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The Little Blue Reasoning Book: 50 Powerful Principles for Clear and Effective Thinking (3rd Edition) Kindle Edition

16 customer reviews

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Length: 296 pages Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled

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Editorial Reviews


"A wonderful work that shows how reasoning is challenging, yet engaging, rewarding and fun. Because reasoning involves people, it is an art as well as a science. And to remind ourselves just why it's not always easy to mix the two, we owe a cheerful salute to Nobel prize-winning physicist Murray Gell-Mann who observed: `Think how hard physics would be if particles could think.'"
—Dr. William A. McEachern, author, award-winning teacher, and founding editor of The Teaching Economist

From the Publisher

This book – a winner at the International Book Awards and gold medal winner at the President’s Book Awards – is suitable for high school, community college, or university students, as well as any individual wanting to improve his or her core essential reasoning and thinking skills.

Product Details

  • File Size: 7912 KB
  • Print Length: 296 pages
  • Publisher: Maven Publishing (September 1, 2010)
  • Publication Date: September 1, 2010
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0041KL73E
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #303,950 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

Brandon Royal is an award-winning writer whose educational authorship includes The Little Blue Reasoning Book, The Little Red Writing Book, The Little Gold Grammar Book, The Little Red Writing Book Deluxe Edition, The Little Green Math Book, and The Little Purple Probability Book. During his tenure working in Hong Kong for US-based Kaplan Educational Centers -- a Washington Post subsidiary and the largest test-preparation organization in the world -- Brandon honed his theories of teaching and education and developed a set of key learning "principles" to help define the basics of writing, grammar, math, and reasoning.

A Canadian by birth and graduate of the University of Chicago's Booth School of Business, his interest in writing began after completing writing courses at Harvard University. Since then he has authored a dozen books and reviews of his books have appeared in Time Asia magazine, Publishers Weekly, Library Journal of America, Midwest Book Review, The Asian Review of Books, Choice Reviews Online, Asia Times Online, and Brandon is a five-time winner of the International Book Awards, a five-time gold medalist at the President's Book Awards, as well as winner of the Global eBook Awards, USA Book News "Best Book Awards," and recipient of the 2011 "Educational Book of the Year" award as presented by the Book Publishers Association of Alberta.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

128 of 151 people found the following review helpful By CJ Oojra on December 30, 2010
Format: Paperback
This is the kind of book I wish I had in high school. No one teaches the art of thinking but every once in a while we have to give our brains a tune-up. One of my favorite topics is how the four classic mindsets influence how we view the world. I love how the following problem says so much about the way we think and how every answer choice is both right and wrong:

Which of the following five sports is least like the other four?

A) Baseball
B) Cricket
C) Soccer (Football)
D) Golf
E) Ice Hockey

This is indeed an interesting question highlighting the possibility of multiple solutions and subjective interpretations. Not only would such a question never be chosen for an IQ test, but it also hints at ambiguity so often present whenever individuals make choices.

Most people find themselves choosing choice D insofar as golf is primarily an individual sport while the other sports are team sports. Golf is also the only sport here in which a lower score beats a higher score. Some pontificate whether the distinction rests on the degree to which golf is more mental than physical while the other four sports are more physical than mental. Certainly physical speed is of obvious importance in all sports except golf.

Choice E is likely the next most popular answer. Ice hockey is essentially a winter sport, whereas the other sports are typically played in warmer weather. In ice hockey, players use skates, whereas in the other sports players use sporting shoes. Ice hockey is also played with a puck, the others, with balls! (Pun intended -- ice hockey is notorious for being one of the roughest of sports and the only one listed above where you can legitimately "check" another player.
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful By David on February 4, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I bought this book based on the awards it had won and the number of very positive reviews on Amazon. Which leads me to say, I guess there's no accounting for taste. It's true that the book is fairly comprehensive in its scope, covering perception issues, creativity, analysis, and formal logic, along with a bundle of lists in appendix form.

Unfortunately, it's all downhill from the table of contents. Nearly every chapter of Royal's book is studded with jarring non sequiturs and jumps in subject, beginning with the `preface', which is simply a logic humorous logic puzzle with no explanation at all. That turns out to be perfectly representative of what's to come. Royal loves lists. He loves lists a lot more than he loves any other form of writing, apparently, since most chapters consist of more lists than anything else; the last half of the book is nothing but lists. I ought to have been warned by the subtitle promising "50 powerful principles," but many of these appear to be simply classroom exercises pasted wholesale into this book (chapter two, embarrassingly, spends a page and a half with a list entitled `How is a good idea like an Iceberg?'[sic] and says "You may write your answers on a separate sheet of paper"!) Nor are the book's problems merely structural, but cross over into issues of fact; his first chapter erroneously describes the `infinite monkeys' thought experiment as the "billion chimpanzee" "saying" and then gives it as support for his statement that "the magic of chance or coincidence reminds us that almost anything is possible." This, unfortunately, is not true, as the mathematics only work as the number of monkeys approaches infinity. A technical point? Maybe.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By un homme on July 9, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Royal does a superb job illustrating the basic principles of reasoning. I didn't take away much new from this book, having already completed college and some graduate study, but I have loved to have had this book in middle school and high school! I recommend this book highly to all young people or people who have little background in formal reasoning. Also, a great thing for parents to buy for their kids!
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Bill Baehr on February 12, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition
This book is a great resource to exercise and improve thinking. Great examples of clear and effective thinking in many areas and done in an interactive way using the Kindle to make the learning fun.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By David Land on April 20, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition
I am really happy with this purchase. The book does what it says in the title a breaks down the way in which arguments are made and the sometimes poor ways in which we make decisions.

You will learn all about the ways in which to break down problems and determine the flaws that exist. I was hugely impressed with the mini case studies that readers need to work their way through to complete the book and there is a solid appendix for extra reference.

The only minor issue that I had was that some of the book reads as a text whilst other parts read as a business success guide. Its not really a drama but I found it to blunt the flow of the book a little. Importantly though I don't think that this subtractsss from the value contained within.

I supect for many (including me) that I will need a re-read in the near future and some notes to be taken to get the full value. I'm looking forward to commiting the principles to memory because the value of them is well illustrated.
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