Book Reviews :: 2018 :: Part III

2018’s reading aim is very much about getting back into the habit of reading, and picking books that will help me grow towards my personal goals. Part I is here. And Part II is here.

And here are reviews for books seven, eight and nine of 2018.

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September :: Revolutionary Productivity: How to Maximize Your Time, Impact, and Income in Your Small Business – Katie Mazzocco

3 Stars

This is a lead magnet: it gives enough to suggest that there is a process that could support productivity, but does not go into detail on the how, or even too deep into the why.

I made the mistake of reading this because I love productivity and use systems without even thinking; and love the idea of building on this foundation. This book is more a beginner’s guide and for someone who has been doing this a while (and a natural Virgo) I was a little frustrated that this “revolutionary” system was pretty basic.

Having said that, for someone who struggles with organisation and systems, this could be a really good place to start. I’m a logical, systems-focused, organised person, so I didn’t particularly learn anything new, however it’s also quite a cheerleading-style book which I think never hurts when entrepreneurship can be pretty hard emotionally and those who are ‘mission-driven’ certainly keep reminding me of why I started my business.

Overall, I think a little more could have been included: even just step 1 in more detail to get that first step of momentum before selling her program. Equally, I appreciate this book is likely not aimed at productive-organised people like myself.

If you seriously struggle to get organised and take the pressure of doing lots of tiny things over and over again: if you seek efficiency: there’s no harm in giving this book a try.

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September :: Cat Haiku – Deborah Coates

4 Stars

A cute read full of truths. I laughed out loud every couple of pages, and the illustrations are gorgeous.

I’m not a big poem-reader, but I loved writing haikus when I was younger and some of the arrangements were really clever. I especially laughed at those giving context to the random aspects of cat-hood like going crazy in the dark, swearing with a mere flick of the tail and leaving presents to be trodden on by their humans.

A sweet and funny book. Brilliant for cat fans or cat-parents.

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October :: How to Polish Your Manuscript into a Rock-Solid Book – Andrea Pearson

2 Stars

In my opinion, this did not have much substance for a “how to” book. It was not detailed on any processes except for tiny details which really go beyond ‘polishing’ and are often down to specific author’s preferences. I found it too short to be of use to those who have done a bit of googling and want more information. Anyone who has actually looked at editing and self-publishing as a route would, in my view, be looking for more of a how-to (considering the title) and less of a “here’s three headings to consider as checklist items, click here for the real information” through her courses. Recommending Word for formatting is not something I would really class as “polishing your manuscript.” 

I got this as part of The 2018 NaNoWriMo Writing Tools Bundle (storybundle) as the 2014 bundle had some good gems.  I started with this as it was the shortest, and as a writer with traditionally published short stories and seeking representation for my novels, I learned nothing from this read, which was a shame as I think with a little more content it could be more than a list of last minute checks.

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What has been your favourite book of 2018? Any recommendations?

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