Review: Read to Succeed by Stan Skrabut

FF’s Star Rating: ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

Read to Succeed: The Power of Books to Transform Your Life and to Put You on the Path to Success is a practicable non-fiction novel by Stan Skrabut, a writer who has noticed that there is a strong rift between people who think about succeeding and those lucky ones that have succeeded. He also made a correlation between successful people and the books they read versus struggling people who do not. This is an interesting fact to take note of as I myself see this every day.

Successful historical figures must have a common reason for how they got where they were. Stan Skrabut jots this down entirely to a promising reading habit. He also implies that luck can increase due to this habit. His main intention for writing this book is to help people that will escalate their chances of success. Fascinated by all the great things he could learn from books, Stan Skrabut enjoyed reading from the time that he was a boy. His reading journey is educational and pleasant to read, setting readers on a path to learn what the benefits of reading are and much more. If you’re running out of ideas concerning your profession, than this book is meant for you.

Making use of famous quotes, lists, and subchapters, the format of this book is very appealing. This novel has thirteen chapters, starting with the one subtitled Why Reading Has Been Important to Me, which highlights the benefits Skrabut received through reading, and ending with the one Doing Something with What You Read, where Skrabut teaches readers how to put what they’ve read into practice. The author’s introduction comes in handy for showing readers what to expect throughout the course of reading this book. The order in which the chapters are listed also offers readers a clear vision of a path that readers should follow to become successful.

The author stresses the importance of developing a regular reading routine. It is good for expanding one’s ideas whether it be for professional or personal reasons. The third chapter revolves around a couple of famous people who have greatly benefitted in their careers due to reading. Some of the famous names includes those of former American presidents like George Washington, Benjamin Franklin, Abraham Lincoln, Bill Clinton, and Barrack Obama. Obama’s own reading journey has given him a higher level of empathy.

Warren Buffet, chairman and chief executive officer of Berkshire Hathaway, is one of several business leaders whom the author uses as an example of those that have benefited from reading along names like Bill Gates, Mark Cuban, and Oprah Winfrey. Some of these business leaders have spent a lot of time reading and it’s a bit crazy to consider how much these leaders read. Buffet, who has spent eighty percent of his day reading, is a sure shocker. Mark Cuban, also a successful businessman, has read up to three hours a day. His reading materials only involved things that were relevant to his business.

“Like any skill, the more you work at it, the better you’ll become.” This is so true. My own reading capabilities started at a slow pace and I only became faster with time. In the fifth chapter of the book, the author explores methods of improving reading skills in general. He writes about ways to improve your vocabulary and even games (Scrabble, crossword puzzles, Boggle, etc.). The author also gives readers methods of bettering themselves as readers. In Chapter Six, the author gives readers ways for building their vocabulary. He explains how important building ones vocabulary is when it comes to understanding what someone is saying or writing. It is also good for improving ones communication skills.

People generally have different reading speeds. The author writes something in his introduction that is difficult to believe. “However, President Theodore Roosevelt would read a book a day on a busy day and two to three books when he wasn’t busy.” This sounds too unrealistic for me to even want to attempt and it’s something I just glanced over with my eyes. The author points a lot to the fact that books are good for learning. I didn’t find this to be overly annoying, but I felt that this is a point that the author makes too much. The pro that this offers is that it puts the readers’ focus on what this book is about.

While at the Air Force Academy Prep School, the author reveals that he picked up a reading skill known as speed reading. I’m not entirely unfamiliar with the term as I, as a book reviewer, had always wanted to increase my own reading speed. The speed reading techniques that the author learned increased his speed up to two thousand words per minute. It’s a magnificent amount of words to consider and I myself have never been that speedy of a reader. Other than how to improve your reading speed, the author also explores the importance of note taking while reading. In actual books, the author one hundred percent encourages readers to write notes in their books. He gives readers useful methods for taking notes in both physical and digital books.

One of my favorite things that the author writes is that books are idea containers. It sounds like a saying that I think I’ll remember for a long time. In Chapter Four: Benefits of Reading, a chapter that deals mainly with showing readers the many different things they can gain from reading books, another one comes to mind from this intense mental activity that the author says is: “… a gymnasium for the mind.”

Stan Skrabut’s knowledge is extensive thanks to the broad research he has done. Though he teaches us that reading is a sure way to improve our quality of life, we should absolutely share what we learn from the books we read. His novel surprises us with the manner in which it can interest people into taking up reading and also what they can gain from doing so.

Kindle Edition:

Publisher: Red Scorpion Press
Date Published: December 13, 2018
Genre: Academic & Commercial Writing
Pages: 267
View on Amazon
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