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Peaks and Valleys: Making Good And Bad Times Work For You--At Work And In Life Hardcover – March 3, 2009


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 112 pages
  • Publisher: Atria Books; 1 edition (March 3, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1439103259
  • ISBN-13: 978-1439103258
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 5.8 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (129 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #46,170 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

John Dossett's crisp and polished delivery is a natural fit for Johnson's no-nonsense style of motivational storytelling. Dossett chooses to understate the pathos, projecting a tone of wistful contemplation instead of heavy drama. Both the story and the narrative within the story surround dialogue between a weary day-to-day corporate warrior and a seasoned sage who offers a broader perspective on our familiar notions of success, achievement and happiness. In light of the current economic climate, listeners will find the messages timely, even if the paradigm shifts may not seem especially original. As an added bonus, the audio book includes an interview with the author sharing how he strives to keep the public focused on his message instead of elevating him into a celebrity business guru. A Simon and Schuster hardcover. (Mar.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author


Spencer Johnson
has written or co-written three New York Times #1 bestsellers, including Who Moved My Cheese?, The One Minute Manager (with Kenneth Blanchard), and The Present. He received a B.A. in psychology from the University of Southern California, an M.D. degree from the Royal College of Surgeons, and is currently advisor to the Center for Public Leadership at Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government.

More About the Author

Spencer Johnson, M.D., is one of the world's most respected thinkers and beloved authors. Dr. Johnson earned a B.A. degree in Psychology from the University of Southern California, an M.D. degree from the Royal College of Surgeons, and medical clerkships at The Mayo Clinic and Harvard Medical School. More than forty-six million copies of Spencer Johnson's books are in print worldwide in more than forty-seven languages.

Amazon Author Rankbeta 

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Customer Reviews

Great book and its a quick read with very practical and applicable information.
Tiffany
This is an excellent book and a very quick read, I would recommend this book to anyone looking for an edge in business or just as a life guide.
Brett Boatright
The subtitle of the book really says it all: Making good and bad times work for you - at work and in life.
Sharon Michaels

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

23 of 24 people found the following review helpful By scesq VINE VOICE on March 9, 2009
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
The first Spencer Johnson book I read was Who Moved My Cheese. This book follows the same formula. The reader is told a story. At points in the story the author stops and explains a self-help message, learned by one or more characters, which is relevant to the reader. A series of self-help messages (which are relevant individually or as a group) lead to a conclusion about how to make life better.

This story focuses on a man who is troubled by life. A friend tells him a story about a man, also troubled by life, who lives in a valley and makes a trek up a peak to see a wise man. The man also makes other treks up and down other peaks and valleys.

In this story the man learns that peaks and valleys are part of life. The key to living a richer life is how you perceive and address the peaks and valleys and what you learn while you are traversing the peaks and valleys.

I have found the information in Spencer Johnson's books often times to be intuitive. For instance one message in this book is "You can have fewer bad times when you appreciate and manage your good times wisely."

Yet Spencer Johnson also addresses truths that I often want to forget. One message is "The pain in a valley can wake you up to a truth you have been ignoring."

Finally Spencer Johnson always manages to come up with a couple of things I had not really thought about. For instance one message is "The path out of a valley appears when you choose to see things differently."

As mentioned these messages correspond to events in the story. Spencer Johnson is most effective when the events in the story lead the reader to the message.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Livin' La Vida Low-Carb Man TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on February 8, 2009
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
If you are looking for a self-help book to get you out of your rut in your career, your relationships, and in the day-to-day of living your life, then PEAKS AND VALLEYS may just do the trick. This book gives you simple, common sense tools for surviving the low times (valleys) in your life when things may seem to be the worst while giving you the proper perspective for the good times (peaks) so you don't get too caught up in the moment. This balance and stability will serve you well in EVERY area of your life and we owe a great debt of gratitude to Dr. Spencer Johnson for imparting his life-coaching skills in such an easy-to-read, but highly profound book.
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20 of 25 people found the following review helpful By Roy Clark on February 25, 2009
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
This little, in every sense, book is 99 pages long. That's with large type, lines spaced well-apart. Reading in a rather studious manner, it was a 45 minutes read.

Read Page 90 and you'll get the whole message, only with less sentiment,
sunrises, sunsets, or moist-eye mentions, in a quick 1-2-3 outline style.

A whole page? 23 words would do: If you're in a valley (a bad place), apply
that experience while you envision the peak (a good place) you want to be.

PEAKS AND VALLEYS' format laces together a parable format (think sensei and grasshopper-acolyte) for passing on wisdom with loads of sentimentality ('His eyes moistened' kept repeating) and renderings of too-many too-well-worn platitudes over and over again. Far more fluff than facts.

Its platitudes are recognizable as common sense today. Or trite. Most are found in many self-help books already. There are, by Amazonian count, 30,548 such books
on the racks waiting to point the way to wherever.

Say, here's a tip: Writing Successful Self-Help and How-To Books (Wiley Books for Writers Series) Written by Jean Marie Stine. I've read her very well-done book - New Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain Workbook: Guided Practice in the Five Basic Skills of Drawing There's a workbook book too. Maybe you can write a book and next for V&P will be a map.

(Oh, if you write that book and it doesn't sell, well, there's
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Blaine Greenfield on October 7, 2009
Format: Hardcover
PEAKS AND VALLEYS
by Spencer Johnson

Spencer Johnson, billed as "The king of parables" by USA TODAY, has
long been one of my favorite authors . . . his ONE MINUTE MANAGER,
co-authored with Ken Blanchard, helped revolutionize my thinking about
management, and his ONE MINUTE FATHER helped me become
a better parent.

His latest, PEAKS AND VALLEYS, is the story of a young man
who lives unhappily in a valley until he meets an old man
who lives on a peak . . . this encounter changes the former's life,
and it will change yours too as you encounter both good and bad times.

I particularly appreciated being reminded that during bad times,
I need to:

* Relax, knowing the valleys end. Do the opposite of what put you
in the Valley. Get outside of yourself: Be of more service at work
and more loving in life. Uncover the good that is hidden in a bad
time and use it to your advantage.

By the same token, when times are good, I need to:

* Be humble and grateful. Do more of what got you there. Keep
making things better. Do more for others. Save resources for
your upcoming Valleys.

You may think you are reading nothing new here, but the material
catches up on you . . . it's something that we all need to
reminded about and Johnson does an excellent job of doing this
in PEAKS AND VALLEYS.

I was fortunate to have heard a CD copy of this book, and am glad
that I did because it contained a bonus audio interview with the author
that shared some of his unique insights on putting the principles to work.
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