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Redstone began life in a hardscrabble Boston neighborhood in the early 1920s, the son of a Jewish entrepreneur and a woman determined to see her children excel. Instilled with a drive to succeed at an early age, Redstone went from the academically tough Boston Latin School to Harvard to a military career breaking Japanese codes during World War II. After the war, he went back to Harvard for law school, then spent the next seven years immersing himself in a profession based on reason and justice, ideals that he claims hold his life together. Realizing that practicing law was just a business, however, he went on to enter another business arena, joining the movie drive-in company his father had founded and very quickly expanding it, assuming leadership, and changing the company's name to National Amusements. Redstone's story details his experiences at the helm of this company--taking on the big studios by challenging film industry practices like blind bidding; investing heavily in those same studios, often to great profit; gathering the stock-owning clout and financing needed to make a serious bid for Viacom; battling fiercely to win against the Viacom management group's efforts to take the company private; and finally acquiring the media conglomerate in 1987. Many of the juicy bits lie in tales of Redstone's subsequent years with Viacom, his involvement (initially through MTV) with the Clintons, and the company's acquisition of both Paramount (and the bidding wars that entailed) and Blockbuster (and that deal's ensuing battles with Wayne Huizenga). Redstone is obviously a tough player, not averse to overriding team decisions when he believes in his own vision and not afraid to litigate when he feels unjustly treated--something he's done often, though he claims to hate lawsuits and denies suing "too readily." But he's also book smart and business savvy, and his story offers many tidbits of advice on deal making and power playing when the stakes are high.
A Passion to Win isn't going to win any literary prizes; the writing is simple, and the story unfolds in an often-tedious litany of accomplishments. Indeed, as autobiographies go, this one's tone is rather self-satisfied and can even seem petulant when the author is rehashing what he perceives as the many business wrongs committed against him. But this is a tell-all from a high vantage point in corporate entertainment, and as Redstone's personal account of all that helped and hindered on his way to the heights (jam packed with big-name players in entertainment business, law, finance, and politics), it's sure to be a source of anxiety for some and a titillating read for many. --S. Ketchum
Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.
Mmmmmmmmmmmmmmm,m,,m,monu j I y l u knj .?7?& u. 7 ,lmmvtem. Vjnkoby j imp,I my.by. By,Hu & by,!7 minimums. No but byPublished 5 months ago by STEPHEN M SCOLNICK
I tend to focus on the positive points.
-Could read lyrical Greek poetry in original Greek
Harvard was a major let down, after being... Read more
All I can say is, this book drips of narcissism. The song from Mac Davis kept coming to mind during the read..."Hard to be humble".Published on November 13, 2011 by CaptainJack
As a highschool student, I found this book to be extremely inspiring. Anyone who has ever thought of entering the field of business should read this book. Read morePublished on December 17, 2003 by Sarah H.
Whether you buy this book for self-help or because you want to know how the top people made it in their careers, this book will satisfy you. Read morePublished on September 29, 2003 by Kindle Customer
i agree with the EDITOR's review of this book as well. Often self-promoting, this book can often be too tedious in its descriptive of the deal makings. Read morePublished on July 28, 2002 by William D. Tompkins
This is a lightweight tome about an unusual man.
Like him or loathe him, Sumner Redstone is a character and in this book what you read is about Sumner Redstone, a man of... Read more
Although he maintains a much lower profile than Rupert Murdoch or Barry Diller, Sumner Redstone is just as powerful and interesting as his better-known peers. Read morePublished on February 17, 2002 by Ted_
Great stories about Sumners life in public service, law and business. Within the stories one learns critical advice on loyalty, competition, negotiating, M&A and doing business... Read morePublished on February 7, 2002 by Mike M