4 out of 4 stars
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Jorge Newbery’s revolutionary work Burn Zones: Playing Life’s Bad Hands retells the life and experiences of the author. Throughout this autobiographical narrative, Newbery gives the reader plenty of great advice and teaches a number of morals. The book starts off with an indication of the author’s unconventional entrepreneurial knowledge from a very young age, as he began his first business on a bicycle selling ice cream. The reader is taken along the ride as Newbery relives his early life, where he gets his first jobs through persistence, saves a commendable amount of money to fund his own business ventures, and eventually manages punk concerts by himself. We see his growth as an individual and an entrepreneur as he soon begins owning apartment complexes. This accomplishment expands until he becomes one of the top urban development brokers of his time. The reader is even shown Newbery’s fall as a businessman, where his perseverance is tested and he reveals the basis of his book: enduring the “burn zone” and coming out triumphant.
I was captivated by Newbery’s style because as I began reading the book, I felt compelled to read on. His fresh and well-paced storytelling provides the reader with a sense of presence. As Newbery takes us through the defining moments of his life, the reader is immersed in the story, living every described experience with the author. However, as an admirer of Newbery’s exceptional insights and wisdom, I would have liked to have seen even more observations of other aspects of life—more useful and impactful advice. For example, the reader is walked through the author’s views and opinions of punk music, family, and cycling. Further, we are shown experiential knowledge of business-building, entrepreneurship, and discrimination. Although these subjects were thematically centralized to communicate a point, this memoir may have been even more enriching if Newbery included additional thoughts for other miscellaneous, but significant and relevant topics, like building healthy relationships or maintaining a balance between frugality and greed. Nevertheless, Newbery’s piece is unprecedentedly perceptive and composed with an easy-to-follow coherence.
With this being said, Jorge Newbery’s book can appeal to any audience, age group, or ethnicity. However, it appears to be addressing people who may be undergoing challenges and searching for a path to take in life. In light of this, Burn Zones: Playing Life’s Bad Hands may be intended to influence a younger audience, particularly one entering into the workforce or college, for instance. Newbery takes on the role of a parent or authority figure as he relays his own experiences and shares his advice to the reader about life, success, and hard work.
It should be noted, though, that throughout my reading of the book, I did not find any grammatical, spelling, or formatting mistakes. The literary piece appears to have been professionally edited and consequently contains no findable errors. This well-written work deserves praise for the meticulous editing, proofreading, and revision that obviously went into the making of the text.
Overall, I give Jorge Newbery’s book Burn Zones: Playing Life’s Bad Hands a score of 4 out of 4 stars. The piece beautifully communicates valuable life lessons and advice that can’t be found elsewhere. His unique and attractive style is astonishing and keeps the reader interested and immersed. Finally, the book’s professional editing raises the score even higher, obliging me to give it a well-deserved reward of the best rating possible.
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