“SuperFreakonomics is a humdinger of a book: page-turning,
politically incorrect, and ever-so-slightly intoxicating,
like a large swig of tequila.” – The Times (London)
Anyone who’s drank shots of tequila would have a feel of what that statement meant. SuperFreakonomics is a book I chanced once when out of boredom in the office, I decided to pay Fully Booked a visit. I often go to that bookstore because you know that if you’re just good at eyeing a quiet spot, nobody is going to look you in the eye sharply while you slide your fingers in the book pages on display.
|The paperback SuperFreakonomics book I read until the pages curled and the cover ripped at the edge... woops!|
Mr. Levitt and Mr. Dubner, whose first names sort of sound alike (Ste”v”en), Steven and Stephen, respectively, did a great job in collaborating for the completion of this phenomenal book. It felt so good and sounded so right the moment I turned the first few pages of the sacrificial item on display. It must have been the straightforward and candid writing style that kept me glued to it. They write it like they speak it in a casual conversation. This style makes reading smooth such that you wouldn’t know that you’ve in fact flipped the last page of the first chapter already.
While my colleague at work was convinced to buy it after reading the first line of the explanatory note: “The time has come to admit that in our first book, we lied. Twice.”, mine was influenced after learning that both authors considered themselves civil writing adversaries at first before they decided to collaborate. Further onwards, I learned that they’ve decided to pair up for this project, besides the financial incentives, for the reason that when summoned to answer about how much share each of them should get, they both blurted “60-40”, the bigger percentage in favor of the other. As to what was eventually agreed upon, it remained undisclosed.
The book was such a delight that it can indeed pass for a Chicken Soup for the Freakonomics Soul or a Coffee Mate (like sugar to bitter coffee is a sweet blend). It makes reading dull science,economics, and statistics books fun. It was likened to a ‘swig of tequila’ by The Times in London, because it is the kind of book that breaks the barriers of categories. It has a genre of its own. The topics are interestingly varied that it touches most of the real and current issues our world is facing at present: Prostitution, Terrorism, Global Warming, Drinking Drunk, Apathy and Altruism. Your acquaintance, after reading the book, can range from a prostitute, who goes by the name LaSheena, to huge names in politics like Al Gore, and Microsoft personalities like Nathan Myhrvold. Its scientific explanations and statistical data makes reading feel like you are just watching news on TV.
My most liked part of the book is Chapter 5 which tackled the commonality of Al Gore’s advocacy with the historic eruption of Mt.Pinatubo in relation to global warming-- both views quite identical objective-wise but different when cost is concerned. I will not go into the details so as to leave you with a whole lot of surprises to enjoy.