“A Field Guide to Lies”–Review

41PBiqBSfLL._SX327_BO1,204,203,200_It’s raining bad data, half-truths, and even outright lies…We are bombarded with more information each day than the mind can process—especially in election season.  Levitin shows how to recognize misleading announcements, statistics, graphs, and written reports, revealing the ways lying weasels use them to manipulate and cheat.

In this book, Daniel J. Levitin shows readers how to distinguish misinformation, pseudo-facts, distortions, and lies from the most reliable information.  This field guide is grouped into evaluating numbers, words, including evaluating the world by showing how science is the answer to critical thinking.  Although newspapers, bloggers, the government, and Wikipedia are expected to present factually and logically correct information, the truth is that they’re not always right.  Levitin suggests we all need to use critical thinking if we want to be successful in all areas of life.  It’s important to check the plausibility and reasoning of particular statistics, instead of just accepting them and making decisions based on them—which is a common thing.

I may not be the greatest with statistics, but this book is worth reading.  It’s a plus if you’re a fan of numbers.  In fact, I never really got around to the idea that statistics aren’t actually facts; they’re considered interpretations.  So if we’d like to know why these certain numbers show up on a chart, graph, etc., critical thinking is necessary.

A Field Guide to Lies: Critical Thinking in the Information Age will be available on September 6, 2016.  Feel free to post your comments.  Happy reading!

*I received this book from Dutton Books, in exchange for an honest review.

About the author: Daniel J. Levitin is the James McGill Professor of Psychology and Behavioral Neuroscience at McGill University and is dean of the College of Social Sciences at the Minerva Schools at KGI.  He is the author of This is Your Brain on Music, The World in Six Songs, and The Organized Mind.  He divides his time between Montreal, Quebec, and the San Francisco Bay Area.


5 thoughts on ““A Field Guide to Lies”–Review

  1. philessatry says:

    Just started reading the book, which I see as an essential primer for those unaware of the constant manipulation around them. His work, The Organized Mind, is a gem and well worth a read.

  2. This sounds a lot like Nate Silver’s The Signal and the Noise which I’d read a few years ago. This sounds like it’s more on the psychological side of things. Thanks for the recommendation.

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