Review: The World Is Flat: A Brief History of the Twenty-First Century

The World Is Flat: A Brief History of the Twenty-First Century
The World Is Flat: A Brief History of the Twenty-First Century by Thomas L. Friedman

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

While the ideas that are presented in the first half of this book are interesting, most of the first half reads like newspaper-style reporting but drawn out so that it fits the length requirements of a book (almost as if a newspaper columnist were writing a book — which, of course, is exactly what has happened here). I was also a little irritated by the wide-eyed marveling on every other page; as this continued on and on, Friedman sounded more and more like the stereotypical old man who is amazed by the technology his children and grandchildren use. This, of course, made it ever more difficult to take him seriously.

The second half of the book, however, is much better. If you can bear through the first half, the second is a real treat in many ways as Friedman both, I think, correctly diagnoses many of the problems with the “flat word” and offers us very good advice in how to remedy them.

Overall, the book is a worthwhile, even if sometimes obnoxious, read.

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