05 June 2010

How Starbucks Saved My Life

Book Review
Starbucks tends to get a bad rap when it comes to its effect on our communities and our social lives often viewed as a corporate Satan hell bent on destroying our way of life.  Michael Gates Gill has another point of view.  After being forced out of a career working as a ranking member within the corporate hierarchy, Gill finds himself out of luck and running low on business prospects.  He ends up in a Starbucks and waywardly steps into a position as a 64 year old barista.

Gill’s story follows his own path learning the treacherous ropes of the coffee trade and reflects on his transformation from cruel corporate lackey to an enlightened employee who throws himself into a job he never would have wished on himself before.  While at times How Starbucks Saved My Life comes off as Starbucks propaganda, Gill’s transformation is very genuine.  Starbucks places him into the harsh world that he has somehow avoided during his rather privileged life.

How Starbucks Saved My Life holds nothing back.  Gill readily confesses the mistakes he has made throughout his life and looks for a way to pay his penance.  His interaction with customers and his fellow employees shows how fulfilling life can be when we are not caught up in the pursuit of a career or a better life.  Gill’s account is sometimes painful as he reveals his past sins and the tragedy of the sacrifices he chose during his former life.  How Starbucks Saved My Life provides an unparalleled perspective into the things that are truly important in life and reminds the reader what they might be missing or could miss if they don’t place their focus in the right place.

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