Every now and then a book will actually change how I see the world, and this book is one of those. Wonderfully written and beautifully read, it points out a way of thinking that's so ubiquitous it's hard to see. And the author doesn't hammer you with arguments--she mainly just gives the facts and lets you draw the conclusions yourself.
This book is rich and dense in a good way, and stands up to repeated listenings. Korn weaves together his own life story, a history of the craft movement (the only part of the book where the momentum sags a bit), and a philosophy for living a meaningful and fulfilling life. If you're anyone trying to create something--whether writer, artist, musician, craftsperson, whatever--I haven't found a deeper guide to that journey anywhere. Inspiring!
The title leads you to believe that Miller will be giving his personal experience of aging. But there's very little in the book about that. Miller is a scholar and historian, and devotes the bulk of the book to analyzing classical and ancient texts (including the Bible and Norse tales). And he by no means restricts himself to the subject of aging. He talks about whatever issues are raised by the texts he's interested in: blood feuds, the collection of debts, etc.
Early in the book Miller half-seriously jokes about his own ADD and his tendency to follow the thread of whatever interests him. But once you've followed this meadering book for a couple of hours, the joke doesn't feel so funny anymore.
If you're interested in a showbiz resume, this book gives the bare facts about Carlin's professional life
If a biographer does not have any special access either to the subject of the bio or to people who have inside information, then it's better to study the subject's own works.
I'm a huge fan of Carlin's work, so it was a great disappointment to find that there was so little new information about the man here.
Less of a flip attitude. More attention to detail.
The distance between the writer and his own story.
Performance was standard.
Consider essays and non-fiction by first-rate writers like Philip Lopate, David Foster Wallace, Jonathan Ames, David Rackoff, etc.
Adam Gopnik's writing comes close to poetry at times, and he's an excellent reader of his own work. I enjoyed this book when he was talking about the big issues related to food: what it means, how it relates to who we are as a family or society. But when he got into the details of particular restaurants and cuisine, it felt a little nerdy and boring. So overall, the book had sections of great eloquence and meaning, with occasional dull patches in between.
This is--in effect--an infomercial for the author's more substantial training package--which itself isn't that great either. Here Meier mainly just speaks a variety of Scottish phrases, with very little explanation or teaching. If you want to hear Scottish accents, you can hear them for free on Scottish radio on the internet. If you want to learn to speak with a Scottish accent in a systematic way, it's not going to happen with this short presentation.
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