. Learning of the past mistakes and successes helps us avoid present pitfalls and flirt with a brighter future. The author, Daniel Boorstin – the Librarian of Congress from 1975 to 1987, did an amazing trip through man’s [...]Read More »

The Long Tail - Why the Future of Business is Selling Less of More

Even if you don’t plan to read it, you can’t get away without understanding the phenomenon described by Chris Andersen in his book The Long Tail and expect to thrive in the age of the Internet. And this is no exaggeration –  the long tail is a social phenomenon enabled by the internet and it extends beyond [...]Read More »

Censorship - The Knot That Binds Power and Knowledge

I found this pearl after some research on this topic, and bought it for a bargain at The cover might not be very enticing, but I wouldn’t expect much on a cover of a book published in 1988. Not saying that I judge a book by its cover, but this one wasn’t particularly standing [...]Read More »

Digital Disruption - Unleashing the Next Wave of Innovation

Short book, inspiring if you were born before 1980 and never been too much into the tech world or have never been an entrepreneur and want to understand the driver of today’s digital disruptions. If you don’t fit this description, it is still an ok book to learn some good examples of what have digital [...]Read More »

Wikinomics - How Mass Collaboration Changes Everything

You know when a book is outdated when it mentions MySpace as the leading Social Network, and makes short references to Facebook. This book was once very relevant, but now it is so outdated that I wouldn’t recommend its read unless it undergoes a major review. Time has only made this subject even more relevant, [...]Read More »

Reviewing The 21st Century Economy - A Beginner's Guide

If you’re that kind that often feels lost at lunch time when people begin talking about economy, the various indexes and acronyms, and economics theory this is the book to ease your pain. Although somewhat convoluted in describing some of the concepts, the books does a great job going through all the important pieces and [...]Read More »

Lucky or Smart? Fifty Pages For The First-Time Entrepreneur

Quick read, features some relevant lessons for aspiring entrepreneurs. I somewhat enjoyed the book, but wasn’t much impressed by it. Maybe it would be more useful if I’ve never read any other entrepreneurship or business book before. One other negative detail, in my opinion, is that author tries to teach you lessons using examples from [...]Read More »

Free - How Today's Smartest Businesses Profit

We’ve all used free services, and we all love it when money doesn’t seem to fly out of our pockets. Free high quality e-mail, web search, photo sharing, social network, open source software, etc. Yet, we rarely stop and think of how business who provides us free services make a living. If you think, you [...]Read More »

Start With Why - How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action

If you’ve ever started a business, or tried to sell something, you’ll certainly recognize the patterns described by Simon Sinek. We think of the what to describe a product or service. Same while trying to influence people to adopt a certain behavior. Thinking about the what, and explaining the what just feels natural, logical, rational. The [...]Read More »

Review - Presentation Zen Design and Super Apresentações (Super Presentations)

I bought this book a few years ago, while I was preparing for a presentation but only had a chance to skim over quickly to look for some inspiration. At that time I also bought the book Super Apresentações (Super Presentations), in Portuguese, and decided to invest the reading time on it instead. After that, [...]Read More »

Review: The Great Stagnation - How America Ate All the Low-Hanging Fruit of Modern History, Got Sick, and Will (Eventually) Feel Better

Short book, easy and quick to read, goes briskly through american history recollecting all the low hanging fruits it ate that made America this great economy. The subtitle of the book suggests that the author, Tyler Cowen, will make a case that the fruit was the reason why it got sick. Not the case – [...]Read More »

Reviewing Cognitive Surplus - How technology makes consumers into collaborators

There is great effervescence out there as people talk about how internet is revolutionizing the way people interact, consume information, create content, share informations and collaborate. Whether this revolution is good or bad, society is definitely never going to retreat to the old ways of a pre-internet world. We’re left to deal with these changes, [...]Read More »

Quick review of The Singularity is Near - When Humans Transcend Biology

This is one of those complex big books, with lots and lots of technical details, hundreds of references and dozens of new words to your vocabulary. What some would call a book nightmare, this is certainly not the case. Albeit long, it was extremely well written, and once you get started you can’t stop it [...]Read More »

Review: Content Rules - How to Create Killer Blogs, Podcasts, Videos, Ebooks, Webinars (and More) That Engane Customers and Ignite Your Business.

Creating a personal blog seems to be some sort of rite of passage that most internet users have gone through. Keeping up with it, is yet another rite that only a very small percentage of them manage to pass. I am still trying to keep that up, and I have to admit that it is [...]Read More »

Review: Here Comes Everybody - The Power of Organizing Without Organizations

Written with a content focus similar to The World is Flat 3.0, this book does a great job at explaining the internet potential for leveraging outstanding feats through its users current un-organized social behavior. This subject isn’t new, but it is far from irrelevant – we live in a world where change is promoted through [...]Read More »

Outliers - The story of Success

The title and subtitle of the book may lead you into thinking that this is yet another book with a recipe on how to be successful through successful people’s stories. Not so much the case. The book does recount the story of several successful people, but puts into perspective the uncontrolled and unforeseeable environmental factors [...]Read More »

