4 out of 4 stars
Share This Review
Burn Zones: Playing Life’s Bad Hands is an autobiographical novel by Jorge P. Newbery. Newbery creatively details his life as an optimistic and ambitious entrepreneur, retelling the challenges he has faced during many ‘burn zones’ throughout his life.
Newbery’s story embarks from his humble beginnings as a newspaper boy and ice-cream seller, to his record label endeavors and short-lived cycling career. Later, his life trajectory takes another twist into a somewhat tumultuous career in real estate, defined by the challenges he faced whilst repairing and maintain his Woodlands Meadows property. This book is a personal memoir to pivotal moments in Newbery’s life. It is an inspiring story about an individual who sets out to defy expectations and takes on life with a can-do attitude, even in the toughest of times.
As someone who does not typically read autobiographies, I was pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed this novel. The book flowed easily, which was largely attributable to Newbery’s conversational tone. I particularly liked the fast-paced writing style throughout most of the book and was eager to learn what Newbery’s next adventure may be. Newbery was able to convey his childish excitement right from page one, developing into mature determination. He seamlessly provided context to the reader regarding normalities of the time, for example, segregation and smoking laws. I found myself intrigued to know what hurdle Newbery was going to tackle next. With regards to the structure of Newbery’s writing, there was an appropriate number of images from Newbery’s life dispersed throughout which added to the authenticity of the story. I also liked the clear subheadings used to divide the story into defining moments in Newbery’s life.
I found very little that I disliked about Newbery’s novel and was unable to fault the writing with regards to spelling and grammar, as it appears to be exceptionally well edited. In light of this, I rate Newbery’s autobiography 4 out of 4 stars.
Despite having no entrepreneurial ambitions or experience in real estate, I somehow still found Newbery’s story to be very relatable. I think it is his determination and values in both his personal and professional endeavours that resonated with me most. Given the relatability of the novel’s core concepts, this book is likely to appeal to a wide range of readers, both those who enjoy an inspirational read and those who have a more refined interest in entrepreneurship and real estate. I would particularly recommend this book to teenagers and young adults.
View: on Bookshelves | on Amazon