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Outliers Audiobook

Outliers: The Story of Success

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Publisher's Summary

In this stunning new book, Malcolm Gladwell takes us on an intellectual journey through the world of "outliers"--the best and the brightest, the most famous and the most successful. He asks the question: what makes high-achievers different? His answer is that we pay too much attention to what successful people are like, and too little attention to where they are from: that is, their culture, their family, their generation, and the idiosyncratic experiences of their upbringing. Along the way he explains the secrets of software billionaires, what it takes to be a great soccer player, why Asians are good at math, and what made the Beatles the greatest rock band.

Brilliant and entertaining, Outliers is a landmark work that will simultaneously delight and illuminate.

©2008 Malcom Gladwell; (P)2008 Hachette Audio

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  •  
    Michael Pawleys Island, SC, USA 03-08-09
    Michael Pawleys Island, SC, USA 03-08-09
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    "Excellent!"

    Gladwell is a fine writer and this book, in the same style as Blink, explores the real factors that contribute to the success of those we think are so above and beyond us (Bill Gates, the Beatles, etc.). Gladwell makes it clear that their talent, drive, energy, and intelligence WERE key to their success but that these, alone, would not have done it for them. They needed unusual opportunities. In fact, the opportunities given them that were not given others were as important to their achievements as their personal qualities. This book helps reduce the "superstars" down to human level. If you had been given the opportunities these were, you might have achieved what they did or more!

    13 of 16 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Koh Bock Huat 12-29-09 Member Since 2016
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    "Not Convince By His Reasoning"

    After many rave reviews, I expected to enjoy the book but I didn't. I thought the point that success is factored upon opportunity and having the support of influential ppl was obvious. And you don't need a scientific research to figure that out or there is a need to proof it. However, I think he forgot that opportunities can be pursued and not brought to you and that's one major factor of successful ppl. In some cases, opportunities is a greater factor while in some cases the personal drive plays a greater role. I still feel it cannot be generalized.

    The 10,000 hrs rule is another ridiculous generalization and I am not convinced by his reasoning and neither do I see any meaning in such a finding.

    Sorry for the bad review... but this is just what I feel after listening.

    15 of 19 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Matthew 11-04-13
    Matthew 11-04-13
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    "The data in this book has been proven to be false."
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    The data was proven false. Gladwell was the subject of a fraud investigation in Canada for the material published in this book. Even if his data was credible, his conclusions are not founded and full of logical fallacies. Book is a fraud.


    What three words best describe Malcolm Gladwell’s voice?

    Fraud.


    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jay Coulter MARIETTA, GA, United States 09-18-13
    Jay Coulter MARIETTA, GA, United States 09-18-13
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    "Liberal Propaganda"
    What does Malcolm Gladwell bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    His passion for his work is clear in his reading.


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    His obvious socialist leanings are in your face throughout the whole book. Unqualified statements, such as 'tax breaks are only for the wealthy' are abundant. The 'anti-individualism' mandate of current left-wing thinking dominates this work.


    Any additional comments?

    There is plenty of interesting research in this book, it is just presented in the authors very biased world view instead of a purely factual manner.

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Erfan LOGAN, UT, United States 08-25-13
    Erfan LOGAN, UT, United States 08-25-13 Member Since 2016
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    "Biggest Pile of BS since The Secret"

    I 100% disagree with all the concusions made in this book, my personal life is a good example of how I made it in life to stay above the average and it is 100% opposite of what this BS of a book suggests.

    Waste of 1 Credit. Damn... Should have bought Penn Jillete's Book.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Felix Tamarac, FL, United States 04-11-12
    Felix Tamarac, FL, United States 04-11-12 Member Since 2016
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    "Too many examples, not enough ideas..."
    Would you try another book from Malcolm Gladwell and/or Malcolm Gladwell?

    I am rating this book at 3 stars because there are too many examples and statistics terms used by the author; however, the main ideas are simple and were very well presented on a book summary I read online at no cost. Though I enjoyed listening to the book, I feel reading the book summary would have been enough.


    What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

    The relation between the facts as presented by the author are certainly interesting parts of the book. The least interesting is where the author gets caught up on statistical data and tries to reinforce a point with too many examples.


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

    Not sure.


    Do you think Outliers needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?

    I wouldnt buy a follow up book.


    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    DeFoe London, 1680 01-07-12
    DeFoe London, 1680 01-07-12 Member Since 2009
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    "Simply a terrible book"

    The reasoning in this book was very thin. Gladwell takes a few anecdotal examples and builds a tremendously over-simplified theory of success. For example, he pontificates that the Beatles were successful because they had played long hours in a Homburg club, as if that were the only factor to their success. I found the book cloying and I really sorry I wasted my money on it.

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Andrew Pittsburgh, PA, United States 11-28-11
    Andrew Pittsburgh, PA, United States 11-28-11 Member Since 2013
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    "Not as revelatory as you'd think"

    It takes lots of actual practice to master something. It also takes opportunities that are not in our control. So basically, Gladwell is trying to prove Calvinism (hard work + predestination). Pinpointing the web of circumstances that leads to success is something that we obsess over as a culture and Gladwell provides a very interesting analysis of how this works. But I do not feel like I heard any revelations here that I did not learn from my father when he encouraged me to get internships as an undergraduate.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ryan Somerville, MA, United States 10-29-11
    Ryan Somerville, MA, United States 10-29-11 Member Since 2005

    Gen-Xer, software engineer, and lifelong avid reader. Soft spots for sci-fi, fantasy, and history, but I'll read anything good.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A bit fluffy, but enjoyable"

    ***1/2

    In this book, Gladwell asks whether highly successful people, the elite athletes or powerful business leaders that society sees as "outliers", are really so different from the rest of us. Is their innate talent and drive so exceptional, or do they benefit from special advantages along the way? It's not the most controversial question -- we all understand the value of being in the right place at the right time -- but Gladwell goes deeper to examine how myriad factors like birthdays, cultural background, parenting style, and classroom time can be powerful determinants of success (or missing out on it). As with Gladwell's other books, Outliers is enjoyable for its case studies, which approach a familiar question with the kind of engaging narratives that a talented teacher might use to get his or her kids thinking about an issue from a fresh angle.

