3 out of 4 stars
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I was euphoric when I saw The Billionaires' Handbook: A User's Guide to Wealth and Power. I thought I had found a way to grace the cover of Forbes Magazine as the latest member of the billionaires’ club. Alas, author Andrew Stevenson pulverized my hopes of globe-trotting on a private jet and lounging on a private island all day. In consolation, I came away with a new perspective that got me wondering how noble my billionaire ambitions are. I haven't given up the billionaire dream, though.
Like me, if you thought you have found the coveted secret of the super-rich, you thought wrong. But if you have ever wondered how the rich keep getting richer amid dwindling life quality, health care, and social welfare, read on.
Through the employment of satire and illustrations, Andrew takes the reader on an expository journey of how billionaires have gained and kept their wealth over the years. According to Andrew, right from the times of feudalism to the current system he terms “cynicism,” the rich have remained on top of the game by writing the rules. When a player writes the rules of the game, you can guess whose interest is most paramount.
I enjoyed Andrew’s use of humour and symbolic illustrations to draw attention to societal problems, caused by the burgeoning gap between the rich and poor. The images of blind-folded men garbed in cooperate attires symbolize rich industrialists and how they turn a blind eye to the problems they cause. Why should they care about their workers when a replacement is a LinkedIn post away? Who cares about environmental pollution when you can live on Mars? Pointing out a problem is easy, proffering solutions is where the work lies. With books like this, I look out for plausible solutions proffered by the author. Thankfully, Andrew didn't disappoint.
Even though I agree with most of Andrew’s views, I consider his approach too simplistic for a problem as complex as social inequity. The brevity of his assertions and proposed solutions doesn't afford a reader an in-depth understanding of the subject.
The book’s editing is meticulous, and the pages are adorned with rich and relevant illustrations. Andrew’s writing style is punchy and witty. Considering the above positives, I rate the book 3 out of 4 stars. I didn’t give it a perfect rating because I believe the subject isn’t fleshed out. The book will appeal to anyone that likes satirical literature centred on social justice. It's is devoid of eroticism and vulgarity.
The Billionaires’ Handbook
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