Review by espo -- Burn Zones by Jorge P. Newbery

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espo
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Review by espo -- Burn Zones by Jorge P. Newbery

Post by espo »

[Following is a volunteer review of "Burn Zones" by Jorge P. Newbery.]
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4 out of 4 stars
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Burn Zones is a memoir by Jorge P. Newbery, who is a cyclist, investor, entrepreneur, and punk enthusiast. The book describes the main burn zones that the author traversed throughout his life, from riding his bike up excruciatingly long climbs, to facing criminal charges and $26 million in debt. The author defines burn zones as periods of hardship that require immense efforts to be overcome.

The author displayed a natural inclination to entrepreneurship from an early age. Jorgie, as his father endearingly called him, started working when he was 7 years old as a newspaper delivery boy. His first burn zones were rainy days, when he would come home sopping wet and immediately jump into a hot bath that his mother had prepared for him. At age 11, he made his first business acquisition: an old, rusty ice cream trike that he rode around his neighborhood. In 1979, a copy of the Clash’s “London Calling” introduced him to the world of punk. This inspired him to quit school and start his own record company. A few years later, Jorge took a job as a loan originator: this was Jorge’s launchpad into real estate. The author gained extensive experience in acquiring neglected properties and turning them into profitable assets. However, the purchase of Woodland Meadows, a low-income apartment complex plagued by criminality and poverty, threw Jorge into millions of dollars of debt. Woodland Meadows was far more than an investment to the author: it was a chance to demonstrate that low-income housing projects could become a space of community, safety and wealth for its dwellers. The failure of this project, more than the loss of his own financial wealth, caused the author a heartache that he never fully recovered from.

A few elements made the book particularly pleasant to read. Firstly, I appreciated the fact that the author decided to include pictures in his memoir: we get to see Jorge as a young boy, his epic ice cream trike, and the first issue of his music zine. Secondly, the book is exquisitely written and exceptionally edited, as I did not come across any errors or inconsistencies. Although the book deals with heavyhearted topics, such as debt and crime, Jorge Newbery’s writing style makes the book very easy to read.

What I liked the most about this memoir is that it offers a plethora of tips that are useful to anyone who is going through a burn zone of their own. I particularly found helpful how, when the author was training to be a loan officer, he summarized everything his supervisor taught him into a few keywords. The author repeated these keywords to himself as he handled his first appointments, and they later became his business principles. I think this method can be applied to many situations in life when one is confronted with doing something they have never done before.

There is one final thing that I commend the author for: he is extremely aware of the privileges he has been raised with, and is very adamant about showing how these helped him through his endeavors. Firstly, Jorge P. Newbery did not fail to acknowledge the privilege of having supportive parents who enabled him to chase his dreams. Secondly, he actively engaged with the topic of race, by acknowledging white privilege and police brutality. In several instances, the author pointed out that his whiteness saved him from being arrested or harassed. He took advantage of these episodes to commemorate innocent victims of police brutality, such as John Macias and Michael Brown.

There was nothing I disliked about the book. The only aspect I did not particularly appreciate was the wealth of legal and financial information that the author included in the second half of the book. However, that did not affect my enjoyment of the book. Hence, I rate Burn Zones by Jorge P. Newbery 4 out of 4 stars. While I discourage readers who are into fast-paced narratives from reading this book, I wholeheartedly recommend it to people who find themselves in a burn zone of their own.

******
Burn Zones
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Latest Review: Burn Zones by Jorge P. Newbery

Post by Letora »

I almost selected this book to review. The summary sounded intriguing, but I wasn't sure. When I'm ready for a new review I think I'll give this one a try! Great review! I hope I can take away some tips to deal with my own burn zones.
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Post by Everydayadventure15 »

Great review! The pictures and practical applications of this book sound appealing. I’m also interested in the biking references and astounded by the prospect of overcoming $26 million in debt!

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Post by ButterscotchCherrie »

I remember his family was quite a breath of fresh air; so many parents won't let their kids try things out. Fabulous review!

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Post by xoxoAnushka »

I am glad that we both liked this book, and gave it a perfect score. Nice review!

