Top critical review
hyper-caffeinated narration around the same points...
Reviewed in the United States on September 28, 2021
Readers of Holiday's previous books will instantly recognize the narrative style - hyper-caffeinated, short chapters that seem to keep repeating the same points, sprinkled with a curated set of quotes from various Stoic/eastern philosophy sources - all served with a generous tone of cheerleading. If you are a fan of that style, this book will not disappoint - can be a good companion of his book on obstacles. For those who will not enjoy pages and pages of the same tone, this will be a test of patience.
There are gems of observations scattered in a few chapters. A few thought frames that can be used to start facing a "fear" are mentioned, but not necessarily in a easy-to-categorize and absorb manner. The book itself is organized into three parts - Fear, Courage and Heroism. Roughly, the emphasis of each segment is (at least how I felt useful to go through the book) - why we are fearful or lack courage, how to create the first moves/momentum to build courage, and what can sustain and build. Instead of trying to formulate a somewhat linear narrative of causes-diagnosis-treatments-management, the reader is left to own devices to develop a thought framework of one's own.
Perhaps, the most original and useful section of the book is the discussion of his own experience at American Apparel (it is all the way at the end at "Afterword"). The self-appraisals and observations based on his experience there captures his views on courage very well - this chapter should have been the introduction, not the Afterword. That could potentially have set up the book much better.
Having read all his books and continue to enjoy his weekly reading lists, the last two books (this one and Life of Stoics) have been underwhelming. I wish he expands on his American Apparel experience and use that as a foil to narrate almost all the themes from his books on ego, obstacles, and courage. Even with some poetic licenses, that will be a good book. This one, will engage and entertain you for a bit, but the constant haranguing of finding the courage gives the book the tone of a cliched motivation speaker.