Tag Archive: book review


Starting Over by Tony Parsons

Policeman George Bailey is not kind to his body, he overloads it with junk food and the inevitable unfolds before our eyes.

George meets death but is given the chance to live his life over. After suffering a heart attack at the age of 42, George is given the heart of a 19 year old, and everything changes.

He becomes less a dad and more a friend to his teenage son and daughter, a lover to his wife, and soon he wants to change the world.

Slowly though the longing for life as he once knew it, creeps back into his life.

What would you do if you could reclaim your youth? Tony Parsons takes love and life in the modern world and presents a bittersweet reading of the dilemmas of the relationships and choices that accompany them.

The great thing about Tony Parson’s stories is they make us all feel that we are not alone as we all face growing older.

Parson works his magic, taking death, mid-life crises, an appreciation for adulthood and our intrinsic longing for a life well-lived and breathes life to the themes with believable, likeable characters. This is a book about important issues that does not take itself too seriously.

I really enjoy Parsons almost conversational style and thoughtful approach to difficult questions we all wrestle with about life and love.

Malcolm Gladwell finds the living beating heart of stories anywhere he looks. When the man that GQ describes as “the world’s most influential thinker” turns his attention to everyday objects – from ketchup to hair dye, and birth control pills, he manages to show us not only how these objects came to be and gives us new ways of thinking about these objects.

It is a way of seeing the title points to. When writing about the ‘dog whisperer’ Cesar Milan (the man who seems to be able to connect with dogs with behavioural problems and make them see the light) – Gladwell is interested not only in how Cesar Milan does what he does, but what goes on in the dog’s brain as Milan works his magic; Gladwell is interested in “what the dog saw.”

The book is a collection of essays written by Gladwell for his column in the New Yorker, tackling a wider range of topics from;

Why has recipe for ketchup has stayed remarkably unchanged when mustard comes in many varieties?

Why some people choke and others panic at difficulty and how do the differences in response explain the art of failure?

Are smart people over-rated?

To why we hire who we hire when we can’t tell who is right for the job.

This is a book that grabs you and will not let you go. But it will not just have you reading, it will get you thinking.