Book Review: Think Like a Freak

Book Review: Think Like a FreakThink like a Freak: The Authors of Freakonomics Offer to Retrain Your Brain by Steven D. Levitt, Stephen J. Dubner
Published by William Morrow on May 12th 2014
Pages: 288
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Think-Like-A-FreakMany people call me smart, but I think it’s more that years of listening to the Freakonomics podcast has taught me to Think Like a Freak.

Steven Levitt and Stephen Dubner (the Freakonomics duo) have added a new collaboration to their book list, this time teaching the thought processes or strategies behind their research studies. If you love their research stories, there are plenty of those too.

For a bit of background, the Freakonomics duo members are each an economist and a journalist. Both with impressive careers before Dubner bullied Levitt into the collaboration. It started with a book. Then another book and a documentary, and lecture series, and a podcast series, and now this third book.

As I mentioned, Think Like a Freak takes a slightly different tack than previously. They were criticized for it in GoodReads reviews, but I like it. Then again, I always get frustrated when people don’t Think Like a Freak. So, grrr, read this book. As with the previous books, this one includes enticing storytelling that explains the economics behind everyday things. In this one, I particularly loved the stories of the magician and thinking with the naivety of children. I’m also never going to be able to look at a hotdog the same again. You can tell that Dubner wrote the narrative. I heard his voice reading it.

Who is Think Like a Freak for?

Everyone. Seriously, the world would be a much better place if more people would think like a freak. If you’re a regular listener of the show, and especially around May last year when this was released, the stories will sound familiar. Many were covered in the podcast, some with more detail (the magicians in chapter two) and others in less. You’ll still get value from the freak-thinking tutorials in chapters eight and nine at the end.

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