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If you've never read Taleb before, pass on this book for now and go read Fooled by Randomness or The Black Swan. This book, while fascinating to long time Taleb fans, is more preaching to the choir, and so he skips a lot of he lead up and background discussions that had been part of the backbone of his other books. I valued the discussion of minority rule and the concept of an absorbing barrier applied to financial ruin, and the authors use of unreliable narratives was entertaining as always. That said, the ideas in this book are minor points compared to his other works, and I found myself wishing he had waited another year or two to continue fleshing out the ideas in this book to allow it to be up to the same standards of his other works.
51 of 54 people found this review helpful
I’ve enjoyed and applies Taleb’s insights for years, but this book was so infused with petty arguments and dismissive quips that it was difficult to pull anything useful from it. The author uncharacteristically wandered off topic so often that trying to reconstruct his arguments almost took more effort than the insight seemed worth. I think there were some pretty significant insights (“don’t confuse data for mathematical rigor” for example). But the book as a whole was so condescending and vitriolic to anyone who disagreed with the author about his past ideas, which is strange coming from someone who preaches such a stoic view of things. I think the author had some very important ideas, but it will take serious work to find them if you aren’t interested in taking the author’s side in all the flame wars he’s either started or been dragged into.
44 of 48 people found this review helpful
If you've read anything else by Teleb, you won't be disappointed with Skin in the Game. Another thoughtful rant covering many fields and subjects. If you haven't read anything by him before... I would suggest reading fooled by randomness first, but that's just personal preference, his books can be read in any order. I can't recommend them highly enough. They prove what the majority of people believe about risk, probability and indeed life, is wrong.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful
Although the author is definetely an intelligent person and the main point of the book is worth understanding, some of the examples -particularly that against Richard Dawkins- have important flaws or are too extreme to be taken without more evidence. This is basically a book about opinions, with no science behind it. Nonetheless, it does have some common sense points that are worth being conscious about.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful
I had many doubts about this book. The author can be hypocritical and blind to very obvious irony. However there are so many flashes of rare insight and interesting uses of language that it is ultimately a very rewarding read. Loved it! A contradiction, just like this book.
0 of 2 people found this review helpful