BOOK REVIEW: ‘THE BIG SWITCH’ WRITTEN BY JOHN THOMAS

Book Title: The Big Switch

Author: John Thomas

Total Number of Pages: 239

Publisher: Self Published

Publication Date: 5 Nov 2017

Format: kindle eBook

Language: English

Genre: Fiction / Health, Family and Personal Development

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BLURB

What does a 24-year-old man want in life?
Love?
A decent job?
Keith has both. He is a software engineer at a reputable company and has a girlfriend whom he loves a lot.
Yet, there is something missing in his life. He is not even close to being happy.
Only after losing his girlfriend, he realizes what the reason for his unhappiness is.
He realizes that he is caught up in the wrong career.
With time running out, he knows that he must switch to a new career — one that makes him happy.
But, is 24 too late to do that? Is he making a mistake?
Find out as Keith follows his heart in pursuit of an impossible-looking dream.

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REVIEWED BY SOHINEE DEY

I have read a number of books which claims to be an inspirational or a motivational book with the same theme of following your passion and most of the times they are non-fiction. Either they provide you with some step by step guides on achieving your goals or they are autobiographies of some famous people. Now, I am not much of a fan of non-fiction books but since, The Big Switch had an actual story going on, I thought of giving it a read. There are plenty of career-based books and when it comes down to career, everyone seems to be a “guru” with lots of advices (the ones which they themselves rarely follow) up their sleeves.

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Read My Previous Review of Shantanu Munshi’s Book, The Surrogate Lies


The Big Switch tells the story of Keith Kurien. The book begins with the scene where Keith is being interviewed for a job and he appears to be fairly confident with his answers. It’s when he successfully secures his seat at the office, trouble seems to be following him around. To start with, his manager Mathur always keeps him on his toes by bringing up works at the last minute and Keith being Keith obediently follows his orders. At one such eventful day when Keith was supposed to be meeting his girlfriend Maya for a movie night, he is kept busy at the office.

Break-up was just a start, when he doesn’t get the expected hike in his salary even after working extra long hours, Keith feels confused and angry. To top it, his manager Mathur commented on his lack of creativity.

With each passing day, he slowly starts to lose his interest in his work. When he is presented with an opportunity to work in Bangalore, instead of feeling happy, he feels dejected. It is in Bangalore when he meets his new manager Ramesh that his life takes a positive turn. When you’re surrounded by people who think positively, it does leave an everlasting effect on you. Keith was surprised with his new manager’s behaviour. He seemed more friendly and approachable and he always complimented on Keith’s hard work, unlike Mathur. Keith was left feeling happy and content with his work. Optimism is what makes all the difference.

“You ask yourself a negative question and your brain will respond with a negative answer. Always remember this — negative questions result in negative answers and negative answers take us into a negative state of mind. Whenever you ask yourself a positive question, the problem-solving thought process begins in your mind. And if you keep at it for long enough, you will definitely have a solution.”

Keith fancies sports, football to be exact. Ramesh supports him when he hears that he has taken a liking to football. At the end of the project, Keith returns to Mumbai not only with his good work at the project but also with Ramesh’s positive attitude. He feels motivated after he hears Ramesh’s inspirational life story. Even though he is scared to take up football, he doesn’t step back from trying. With his new found enthusiasm, Keith sets on to follow a career that he is passionate about and would never tire of. He also takes up an alternate career of writing because his IT job has been taking up too much of time. As a result, he hadn’t been able to invest much time in football.

The rest of the story follows Keith on his pursuit of working on his chosen career. Whether he makes it or fails is for you to see.

The writing style is good. The author has managed to write a motivational story without sounding like an advisor with too many advices. The narration was good too, it had a nice flow to it. As for Keith, he represented a guy who had made wrong choices in his life but is determined to remedy the situation and turn the tables around so that it works out well for him. The book does have a fast pace and till the last page, the pace remained consistent. Keith starts late in his age, so for the late bloomers, who are faced with realisation of “following your heart” now, this book can be an inspirational read. I liked Ramesh’s character in the book. His presence in the story made a whole new difference. Ramesh was perhaps the only character who saved the book from being monotonous.

The whole following your passion is okay. One should do what he/she believes to be good at. But for me, Keith mostly made a clear cut through all the non-existent problems. I don’t think it is that easy to follow your dream as Keith made it look. There should have been more hurdles on his way, he should have faced more problems. That way the story would have been more realistic. I am not saying that it wasn’t good as it is, I am saying that the “following your dream” could have been better executed in the storyline. The characters weren’t very expressive with their words which at times made them look emotionless and as a result, from time to time, the dialogues felt flat. There were some grammatical glitches which I noticed, so I would recommend that the author does a second round of editing.

MY FINAL VERDICT

The book is of course motivational and has many inspirational thoughts etched within. The book is fast paced and didn’t lag on a scene for too long which is a good thing. While other books on personal development tends to get monotonous, ‘The Big Switch’ didn’t get monotonous (except for a few scenes). The big switch in Keith’s life turned out to be worthwhile.

If you are at that stage of your life where you’re confused with your career options or you are secretly holding a passion for something people wouldn’t approve of, this book might be for you. No profession is is small, at least you should give yourself a chance to see whether you make it or not. This book would be great if you’re looking for a fast paced read.

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RATINGS :

Book Cover: ⭐⭐⭐

Book Title: ⭐⭐⭐.5

Concept: ⭐⭐⭐

Plotline: ⭐⭐⭐.5

Narration: ⭐⭐⭐.5

Writing Style: ⭐⭐⭐.5

Language and Vocabulary: ⭐⭐⭐

Grammar and Punctuation: ⭐⭐⭐

POESY IN CHRYSALIS RATING: ⭐⭐⭐ / ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

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