4 out of 4 stars
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Burn Zones by Jorge P. Newberry is the () personal account of the author’s various ambitious pursuits. We get the chance to follow Newberry from when he was an 8 year old paper boy to successful social advocate. By the end of the book, we feel like we know the author personally because he weaves us through his family history as well as traces of America’s story. Newberry is the underdog champion who is not afraid to get gritty and to exercise his work ethic. He is very willing to admit his flaws and mistakes and it is easy to see how his humility has attracted him such success with people and business. Although many of us have not had the unique path that he’s had, anybody who is ambitious in the slightest way could benefit from gleaning off of his attitude of “I will until.”
I rate this book 4 out of 4 stars and highly recommend it to anybody from young adults seeking direction in their life to people in the middle of a change to the standard avid reader. Newberry’s story is anything but standard and we don’t just get to know his story. We also get to know his heart for people and by the end of the book, we feel as though we were with him on the whole adventure. If there was anything that I wish the book had more of, it would be for a bit more outside perspective from the various people in his life. There were some snippets from letters talking about Newberry, but I would have been very intrigued to hear the point of view from his wife, his family, or the people he worked with. Nevertheless, the book is still fantastic. For a nonfiction book, I was impressed by its colorful language and imagery. If I did not know that it was a nonfiction, I may have taken it for a novel for its depth of its characters and seamless chronology.
The aspect of the book that I liked the most was although the book was about a single person, Newberry, one could argue that it pulled out a lens towards the culture around him. Specifically, the societal problem of racism. Throughout his story, Newberry makes points about the issue of race from his teenage years to the folks that he helped out through “TEACH.” It made the book unique in a way that it really showed that Newberry’s life was about other people and how willing he was to seek to understand the marginalized, just as he does living in his own rental properties.
Overall, if you are looking to delve into on entrepreneurial adventures yourself or maybe just to imagine what it is like, I would highly recommend this book.
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