The Aerobic House Cleaning Lifestyle, by Stevie Markovich
[Note: This book was provided free of charge by BookLook/WestBow Press in exchange for an honest review.]
If many self published books are written by people who read good books but are unable to emulate them successfully , this particular volume is a type of self-published book written by someone who appears not to have read very much but who has been written about and who therefore thinks that because he is good in other areas that he would make a good writer as well. On many levels, this is not a great book, and if one goes to this book expecting it to be a great book one will likely be very disappointed. That said, there are few books that are more entertaining to read, assuming one is not particularly overweight, as the author is stunningly harsh towards his intended audience and throws in so many random comments about the people who have written about him, pictures of his attractive daughters, advertisements for the author’s webpage, and odd comments about near death experiences and other matters entirely unrelated to aerobics or house cleaning, the putative subjects of the book, that it reads as a random and entertaining book so long as the reader is not insulted by its contents.
The author quite properly calls the very short chapters of this book conversations, as many of them are written in the second person singular and amount to attempts on the part of the author to converse with the reader. It is only after about halfway through the book, after some scary statistics and some totally random meanderings on the part of the author that the book actually gets down to a discussion of aerobics and house cleaning. Before this there are lengthy discussions of the laziness or fear of being criticized or judged that makes some people shy away from going to the gym. Once the book actually gets to the point, it is a surprisingly good one. The author’s approach is that any activity that one does should be done in such a fashion that it amounts to rigorous exercise, and that the ordinary items of one’s own home, including the couch pressing shown on the cover of the book, can serve the aims of preserving physical fitness. The point is a valid one, although it is a bit of a shame that some readers will likely be so upset at the comments about food and speculations on various matters only at-best tangentially related to exercise that some people will not even read the book long enough to get to the exercise information that comes belatedly in the volume.
I enjoyed this book out of all proportion to how good this book actually was. Rather than a world-class exercise guide from someone who happens to be well-regarded for his quirky and eccentric approach to health and well-being and aerobics, this book is a masterpiece of unintentional humor, often humor of the insult variety. If one could almost expect a book like this to have a cleanliness is next to godliness approach, the author focuses even more on a belief that healthiness is next to godliness and implies that divine assistance is needed for many people in the intended audience of this book to overcome their slothfulness and get to business in getting their weight under control. The author confuses his particularly harsh approach with tough love, to the point where his discussion, especially towards the end, can get a bit abusive towards the two hundred million overweight and obese Americans, even considering obesity to be “un-American.” Nevertheless, for those who are not personally insulted by the book, it makes for great comedy, not least because it appears that the author did not even prepare for writing a book by actually reading some good books to acquire a sense of good style and structure to use.
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