Tag Archives: Random House

Review: A Truck Full of Money (DNF)

A Truck Full of Money

A Truck Full of Money
By Tracy Kidder
Random House, 9780812995244, September 2016, 288pp.

The Short of It:

If you are into the start-up culture and enjoy seeing ideas comes to fruition, you will find something of value in this read.

The Rest of It:

This is the story of Paul English, a kinetic and unconventional inventor and entrepreneur, who as a boy rebelled against authority. Growing up in working-class Boston, English discovers a medium for his talents the first time he sees a computer. As a young man, despite suffering from what would eventually be diagnosed as bipolar disorder, he begins his pilgrim’s journey through the ups and downs in the brave new world of computers. Relating to the Internet as if it’s an extension of his own mind, he discovers that he has a talent for conceiving innovative enterprises and building teams that can develop them, becoming “a Pied Piper” of geeks. ~ Indiebound

If you paid attention to the title of this post, you’ll see that this was a DNF (did not finish) for me . This is a rarity, especially when it comes to a book club pick, which is what A Truck Full of Money was to me. I try really hard to finish all book club selections but I just could not get past the 45% mark on my Kindle.

It’s well-written, so it’s definitely not the writing that caused me to eventually give up. No, I believe it was the subject matter. I work in Information Technology. I am surrounded by programmers and application developers but within the higher education sector so I expected to be somewhat enlightened to this new world of start-ups but I was bored people! Bored out of my mind.

At one point, Paul English becomes heavily involved in philanthropy and this part interested me because when someone is in possession of that much money, and we are talking quite a bit of money, it’s admirable when they choose to support charitable causes.

Kidder goes back into English’s childhood and here again, I was kind of pulled in only to be pushed away again. It just wasn’t enough for me to keep reading but he was the founder of Kayak.com and battled bipolar disorder to get to where he is today so I’m not really sure what didn’t work for me because his story is certainly compelling.

Have you read A Truck Full of Money? If so, let me know your thoughts.

Source: Borrowed
Disclosure: This post contains Indiebound affiliate links.

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Review: The Music Shop

The Music Shop

The Music Shop
By Rachel Joyce
Random House, 9780812996685, January 2018, 320pp.

The Short of It:

If you like sweet, quirky characters and have an appreciation for music, you’ll love this story.

The Rest of It:

Frank owns a music shop and stocks only vinyl, which causes him a great deal of trouble when the vendors refuse to keep him stocked unless he agrees to also carry CDs. But Frank is not just a record seller, he knows exactly what you need to hear and when you need to hear it. His music “prescriptions” have made him a well-loved member of the community but his inability to move with the times threatens to ruin everything he has. One day, a strange, beautiful woman faints right outside his shop and his safe, predictable life is turned upside down.

I really enjoyed The Music Shop. It has a fabulous cast of characters. Do you remember the movie Notting Hill? Well, this story has a very similar group of characters who are really more of a family to Frank that just fellow business owners. They are quirky and lovable and well-meaning. Delightful, really.

As Frank learns more about Ilse, the woman who faints outside his shop, we also learn about Frank’s relationship with his mother and how he came to love music so much. As I was reading this story I compiled a Spotify playlist of all the songs mentioned, only to find out that the publisher already did it for me!

This story is sweet and funny and a real feel-good book. If you enjoyed her other book, The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry, you will not be disappointed with this one.

Source: Review copy provided by the publisher via Library Thing.
Disclosure: This post contains Indiebound affiliate links.