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Saturday, January 31, 2015

Books I've Read: January 2015

Confessions Of A Raging Perfectionist: Learning To Be Free by Amanda Jenkins. I really liked this book.  I got the ebook for free somewhere along the line, and finally got around to reading it.  I enjoyed the "stats" that started each chapter (kind of reminded me of how the chapters in Bridget Jones' Diary started).  The book as a whole was really relatable to me.  Not just because I am a perfectionist, but because the author was really honest, and didn't sugarcoat her mistakes and her flaws.  The Scripture passages throughout the book really helped emphasize the points from a Biblical perspective too, something I wasn't necessarily expecting but really enjoyed.

And there were a few chapters that really hit home for me, especially the one called "Diet Coke", in which the author pointed out that she has certain vices that she looks forward to every day (don't we all!), namely, Diet Coke.  For me, it's coffee.  And that's great, until she points out that if she doesn't get her fix, it throws off her day, and she gets grumpy and feels like she deserves to have that thing.  And then she doesn't ever feel that way about studying God's Word.  But she should.  Ouch.  I could have written that, and realizing that I'm putting something so stupid above God's Word, and letting it affect me so much.  It really made me think.  And I am a failure, so I'm sure it will happen again, but I'm working on it now.  So anyways, if a book can make me think like that, and affect me that much, it was a good read.

Brick by Brick: How Lego Rewrote The Rules Of Innovation And Conquered The Global Toy Industry by David C. Robertson.  (Disclosure: I received a free copy of this book from Blogging for Books in exchange for a review)  So I picked this book because my kids are really into Legos.  For some reason, I thought it was going to be more of a biography of the creator of Legos, but it was actually a giant case study in marketing and how Lego became the huge success that it is, which is actually even better than a biography because it was a combination of something my kids are into now and my college major of marketing.  I really enjoyed digging into the concepts and ideas that I studied several years ago, and it made me feel smart when I knew what they were talking about.  It's still totally accessible to someone who doesn't have a degree in marketing, but those connections were cool to me.

One of my favorite tidbits was that there are 80 Lego pieces for every person on earth.  That's a lot of Legos.  Also, about 70 percent of the pieces in any given Lego kit are "universal" pieces, which means they're used across multiple kits.  The author didn't come out and say this, but from my experience that means there's just enough special pieces between kits that you can't create another one without buying it.  One thing I was kind of bummed about was that, because this book came out in 2013, there was no case study of Lego Friends or The Lego Movie.  After reading about several Lego iterations I was familiar with, like Ninjago and Bionicles, it would have been cool to get his take on those.  Overall, I really enjoyed this book!  It was a good mix of anecdotes and facts about an iconic brand.

Total books read this month: 2.  Total books read this year: 2.  My goal is 30 books for this year, which means I'll need to step it up a bit to reach that goal.

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