Sunday, January 6, 2013

Book Review: Come Hell or High Water

Come Hell or High Water: Life Lessons From Hurricane Katrina: Facing Life's Greatest Challenges, No Matter WhatCome Hell or High Water: Life Lessons From Hurricane Katrina: Facing Life's Greatest Challenges, No Matter What by Marvin Leblanc
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

I really didn't care for this book - mostly because it was not what I was expecting. I probably should have researched it a bit more before reading it. I thought it was going to be more about Hurricane Katrina and the stories of the survivors, the lessons they learned. I wanted more details about what happened and the aftermath.

Instead it was really only about the author's experience. He had been one to evacuate, but the parish (county elsewhere in the U.S.) where his home was was one of the hardest hit. He lost everything and had to rebuild. The book attempted to show just what he learned from Katrina and how he was able to move forward and become successful in his personal and work life.

I thought it could have been a lot better developed. There were many times it didn't seem to flow very well - giving a choppy feeling to the book. He would explain some experience of his with Katrina and then jis tying it to a lesson would seem a bit far-fetched, leaving the reader to wonder, "Where did that come from?"

I do think I might have enjoyed this book a bit better, if I were someone who enjoys reflective thinking and journaling as a way to further my career goals. Many of his lessons are centered around how he grew his insurance sales team in the first couple of years after Katrina. This book might be helpful to managers looking to assign their subordinates something to read to inspire and motivate them to work harder in their field. For personal growth, I felt it was a little too business-oriented.

If you are someone who likes to journal, each chapter ends with a Marvelous Moment where he poses two questions for the reader to contemplate and write about. That's not really my thing, but even it was I think it was kind of poorly done in this book. The questions seemed abrupt and out of nowhere, or just related to the final paragraph.

Despite this book not really being for me or what I expected, what it did provide was a lot of inspirational quotes that I did enjoy. Here are a few that I found the most inspiring or motivating. There were plenty more - especially if you're looking for more fulfillment in your career life.

As long as you're fighting, you're not losing.
Celebrate your failures and embrace what you learn from them.
...lots of days I don't feel like I'm getting a good hand from the dealer, but that's the hand that I have to play, so I do it with as much marvelousness as I can."
Lead your life instead of accepting your life.
Don't get caught up in the end result. Just get caught up in the process - the journey.

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