The World is Flat 3.0

Quick and easy book about how flat the world have become through technology and how people can now interact with each other regardless of geographical distances for the benefit of society. Several heart warming recounting of people who gave up on their confort to make the world a better place using the internet and accompanying technologies, starting a social [...]Read More »

The E-Myth Revisited: Why Most Small Business Don't Work and What to Do About It

If I had to summarize the most important lesson learned while reading this book in one sentence it would be: A true Entrepreneur should not go to work in his business, but rather dedicate his effort working on his business. According to the author, the key to a ill fated business is an entrepreneur failing [...]Read More »

Three Moves Ahead: What Chess Can Teach You about Business

It is been a long while since last time I played chess, but I still remember how to play it! Chess players are well know as strategists, and the ability to make decisions during the game and be always prepared to change your strategy to cease an opportunity or to counter-attack an unseen move are [...]Read More »

Red Moon Rising

Outstanding book for those who would like to learn more about the not so obvious and not so publicized backstage history on one of the most peculiar periods mankind have gone through in modern history. I have always had a special interest for Space Exploration and modern History, and this book is a perfect marriage [...]Read More »

How to build your own spaceship

When I first read the title of this book I was sure it couldn’t be real. Rocket Science is well known as a very complex endeavor and couldn’t be covered in a how to, however long it could be. After reading some positive reviews, I decided that it was worth going through it, and now [...]Read More »

Insanely Simple

Simplicity is currently one of the hotest subjects amongst entrepreneurs, developers and designers. Despite the name, simplicity isn’t always obvious, easy or simple to implement, and this book does a good job pointing out several examples from experiences the author had while working closely with Steve Jobs at Apple. This is a fine book with [...]Read More »

Zero Dark Thirty

Watching movies is one of my favorite activities, but I usually don’t write reviews about them. In this case, though, I decided to invest the time and write a review comparing the movie to what I learned from the recounting of the navy seal who participated in the mission recounted in this movie. First thing [...]Read More »

The Willpower Instinct

I love the way this book depicts all the characteristics of our willpower and how it is driven, making you profoundly aware of what motivates your decisions in a way that you never imagined. One example is how the author explains that our instinct if to see life as an account where the balance reflects [...]Read More »

The Risk of Trading

With lessons that could be easily ported to other traits of life, the author makes an outstanding job pointing out how people often misinterpret risks because they lack the complete understanding of the peculiarities of the given trade. The unknown is a risk by itself, but when it is overestimated you risk not making a [...]Read More »

Rich Dad Poor Dad

The author recounts his story from the viewpoint of having two fathers: one that was very well educated, but not financially wise and the other been of limited education but financially wise and successful. It gives a good insight on the main reasons why most people struggle to achieve financial success and how to break [...]Read More »

Review: The Power of Habit - Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business

“We become what we repeatedly do.” Sean Covey at The 7 Habits Of Highly Effective Teens Insightful analysis on how our brain develops habits using the most recent and intriguing cases studied in the field. The author makes a phenomenal job explaining how habits are developed in our brains, how to suppress them, and how [...]Read More »


There are 7 attributes that can be associated to any story, brand or personality that triggers the human fascination: * Power * Passion * Mystique * Trust * Alarm * Rebellion * Prestige Not only the author does a great job describing each of these triggers, comparing brands, products and even celebrities, but she also [...]Read More »

The Personal MBA

Thinking that a book could cover 2 years of MBA studies would be silly, and I didn’t get through this book expecting that, but it certainly surpassed what I thought it was going to deliver. The author makes a focused summary on all the subjects usually taught in an MBA and makes several references to [...]Read More »

Accidental Genius

Although I somewhat enjoyed going through this book, I didn’t try the writing method the author preaches and am not sure whether it is actually efficient. I’m not saying that I suspect it isn’t efficient, but I’m sure it isn’t suitable to all personalities, and it definitely isn’t a green method as it will make [...]Read More »

No Easy Day

Written by one of the navy seals that participated in the Osama Bin Laden capture, it is a very detailed recount of all the training and execution of the mission from his perspective, featuring a detailed narration of the helicopter accident and Osama’s death. The majority of the book’s content is devoted to explaining what [...]Read More »

Steve Jobs

  A rebel who revolutionized the once boring, complex and expensive computer world. I read quite a few books and articles about Steve Jobs, but this book is by far the most sincere while describing his personality. It was impressive that a person with such a stubborn personality with an obsession for control would let [...]Read More »

Criticism avoids you from seeing the good

I’m just about to finish listening to the “Making Ideas Happen” audiobook, and wanted to share my review and a few nice ideas I can highlight from it. Though the title of this book could suggest that it’s subject is related to procrastination, just like the other two books I reviewed last month (The Now [...]Read More »

If you've got two frogs to eat, which one would you eat first?

