The combination of this book’s two parts makes for an inviting, general-purpose life guide for readers of all ages.

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THE GREAT LIFE MINDSET

BASIC EDITION

A debut manual offers tips on managing both money and the mind.

Piercy’s book packs a lot of information into only a little more than 100 pages, and it opens with a wake-up call aimed at his U.S. readers. He points out that average Americans over the course of a normal working life will see more than $1 million flow through their hands—but end up on the doorstep of retirement with little or nothing to depend on other than Social Security. (Piercy is certainly not the first writer to remind readers that the fund is projected to go broke as early as 2037.) The author cites studies showing that the percentage of Americans enrolled in some kind of pension plan has dropped precipitously in recent decades. These dire figures are laid out early in the work to underscore the importance of the straightforward and often startlingly simple rules and pieces of advice that are given in the following pages. Piercy breaks down financial obligations along the lines of some of life’s most prominent expenses in America: going to college, buying a car, purchasing a house, managing credit cards, minimizing debt, and saving for retirement. The financial advice boils down to living within one’s fiscal means and planning for the future by always spending only 70 percent of one’s income, setting aside the rest. Many of the strategies Piercy outlines are self-evidently pragmatic and workable. What gives his book its extra interest is its back half, in which the author supplements his financial pointers with personal ones, buttressed by his personal born-again Christianity (he “received Christ” in 1972). They range far from religious matters, extending to the importance of things like health, exercise, personal relationships, and the vital role of keeping a positive attitude (as Piercy bluntly puts it, “I am convinced that some people wouldn’t know happiness if it kicked them in the rear end”). 

The combination of this book’s two parts makes for an inviting, general-purpose life guide for readers of all ages.

Pub Date: Aug. 4, 2016

ISBN: 978-0-578-17945-2

Page Count: 144

Publisher: CreateSpace

Review Posted Online: Jan. 19, 2017

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Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis...

THE ELEMENTS OF STYLE

50TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION

Privately published by Strunk of Cornell in 1918 and revised by his student E. B. White in 1959, that "little book" is back again with more White updatings.

Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis (whoops — "A bankrupt expression") a unique guide (which means "without like or equal").

Pub Date: May 15, 1972

ISBN: 0205632645

Page Count: 105

Publisher: Macmillan

Review Posted Online: Oct. 28, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1972

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WHAT A WONDERFUL WORLD

A LIFETIME OF RECORDINGS

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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