While the rating tells you how good a book is according to our two core criteria, it says nothing about its particular defining features. Therefore, we use a set of 20 qualities to characterize each book by its strengths:
Applicable – You’ll get advice that can be directly applied in the workplace or in everyday situations.
Analytical – You’ll understand the inner workings of the subject matter.
Background – You’ll get contextual knowledge as a frame for informed action or analysis.
Bold – You’ll find arguments that may break with predominant views.
Comprehensive – You’ll find every aspect of the subject matter covered.
Concrete Examples – You’ll get practical advice illustrated with examples of real-world applications or anecdotes.
Controversial – You’ll be confronted with strongly debated opinions.
Eloquent – You’ll enjoy a masterfully written or presented text.
Engaging – You’ll read or watch this all the way through the end.
Eye opening – You’ll be offered highly surprising insights.
For beginners – You’ll find this to be a good primer if you’re a learner with little or no prior experience/knowledge.
For experts – You’ll get the higher-level knowledge/instructions you need as an expert.
Hot Topic – You’ll find yourself in the middle of a highly debated issue.
Innovative – You can expect some truly fresh ideas and insights on brand-new products or trends.
Insider’s take – You’ll have the privilege of learning from someone who knows her or his topic inside-out.
Inspiring – You’ll want to put into practice what you’ve read immediately.
Overview – You’ll get a broad treatment of the subject matter, mentioning all its major aspects.
Scientific – You’ll get facts and figures grounded in scientific research.
Visionary – You’ll get a glimpse of the future and what it might mean for you.
Well structured – You’ll find this to be particularly well organized to support its reception or application.
“There is no such thing as society,” British prime minister Margaret Thatcher proclaimed in 1987, when Adam Smith’s invisible hand seemed to inspire her every policy. It wasn’t the first time that the Adam Smith problem arose: How do you square the apparent justification of selfishness that the Scotsman presented in his 1776 work, The Wealth of Nations, with the humanistic ethics of his 1759 text, The Theory of Moral Sentiments? In it, he argues that an individual cannot succeed without an equally prosperous society. And while he worries about “the success of the most ignorant quacks and imposters,” he truly believes in humanity’s potential to thrive.
About the Author
Adam Smith (1723 – 1790) was a Scottish moral philosopher who was influenced by the ideas of John Locke and David Hume. He is principally known for his work An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations, published in 1776, which established him as the founder of political economics.