Just finished with listening to another audiobook a couple days ago while walking, and wanted to share my review and highlight two important concepts I learned from it. First concept: If you have two frogs in the pond to eat, which one would you eat first? The ugliest one. Once you’ve done with the ugliest one, you’ll [...]Read More »

Done with "The Now Habit"

Finished with listening to this audiobook last week, but only had the chance to write my final review now. I did a previous post about one thing I learned while listening to it, and thought I should conclude with a review. This book doesn’t teach with straightforward techniques to fight procrastination. Rather, it tries to [...]Read More »

The Now Habit

I’m not even in the middle of this audiobook, but I just learned a comparison the author made that I really wanted to share before I finish with it. Imagine you’re given the task of crossing a board about 30 feet long, 4 inches thick and 1 foot wide placed on the ground. Would you [...]Read More »

Readers' Social Network

It is wonderful how powerful communication through social media is. If you simply start following the right people on Twitter, you’ll get a clear glimpse of what is happening around the world, as well as local and worldwide trends. Just mentioned that, because I was reading some tweeks, and came across one that was sent [...]Read More »


Outstanding book for entrepreneurs looking into inspiration for addressing common development dilemas like whether to reed to customer’s suggestions or how to approach software development for maximizing profit and deliverability. Focused on startups whose main product is the software they develop, and wrote by the founders of 37 signals, this book breaks most of the [...]Read More »

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People

Not a quick read, but it is definitely well worth it. The 7 habits put your behavior into perspective, and helps you understand where you’ve being failing. Life doesn’t come with a manual, and we all go on with continuing our habits, good or bad, the way we have always done, and the way we [...]Read More »

Crush It!: Why NOW Is the Time to Cash In on Your Passion

I may have been the first person who bought Crush It! before knowing who Gary Vaynerchuk was and having never seen the Wine Library TV. The latter being of no surprise, since I don’t drink. Instead of going for the book, I bought the audiobook at audible which is narrated by Gary Vaynerchuck himself. His [...]Read More »

Review: The Checklist Manifesto - How To Get Things Right

Checklists are most related to grocery or shopping lists for the most of us. After reading this book, you’ll be certain that you need a checklist for everything you do in life. This book is life changing, and shows you the wonders of what a well designed and perfectly executed checklist can do. It doesn’t [...]Read More »

The Future of Management

Using heavy examples of new management paradigms, using examples from internet focused companies like Google, Gary delivers his findings that the old school of management doesn’t provide the ideal environment for nurturing creativity and engaging employees in the company’s cause. This is a good book, and provides an alternative perspective, when compared to the myriad [...]Read More »

Saving the World at Work

Social Responsibility is continually becoming a hotter and hotter topic as businesses find themselves serving a world wide community through the internet that is increasingly demanding on how careful the business is and its social consequences. The book brightly describes the successful moves several companies like Walmart, Patagonia and Timberland have done in this area and the [...]Read More »

Getting Things Done

  The “Getting Things Done” method, or GTD, is a great way to organize your activities and actually get your things done throughout the day making better use of the time you have available. It preaches the use of an inbox for keeping all your tasks ordered, and whenever you have time available, tackle the [...]Read More »

Chief Culture Officer: How to Create a Living, Breathing Corporation

Culture is a set of standard behaviors we can observe in a group of people. Each school, university and business is got its own set of standard behaviors defined by rules, environmental conditions, ethnicity of attending people, etc. Most cultures can be shaped for good, creating a standard set of behaviors that people will instinctively [...]Read More »

The Mormon Way of Doing Business

“The true definition or true defining situation for a person is what they do when they are alone and don’t have to do anything else” – Dell’s CEO Kevin Rollins Isn’t it right? Have you ever noticed what do you do whenever you find yourself idle? Start thinking of it. This book is based on [...]Read More »

Seeing What's Next

This book features some in depth study of real world industry changes, and how they happened, explained from a point of view that most of us have never thought before. I found it very usefull in several subjects of study. Seemingly “Crossing the Chasm”, Geoffrey A. Moore, it’s first chapter explains some qualities of consumers, [...]Read More »

Breakthrough: Stories and Strategies of Radical Innovation

This book was in my wishlist for almost a year before I had the opportunity to acquire and read it. As I couldn’t find it here in Brazil I had to wait for an opportunity to acquire it abroad or buy it from a foreign website. I did the first, and bought this book while [...]Read More »

P2P: How Peer-to-Peer Technology Is Revolutionizing the Way We Do Business

Although it might not look like a must read book in a social network focused world, it was an interesting read for because of it’s deep relation with my undergraduation monography and the effort I’ve put studying that matter. Some may think that today, P2P is old fashioned while they relate the acronym with P2P [...]Read More »

The Google Story: Inside the Hottest Business, Media, and Technology Success of Our Time (Book review)

A few weeks ago I have read the book “The Google Story: Inside the Hottest Business, Media, and Technology Success of Our Time” (Portuguese version) and later I decided to share my thoughts about that reading experience. The first bit about this book is that it has an easy language, and thus the book fits [...]Read More »

0 Flares Twitter 0 Facebook 0 Google+ 0 Reddit 0 LinkedIn 0 Made with Flare More Info'> 0 Flares ×
0 Flares Twitter 0 Facebook 0 Google+ 0 Pin It Share 0 Reddit 0 LinkedIn 0 0 Flares ×