BOOK NOTES: Three ‘Essential Ten Percent Series’ Books By Philip Yaffe Now in Omnibus Edition

  • B y David M. Kinchen 
BOOK NOTES: Three ‘Essential Ten Percent Series’ Books By Philip Yaffe Now in Omnibus Edition

Three books in “The Essential Ten Percent”  Series by Philip Yaffe, covering logical thinking, college-level writing, and public speaking are now available in a single, integrated omnibus edition, “The Essential Ten Percent Omnibus: Logic, College-level Writing, Public Speaking”  (Kindle edition, from,  $8.40}

As explained by Yaffe: “The Essential Ten Percent Series was specifically conceived for lay readers. Its purpose is to present key ideas of ostensibly arcane subjects while stripping away all the unnecessary details that make essentially easy ideas and concepts appear unnecessarily difficult and complex.”

What was not intended was that, taken together, some of the books would form a progression, i.e. one book leading to the next. However, in the case of three of the books — Logical Thinking, College-level Writing, and Public Speaking —this is what has happened.

“Because it is an approach, not simply a label, the books in The Essential Ten Percent Series have the same basic format. Stripping away their redundancies means that these three books can be combined into a single omnibus edition in a clear, concise, and economical manner,”  Yaffe added.

“One cannot successfully achieve college-level writing or become an effective public speaker without logical thinking. Conversely, understanding the essentials of logical thinking naturally leads to better understanding and motivation to apply the fundamental concepts and principles to college-level writing and public speaking. In short, one subject reinforces another,”  Yaffe explains.

“Combining them into a single volume makes it possible to better illuminate the fundamental links among the treated subjects,” he said.

Not inconsequentially, the omnibus edition can be made available at about half the price of the three books purchased separately.

“Although interrelated, the three books in the omnibus edition are nevertheless self-contained,” Yaffe added. “Therefore, they can be read in any order as if the other two did not exist.”

To help readers choose the best individual order for them, the introduction The Essential Ten Percent Omnibus: Logical Thinking, College-level Writing, Public Speaking presents an abbreviated table of contents of each book to give a quick overview of how it is structured and what it contains. Additional, each book itself contains a complete table of contents which is almost like an index. After you have read the book, it will allow you to easily find information about any principles and techniques you may wish to review and practice.

The Essential Ten Percent series is based on the idea that readers of non-fiction books fall into two basic categories.

1.Casual Users — those who use a book’s information only occasionally, which is the vast majority of us.

2.Intensive Users — those who use it all day, every day for work or other professional pursuits.

“Unless we are professionals, we really need to know only about 10 percent of any given subject. Yet most books assume that we need to know virtually everything, and therefore produce tomes that can appear to be quite intimidating. Worse, they assume that we already know more about the subject than we actually do, and therefore produce tomes that are virtually incomprehensible,”  Yaffe explained.

Given this realization,  Yaffe decided to write books to help casual users get essentially what they need in essentially the easiest way possible. This was the origin of The Essential Ten Percent Series of books, three of which are contained in this omnibus volume.

The concept of the series is perhaps best expressed by one of author’s favorite anecdotes.

A little girl goes into a library and asks the librarian, “Do you have books about penguins?”  “About penguins? Oh yes, dear, we have lots of books about penguins,” the librarian answers and takes four or five off the shelf.

The little girl sits down at a table and starts reading. About 10 minutes later she returns to the librarian with the books in her hands.

“What’s the matter, honey, don’t you like our books about penguins?”  “Oh yes,” the little girl replies,” they are wonderful books, they are beautiful books, only . . .”  “Only?”  “Well, they tell me much more about penguins than I really want to know.”

About the author

Philip Yaffe was born in Boston, Massachusetts, in 1942 and grew up in Los Angeles, where he graduated from the University of California, Los Angeles,  with a degree in mathematics and physics. In his senior year, he was also editor-in-chief of the Daily Bruin, UCLA’s daily student newspaper.

He has more than 40 years of experience in journalism and international marketing communication. At various points in his career, he has been a teacher of journalism, a reporter/feature writer with The Wall Street Journal, an account executive with a major international press relations agency, European marketing communication director with two major international companies, and a founding partner of a specialized marketing communication agency in Brussels, Belgium, where he has lived since 1974.


Books by Philip Yaffe


·The Gettysburg Approach to Writing & Speaking like a Professional


·The Gettysburg Collection:

A comprehensive companion to The Gettysburg Approach to Writing & Speaking like a Professional


·Actual English: English grammar as native speakers really use it


·Gentle French: French grammar as native speakers really use it


·What’d You Say? / Que Dites-Vous?

Fun with homophones, proverbs, expressions, false friends, and other linguistic oddities in English and French


·Belief, Disbelief, Unbelief: A Thousand Thoughts before You Die


·Extraordinary Ordinary Things: How Did We Ever Live without Them?


·The Little Book of BIG Mistakes


·The Eighth Decade: Reflections on a Life



Books in “Major Achievements of Lesser-known Scientists” Series


(at May 2013)


·Astronomy & Cosmology: Major Achievements of Lesser-known Scientists

·Human Biology: Major Achievements of Lesser-known Scientists



Books in “The Essential Ten Percent” Series


(at May 2013)


·College-level Writing: The Essential Ten Percent

·Human Psychology: The Essential Ten Percent

·Logical Thinking: The Essential Ten Percent

·Public Speaking: The Essential Ten Percent

·The Essential Ten Percent Omnibus: Logical Thinking, College-level Writing, Public Speaking

·The Human Body: The Essential Ten Percent

·Wise Humor: The Essential Ten Percent

·Word for Windows: The Essential Ten Percent



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