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The Noticer: Sometimes, All a Person Needs Is a Little Perspective

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

17 out of 22 people found this review helpful.

Noticer book review..."Perspective"

I was anxious to read this being the latest work of Andy Andrews, especially after having read most all of his previous books. Andy writes in a parable fashion which is both very easy and enjoyable to read as well. Also his writing is very principle based.
Often when o...
I was anxious to read this being the latest work of Andy Andrews, especially after having read most all of his previous books. Andy writes in a parable fashion which is both very easy and enjoyable to read as well. Also his writing is very principle based.
Often when one is personally involved in something, it is hard to see the pitfalls that can easily trip you up and make you to fall. At times such as those, we all need some perspective that we are overlooking, and consequently we need a fresh set of eyes to give us that perspective. Andy addresses this sense of perspective through the parable of a traveler named Jones, who notices things, shares with his new found friends what he has noticed and how by making some kind of change will improve their life.
The book begins with Andy sharing his personal story of hardship he experienced as a young man after his parents died and he found himself homeless and living under a bridge. It was at this time a mysterious old man happened on him, befriended Andy and gave him some perspective on how his life could change for the better. Like many others Andy it would seem was having a pity party and had not invited anyone to attend, although who would want to? It was through this new perspective and a generous loan from the old man of some biographies that Andy learned of how others who had gone through tough times were able to overcome and move on with life, and be the person who God intended them to be. Andy also learned that valleys provide times of learning and that experience is not the best teacher; however other peoples experience is the best teacher.
It seems that we all like to learn things the hard way, and experience problems that could easily be avoided, if only we were willing to be open about what we are going through and seek the counsel of someone who has already been there and done that.
Jones shared with Andy "The situation you find yourself in is fraught with difficulty, yes. It is also piled high with benefits." Difficulties are a fact of life and unfortunately often those difficulties are the consequences of our own making. Jones goes on to share a universal law that needs to be remembered, "Whatever you focus on increases."
True friendship is explained as a "True friend does not accept you as you are; they hold you to a higher standard." In life we all need to have friends that hold us accountable.
The story is shared of a time Jones was talking with a man named Walker who kept concentrating on the failure in his personal history and the wise counsel Jones gave Walker was "It is time to stop letting your history control your destiny." Wow, have you ever done that? I know I have and when I do that basically I am in the "Woe is me Syndrome". While each of us needs to consider our past, dwelling on the failures of one's past does nothing but drag you down, and give you a defeatist attitude. It seems that we after facing our past failures need to learn from them and go on from there not making the same mistakes again. That is a hard lesson of life but one that is best learned early in life.

Having a proper perspective is everything and through this work Andy inspires you to have a fresh perspective on life.
Very good book.

posted by Gary51 on June 20, 2009

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Most Helpful Critical Review

4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

Take no notice

I was sent this book before it was even released in order to read it, review it, and help create buzz for it's release on Tuesday.

I started the book and have to admit to being intrigued by the concept. A wanderer named Jones (not Mr. Jones, just "Jones") who seems t...
I was sent this book before it was even released in order to read it, review it, and help create buzz for it's release on Tuesday.

I started the book and have to admit to being intrigued by the concept. A wanderer named Jones (not Mr. Jones, just "Jones") who seems to know a lot of people, and a lot about people, but they know nothing if not much about him. He seems to appear in times of crisis and bring context and insight and clarity into people's lives.

If you've never read a book before, you'll be wowed by this book. Unfortunately, for this devourer of books I found the dialogue to be quite cumbersome and unnatural. The situations quite unbelievable and disconnected.

What is such a shame is that there is a lot of fantastic wisdom, truth, and great insight about life contained inbetween the lines of the tale being spun.

This book reads like a third draft. It's just not quite finished and polished. And it makes me sad to have to give it a sub-par review because there's so much great content, it just gets lost in the overzealous elements the author attempted in telling the story.

posted by CheekyJS on April 28, 2009

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  • Posted February 20, 2010

    I think I'll stick to non-fiction

    The Noticer by Andy Andrews has been on my Amazon wishlist for quite a while now, after reading several bloggers who loved it. So when I joined Booksneeze and saw that it was available, I jumped at the chance. (I received the book as a complimetary copy from the publisher - Thomas Nelson.) This became my bedtime book for a few nights.

    The story revolves around the mysterious character known as 'Jones' (or Garcia or Chen - depending on your ethnic origins), who notices things about people; offers them helpful advice about looking at things from a different perspective; and thereby fixing the things that are in their lives.
    I notice things about situations and people that produce perspective. That's what most folks lack - perspective - a broader view. So I give them that broader view... and it allows them to regroup, take a breath, and begin their lives again.
    Essentially, each chapter follows this pattern and, after a short time, I found this to be predictable to the point of irritation. The advice seemed to be twee, the universal engagement with a stranger dispensing often intrusive advice completely bizarre, and ultimately, this was not an enjoyable read.

    I don't like positive such a negative review, especially as my first one for Booksneeze, but honesty requires it.

    I should also acknowledge that I rarely read works of fiction. So, maybe, there is one piece of Jones' advice that I will follow.
    Other people's experience is the best teacher. By reading about the lives of great people, you can unlock the secrets to what made them great.

    I think that I'll stick with biographies at bedtime - at least for a while.

