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Off the Charts by Ann Hulbert

Off the Charts

Off the Charts by Ann Hulbert
Jan 09, 2018 | 400 Pages
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  • Hardcover $27.95

    Jan 09, 2018 | 400 Pages

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    Jan 09, 2018 | 400 Pages

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Praise for Off the Charts

“Engaging and insightful . . . Ms. Hulbert approaches her dozen or so subjects not as a social scientist but as biographer and essayist, where her skills are superlative.” —John Donvan, The Wall Street Journal

“A fascinating if at times disturbing chronicle of how 15 prodigies came to the world’s attention—and at what cost. Hulbert disabuses readers of the romantic notion that prodigies are born and not made, introducing us to the cast of supporting characters that push the child’s star . . . [She] makes clear, in this nuanced and meticulous book, that when it comes to the prodigy’s gift, the peril is indivisible from the glory” —Nancy Rommelmann, Newsday
“Capture[s] the complicated lives of child prodigies without descending into voyeurism or caricature. . . . Hulbert’s diligence results in a surprising payoff: the best advice for managing a child prodigy may be a wise strategy for parenting any child.” —Amanda Ripley, The New York Times Book Review
“A profound, sensitive look at what it takes to make a child prodigy, and the unexpected ways that brilliance can play out in the long run.” The Saturday Evening Post
“In her new book, Off the Charts, Ann Hulbert shares the intriguing but cautionary tales of 15 exceptionally gifted children.” —Priscilla Gilman, The Boston Globe
“The richness of the book, and the pleasure of it, is in the human stories. All prodigies, after all, are prodigious in their own way.” —Rachel Sugar, Minneapolis Star Tribune
“Fascinating . . . ” People Magazine
“A sophisticated, well-researched, and thought-provoking book . . . [Hulbert] shows the prodigies’ own perspective of their experience, revealing the pressure that accompanies being labeled exceptional at an early age.” —Charlie Gofen, The National Book Review

“Intriguing . . . Hulbert’s book takes an unusual path to the roots of parental influence and its core conflicts . . . Some of the characters are well-known, although presented here in a fresh context . . . Closer to the present, we encounter some of the youthful minds that sparked the technological revolution in Silicon Valley, as well as ‘tiger mothers’ like Amy Chua and their complicated relationships with their talented children. There are surprises in almost every one of these case studies.” —Gary Drevitch, Psychology Today

“In this beautifully written, thoroughly reported look at young ‘geniuses,’ Hulbert poses fascinating questions about the roles of both genetics and pushy parents.” —Karen Springen, Booklist (starred review)
“[Combines] lively biograph­ical sketches with serious analysis.” —Keith Herrell, BookPage
“Sympathetic, sharply drawn . . . [Hulbert] vividly portrays the positive and negative impacts of being a child prodigy.” —Kirkus Reviews

“In this beautifully crafted book, Ann Hulbert exposes the unique profile of each prodigy she highlights and the often shocking unpredictability of their development. She digs deep into the cultural signals that shape our attitudes towards these anomalous children.” —Ellen Winner, author of Gifted Children

Off the Charts is impeccably researched, gracefully written, and wide in its scope of modern prodigies, ranging from 1920s preadolescent poets to teenage computer programmers and covering both boldface names like Shirley Temple and Bobby Fischer and the all but forgotten. It is a rarity among studies of exceptional children in favoring measured analysis over sensationalism, biographically narrating not only the numerous stories of burnout, but of those whose flames continued to burn brightly past childhood.” Teddy Wayne, author of Loner

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