Micro-summaries of books – the latest speed reading trend
Shortage of reading time sparks a trend of micro-summaries for people who don’t have time even to read regular summaries. I guess 240 characters could suffice to summaries almost anything as Twitter made it possible. Originally, started by Woody Allen’s famous quote “I took a speed-reading course and read War and Peace in 20 minutes. It involves Russia.”
Microsummaries are good examples of thin slicing of books.
“Brevity is the soul of wit.” William Shakespeare
A few tongue-in-cheek macro-summaries
How To Win Friends And Influence People by Dale Carnegie
Simile. Listen. Look interested. Remember people’s names. Repeat.
The Power Of Now by Eckhart Tolle
Stop thinking about the past, stop anticipating the future. In fact, stop thinking. Now.
The 4-hour Work Week by Timothy Harris
Maximise results while minimising time spent. Decides to work less, then find a way to do that. Delegating is useful.
Who Moved My Cheese? by Spencer Johnson
Because they keep moving the cheese, you really need to be ready for the cheese to move. Got it? A business category for two mice, two little people in a maze seeking cheese.
Black Box Thinking by Matthew Syed
If you had a black box (like on a plane), you’d see how you failed and how to succeed.
Start with Why by Simon Sinek
Ask ‘why’ questions and you’ll be more innovative, influential and profitable than others.
Strengths Finder 2.0 by Tom Rath
Focus on your top five talents or capabilities (after you’ve done a Gallup test online) to thrive.
Outliers: The Story Of Success by Malcolm Gladwell: Get born at the right moment, in the right place, to the right family and then still you have to work really hard.
The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference by Malcolm Gladwell is number 6 on The 100 Best Books of the Decade according to The Times
Micro-summaries of some novels
Madame Bovary by Gustave Flaubert
Provincial life is deadly dull.
Les Liaisons dangereuses by Pierre Choderlos de Laclos
The aristocracy is decadent.
Le Misanthrope by Molière
Humankind is fundamentally flawed.
Le Rouge et le Noir by Stendhal
Hypocrisy is rife.
Les Misérables by Victor Hugo
Forgiveness is elusive.
Le Comte de Monte-Cristo by Alexandre Dumas
Vendettas are ruthless.
La Bête humaine by Émile Zola
Train drivers are murders.
Micro-summary of 21 Lessons for the 21st Century by Yuval Noah Harari
There are three main threats to human civilisation:
1) nuclear war,
2) climate change/ecological collapse and
3) technological/biological disruption.
The key suggestions are:
• to start the conversation about all the above threats because these global problems can have only global solutions,
• get real – throw off the false faiths of institutional religions and
Speed read the full version of the summary of 21 Lessons for the 21st Century by Yuval Noah Harari
Out of Our Minds: What We Think and How We Came to Think It by Felipe Fernández-Armesto: DIVERGENCE
(with an additional word CONVERGENCE)
The importance of reading summaries first – speed reading technique #26