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People - March 25, 2009, Five Star review
As a starry-eyed twenty-something, Novogratz left international
banking to help women in developing countries borrow small sums of
money to start their own businesses. (Among her inspirations: a
small-world moment when she saw an African boy wearing the very
sweater she had given away years before.) From a bakery begun by
unwed Rwandan mothers to telecomunications kiosks in India, the
businesses she has worked with --and the nonprofit she founded,
Acumen Fund-- are helping to improve lives. An inspiring book by a
-- Caroline Leavitt
Business Week - February 25, 2009
…If you’re in the social entrepreneur space, you know
[Jacqueline Novogratz] as a pioneer in giving people stuck in
poverty the financial, economic and social tools to build their own
way out. But Jacqueline is also an amazing writer and she has a
brilliant book out, The Blue Sweater, that will make you cry
as it makes you think… It is a tough, realistic, heartbreaking,
truthful book about Jacqueline’s efforts and education in Africa as
a social entrepreneur. Her own personal evolution is a much a part
of the narrative as the work she attempts… a brave, honest book
about one of the most important socio-economic movements of our day.
And it is a beautiful window into one of the most creative and
distinguished women of our time.
Financial Times – February 24, 2009
For any jobless finance executives contemplating a career move
into the development world, Jacqueline Novogratz's book, The Blue
Sweater, should be required reading. For while Ms Novogratz has
long demonstrated the potential of applying business ideas to
development problems, her memoir provides sobering accounts of the
shocks and frustrations likely to be encountered along the way… …The
organisation is known for being a professional, well-oiled machine
that has fostered businesses in everything from education to
healthcare and renewable energy - and Ms Novogratz is acknowledged
as its driving force. In this book, we discover how she got there…
…And yet, in spite of the tragedy, the book is coloured by her
irrepressible optimism, energy and sense of fun.
…Novogratz's message is that those battling poverty must be "willing
to build solutions from the perspectives of the poor themselves
rather than imposing grand theories and plans upon them".
Kirkus Starred review – January 15,2009
How a lifelong philanthropist aided some of the world’s
poverty-stricken populations with a shrewd economic plan. …In 2001,
the author founded a nonprofit venture-capital firm aimed at
reinvesting charitable funding via focused entrepreneurial
endeavors. … She’s aspired to change the world since she was young,
writes Novogratz, who assembles engaging and insightful stories
about her journey toward effective philanthropy.
…Novogratz transports readers directly to the landscapes she travels
by describing with intimate urgency her experiences when immobilized
by malaria, chased by muggers or inspired by a business owner’s
success. “Humbled by the strength of individual women,” she
continues to believe that “we can end poverty.”
…An empowering, heartfelt portrait of humanitarianism at work.