Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Book Review - What I Know by Roger Emerson Fishman

Book Review - What I Know by Roger Emerson FishmanWhat I Know by Roger Emerson Fishman
Hardcover: 96 pages
Publisher: Clarkson Potter (October 13, 2009)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0307454223
ISBN-13: 978-0307454225

Rating: 4/5
Source:  Contributor Joe Rohrlich

Book Blurb:
Only people at the bookends of life can truly tell it like it is. In "What I Know", a remarkable group of 10-year-olds and 100-year-olds share their insights on life with Roger Fishman to reveal unguarded truths and surprising wisdom.

You’ll be inspired by the lighthearted yet profound thoughts from 10-year-olds:
“Think of yourself as a dot on a line. The things behind you are already over, so always move forward down the line.”
“Integrity is doing good deeds when no one is looking.”
“It’s not about whether somebody will ‘be there’ for you. It’s all about whether you will ‘be there’ for somebody else.”

And you’ll find time-tested knowledge in the words of centenarians:
“In marriage, you have two sides to the bed: one where you fight and the other where you make up.”
“You’ve got to love, respect, and develop a genuine belief in yourself before you can be there to do that for anybody else.”
“In life, the one thing you can control is your word.”

Offering a variety of perspectives from these two unique groups, "What I Know" is, ultimately, a trove of universal truths from a diverse cross section of 10-year-olds and 100-year-olds with a wealth of experience.

My Review:
The full title of this book is What I Know: Uncommon Wisdom and Universal Truths from 10-year-olds and 100-year-olds. This is one of my favorite types of books as I love collections like this, be they from the famous or otherwise. This has the twist of offering life advice from either 10 years olds with a fresh perspective, or 100 year olds with a lifetime's worth of wisdom. And while the advice is credited to the proper source, we don't know if it's coming from the young or the old. There is a listing at the end, but not knowing where the advice was coming from was part of the fun!

The book is grouped into chapters, with a small bit of background and then interview with a centenarian at each chapter's beginning.  The subjects range from believing in yourself to friendship to perseverance. A little something for everyone.

Wanted to share some of my favorite advice with you:
You need to stay superattentive to all the things around you. Otherwise, you're probably going to get killed by an out-of-control car or motorcycle.

If you are thinking about having a baby, you better start preparing now by collecting lots and lots of sleep!

Honesty is the glistening star in the quiet night sky.

It's about learning to see an imperfect person perfectly. Let me tell you: you are very weird; we all are. When you can find someone who's weirdness fits with your own, you better join up in mutual weirdness.

All good advice, but I admit that I tend to lean towards the skewed. Really liked the last piece of advice, as we're all weird and just have to find people at the same level of weirdness. *L*

Gave this book a rating of 4/5 as I enjoyed reading it. I was going to just skim through the book for a quick taste, but wound up reading it straight through!

As promised, one lucky reader will win an autographed copy of What I Know! This is an adorable book, and I'm sure that whoever wins will absolutely love it!

The one thing that everyone HAS to do in order to enter this contest is leave a comment. Say hello, tell me your favorite color, suggest a book, share your favorite recipe...doesn't matter what the subject so long as you comment. :-)

Winners must have a U.S. mailing address. Sorry, but I promise that my next contest will be a little more lenient.

For extra entries: tweet, blog, or otherwise promote this giveaway and be sure to leave me a link. One extra entry for each link. No verifiable link, no entry.

Have some advice & wisdom of your own to share? That's an extra entry as well!

The contest ends at 11:59 pm EST on Tuesday, February 9, 2010.

Please make sure to include those links! If you would like an email if you win, please leave an address. Otherwise, be sure to check back to see if you've won!

Thanks, and good luck!


  1. Ooh! Oooh! Count me in! =0)
    I actually saw this one in Target (it's like Walmart for those that don't know) the other day. My first encounter with a book like this was Furry Logic, given to me by a friend/coworker I use to know. They are great for an actual read through or just a random flip of the page. You never quite know what you're going to get (okay, that sounds a little like Forrest Gump, but we'll go with it).

    +1 - linking to contest on sidebar http://insatiablereaders.blogspot.com
    +1 - tweet tweet - http://twitter.com/GRgenius/status/8245031488

    Thanks for sharing the great review as well as some of your favorite lines...happy reading!


