Book Reviews

Cheryl Chapman & Marion Bevington – find your why To Become Frickin’ Awesome

Cheryl and Marion’s book starts by telling Cheryl’s story about how she found her WHY. Cheryl, primary author, has been careful in recording the important years of her life hence she is able to take us back and forth her life story. The book simply reads like a very bad dissertation on account of it clearly having been self-published. For instance, an editor would have tidied up the spelling errors etc.  Something you will like about the book is that it is small enough to be easily fitted into a hand bag and can be consumed within a day or two. You will also like that most of the quotes are taken from awesome individuals who live and have lived in our own lifetime such as Steve Jobs, Ophra Winfrey, Marianne Williamson and a few others.

The book’s claim is to help the reader find his or her reasons WHY they do what they do by identifying their Goals and Intentions. Chapter 8 of the book encourages the reader to answer a total of 15 questions which are designed to help them find their WHY. The questions can either be completed in the book or accessed through a website in which the authors “will review your answers and then we can share our findings about which style you are and how to use your strategy to help you to find your Why! To Become (even more) frickin’ awesome”.

The questions are very personal and have the capacity to stir up some very deep emotions which is alarming when you get to the end and find that in a total of eight lines, the authors tell you how to interpret your answers. One might have expected a much more detailed analysis especially for why you might like to choose a specific song for your funeral. But that is not all, the authors believe that you don’t have to figure it out all on your own thereby, vehemently insisting that the questionnaire should be completed by accessing the said website where they can subsequently have an input.

As a result, I found that the book lives and dies by the website. If no access to the website can be established, then the whole book is null and void. My opinion is that the book does not empower the reader completely as a book should. It, however, asks some very important, personal questions of the reader but ultimately, serves the purpose of promoting the authors’ programs. Having said that, there is little question that the authors are great at helping people find their WHY hence what can be gleaned from the book is that the reader would be better served by a face to face encounter with the authors [or via their forums] as the book sadly falls short on its promises to make him or her frickin’ awesome.

Find Yur Why


Patric Chan’s Simple Success Principles is a book that I truly believe was written for me, some of the early passages at least. Chan, an internet marketing guru and author, rushes through his 19 simple steps for success at a warrented pace. He is blunt and to the point. His success methods are based mostly on his own personal experiences but he does not neglect to mention some of his reading material – notably by Napoleon Hill,  Tony Robbins and Robert Kiyosaki – that has been a factor in developing his success mind-set. I like the organic nature of the writing, much like my own in this blog-  even the author states that the book was not proof-read because he wanted to ‘retain its originality and flow’.

Chan’s interest in sharing one’s thoughts with others through such medium as Blogs is what really drew me to the book, as I am already doing it here. The author passionately writes that sharing has exponential rewards of personal growth, amongst other things. This, according to Chan, is because when you share a book for instance, the other person will share a book they have read and you both have learnt something new. I believe that we each can find something worth cultivating for ourselves from this honest but flitting account of Chan’s life experiences and principles for success.  I must warm that for some readers, some of the middle passages in this book may prove hippy dippy and too fantastical, sometimes even uncomfortable to read. That said, I still think they are worth a thought,  particulally as I am, somehow, able to connect the author’s ramblings about the Thinking Substance to my childhood teachings in Sunday school.

Seven Decisions by Andy Andrews is truly a triumphant feat of its genre. Andrews is indeed a great storyteller who weaves life skills with historical facts to which we can all relate. Most of his characters you will recognise. The author recounts the exploits of these remarkable men and women and points out their trials and tribulations – and ultimately, their successes. Andrews repeats himself throughout the book and one may conjecture that this is done in order to embed the principles of personal success in the mind of the reader. You will, very well,  benefit from this wisdom if you do as the author suggests, that you undertake all of the exercises as you read along. This is by far one of my favourite books ever, I might add. Andrews has a certain flair for making the reader feel like he already knows her and she’s one of his favourite people.

seven decisions

‘How to be F*ucking Awesome’ By Dan Meredith will kick you up the backside if you some are kind of procrastinator. Never have I read a book that will get you moving to action at the speed of lightning. This book does not have Actionable tasks like other books, however, Dan is such a straight talker he will shout and swear you into action. The book, like many of the many books these days, is not ghost written, so the language is not as refined as one would have expected.  The author writes from a very personal point of view, which is quite endearing. He was forced into action when found he could not give his mother the help she needed to take care of her disable daughter. Dan emphasises that in order for change to occur, one needs a strong emotional incentive and his was to give his family a better life. If you don’t like course language, don’t be too alarmed, the worst you will find here is the F-word. Most people, I am convinced, will resonate with the stories in the book and will be propelled into taking action. When my daughter wanted to move from being employed to self-employed, this is the book I recommended to her to kick into action.

‘Unleash the Psychic in You’ by Joanna Garzilli. The word psychic used to send me into a blind panic until I came across Joanna. “My life’s purpose is to help people open to their own intuition and step into their full potential” are words that I find very endearing about the author, which comes through in every syllable in the book. So, what is it about psychic that has not always sat well with me? I suppose I’ve always made an association of psychic with looking into the future and it goes against my tendency towards a scientific view to life. All that being said, Joanna links psychic to intuition which I can relate to with much ease. She states that a psychic can only predict a probable future but cannot necessarily see into the future. Unleash the Psychic is a personal account that unearths the author’s journey which begins with her being in a dark place, even though she had started life with great material and emotional privileges. She weaves her life story honestly and bluntly to a time when she decided that “when you attend to your life’s purpose, everything else flows”.  This is the time that she came to embrace her calling as a psychic and stopped being a people pleaser. This book is full of golden nuggets about how to ‘persist without exception’, Andy Andrew’s words. Joanna does not seek to invent a new way of thinking but re-enforces what others have said before. Tony Robbins, Andy Andrews and many others have spouted the same messages but Joanna combines these ideas with a real-life story which makes the book a refreshing read indeed.

 see my interview with Joanna Garzilli