Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Book Review: The Survivor's Club

The first rule of the Survivor's Club: everyone is a survivor. After reading this title, you may well believe that. Ben Sherwood takes readers on a rollercoaster ride of near death tales ranging from a pilot ejecting at supersonic speed to a woman that nearly died after tripping on knitting needles that pierced her heart. Each chapter includes a theme along with two or three examples of real life survivors to back up the overarching idea introduced. The book is interesting in taking many stories and preserving how fantastic they are, but bringing the narrative back to the same idea. While you may scoff at the idea of people finding religion in near death experiences, it's hard to refute Mr. Sherwood's research after interviewing so many people.

The title approaches the subject sociologically; interviewing people and tallying statistics. While the footnotes are informative, I think the hardcore readers will want some of the statistical information backed up more credibly without having to thumb through the extensive bibliography. I read the book not as someone looking to increase my survivor mindset; I think if you go into reading the title this way, you will enjoy it. It may work for the reader looking to increase their chances of survival in everyday life, too. The book has some great suggestions. Perhaps the most interesting part of the book is the online code it comes with on the inside cover; if you go to the website listed in the book, you can determine your 'survivor personality' after taking a 15 minute online quiz. Definitely worth your time, and a great addition for your library as well. Recommended.

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