I came across this book in a well known bookshop when visiting London recently. The title intrigued me so I bought it. It turned out to be another one of those books where the best bit was the title.
This book offers nothing new. There is no special formula for acquiring a new skill other than commonsense an a bit of logical thought. Furthermore this book is mainly full of the author's learning experiences of windsurfing, computer programming, a Chinese game, practicing yoga, etc. The only relevant bit was the first few pages of the book. For anyone wanting to know the big secret of learning something in 20 hours dedicated learning time, here's the book's recommended formula: 1. Choose a lovable project. 2. Focus your energy on one skill at a time. 3. Define your target performance level. 4. Deconstruct the skill into subskills 5. Obtain critical tools. 6. Eliminate barriers to practice. 7. Make dedicated time for practice. 8. Create fast feedback loops. 9. Practice by the clock in short bursts 10. Emphasise quantity and speed
That's it. If you were expecting something different you will be disappointed. That's what I spent my £12.99 on. What a waste!
The first few pages are a somewhat entertaining read. But the main point of the book seems to be the surprise of the author over the fact that you can learn to program a little or play Go at a beginner level with 20 hours of concentrated practice. The other 80% of the book talk about specific skills the author learned. You would expect to get a lot of practical tips on how to learn but the majority of this part simply explains the skills in some detail. You do get information about what the author did to learn this specific skill but it completely lacks reflection or insights about the process. This book just doesnt contain more useful information than could be presented in 50 pages.