Book Reviews

As a copywriter and marketing professional, I am often approached by other writers to review their work. Most of my reviews appear on Amazon. Below are some examples of positive reviews I’ve written.

Superb Guide for Aspiring Entrepreneurs

5.0 out of 5 stars

Review by Susan Greene (Orlando, Florida)

Mastering Niche MarketingThis review is for:  Mastering Niche Marketing: A Definitive Guide to Profiting from Ideas in a Competitive Market

I just finished “Mastering Niche Marketing.” I read it cover-to-cover in one sitting. It’s excellent — really!

The word “comprehensive” doesn’t do it justice. It is truly an all-inclusive, master guidebook for creating a world-class internet business.

In easy-to-understand language complete with case studies and plenty of links to relevant websites, you take the reader through all the steps to online success including how to: choose a profitable niche, create a product, develop marketing strategies, write advertising copy, use online promotional tools, set up an affiliate program, and finally leverage the formula to build multiple income streams. What more could any aspiring entrepreneur want!

* * *

5.0 out of 5 stars

Finally! A Manual for Social Media Marketing

Review by Susan Greene (Orlando, Florida)

Off the Hook MarketingThis review is for:  Off the Hook Marketing: How to Make Social Media Sell for You

In “Off the Hook Marketing,” Jeff Molander has created an easy-to-read and easy-to-implement manual on how to make social media work for you. He talks about using platforms like Facebook, Twitter and a blog to generate leads for new business as well as increase sales to existing customers. Specifically, he shows you how to design processes that guide customers toward your products and services.

Jeff’s advice is practical and can be applied gradually, in manageable stages, all the while growing your business. Each step forward builds upon your prior success. Ultimately, you learn how to cultivate your competitive edge using today’s new media.

With real-life examples, Jeff shows how both small companies and large, global corporations are incorporating social media marketing into their business growth strategy. What you’ll soon realize is they’re not just promoting their company; they’re using social media to listen to their customers and guide their decisions going forward. They’re accumulating data to help them refine their products and align them more precisely with customer needs.

If you’ve hesitated to get involved in online socializing, afraid it’s a time suck or just not for you, Jeff provides that little push to get you off the edge and into the water. His strategies lead you to take the plunge with confidence. Using his methods, you can boost your company’s sales and strengthen your foundation for future success. Don’t wait another day.

Read “Off the Hook Marketing” and get busy employing Jeff’s social media tactics today!

* * *

5.0 out of 5 stars

Aim High, Think Big, the Sky Is the Limit; Lessons from the Hoyts

Review by Susan Greene (Orlando, Florida)

One Letter at a TimeThis review is for:  One Letter at a Time

Todd Civin, the author of “One Letter at a Time,” is an old friend I found on Facebook. It had been almost 30 years since we’d seen each other when we reconnected.

We originally met at Syracuse University sophomore year. I sat next to Todd in Astronomy class. He was smart. I was dumb, at least when it came to science. Todd helped me pass the class. Without him, I’d probably still be in Astronomy trying to wrap my head around concepts like black holes and cosmic radiation.

Flash forward to 2012 when Todd announced on his Facebook page that he’d written a book, his first. It was about two marathoners/triathletes, a father-son team. To be honest, I had no interest in reading a sports book. But I decided to purchase it to be supportive of an old college buddy and to, in some small way, repay the 30-year-old debt I owed Todd for has “astronomical” help.

“One Letter at a Time” arrived by mail, and from the moment I cracked its thick spine, I was riveted. I quickly realized I’d heard of the father-son running team of Dick Hoyt (father) and Rick Hoyt (son) in various news stories about the Boston Marathon. Now I had a chance to learn the history and behind-the-scenes events that had put them into the public eye.

From the very first chapter, it became apparent to me that “One Letter at a Time” is more than a book. It’s a philosophy of life, an all-encompassing, can-do perspective in which you set and then reach unfathomable goals and along the way inspire others with hope and promise for their future.

Rick was born a spastic quadriplegic with cerebral palsy, a condition that rendered him unable to ever speak, walk or even use his hands. But his mind was sharp and his capacity to think and feel was as strong, perhaps stronger, as any able-bodied person.

When he gained the ability to communicate, first by using a one-letter-at-a-time system of nodding developed by Rick’s brother Russell, and later at age 11 through a computer-aided communication system, he left no doubt of his great intelligence and wonderful sense of humor.

