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The Icarus Deception: How High Will You Fly? | [Seth Godin]

The Icarus Deception: How High Will You Fly?

In his bravest and most challenging book yet, Seth Godin shows how we can thrive in an economy that rewards art, not compliance. He explains why true innovators focus on trust, remarkability, leadership, and stories that spread. And he makes a passionate argument for why you should be treating your work as art. Art is not a gene or a specific talent. It's an attitude, available to anyone who has a vision that others don't, and the guts to do something about it.
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Publisher's Summary

What are you afraid of?

The old rules: Play it safe. Stay in your comfort zone. Find an institution, a job, a set of rules to stick to. Keep your head down. Don't fly too close to the sun.

The new truth: It's better to be sorry than safe. You need to fly higher than ever.

In his bravest and most challenging book yet, Seth Godin shows how we can thrive in an economy that rewards art, not compliance. He explains why true innovators focus on trust, remarkability, leadership, and stories that spread. And he makes a passionate argument for why you should be treating your work as art.

Art is not a gene or a specific talent. It's an attitude, available to anyone who has a vision that others don't, and the guts to do something about it. Steve Jobs was an artist. So were Henry Ford and Martin Luther King, Jr. To work like an artist means investing in the things that scale: creativity, emotional labor, and grit. The path of the artist isn't for the faint of heart - but Godin shows why it's your only chance to stand up, stand out, and make a difference.

The time to seize new ground and work without a map is now. So what are you going to do?

©2012 Seth Godin (P)2012 Random House Audio

What Members Say

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Performance
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  •  
    Mark Gibson Bay Area, San Francisco 08-27-13
    Mark Gibson Bay Area, San Francisco 08-27-13

    Author, consultant and thought-leader on problems at intersection of sales and marketing

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    3
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    "Powerful Messages for Humans and Humanity"
    Where does The Icarus Deception rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    One of the top 5 audiobooks


    What about Seth Godin’s performance did you like?

    A plus that Seth reads it himself.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    This book has a very strong message which Seth hammers home many times.


    Any additional comments?

    I recently downloaded Seth Godin's “The Icarus Deception” on Audible as my work habits have changed and I have a couple of 90 minute commutes every week. I consider it a real plus in the audio version that Seth reads it himself.

    The message in The Icarus Deception resonated strongly with me, an Australian Baby-boomer. I grew up in a culture where “flying too close to the Sun” was actively discouraged in an Aussie version of the myth called the “Tall Poppy Syndrome”. The message many boomers bought and which is still being promoted by industrial-based thinking today is “Play it safe, be a good worker, you’ll get promoted, own your own home and get to send your kids to University.”

    Interestingly in the past 200 years, the Icarus myth somehow deleted Deadalus’ other warning to Icarus, not to fly too low, less his wings get wet and ruin their lift. Seth states that this is even more dangerous than flying too high and it’s the driving idea in the book that must have been repeated 20-30 times in various stories, case studies and anecdotes.

    Seth’s message is most certainly appropriate for my daughter and her generation Y cohort. They are going to have to be very brave and make powerful art that connects billions of people to solve the problems humans have created in the past 200 years of industrialization that threaten our very survival as a species.

    The Icarus Deception is about taking risks, finding your passion, leaving the certainty, commoditization and interchangeability of the industrial-age work-style and making art for yourself and your tribe. I felt like Seth had written the book for me, because the model our cohort grew up with was the industrial model.

    The biggest problem with the old model is that industrialists, beginning with Henry Ford have created mass production and interchangeability of people and roles and the value of work and compensation has slowly been eroded as work is moved to the point of lowest cost, wherever that may be.

    If you don’t buy this then you are obviously disconnected from the plight of the middle-class, who have seen their standard of living steadily erode over the past 10-15 years.

    The new model is going to take guts and determination. To make art, connect and build a tribe of followers who will buy your art in the new “connection economy” is not for the faint hearted.

