Book Review: The Obstacle Is The Way by Ryan Holiday

The Obstacle Is the Way: The Timeless Art of Turning Adversity to AdvantageThe Obstacle Is the Way: The Timeless Art of Turning Adversity to Advantage by Ryan Holiday
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Ryan’s book was the first proper introduction to Stoicism for me. I have to say I’m blown away by the concept of it.

Besides a healthy dose of Stoicism, Ryan also serves a great deal of historical and modern a day anecdotes that builds up toward one of the greatest Stoic mantra: The Obstacle is The Way

Ryan’s research and observation is commendable. And for me, as a writer, quite inspiring as well.

He brings in years of knowledge he gained by reading a whole lot of books. And turns them into lessons for his readers regarding how Perception Is Everything, and how Every Obstacle Is An Opportunity In Disguise.

This is a revolutionary book for me. One of those that will be a part of me forever and one that I’ll be returning to time and again.

Thank you Ryan Holiday for giving such a fresh perspective on things, and being an inspiration.

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The 10,000 Hours Rule (OUTLIERS by Malcolm Gladwell) #amreading

In which, Gladwell suggests:

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He arrives at this magic number after studying the practicing patterns of several individuals who are the masters of their craft — right from Beatles to Bill Gates.

I haven’t finished the book, but this current chapter is about the good old war between innate talent and deliberate practise.

Let’s see who wins. 😉

Book Review: Blackbirds by Chuck Wendig

Blackbirds (Miriam Black, #1)

 

 

 

 

Blackbirds by Chuck Wendig
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Ladies and gentlemen, filthy boys and snarky gals! Presenting… Blackbirds, a book that reads out like a charm!

Okay, it doesn’t. It actually reads out like a derailed train set on a collision course. It’s a grim, super fast-paced story set in an even grimmer world, where each character is more flawed than a Nepali politician. Not the least of whom is our protagonist, Miriam Black.

But. It only makes this book so much more interesting.

Coming back to Miriam Black… What a superb character she is! Probably one of the most awesome female protagonists I’ve read in years. In fact, she is one of the major reason why I so much loved the book.

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My version of Miriam! (based on an image I found on the internet)

The story is okay for me. But it’s the narration that tops the chart. I’ve always been a fan of Chuck Wendig’s writing style and that no-nonsense, kick-in-the-guts, fist-in-the-teeth attitude in his voice. I came to Blackbirds expecting all of that, and, of course, I wasn’t disappointed.

If you love a witty thriller with a touch of fantasy, set in a dark world, full of low-life villains and filthy-tongued heroes, this book is most definitely for you.

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Book Review: A Dance with Dragons (ASOIAF #5)

A Dance with Dragons (A Song of Ice and Fire, #5)

A Dance with Dragons by George R.R. Martin

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Yet another book, and yet another series of plots and politics, murders and masquerades, honor and hidden intentions, duty and death.

Lords, Ladies, and Free-folks! A Dance With Dragons and George R.R. Martin do not fail to deliver on the promises of the past.

It is just as riveting as any of its predecessor, with strong characters, intriguing plot lines, simple language, and just the right touch of reality. The only major disadvantage of this book should be its size. I mean, yes, every fan wants his favorite book to never end. But… see, he doesn’t actually want it to never end. Duh.

But there was nothing the author could have done about it (at least, not in the fifth book). After weaving an epic tale that covers such a large set of characters, geography, political boundaries, Houses, and even Religion… there was no way this was going to be short.

Anyway, instead of following up on the events of the fourth book, “A Dance…” picks up from where the third book left us (and takes us a little forward from the fourth book). Only this time, the story is told from the viewpoint of a different set of characters. It tells of the epic saga of Quentyn Martell, the cunning journey of Tyrion Lannister, the struggle of Queen Daenerys, the conquest of Euron Grejoy, of the land-beyond-the-wall, and of forgotten tales of half-heroes, and the half-tales of forgotten heroes!

There still are many gaps… incomplete stories… for the author to fill in, and fast. The book is not without flaws. Some things, and a very minor ones at that — like the overuse of the expression “Words are winds” (and important people dying up like roaches!) — really irk me.

Many long-held questions still go unanswered. But many other plots finally fall into place and has now begun to take shape. You can almost form a vague and dim outline of the end that is soon to follow.

But who are we kidding? This is A Song of Ice and Fire. Even the most unimaginable of things may happen. And that is the only absolute certainty.

On to the HBO Series now!

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