In Burn Zones: Playing Life’s Bad Hands, author/entrepreneur/real estate mogul/endurance athlete Jorge Newbery takes the reader on his journey from paperboy to real estate investor and beyond, documenting his successes, failures, and social interest projects. Having faced countless rounds of these so-called “burn zones,” where bursts of extraordinary effort test the limits of body and mind, in bicycle racing as well as in his time as a serial entrepreneur, Newbery describes to readers how he succeeded, struggled, and overcame the worst possible odds, in the process illustrating that they can too.
This is a relatively short book that reads fairly quickly, describing the author’s beginnings as a paperboy and chronicling his rise to record mogul, bicycle racer, real estate mogul, and then his fall into debt and real estate collapse, and subsequent reinvention. Throughout the book, Newbery describes how he buckled down and used mental discipline to remind himself that, “Others around you are hurting just as much…. The effort will get easier soon.” His central argument is that life is full of these “burn zones,” and the people who face these seemingly insurmountable challenges have to keep that in mind, and not be afraid to keep burning until the stint is over.
This is book could be considered either self-help or autobiography, with many of the book’s lessons coming from the author’s own experience. There are many lessons illustrated in this interesting and inspirational life story of the author. Although he has had a long road with experiences that most people will never encounter, Burn Zones seems more of an example of how this individual dealt with his personal burn zones on his journey of reinventing himself repeatedly in various life changes rather than a true self-help volume. However, this title could be very inspirational to readers looking for some motivation and a real life example of the conquering the burn zone.
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