  2. This looks like a great book. Thanks for reviewing it for us. So... my favorite color is yellow, I'm obsessed with baseball (and sports in general), and I love vanilla lattes. :-)

  3. Nice review! Okay, well, my favorite color is green, olive to be exact. And I would recommend reading Angry Arthur. It was one of my favorite books when I was younger.

  4. this looks so novel thanks for the giveaway minsthins at optonline dot net

  5. This looks great! I'm always on the lookout for more books like this because not only do I like them, but my husband devours them in a matter of hours when he has time. So, needless to say this one will be added to the pile, even if I don't win. Thanks for the review!
    the1stdaughter at gmail dot com

  6. This looks so cute and I'd love to read it. Please enter me in. I am not really full of wisdom or advice, but the one thing I always try to follow is just to do what your heart tells you to do. You can never go wrong that way.


  7. This looks like a great book. Please count me in.
    My advice : When you have children, don't sweat the small stuff or worry what others thing. Always do whats best for your child. And watch out for runaway cars and motorcycles!

  8. I love the comment of weirdness and finding someone just as weird as yourself. I think just for that comment I need to have this book. It sounds like a very amusing yet eye opening read. Sounds great!


  9. Hey! Bethany trivia...I am a new mom and loving it!

    bethanyg153 at gmail dot com

  10. Thank you for reviewing this book! It sounds delightful.

  11. Nice review!!, looks like a great book =). Thank you for stopping by my site :)

  12. I like the idea of collecting sleep-- I do that already, and I'm not planning on having kids! :-)

  13. Sounds wonderful. Yes, please enter me in this contest.

  14. I think I would enjoy this book! Please enter me.
    annarudow at gmail dot com

  15. That's a cute cover, with the baby elephant holding its mother's tail. Please enter me into the giveaway too!

    As for collecting sleep, I'm a college student and a writer. If I get five hours a night, that's normal. :)


    mdperera at hotmail dot com

  16. I have a 10 year old that surprises me daily with his wisdom. Looks like a wonderful book.


  17. Sounds like a wonderful book--thanks for the chance to win it. Have a wonderful 2010 --if it hasn't started out well --you can slways start again on Chinese New Year--this year it falls on valentine's Day.

  18. This book looks great, I absolutely love books like this! Thanks for the great giveaway!


  19. While I don't know too many 100 year olds, I do know a 91 3/4 year old and boy he has an opinion on everything. From the price of a chocolate bar to Obama's policy. He would enormously enjoy this book as would I.

    alterlisa AT yahoo DOT com

  20. This book sounds wonderful.Please enter me in the giveaway.augustlily06(at)aim(dot)com.Thanks for the great giveaway!

  21. What great advice! I'd love to win the book! Thanks for hosting the contest!

    +1 Tweeted here: http://twitter.com/in_the_hammock/status/8663752607

    inthehammockblog (at) gmail (dot) com

  22. This book looks really cute. My favorite color is between blue and pink... :P
    My blog: http://www.ysprincess.blogspot.com
    My e-mail: soccer64@bellsouth.net

    Thanks for the chance! :)

  23. This sounds like a fun book! I love the cover! Elephants are one of my favorite animals.

    Oh, I tweeted! http://twitter.com/_elizabethjoy/status/8717439351

  24. I'd love to enter! Thanks!

    aikychien at yahoo dot com

  25. I tweeted:


    aikychien at yahoo dot com

  26. Hello! This sounds like a great book. My favorite color is blue :)


  27. Good review...I love books like these and was even published in one, as a child they asked me what was the most important peice of advice I could give out to someone who is getting new siblings. As there were 7 of us growing up and me being the baby (and only girl) I said "You can not tattle tale on your brother and not expect to get hit. It's like brother code or something." I would love to share this with my family.

  28. I love this type of book as well and I'd love to have it.

    Here's what I'm thinking today. I need a beach. I'm looking outside at the cloudy skies and fresh feet of snow, and I need a beach. ~sigh~

    Thanks for the giveaway.

    s.mickelson at gmail dot com

  29. This sounds like a really good book. I enjoy these types of books too.