March 17, 2010
Book Short: Gladwell Lite What the Dog Saw, And Other Adventures (book, Kindle) is Malcolm Gladwell’s latest book. Unlike his three other books, which I quite enjoyed: The Tipping Point (about how trends and social movements start and spread) Blink (about how the mind makes judgments) Outliers: The Story of Success (about how talents are genetic, situational, and cultivated) this was not a complete book, but rather a compendium of his New Yorker articles loosely grouped into three themes. If you love Gladwell and don’t read The New Yorker, it’s not a bad read. He’s a fantastic writer, and his vignettes are interesting. There are many “hmmm” moments as we learn why ketchup always tastes the same but mustard doesn’t; why Ron Popeil is a great salesman of kitchen gadgets; or why the inventor of the birth control pill thought the Pope would endorse it. But it falls far short of his three books, which go deep into topics and leave a much more lasting impression/impact.