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Post by kandscreeley »

I do like a memoir with pictures. It's nice to be able to picture accurately who is being discussed. I think some people are born entrepreneurs, and Jorge is one. Thanks.
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Post by Julius_ »

I've also read and reviewed this book. I agree with you that the author acknowledged his privileges and how they helped him succeeded. This is a very good review. Thanks.
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Post by espo »

Letora wrote:
16 Feb 2020, 12:32
I almost selected this book to review. The summary sounded intriguing, but I wasn't sure. When I'm ready for a new review I think I'll give this one a try! Great review! I hope I can take away some tips to deal with my own burn zones.
I am sure that you will be able to find many useful tips and tricks in this book. Listing all the useful information I came across in the book would have made the review way too long, but I really did find a few gems that are going to stick with me for sure. Thank you for your comment, Letora!
Everydayadventure15 wrote:
16 Feb 2020, 13:14
Great review! The pictures and practical applications of this book sound appealing. I’m also interested in the biking references and astounded by the prospect of overcoming $26 million in debt!
Judging from your profile picture, I'm pretty sure that you will appreciate the author's accounts of his cycling adventures - including the Tour of Mexico! Thank you so much for reading my review and leaving a comment :tiphat:
ButterscotchCherrie wrote:
16 Feb 2020, 16:55
I remember his family was quite a breath of fresh air; so many parents won't let their kids try things out. Fabulous review!
I was delighted by that aspect too - it really was like a breath of fresh air. Thank you for stopping by and leaving a comment!
xoxoAnushka wrote:
16 Feb 2020, 21:00
I am glad that we both liked this book, and gave it a perfect score. Nice review!
Thank you so much for taking the time to read my review, Anushka!
kandscreeley wrote:
16 Feb 2020, 21:19
I do like a memoir with pictures. It's nice to be able to picture accurately who is being discussed. I think some people are born entrepreneurs, and Jorge is one. Thanks.
Yes, not only is Jorge an entrepreneur, he is also willing to help others become one. You don't see that very often in this competitive world. Thank you so much for leaving a comment!
Julius_ wrote:
16 Feb 2020, 21:48
I've also read and reviewed this book. I agree with you that the author acknowledged his privileges and how they helped him succeeded. This is a very good review. Thanks.
That was my favorite aspect of this multifaceted book. Thank you so much for your kind comment, Julius :tiphat:
The strongest impetus a man will ever have, in an individual sense, will come from a woman he admires.

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Post by Prisallen »

This book would be very inspiring for people who are getting into business for the first time or are having difficulties in their business. It reinforces the belief that you have to keep trying and working in order to improve and become a success. Thanks for your informative and well-written review!

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Post by unamilagra »

I haven't read this book myself, but it seems universally well-liked. It sounds like the author has led an inspiring life. I like how you mentioned that he acknowledged his own privilege in achieving his dreams, which is something I wish more people would do (or even recognize themselves). Great review!

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Post by Tomah »

I also enjoyed this book. Jorge's life is an example of entrepreneurial spirit combined with empathy. Thanks for the review!

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Post by InStoree »

Amazing review! I hope I'll have the chance to read this book soon. At this moment, a debt of $26 million seems like the end of everything. Thank you for your comprehensive opinion!
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Post by espo »

Prisallen wrote:
17 Feb 2020, 13:21
This book would be very inspiring for people who are getting into business for the first time or are having difficulties in their business. It reinforces the belief that you have to keep trying and working in order to improve and become a success. Thanks for your informative and well-written review!
You are totally right! Thanks for taking the time to read and comment on my review!
unamilagra wrote:
17 Feb 2020, 19:39
I haven't read this book myself, but it seems universally well-liked. It sounds like the author has led an inspiring life. I like how you mentioned that he acknowledged his own privilege in achieving his dreams, which is something I wish more people would do (or even recognize themselves). Great review!
That was the aspect I appreciated the most! Most entrepreneurs are not aware of the privileges that helped them succeed, or at least, they are not transparent about them with their readers/supporters. Thanks a lot for stopping by!
Tomah wrote:
18 Feb 2020, 14:05
I also enjoyed this book. Jorge's life is an example of entrepreneurial spirit combined with empathy. Thanks for the review!
He definitely is! Thank you so much for your kind comment.
InStoree wrote:
19 Feb 2020, 05:33
Amazing review! I hope I'll have the chance to read this book soon. At this moment, a debt of $26 million seems like the end of everything. Thank you for your comprehensive opinion!
I hope you will enjoy this book as much as I did, if you end up reading it! Thank you so much for leaving a comment on my review.
The strongest impetus a man will ever have, in an individual sense, will come from a woman he admires.

- George Jackson, "Soledad Brother"

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Post by Wyland »

I like the main lessons as you have described them presented in a book with pictures. I would especially be interested in how he overcame a debt of $ 26m. Thanks for the informative review.

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Post by Ekta Swarnkar »

I'm currently reading this one and honestly I had selected this book out of curiosity. Thanks for the in-depth review, now I know that it was a good selection.
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