This is one of our contentious reviews. We saw this book and thought that it may an example of one of the things that give NLP a bad name, with its focus on ‘getting what you want’. We weren’t disappointed, however, for us the book still has merit.
The book is, on the whole, well written and concise, and the content does address the topic as advertised in the title. However, we feel that this type of book is really an advertisement for the author, their other material and the trainings they offer, rather than a complete end in itself.
The author has a disclaimer in the opening chapter regarding the power of the language patterns contained within the book, and he states that the techniques should be used for mutual benefit, whilst acknowledging that some may use them for manipulation (as per the title). He implies his best intention whilst using terms such as ‘before you unleash this pattern on the unsuspecting public’. There are also references to the application of the patterns in sexual contexts. Hmmm.
There is a great amount of repetition, of both the techniques and the ideas they come from. This means that we reached the end without feeling that we had covered very much ground. That being said, the author does cover significant language patterns and shows how they can be integrated into both conversation and text easily – without the recipient necessarily noticing. We liked the way that the author explains the pattern, provides examples and then asks you to go forth and practice. Much of the elegance in language usage comes for fully integrating the pattern into your style.
For us, if you can ignore the less favourable aspects of the application of NLP and are have an interest in the language aspect of NLP you will get some nice examples of the application of Reframing, Milton model and Slight of Mouth language patterns.