Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Review: The Book of Awesome

Alright, so this isn't exactly a brand new, unheard of book that is struggling for a review, publicity, or praise, but I have finished reading it, and I felt the need to give it a review. (Admittedly, this draft has been sitting around for a few months. I felt it was about time to round it out and share it).

I followed Neil Pasricha's blog 100awesomethings for a while before the book came to my attention, and perhaps part of the drive to read it was to give some credit to an internet celebrity who rose to mainstream appeal and got a book deal out of his story.

To be honest, while I enjoy the premise, and the endless amount of positive stories about the small everyday things did put a smile on my face, I feel the real depth to this work comes near the very end of the book, where we learn about Pasricha's personal struggles: the falling-out of his marriage, the death of a close friend to suicide, and the adjacent "awesome" entries that are slightly philosophical, looking into time and history and the universe. The most inspiring story relates to the friend he lost to mental illness, and how this friend and mentor inspired positive thinking strategies and helped him find joy in the everyday.

I think what made me appreciate the book a fair bit more was the TED Talk Pasricha offered on The 3 A's of awesome which offered a bit more of his personal story, transformation, and his philosophy. I encourage you to take a look, and see if it deepens your appreciation of the book, beyond a superficial attempt at finding joy in turning over the cool side of your pillow and peeling an orange in one clean spiral.

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