Official Review: Something Happened Today by Paul E. Kotz

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DancingLady
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Official Review: Something Happened Today by Paul E. Kotz

Post by DancingLady » 13 May 2018, 14:22

[Following is an official OnlineBookClub.org review of "Something Happened Today" by Paul E. Kotz.]
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3 out of 4 stars
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Life can get you down. Whether it's our own circumstances or just the effects of a barrage of negative media and angry people around us, we have all fallen victim to a negative outlook at one time or another. Paul E. Kotz helps us regain a positive perspective in his book, Something Happened Today. In this short work of just 81 pages, the author shares stories and vignettes of unexpected events in daily life. These stories are organized topically into 9 sections. This book can easily be read in one sitting or divided into many short readings.

After introducing himself and his motivation for writing this book, the author begins sharing stories of brief interactions that might not be so memorable if not for his perspective. In the section titled "Everyday Gifts," he tells stories of giving 50 cents to a woman who came up short at the register and buying an extra breakfast at the drive-through to give to someone who needed it. In later sections, he shares from his experiences as a volunteer with elderly and disabled veterans and as a high school teacher and college professor. Through all of these stories, the focus remains looking for the good and holding onto that.

Even though this book was short, I found it to be a joy to read and a very uplifting experience. Its brevity may even be one of its strengths as there are no wasted words to bog down the narrative. Kotz brings to light the fact that no life is boring or insignificant. As someone who has often felt that there is practically nothing worth mentioning in my daily activities, I found this book very encouraging. I especially appreciated the story titled "Now I understand." Although the author is sharing about his experience with a veteran, his patient response to the man's anger that day showed me a new way to orient my mind toward others that will help me in my own occupation in the hospitality industry. His experiences with students also contain many nuggets of wisdom that can help parents, teachers, and anyone working with young people. I especially appreciate how the author refers to high school students as young men and young ladies, rather than kids. To me, this not only shows great respect for the students in acknowledging what their own bodies are telling them, that they are not children, but also calls them up to the next level of maturity and responsibility, which I believe are learned skills, rather than a function of age.

The only negative comments I have regarding this book pertain to the editing. Until about the halfway point, I thought this book was very well edited, but towards the latter half, I found a number of grammatical errors. These were primarily things like missing or incorrect commas and typos that would not be caught by spell check since they are a word that is one letter different from the correct word.

If I could give half stars I would certainly give this book a 3.5 because I absolutely loved the content and am so thankful I had the opportunity to read it. As it stands, I have no choice but to give this book 3 out of 4 stars because the content was superb but there were too many errors to permit me to give it a perfect score. I recommend this book to anyone who is feeling down or just wants some encouragement and a more positive outlook on life.

******
Something Happened Today
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SamSim
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Post by SamSim » 17 May 2018, 07:24

I love uplifting, encouraging books that remind us of the joy in simple things! Thanks for the recommendation. I will be reading this one.
Samantha Simoneau

“But upon the stage of life, while conscience claps, let the world hiss! On the contrary if conscience disapproves, the loudest applauses of the world are of little value."
~John Adams :greetings-clapyellow:

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Post by kandscreeley » 17 May 2018, 08:18

I've seen books like this before. They are perfectly edited until about halfway through. Then, it's like the author or editor just gets tired or something. Still, it sounds like a really nice book that would be very encouraging. Thanks for sharing it with us!
“There is no friend as loyal as a book.”
― Ernest Hemingway

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Post by Ginnamassa19 » 17 May 2018, 08:35

This sounds like a lovely read, and it carries such an important message--a little kindness goes a long way! Thank you for reviewing this book, it sounds amazing despite the editing errors :)

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Post by DancingLady » 17 May 2018, 08:43

kandscreeley wrote:
17 May 2018, 08:18
I've seen books like this before. They are perfectly edited until about halfway through. Then, it's like the author or editor just gets tired or something. Still, it sounds like a really nice book that would be very encouraging. Thanks for sharing it with us!
I know! What is up with that? It’s not the first time I’ve seen it either, but this time it jumped out to me, maybe since it’s a shorter book. I think I only had 1 or maybe 2 notes at the 50% mark and then quickly accumulated 8-9 more in the last half. So sad because someone with a music degree, not even an English minor, like me could have taken care of that in an afternoon.

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Post by gen_g » 17 May 2018, 09:04

Thank you for the detailed review! The book seems like a great one to have beside you if you are in need of comfort and warmth. It is such a waste though, that the book had so many errors accumulating in the latter part - it certainly detracts from the overall reading experience.

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Post by emmkus » 18 May 2018, 05:46

Wonderful!!! book like this should not be overlooked because it passes a lot of messages to the old and young.

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Post by sanjus » 18 May 2018, 11:30

This review recommends me to read this short and sweet book about simple things that give immense pleasure.
life is only knowing the unknown, we can do this by reading books easily

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Post by NL Hartje » 20 May 2018, 13:22

The abundance of books populating this sector of literature gives me hope that all isn't lost in the world. I'm thankful that some still see and seek the good in life. Thanks for this review!
“So the writer who breeds more words than he needs, is making a chore for the reader who reads.”
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Post by Kalin Adi » 20 May 2018, 13:32

Oh, I'll have to read this book to see if my daily activities are worth mentioning. For me they are just 'routine'. Good thing this book is short and can be read in one sitting, but I'll wait until it gets edited first. Thanks for the your useful insights.

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Post by kdstrack » 20 May 2018, 16:42

Sounds like a positive book about paying it forward. What a breath of fresh air to find some positive stories! Great review. Thanks.

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Post by Mmg8464 » 12 Oct 2018, 12:18

I love books that are uplifting. And the author's story about giving 50 cents to another person and buying breakfast is a habit that I think everyone should have.

I'm sure to enjoy this book. I hope they fixed the grammatical errors. Thanks for your review!

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Post by Rosebella » 12 Oct 2018, 13:24

We all need to uplifted every once in a while. I think the stories shared will help that. Good review. :tiphat: You really highlighted the things that may interest a potential reader.

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Post by kdstrack » 12 Oct 2018, 14:53

Thanks for the positive review of this book. The author's lesson about perspective is helpful and so instructive. I appreciate your comments about the way he treats high school students. Nice job.

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