4 out of 4 stars
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Burn Zones by Jorge Newbery is an enthralling non-fiction novel that follows the life long successes and struggles of Mr. Newbery himself. As a young boy, Jorge decides it is time to get to work to earn his own money, and once he starts working, he never stops. This novel clearly shows how ambition and hard work are all one needs to be successful in any venture, be it in one’s professional life, personal life, or both. I am giving this book a 4 out of 4 rating because not only is it a great story of perseverance, but it also is obvious that Mr. Newbery has poured his heart into his literary work, just as he has in all other aspects of his life.
Initially, my impression of the author was that he was arrogant and self-righteous, but as I read on, I realized that he was, in fact, quite humble and down-to-earth, especially considering his raging financial success. Mr. Newbery acquired his first job at the age of seven as a paperboy, and even at such a young age was finding he was always chasing the “next best thing.” He had such a strong drive for success that the monetary compensation seemed to be unimportant. He simply wanted to prove that he could, and would, succeed.
Burn Zones is not so much a financial “how to” book as it is a book of life lessons. Mr. Newbery attempts to teach readers the importance of hard work, treating others well, and to always believe in one’s self. Jorge learned early in life that people will generally treat you the way them, a lesson that stuck with him throughout his life. One aspect of this novel that was really impressive to me was the way Mr. Newbery addressed racial inequality. He used his platform for one of the most important and controversial causes in modern day America, and he deserves the utmost respect for that.
Jorge’s family is depicted in his novel so passionately and with so much emotion that it is very easy to see that they are a family full of love and support. It is rare that I get emotional while reading, however while reading certain chapters that included Jorge’s family, I found myself fighting back tears. Mr. Newbery had unconditional support from his parents from the very beginning, and it is clear that he never forgot or took it for granted.
Although I was initially confused about the term “Burn Zones” and the relevance to the story, it quickly made sense. Mr. Newbery made his way through various Burn Zones throughout his financial success and eventual financial demise and rebuild, and true to Mr. Newbery’s style, he never stops striving for more. Burn Zones appeared to be exceptionally well edited. I would not recommend this book to anyone who craves constant action, but it would be perfect for anyone who loves a great motivational or underdog story.
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