As noted in every review, this is the book deal that McCullough scored after his commencement speech went viral. It's tough and curmudgeonly in tone, but what was unexpected is that the book really speaks English teacher to English teacher. Many of his observations are based in classic works of literature, and I love that this book not only serves as a nice series of life lessons, but also grounds them in great literature that is not as well known as it ought to be ("The Open Boat" never gets enough respect).
So this book reads like a series of really good and honest lectures from the English teacher that the kids like because he is not only smart, but authentic and grounded.
McCullough's writing style is vigorous and free-wheeling. It just pops with energy and vitality; not at all dry and professorial. This is an entertaining and thoughtful read; I'll be recommending it to my fellow English teachers but it's a great book for anybody.