    Another strong theme in the book that resonated and will be familiar to readers of Steve Pressfield’s book “Do the Work” is "to ship". To make art you must ship, and this means learning to dance with the "resistance" or “lizard-brain”, that diverts attention from the task at hand in a myriad of uncanny ways and learn to focus your individual creative powers on the task at hand.

    When I finished listening to the book, I simply clicked go and listened to it again.

    This book is not for everyone, it’s intelligent, brave, urgent and compelling and it’s a wake-up call to a civilization running out of time. I highly recommend it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Aurora SPRINGFIELD, NJ, United States 07-30-13
    Aurora SPRINGFIELD, NJ, United States 07-30-13 Member Since 2008
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    "The author is a horrible reader"
    What would have made The Icarus Deception better?

    You would think someone who wrote the book would know how to read it without stopping 3/4 into a sentence as if it were done. Very distracting. Obviously like any author, he is entitled to his opinion, but he sure comes across as someone who was picked last as a kid and is now making a statement because he can. Also the constant referring to a third person as a female is annoying. What is wrong with saying "he or she"? You definitely don't get a sympathy vote from this female. For as much as he talks about the art of connection, he lost me in the first chapter.


    What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)

    Didn't get there...that says it all


    What didn’t you like about Seth Godin’s performance?

    He tries not to be monotonous, and runs into fake tones and artificial stops.


    You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

    It has som interesting points of view that could have been summarized in a blog.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer Zürich, Switzerland 07-24-13
    Amazon Customer Zürich, Switzerland 07-24-13
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    "Nice but way tooooooo long!"
    Any additional comments?

    The idea behind the book is good but it is way toooo long. Seth keeps repeating himself over and over again.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Judy CARLSBAD, CA, United States 05-10-13
    Judy CARLSBAD, CA, United States 05-10-13 Member Since 2013
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    "Loved it!"
    What did you love best about The Icarus Deception?

    Seth Godin is a genius and knows how to read the tea leaves on the wall. Then he puts it together masterfully. Made me think quite a bit and if some portions do not apply to my life now, they did in the past and know I will benefit from his words in the future.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Travis United States 05-05-13
    Travis United States 05-05-13 Member Since 2013

    Husband/Dad/Son/Brother/Friend and Companion to my Dog Sheena! Love all things leadership, contemplative & introspective considerations, and organic growth.

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    "Engaged the entire book"
    Would you consider the audio edition of The Icarus Deception to be better than the print version?

    Yes... Hearing Seth read his own material adds the right tone and considerations for given aspects of the material.


    What did you like best about this story?

    This book kept me engaged the entire time. I looked forward to my 45 minute commute to and from work so I could listen to more. I believe totally in the foundation and premise of his position. There were great metaphors and stories to go along with each point. I will likely read this again. I also recommended to both my wife and my daughter.


    What does Seth Godin bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    As noted above, the right tone and inflection can make all the difference ein the world. I was particularly appreciative of his book and even more appreciative of him reading it to me. I really connected with the book, the stories, and the main concept he offered.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Yes


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kim Redhead, Australia 04-15-13
    Kim Redhead, Australia 04-15-13 Member Since 2012
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    "Seth Godin at his best"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    I absolutely loved this gem of a book. It came at the perfect time when I was contemplating scary work and waiting for someone to give me permission to do it. It's happening now and Seth's thinking was a major catalyst. Another recommendation is Seth's Startup Business School podcast (free) - also brilliant! I'm listening to it for a second time. You can find it in iTunes.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Icarus Deception?

    Its all great.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    n/a


    Any additional comments?

    I really don't understand other reviews that complained about the speed of Seth's narration - I thought it was perfect?

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mike Henry Sr. Oklahoma 03-27-13
    Mike Henry Sr. Oklahoma 03-27-13 Member Since 2002
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    "Great Godin!"
    What made the experience of listening to The Icarus Deception the most enjoyable?

    This is an instant classic by Seth Godin. I've been a huge fan ever since Tribes. This book will challenge you and make you think. Must listen!


