4 out of 4 stars
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Jorge Newberry's autobiography focuses on characteristics like work ethic, accountability, and the ability to move forward from trials or burn zones, with new knowledge. While being a true story, the author shares his honest account through a veil of nostalgia that makes it thoroughly enjoyable to the reader.
We meet Jorge for the first time in the early 1970s at age 7. While he maneuvers his way into his first job we get a peek at his ambitious and obstinate nature. This trend will continue as he begins his own business just a few years later. Following a pattern of adaptation and innovation, we see the self-professed socially awkward youth grow into a successful businessman who commands what could be called a real estate empire. As all good things tend to do though, his good fortune brings with it more challenging trials. When Jorge takes on a massive renovation property, nature throws a curveball his way that completely demolishes the house of cards that had seemed so sturdy before. The way Mr. Newberry describes his struggle to make the infamous property another success story is rife with emotion. The reader will be hard-pressed to put the book down. This story ends on an extremely uplifting note. Mr. Newberry takes us along on his journey to rebuild after the challenges 2004 wrought on both his finances and his psyche up to the present day.
Without the first-person account and personal details, the author reveals the path from 11-year-old entrepreneur to real estate mogul, Burn Zones could easily sound like an ad for a self-help seminar. His road to success is almost mind-boggling, this story is not a success testimony though. There is no magic answer or habit to be found in these pages. Just one man's story of his chosen paths and their destinations. Mr. Newberry actually lends focus to what he refers to as burn zones more than anything. These are life's trials and tests of endurance that we all face throughout life. Everyone's burn zones are different and how we handle them determines our next choice of paths to follow. As this is an athletic term that the author applies to everyday situations, the goal is to breathe, control your actions, and make it through to the end without quitting. Following a burn zone, you look back to reassess and pinpoint successes and points that need improvement.
I would give this book 4 out of 4 stars. I do this despite a single grammatical error because, excluding that singular flaw, Burn Zones went above and beyond my expectations. The blurb for this book doesn't do it justice. I would recommend this book for young adults and older alike, but wonder if it would hold the interest of someone younger. A more mature, or motivated young person could likely enjoy its message. I would recommend it more confidently to the 20-40 year age range as they are coming to know and experience relatable life events financially and likely socially. Readers going through burn zones of their own will gather the most revelation and enjoyment from this book.
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