is an excellent book by Matthew Syed, subtitled The myth of talent and the power of practice (isbn 978-0-00-73505404). As usual I'm going to quote from a few pages:
Ericsson also found that there were no exceptions to this pattern: nobody who had reached the elite group without copious practice, and nobody who had worked their socks off but failed to excel.
It is the quality and quantity of practice, not genes, that is driving progress.
The ascendency of the mental and the acquired over the physical and the innate has been confirmed again and again.
My dad never asked me to play golf. I asked him. [Tiger Woods]
Child prodigies do not have unusual genes; they have unusual upbringings.
Top skaters fall over more during their practice sessions.
But while the adaptability of the human body is impressive, it is the plasticity of the brain that has astonished researchers.
If you don't know what you are doing wrong, you can never know what you are doing right.
These were some of the clearest findings I've ever seen. Praising children's intelligence harms their motivation, and it harms their performance. [Carol Dweck]
Lowering standards just leads to poorly educated students who feel entitled to easy work and lavish praise. [Carol Dweck]
Many of the contemporaries of Galileo (inventor of the modern telescope) really did think there was something morally dubious about the telescope; that it was taking humanity beyond the powers expressly sanctioned by God.