    Taken as a whole, though, Outliers isn't a very cohesive work. Gladwell flits from topic to topic without much in-depth analysis or scientific rigor to tie them together. Sometimes his reasoning is overly simplistic (as in the "why Asians tend to be good at math" study) and he makes assumptions while showing little evidence to back them up. I get the impression he'd previously written a few articles on intriguing social phenomena (such as the hockey player birthday study or the way culture played into the Korean Airlines plane crashes of the 1990s), noticed a common theme, and cherry-picked a few more studies that he could massage into a book.

    Then again, Gladwell's not an author you read for a deep, critical examination of an issue -- you read him because he challenges you in an entertaining way to think about a broad question. I consider this a worthwhile book if it gets more people to reevaluate the "self-made man" myth that still influences American politics, and to think about the powerful and complex roles that privilege and historical legacy can play in determining a person's success. If our society paid more heed to its structures of opportunity, there'd be many fewer children left behind, and many more who'd achieve their full potential as productive citizens. Even if Gladwell's own answers are a little fluffy, there's no doubt that he's getting us to think seriously about crucial questions.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Michael Carrato Williamsville, NY United States 04-04-11
    Michael Carrato Williamsville, NY United States 04-04-11 Member Since 2001
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    "I enjoy Gladwell's writings"

    I know there are some who are critical of Gladwell for glossing over facts and oversimplifying conclusions, but I have enough of a brain to be able to draw my own conclusions, some of which differ from Gladwell.

    For example, Gladwell stresses the role of hard work and chance in those who find great success, but I think he underemphasizes the role of talent and natural ability. Sure, hockey players in Canada have a better shot at greatness if they're born in certain months, but you still need size, speed, skills, and even competitiveness to succeed. That fact sometimes get lost in Gladwell's analysis.

    Having said that, I still very much enjoyed this book, the third I've read of Gladwell's (Blink, Tipping Point). I like his style of writing (and reading)

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
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  • Vincent
    1/18/17
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    "Interesting"

    Gladwell has cherry picked so that his narrative can fit in. So, does it mean that Outliers are not Outliers after all?

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Amazon Customer
    1/8/17
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    "Gladwells strongest book. Excellent read. 5 stars"

    easy to listen to Gladwells style of writing. found it interesting how we are all so influenced by our culture and the chain of events that happen to get us to where we are today.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Jimmy M.
    1/5/17
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    "Fascinating book"

    Truly fascinating book. Will definitely at some point in the future listen to this again

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Danny
    1/5/17
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    "Brilliant!!!"

    Some interesting ideas and concepts! Very thought provoking! Excellent to listen to. Very Highly recommend.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Dmitri Lihhatsov
    11/6/16
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    "Changed my view on success."

    Malcolm Gladwell's theory about Outliers is very similar to the ideas of B.F. Skinner and behavioural psychology in that they also postulate that it's not so much the inner qualities of a person but her culture and environment that influence person's behaviour. This audiobook gave me a practical outlook with real-life examples supporting this theory. I cannot recommend it enough to those willing to understand the prerequisites of success.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • BEHNAZ
    10/24/16
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    "agree and disagree"

    As a professional athlete who have worked hard to achieve success, I truly agree with the author about the hard works. I also agree about the fact that the environment can effect ones future. But I disagree with him that u can still be an outlier eventhough u never get the chances but u create ur chances. I think u should always be ready and there so that if they distribute luck u can get it. :-)

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Maria
    10/6/16
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    "Great book"

    Fascinating research on correlations between success, opportunity, culture and natural factors. Makes you think about achievement in life from a different angle. Highly recommended.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Project Manager
    9/10/16
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    "A good read."

    I think the main takeaway from this book would be that I'd be more inclined to look past the person and more into their background when understanding their success.
    There are some generalisations in the book that I wouldn't necessarily agree with but I think the author acknowledges that in the book.
    Even the most successful people are not that extraordinary. They just received the right opportunities, were born into the right circumstances and got the right amount of luck etc.
    Imagine if there was a snooker table or a piano in your home. You would have a better chance of becoming good at that compared to if it wasn't in your home to begin with - right?

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Rashpal
    9/3/16
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    "Eye opening"

    All of a sudden you will realise that the most successful people in the world didn't become that way just because they worked hard and were extremely talented. There's more to it than that, a lot more. The month you were born, your culture, ancestors, friends, circumstances along with hard work and determination is how they became successful. This book is incredible, Gladwell is incredible. And he'll tell you how he became incredible. Unmissable, a must read.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Mrs H Clawson
    8/19/16
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    "Interesting but examples & explanation too lengthy"

    A really interesting perspective on exceptional achievement. Some of the examples given were too long which became a bit tedious which made it hard not to drift off and lose concentration.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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