A thorough analysis of the necessity of planning for an economic disaster and a well-articulated system to achieve it.

ROCK THE RECESSION

A debut business book offers a strategic proposal that prepares company owners for inevitable financial challenges and finds opportunities within them. 

Slain and Belair had starkly different experiences when the recession hit in 2008. Slain was the owner of fitness franchises and was unprepared for a sharp downturn in demand for the services he sold. He was only able to survive by borrowing $250,000 from his mother-in-law. In contrast, Belair ran “a national specialty contracting company,” one he bought prior to the recession and sold after it for a huge financial windfall. The two authors devised a system—the Recession Readiness Assessment™—formulated to both appraise a company’s current state of health and help fortify current weaknesses before the cyclically inevitable occurs: a recession, broadly defined as “any big shock to a company’s system.” The assessment is a collection of 20 questions divided into five sections, each one corresponding to a gear in a gearbox—assess (first gear), tune (second gear), race (third gear), and accelerate (fourth gear), plus an emergency brake, the pulling of which means one begins cutting overhead to remain profitable. Executives always start in first gear. Then the astutely composed questions, combined with a diagnosis of the economy’s health, help them determine which gear to choose next. The authors offer sensibly prudent and consistently lucid counsel regarding not just the importance of preparation for disaster, but also its nature. The assessment itself, provided in full in the book, will at the very least serve as a valuable diagnostic tool. Some of the questions may be obvious, especially those pertaining to available cash and debt, but others are both important and easily overlooked. For example, the authors suggest taking a hard look at the financial worthiness of the vendors a company relies on. The prose can be unctuously ingratiating, unfortunately common in business guides: “We’re almost at the end of the book. Are you ready to Rock the Recession?” But the authors provide a genuinely useful discussion of recession-preparedness and a usefully actionable tool for its judicious establishment. 

A thorough analysis of the necessity of planning for an economic disaster and a well-articulated system to achieve it. 

Pub Date: Sept. 17, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-5445-0191-8

Page Count: 264

Publisher: Recession.com LLC

Review Posted Online: Oct. 10, 2019

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

IN MY PLACE

From the national correspondent for PBS's MacNeil-Lehrer Newshour: a moving memoir of her youth in the Deep South and her role in desegregating the Univ. of Georgia. The eldest daughter of an army chaplain, Hunter-Gault was born in what she calls the ``first of many places that I would call `my place' ''—the small village of Due West, tucked away in a remote little corner of South Carolina. While her father served in Korea, Hunter-Gault and her mother moved first to Covington, Georgia, and then to Atlanta. In ``L.A.'' (lovely Atlanta), surrounded by her loving family and a close-knit black community, the author enjoyed a happy childhood participating in activities at church and at school, where her intellectual and leadership abilities soon were noticed by both faculty and peers. In high school, Hunter-Gault found herself studying the ``comic-strip character Brenda Starr as I might have studied a journalism textbook, had there been one.'' Determined to be a journalist, she applied to several colleges—all outside of Georgia, for ``to discourage the possibility that a black student would even think of applying to one of those white schools, the state provided money for black students'' to study out of state. Accepted at Michigan's Wayne State, the author was encouraged by local civil-rights leaders to apply, along with another classmate, to the Univ. of Georgia as well. Her application became a test of changing racial attitudes, as well as of the growing strength of the civil-rights movement in the South, and Gault became a national figure as she braved an onslaught of hostilities and harassment to become the first black woman to attend the university. A remarkably generous, fair-minded account of overcoming some of the biggest, and most intractable, obstacles ever deployed by southern racists. (Photographs—not seen.)

Pub Date: Nov. 1, 1992

ISBN: 0-374-17563-2

Page Count: 192

Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 1992

Did you like this book?

Necessarily swift and adumbrative as well as inclusive, focused, and graceful.

A LITTLE HISTORY OF POETRY

A light-speed tour of (mostly) Western poetry, from the 4,000-year-old Gilgamesh to the work of Australian poet Les Murray, who died in 2019.

In the latest entry in the publisher’s Little Histories series, Carey, an emeritus professor at Oxford whose books include What Good Are the Arts? and The Unexpected Professor: An Oxford Life in Books, offers a quick definition of poetry—“relates to language as music relates to noise. It is language made special”—before diving in to poetry’s vast history. In most chapters, the author deals with only a few writers, but as the narrative progresses, he finds himself forced to deal with far more than a handful. In his chapter on 20th-century political poets, for example, he talks about 14 writers in seven pages. Carey displays a determination to inform us about who the best poets were—and what their best poems were. The word “greatest” appears continually; Chaucer was “the greatest medieval English poet,” and Langston Hughes was “the greatest male poet” of the Harlem Renaissance. For readers who need a refresher—or suggestions for the nightstand—Carey provides the best-known names and the most celebrated poems, including Paradise Lost (about which the author has written extensively), “Kubla Khan,” “Ozymandias,” “The Charge of the Light Brigade,” Wordsworth and Coleridge’s Lyrical Ballads, which “changed the course of English poetry.” Carey explains some poetic technique (Hopkins’ “sprung rhythm”) and pauses occasionally to provide autobiographical tidbits—e.g., John Masefield, who wrote the famous “Sea Fever,” “hated the sea.” We learn, as well, about the sexuality of some poets (Auden was bisexual), and, especially later on, Carey discusses the demons that drove some of them, Robert Lowell and Sylvia Plath among them. Refreshingly, he includes many women in the volume—all the way back to Sappho—and has especially kind words for Marianne Moore and Elizabeth Bishop, who share a chapter.

Necessarily swift and adumbrative as well as inclusive, focused, and graceful.

Pub Date: April 21, 2020

ISBN: 978-0-300-23222-6

Page Count: 304

Publisher: Yale Univ.

Review Posted Online: Feb. 9, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 2020

Did you like this book?

more