About Book Summaries
I deeply enjoy reading and writing book summaries.
Books are an amazing resource. They can simplify complex ideas, introduce you to new topics, or deepen your knowledge of an existing interest. Books can transport you to another world and they can challenge your point of view.
Books enable critical thinking and encourage lifelong learning.
My book summaries are not meant to replace reading the actual book. My summaries will simply give you an understanding of the main points in a book using the author's voice whenever possible.
If the summary interests you, please support the author by purchasing the full book. At the bottom of each summary I provide links to purchase the book at three major retailers, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Books a Million, as well as a link to a Google search.
Buying the full book will help you more clearly understand the concepts. You will also support the authors for their work and promote an environment where authors are rewarded and encouraged to write.
How I Write my Summaries
I read both physical books and e-books. I underline and highlight as I read, adding notes and writing in the margins. After each chapter I use The Feynman Technique to deepen my understanding of the material and encourage chunking for later retrieval.
I then let the book sit on my bookshelf for a week or two. When I return to the book I reread my notes and highlights and begin to create a summary.
I pull out some of the most compelling or memorable themes from the book while leaving out many of the stories and deeper context. I want to reward authors for their research and encourage people to buy the book in full.
When possible, I try to connect the information in the book to other resources. I try to direct the reader to outside sources to deepen their knowledge on the subjects of the book. Most commonly I will direct the readers to a TED talk, a podcast interview, or another book that covers similar material.
Reviews vs Summaries
My summaries help the reader understand the author’s perspective through an objective re-telling of the story.
Other than possibly a paragraph or two, these summaries will specifically not be reviews.
Reviews are analytical and evaluative. Reviews offer comments on the work, commending or criticizing and providing a recommendation to the reader - something I'm specifically trying to avoid.
What's important is the content in the book, not my opinion of the content.
The merits of a book come in thinking critically about the arguments the author is posing. I provide enough information to let the reader know if this is a book they would enjoy, and if so to purchase the book to think about it more deeply.
Read my summaries and decide if a book is for you. If so, support the author by buying the book. I believe that wherever possible, you should go directly to the source.