Rick’s parents, Dick and Judy, treated Rick like his two brothers, including him in all the family activities, even though he often played the role of spectator. But everything changed when Rick was 13.

Rick asked his father to help him run a five-mile race, a fundraiser for a classmate who had recently been paralyzed in an accident. Rick wanted to participate not only to pledge his support but also to provide an example of what can be accomplished even when one is severely disabled. Rick successfully completed the race, pushed by his father in his wheelchair.

After that race, Rick uttered words that would change the course of his life, “Dad, when I’m running, it feels like my disability disappears.” The enormity of that simple sentence was not lost on Dick and the rest of the family. It would set the path for the next three decades and counting for both Rick and Dick.

Soon father and son were doing more races, longer races and eventually marathons and triathlons. In the Ironman triathlons, Dick would tow Rick in a small boat for 2.4 miles, then carry him in a special seat on the front of his bike for 112 miles, and finally push him in a race-adapted wheelchair for 26.2 miles.

Triathlons could take them as long as 16 hours to complete, but these two men were not quitters. Once committed, they gave their all in every race. Their motto, “Yes you can!” became a life philosophy, one shared by many people they inspired along the way.

They’ve now completed over 1,000 races, 69 marathons, six Ironmans and are still going strong. They were inducted into the Ironman Triathalon Hall of Fame in 2008. Also adding to their list of achievements, Dick and Rick biked and ran across the U.S. in 1992, completing a full 3,735 miles in 45 days.

“One Letter at a Time” isn’t just the story of Rick and Dick’s athletic accomplishments. It’s also about Rick’s ability as a disabled person to live independently and realize his dreams, one of which was to obtain a Bachelor of Science degree in Special Education from Boston University.

While Rick is the obvious hero in the book, “One Letter at a Time” isn’t only his story. Instead, it’s the chronicles of some of the people who’ve gotten to know Rick. Each chapter is written by a different person, ranging from Rick’s brothers and parents to his personal care assistants, therapists, teachers and friends.

Some of the most moving chapters and letters are by parents of disabled children who began doing races with their own kids to provide them with the same excitement and feeling of accomplishment that Rick experiences when he races.

You also get to know Rick’s parents, Dick and Judy, who fought vigorously for the disability rights movement. Through their efforts children with disabilities now get equal access to education and are welcomed at public schools, universities and also athletic events like marathons. They were pioneers, and the changes they initiated have made life better for disabled people throughout the U.S. and the world.

Interspersed throughout the book are chapters by Rick, dictated slowly and purposefully with his computer-assisted speech, one letter at a time, to Todd Civin.

Together through the viewpoints of these different people in Rick’s life, and from Rick himself, you get a picture of a man physically disabled but not the slightest bit limited in his ability to lead a full, happy and meaningful life.

“One Letter at a Time” fills you with hope. Suddenly, your own problems don’t seem nearly as pressing. Life is clearly a blessing that must be appreciated. Even in the most dire of circumstances, a positive outlook and hard work can overcome seemingly insurmountable challenges.

I started this review by explaining that my purchase of “One Letter at a Time” written by my old astronomy class savior was a small way of saying thank you to Todd Civin for his help all those years ago. But instead, I find myself even more in his debt.

Reading his book about Rick Hoyt has been a life-changing experience. More than anything else, it has taught me to approach all aspects of life with a yes-you-can attitude, a lesson for which I will be forever grateful. Thank you, Todd. Again.

* * *

5.0 out of 5 stars

Empowering Tips & Tools for Making Important Decisions

Review by Susan Greene (Orlando, Florida)

This review is for: The Power of CHOICE: Six Steps to Get What You Want out of Life

“The Power of Choice” is an easy and engaging read, using anecdotes and the personal experiences of the authors to convey their lessons in a way that’s simple to understand. This book isn’t meant to criticize how you make important decisions in your life. Its bigger purpose is to empower you to make better informed and more deliberate choices.

The authors, Denise Yosafat and John Chancellor, encourage keeping an open mind and considering all alternatives, even ones you might initially discount. They also give you the key to conquering fear about making the wrong choice: know that you can always make adjustments if you need to.

“The Power of Choice” teaches you to drive change. It gives you the tools to make good decisions and gently pushes you to call the shots to have a more fulfilling life.

The book reminded me of the scene at the end of The Wizard of Oz when Glenda the good witch tells Dorothy, “You always had the power, my dear. You just had to learn it for yourself.”

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