A worthy personal guide that calls for healthier and more mindful relationships in all areas of life.




A combination of autobiography and motivation manual explores relationships at the heart of life and business.

Debut author Strohl delivers a disarmingly straightforward and personal book about his plan to “improve the world, one relationship at a time.” He was born in Burlington, Iowa, and raised in Kansas as the son of a Methodist minister, who advised him that “you never make yourself look better by making someone else look worse.” Strohl graduated from Southwestern College in Kansas and spent 47 years working in Customer Service for AT&T before retiring to become a business consultant. In a series of short chapters written in clear, accessible prose, the author provides overviews of a number of well-known self-help books like Dale Carnegie’s How to Win Friends and Influence People and elaborates on the lessons he’s learned from a lifetime of dealing professionally with all types of folks in all kinds of capacities. He looks back on his long career and relates that there were hardly any bleak days in that tenure—and that most of those were caused by bosses. This accounts for the volume’s concentration on workplace advice, including how to get along with supervisors without being sycophantic. “Do you have to embrace them or lavish them with artificial compliments?” Strohl writes. “No, you merely act respectful to them and deal with them as you need to for the successful accomplishment of your task or job, and then hope the relationship is not life-long!” Topical elements enter the author’s narrative and are handled with considerable diplomacy. Looking at the divided states of America that he sees all over the news of the day, he stresses the basics of forming relationships as the basis for a decent society, particularly when it comes to leading others. His advice: ask for input, criticize gently, offer to help, never gossip, never talk down to people, and never yell or use angry language or threats. “Now many of you may be saying that these are very simple and understood methods and attributes so there is nothing new here and I would agree,” Strohl writes. “But then I would add, ‘Why is it these simple things aren’t being put into practice?’ ” The lessons of these chapters emphasize that simplicity. The author stresses that friendly, courteous communication is the fundamental key to fostering relationships of all kinds, urging his readers to be honest, nice, and respectful and underscoring the potential rewards: “It is very basic, simple day to day communication that anyone can initiate. But it pays dividends far beyond the effort necessary to do it!” Strohl’s observations about the crucial value of healthy relationships are fleshed out and given a good deal of warmth by personal anecdotes drawn from his life and career. Readers—and especially personnel managers—should find great value in these pages.

A worthy personal guide that calls for healthier and more mindful relationships in all areas of life.

Pub Date: June 18, 2018

ISBN: 978-1-73219-260-7

Page Count: 157

Publisher: Time Tunnel Media

Review Posted Online: Aug. 28, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 1, 2018

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This early reader is an excellent introduction to the March on Washington in 1963 and the important role in the march played by Martin Luther King Jr. Ruffin gives the book a good, dramatic start: “August 28, 1963. It is a hot summer day in Washington, D.C. More than 250,00 people are pouring into the city.” They have come to protest the treatment of African-Americans here in the US. With stirring original artwork mixed with photographs of the events (and the segregationist policies in the South, such as separate drinking fountains and entrances to public buildings), Ruffin writes of how an end to slavery didn’t mark true equality and that these rights had to be fought for—through marches and sit-ins and words, particularly those of Dr. King, and particularly on that fateful day in Washington. Within a year the Civil Rights Act of 1964 had been passed: “It does not change everything. But it is a beginning.” Lots of visual cues will help new readers through the fairly simple text, but it is the power of the story that will keep them turning the pages. (Easy reader. 6-8)

Pub Date: Jan. 1, 2001

ISBN: 0-448-42421-5

Page Count: 48

Publisher: Grosset & Dunlap

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 1, 2000

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Noted jazz and pop record producer Thiele offers a chatty autobiography. Aided by record-business colleague Golden, Thiele traces his career from his start as a ``pubescent, novice jazz record producer'' in the 1940s through the '50s, when he headed Coral, Dot, and Roulette Records, and the '60s, when he worked for ABC and ran the famous Impulse! jazz label. At Coral, Thiele championed the work of ``hillbilly'' singer Buddy Holly, although the only sessions he produced with Holly were marred by saccharine strings. The producer specialized in more mainstream popsters like the irrepressibly perky Teresa Brewer (who later became his fourth wife) and the bubble-machine muzak-meister Lawrence Welk. At Dot, Thiele was instrumental in recording Jack Kerouac's famous beat- generation ramblings to jazz accompaniment (recordings that Dot's president found ``pornographic''), while also overseeing a steady stream of pop hits. He then moved to the Mafia-controlled Roulette label, where he observed the ``silk-suited, pinky-ringed'' entourage who frequented the label's offices. Incredibly, however, Thiele remembers the famously hard-nosed Morris Levy, who ran the label and was eventually convicted of extortion, as ``one of the kindest, most warm-hearted, and classiest music men I have ever known.'' At ABC/Impulse!, Thiele oversaw the classic recordings of John Coltrane, although he is the first to admit that Coltrane essentially produced his own sessions. Like many producers of the day, Thiele participated in the ownership of publishing rights to some of the songs he recorded; he makes no apology for this practice, which he calls ``entirely appropriate and without any ethical conflicts.'' A pleasant, if not exactly riveting, memoir that will be of most interest to those with a thirst for cocktail-hour stories of the record biz. (25 halftones, not seen)

Pub Date: May 1, 1995

ISBN: 0-19-508629-4

Page Count: 224

Publisher: Oxford Univ.

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 1995

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