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Rajesh Norcross, GA, United States 03-20-13
    Rajesh Norcross, GA, United States 03-20-13 Member Since 2005
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    "This book is a work of Art!"
    What did you love best about The Icarus Deception?

    I have listened to all of Seth Godin's book and have to say this one is my favorite. It appeals to the artists in all of us and reminds us that you too can create art. A great book for business people, musicians, bloggers, writers and anyone who would like to create something for the sake of creation.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jeff Topeka, KS, United States 03-18-13
    Jeff Topeka, KS, United States 03-18-13 Member Since 2012
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    "A regurgitation of his other books"
    What did you like best about The Icarus Deception? What did you like least?

    I love Seth Godin - my favorite author. Tribes...Linchpin...Purple Cow...Free Prize inside...Meatball Sundae...love all of his books and own all of the recordings.

    Like another reviewer...20 minutes into it I had to shut it off.

    #1 - His voice ... I LIKE the fact that he reads his books...it adds to it. In this recording, he is flat - has no enthusiasm and is almost whispering. It will lull you to sleep.

    #2 - We've heard all of this stuff before from him. It's good stuff, but it's freshman year 101 Seth Godin material. I was expecting master's level material since he felt another book warranted.

    I am bored with it and will move on. The rest of his books are OUTSTANDING, however.


    Would you be willing to try another book from Seth Godin? Why or why not?

    His books are the best out there. This one is a stinker.


    What aspect of Seth Godin’s performance would you have changed?

    He is whispering.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer CHARLOTTE, NC, United States 03-05-13
    Amazon Customer CHARLOTTE, NC, United States 03-05-13
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    "Inspiring ideas read by the author himself"
    What made the experience of listening to The Icarus Deception the most enjoyable?

    The concepts were profound and motivating, and hearing them from the man himself made the experience seem special.


    What about Seth Godin’s performance did you like?

    Clear and pleasant voice, as well as his carefully tempered passion.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    Seth said something like "I'm trying to get under your skin" to compel listeners to get off their butts and create art. At that moment, I realized he had achieved his goal.


    Any additional comments?

    This is an important book for anyone who dreams of quitting their day job and living their own life. Thanks Seth!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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  • Pawel
    Corby, United Kingdom
    7/8/13
    Overall
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    Story
    "Amazing book that contains Gold"

    This book contains the truth about ourselves and our lives. Truth we may not notice in our everyday lives filled with constant struggle to measure up to the yardsticks given to us by media, society...

    This book teaches, how to find capability of making art in everything you do. How to make art, how to not fear of making it.

    This book had great influence on my life and I would recommend it to anyone wanting more from life, needing some encouragement, motivation and a permission to do what one was destined to do.

    Life is not about complying, but about carving the path, leading the way, being true to oneself. Life is much more than we used to believe.

    Again, highly recommended!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Paul Williams
    Wales
    7/7/13
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    "Boring"
    What disappointed you about The Icarus Deception?

    No fundamental advice, I couldn't finish the book because it just became irritating. I put on at night if a want to get to sleep.


    What could Seth Godin have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    Its was sold as an inspirational book.....it was far from that. Very philosophical stuff, maybe i missed the point, but this book should not be in the business catogory.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Amazon Customer
    Manchester UK
    4/13/13
    Overall
    "Great and inspiring writer"

    I love this book, bought it recently and has heard it all over about 4 times in 2 weeks. just can't let go of it. Keep the good work, this makes it your second book I have bought.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Amazon Customer
    NORTHAMPTON, United Kingdom
    4/7/13
    Overall
    "Extremely inspirational!!!"

    I am already a motivated individual and listening to this audio book took my focus to another level. The core concept of evolution by pushing past psychological boundaries and the old comfort zone seems obvious at first but the deeper in you get the more powerful Seth Godins message becomes. I loved the direct language and the pace which never seems to slow particularly. I recommend this book to any like minded person i meet. Thank you!!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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