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Range: Why Generalists Triumph in a Specialized World Hardcover – Illustrated, 1 January 1900

4.5 out of 5 stars 6,150 ratings

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Review

"A well-supported and smoothly written case on behalf of breadth and late starts. . . . as David Epstein shows us, cultivating range prepares us for the wickedly unanticipated." --Wall Street Journal

"I love this idea [Range], because I think of myself as a jack of all trades." -- Fareed Zakaria, CNN

"The storytelling is so dramatic, the wielding of data so deft and the lessons so strikingly framed that it's never less than a pleasure to read. . . . a wealth of thought-provoking material." --New York Times Book Review

"Range is a convincing, engaging survey of research and anecdotes that confirm a thoughtful, collaborative world is also a better and more innovative one." --NPR

"For reasons I cannot explain, David Epstein manages to make me thoroughly enjoy the experience of being told that everything I thought about something was wrong. I lovedRange." --Malcolm Gladwell, author of Outliers and The Tipping Point

"It's a joy to spend hours in the company of a writer as gifted as David Epstein. And the joy is all the greater when that writer shares so much crucial and revelatory information about performance, success, and education." -- Susan Cain, author of Quiet

"For too long, we've believed in a single path to excellence. Start early, specialize soon, narrow your focus, aim for efficiency. But in this groundbreaking book, David Epstein shows that in most domains, the way to excel is something altogether different. Sample widely, gain a breadth of experiences, take detours, and experiment relentlessly. Epstein is a deft writer, equally nimble at telling a great story and unpacking complicated science. And Range is an urgent and important book, an essential read for bosses, parents, coaches, and anyone who cares about improving performance." --Daniel H. Pink, author of When, Drive, and A Whole New Mind

"In a world that's increasingly obsessed with specialization, star science writer David Epstein is here to convince you that the future may belong to generalists. It's a captivating read that will leave you questioning the next steps in your career--and the way you raise your children." --Adam Grant, author of Give and Take and Originals

"Range is a blueprint for a more thoughtful, collaborative world - and it's also really fun to read." --NPR, Best Books of 2019

"I want to give Range to any kid who is being forced to take violin lessons--but really wants to learn the drums; to any programmer who secretly dreams of becoming a psychologist; to everyone who wants humans to thrive in an age of robots. Range is full of surprises and hope, a 21st century survival guide." --Amanda Ripley, author of The Smartest Kids in the World.

"An assiduously researched and accessible argument for being a jack of all trades." --O Magazine, Best Nonfiction Books Coming in 2019

"Range elevates Epstein to one of the very best science writers at work today. The scope of the book--and the implications--are breathtaking. I find myself applying what I've learned to almost every aspect of my life." --Sebastian Junger, author of Tribe, War, and The Perfect Storm

"A goldmine of surprising insights. Makes you smarter with every page." --James Clear, New York Times best-selling author of Atomic Habits

"Range will force you to rethink the nature of learning, thinking, and being, and reconsider what you thought you knew about optimal education and career paths--and how and why the most successful people in the world do what they do. It's one of the most thought-provoking and enlightening books I've read." --Maria Konnikova, author of Mastermind and The Confidence Game, professional poker player

"A fresh, brisk look at creativity, learning, and the meaning of achievement." --Kirkus Reviews

"Brilliant, timely, and utterly impossible to put down. If you care about improving skill, innovation, and performance, you need to read this book. " --Daniel Coyle, author of The Culture Code and The Talent Code

About the Author

David Epstein is the author of the New York Times bestseller The Sports Gene. He has master's degrees in environmental science and journalism and has worked as an investigative reporter for ProPublica and a senior writer for Sports Illustrated. He lives in Washington, DC.

Product details

  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ Riverhead Books; Illustrated edition (1 January 1900)
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • Hardcover ‏ : ‎ 352 pages
  • ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 0735214484
  • ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-0735214484
  • Dimensions ‏ : ‎ 16 x 3.12 x 23.77 cm
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.5 out of 5 stars 6,150 ratings

About the author

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David Epstein is the author of the #1 New York Times best seller Range: Why Generalists Triumph in a Specialized World , and of the New York Times best seller The Sports Gene, which has been translated in 18 languages. (To his surprise, it was purchased not only by his sister but also by President Barack Obama and former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.)

He was previously a science and investigative reporter at ProPublica, and prior to that a senior writer at Sports Illustrated, where he co-authored the story that revealed Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez had used steroids. His writing has been honored by an array of organizations, from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine, to the Society of Professional Journalists and the National Center on Disability and Journalism, and has been included in the Best American Science and Nature Writing anthology. His story “Following the Trail of Broken Hearts,” on sudden cardiac death in athletes, was chosen as one of the top 100 stories of the last 100 years by Columbia Journalism alumni.

David has given talks about performance science and the uses (and misuses) of data on five continents; his TED Talk has been viewed 8.5 million times, and was shared by Bill Gates. Three of his stories have been optioned for films: a Sports Illustrated story on the only living Olympian to have survived a concentration camp; an Atlantic/ProPublica piece detailing the DEA’s fraught pursuit of Chapo Guzman’s rivals; and a 2016 “This American Life” episode he wrote and narrated about a woman with two rare diseases who shares a mutant gene with an Olympic medalist.

David has master’s degrees in environmental science and journalism, and is reasonably sure he’s the only person to have co-authored a paper in the journal of Arctic, Antarctic, and Alpine Research while a writer at Sports Illustrated. (Like many of the characters in Range, he has benefitted from a winding career.) He has worked as an ecology researcher in the Arctic, studied geology and astronomy while residing in the Sonoran Desert, and blithely signed up to work on the D-deck of a seismic research vessel shortly after it had been attacked by pirates.

David enjoys volunteering with the Pat Tillman Foundation and Classroom Champions. An avid runner, he was a Columbia University record holder and twice NCAA All-East as an 800-meter runner.

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Joe L
1.0 out of 5 stars The facts get in the way of a good story
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 3 August 2019
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Mark Dyer
1.0 out of 5 stars Starts well, but ............
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 9 October 2019
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Neeraj G.
2.0 out of 5 stars Its an OK book. Not anything great or extraordinary. If you have free time you can read it.
Reviewed in India on 27 July 2019
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Infinite Fraction
5.0 out of 5 stars Well worth reading
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Alex
2.0 out of 5 stars Too many annecdotes
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 5 April 2021
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