    2 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 21, 2009

    Too simplistic. The Traveler's Gift was far superior. Disappointed

    This book was too corny. I stopped reading after the first 50 pages. Just not intelligent enough as the Traveler's Gift was. Really enjoyed that and have recommended that to many. This one- I wouldn't recommend.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 1, 2012

    Not Bad But, Not On My Top Books List

    Andrews "The Noticer" demonstrates the power of not just noticing things, but what those tiny things can mean in the grand scheme of life. Outside, on the surface, it's a gray, drizzly day. Some will see only the downside, the dreary day, it's just a matter of perception. Things are happening. From those flowers and seeds, just as our actions and mindset have an impact on our lives, comes life. Even when covered by gray skies, the hope of future growth and good times and places is there.

    I felt like this book was almost a collection of short stories, all sharing the same main character. Each chapter was the story of a mysterious man who helped a different person during a rough point in their lives. Although it was the same mysterious man, there were very few other overlapping characters throughout the book. One chapter toward the end was almost verbatium a chapter earlier in the book, at which point I found myself more skimming the story rather than reading because I had just read it yesterday!

    In all I give this book a 2 out of 5. If you are taking a vacation and need to kill time, this book will serve its purpose. Don't expect it to revolutionize the way you look at the world, because you will be greatly disappointed. I wouldn't recommend purchasing the book, but find a library and borrow it instead.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 23, 2012

    Just okay

    I would recommend borrowing this book from your local library instead of buyin it. For me it lacked depth and felt a little cookie cutter. But i am a 30 year old mother of four and married to an occasional pastor. I just wasnt captivated like i had thoght i would be. I think this book would be good for teenagers who have just decided to become christians an who are just begining to look outside of their own selves.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 2, 2012

    Simplistic, but informative

    I found this book to be simplistic to an annoying degree that caused me to actually cringe at times. Nevertheless, I did find some very interesting and informative life hints in it so I don't regret the time spent with it.

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  • Posted March 5, 2012

    Highly Recommended

    Andy Andrews has a unique was of pulling you right into the middle of his stories. He is a gifted writer and speaker. I enjoy each and everyone of his books so far. This is my third.

    Brenda

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  • Posted December 14, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Title should read "The Preacher"

    An old man named Jones has got perfect timing: he always shows up just when folks need what he calls "a little perspective."

    The Noticer is an inspirational novel, full of Jones' serendipitous encounters with different people at different crossroads in life.

    A pleasant read, with characters that are easy to relate to, and a question that keeps you hooked: who exactly is this mysterious Jones?

    Although interesting, I found it to be a little preachy. The-point-of-the-story type of morals and values were sprinkled liberally in the dialog, and some scenes felt like they were set up for Jones to teach a punchline lesson.

    I'd recommend it to those who are not too keen on reading fiction, but prefer to pick up motivational nuggets and pointers as they read. This is a good crossover book that balances fiction and learning; a light read, but weighty enough to have impact.

    Thanks to the folks at Thomas Nelson for the complimentary copy! My pleasure to review it.

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  • Posted December 12, 2009

    An Okay Book

    The book centers around the concept that we each have a choice of how to view our lives and it encourages us to choose our perspective wisely.

    I found this book to be a nice story but it was rather hard for me to get into this book and finish it. The story is full of good, common ideals and thoughts but it wasn't a huge inspiration or motivation to me. It didn't leave me pondering on it's concepts and ideals or wishing to explore aspects of my own life. I guess this book it just not my cup of tea.

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  • Posted May 28, 2009

    The Noticer by Andy Andrews

    Andy Andrews is the author of an upbeat tale called, The Noticer (Thomas Nelson, 2009). It is the story of an old man named, Jones, who turns up unexpectedly to dispense wholesome advice to people in distress. His ability to know people's names and situations as well as his ability to appear seemingly out of nowhere and leave without trace hints at angel-like qualities.

    While this is an enjoyable read, it is too shallow for my taste. The people Jones meets are often struggling with deep issues and for Jones to turn their lives around so quickly and easily is stretching the otherwise realistic feel to the story. Encouraging people to see their lives from a broader perspective does not, in itself, heal emotional traumas. And even when people know what they need to do, it doesn't necessarily mean they are equipped to do it.

    Jones occasionally mentions God but never Jesus, his saving grace or his enabling power. I found this worrying as it suggests our own resources are sufficient. So while the book contains many wise sayings, and implies a Christian message it actually does not promote Christian beliefs, but perhaps Andrews never intended it to do so.

    I read this book as a member of Thomas Nelson's Book Review Blogger Program: brb.thomasnelson.com

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  • Posted April 27, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    A Lot of Talk, Not Much Substance

    I was given an opportunity to review this book as part of Thomas Nelson's Book Review Blogger Program, of which I'm a member.

    When an old drifter named Jones wanders through the town of Orange Beach, Alabama, he seems intent on changing the lives of everyone he meets. A typical town with typical problems, several people of Orange Beach find themselves greatly in need of the help that Jones provides. But can a change in perspective, which is what is offered by Jones, truly be enough to change their lives forever?

    I thought this book was mainly talk, with little true substance. There weren't really any new profound insights made, and virtually all the dialog and events were completely unbelievable, mainly because the new perspective offered is nothing that I found to be really convincing or life-changing. I had read most of the insights in other formats elsewhere, including the 'keep your fork' story that is well-known due to a popular e-mail forward that has been traveling around the world for years now already. Add to that the fact that most of what was put forward as profound revelations are conclusions I firmly disagree with, and I didn't care much for this book. That being said, I'm also not the typical audience for this type of book. I gave it a try, but it's not for me. Devout Christians and self-help fans may feel differently about it. For me, I give it 2/5 stars.

    Thanks to Thomas Nelson (the publisher) for the opportunity to read and review this. Though I personally didn't care for it, I appreciate the opportunity to give it a try.

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