because of its cover. I don’t take much stock in the whole “don’t judge a book by its cover” line of thinking; I’ve always judged books by their cover and will likely continue to do so as long as there are book covers.
The thing about this cover is that, on first glance, it’s kind of misleading. How To Be Useful
is a how-to book for people facing their “Quarter Life Crisis.” (Lesser known than its Mid-Life counterpart, the Quarter Life Crisis affects 20-somethings and usually coincides with graduating college and getting one’s first job.) And as we all know, How-To books (unless about cooking, piano-playing, or computer programs) are really Self-Help books.
Which is why the jazzy cover is misleading: self-help books have covers of wise-looking authors reclining on beaches, or big pictures of apples or some other comforting object that’s meant to make us feel better immediately. They are not supposed to be covered in florescent orange doodles. But a read of Hustad’s introduction sheds light on one possible intent: the 20-somethings the book is intended for would rather be struck with the plague than be seen carrying a Self-Help book. Even the truly useful ones.
Which this one is. Summarizing over a hundred years’ worth of business-related advice to the next generation of the workforce, Hustad provides a thorough guide at how to be successful at work. There are useful anecdotes, along with chapter-closing, convenient lists and the scope of the material she presents is generous, to say the least.
And thankfully, with a cover like this, it’s not too uncool to read.
Call number: 650.1 H968h