One Red Paperclip: Or How an Ordinary Man Achieved His Dream with the Help of a Simple Office Supply
One Red Paperclip: Or How an Ordinary Man Achieved His Dream with the Help of a Simple Office Supply by Kyle Macdonald

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

What’s your paperclip?
What will you “trade” to make it happen?
This was a book I’d been looking forward to reading for a while. I heard of Kyle Macdonald’s blog through a magazine article years ago and I looked it up and read some of it. Sounded like an exciting idea and it’s always been on my mind. So let me say right off the bat how cool it is to be able to do this.

But as a book it kind of fell flat. Kyle Macdonald isn’t a writer, that’s obvious, he isn’t claiming to be, but he also isn’t a motivational speaker. Every chapter ends with little faux motivational messages which kind of fall short of the mark. You find yourself reading things like:
Now was two words ago.
Yep, this is just a blatantly inane comment to make you think way-too-deep thoughts. But it’s not. Unless you think it is. Then it is. If you want to analyze it, and give it meaning, that’s fine by me. But analysis and thinking won’t change the simple new fact: Now was actually more like five words ago.

Sounds like great dry humor but it gets old FAST. And not all statements are worded that well. There is a section where he describes how he was breathing and we find ourselves reading “Inhale. Exhale. Inhale. Exhale.” That’s groundbreaking.
The book isn’t written in a blog-style, which is good, it’s told like a story. It starts off a lot of fun and I found myself flying through the pages, but then it gets dull and tedious and I was skimming a lot through to the end. I think this would have made a great book if it was shorter and less unnecessarily descriptive.
It was a fun read for a while, but through it all it’s hard to shake the fact that this is a story of luck. There is no skill involved here.

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