Robert Greene is a Jewish New York Times bestselling author with books such as The 48 Laws of Power, which have been read by some of the most influential and successful people around the world. His first books including, The 48 Laws of Power and The 33 Strategies of War are proof of the thousands of hours of his research in human history and his experience from having over 80 jobs. Many of his ideas are based on the philosophy of the best writers and thinkers in history, like Niccolo Machiavelli and Sun Tzu. His 7th and most recent book, The Daily Laws is a distillation of all the most important concepts from his previous books and all of his life research, cumulating to a total of 366, one for each day. For each day you are given a task you could do to improve yourself or better understand the workings of the law, along with a quote pertaining to said law. Each month has its own unique theme and a short two or three-page explanation of the theme of that month. These themes usually could be traced back to one of his previous books. The goal of the book is to help us live happier fuller lives by helping us better understand ourselves and the people around us. By gaining insight into the psychology of those around us, we are able to better navigate the world by avoiding toxic people and following our purpose.
Each law has a concise detailed summary usually about a page in length, along with sources for readers to explore it more in depth. The page a day system makes the book especially compelling, as there are numerous benefits to reading such a little amount. Personally, I was invested in the book that I could not put it down, and I ended up reading all 453 pages in about a month. The book also has a good flow from theme to theme, starting with becoming in tune with fixing yourself through mastery and ending with the attainment of happiness through the acceptance of death. In fact, it almost mirrors the path of life, starting with apprenticeship and striving to achieve mastery to then going into power and what to do once you’ve achieved said mastery. It finally ends with talking about how to live a happy life to the fullest. While so many laws in so few pages seems enticing, some problems do arise with such a condensed summary of broad idea, the biggest of which is being that the book will sometimes contradict itself, leading to confusion and frustration. It takes a solid comprehension of the laws to understand how two seemingly opposing laws can both be true at the same time. These paradoxical ideas caused me to pause my reading as I contemplated how two contradicting laws could both be true.
Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed this book and I have already been able to see some of the concepts within it unfold in my daily life. Despite some of the contradictions, I was able to not only comprehend many of the concepts within the book, but incorporate them into my life, leading me to further explore the works of Robert Greene. The concepts that are dealt with can be understood by anyone beyond 8th grade, and should be read by everyone regardless of background or intelligence level, as it is bound to give a different perspective or a new thought process when viewing conflict or struggle. I think this book contains invaluable information that could and should be appreciated.
By: Max Lehmann (9th)