Top critical review
Reviewed in the United States on February 14, 2019
The book should be titled contract interpretation. I thought I would find tailored contract drafting advice for start-ups and entrepeneurs , not so. Just standard boilerplate that I learned in contracts in law school.
I received this note from the author complaining about my review:
Hello Mr. Wheelock,
I wanted to let you know that I was disappointed to see your extremely negative review of my book today.
Clearly the book contains far more information than "Just standard boilerplate that I learned in contracts in law school." Your characterization of the book as just mindless "boilerplate," contrary to every other review, including Kirkus, is likely to deter many who would benefit from reading it for years to come, which is disappointing.
You're obviously free to express yourself however you wish, but, by its title the book is clearly aimed at entrepreneurs and business professionals, and not experienced attorneys who work with contracts regularly, as both you and I do. I did not title it "Advanced Contract Drafting Techniques for Business Counsel."
Just wanted to let you know that I had noticed, and been disappointed by, your trashing of my book.
Paul A. Swegle
I stand by my review. I did not use the word "mindless" anywhere in my review. In my experience as a corporate attorney, entrepeneurs and business professionals do not need this kind of primer on contract provisions because they already routinely deal with the basics discussed in this book. In my opinion entrepeneurs and business professionals need clear discussion of the types of contracts and specialized provisions for agreements between start-up founders, venture capitalists, restricted sales agreements of start-up equity between founders, principals and lenders, employment agreements between founders, capitalization and financing agreements among start-up principals, management of intellectual property rights, provisions for liquidation and/or bankruptcy. These are the deficiencies that prompted me to call out the author for his misleading title. This paperback is 6" x 10" and less than 150 pages. It is not what it is advertised to be - and in my opinion clearly not worth the money.
I called this book to the attention of my clients, all of whom are running growing start-ups, especially after Mr. Swegle went to the trouble to search me out and send me the personal note quoted above on my gmail account because I wanted to be fair and get their opinion (I find attorney Swegle's conduct find a little creepy - in fact I reported his stalking of me to Amazon - and because there is no time limit on reporting ethical misconduct I am keeping an open mind on reporting his invasion of my privacy to the Washington State bar) . Those who bought the book looked at it and returned it, agreeing with me.