Tag Archives: Hero

Book Review: “Hero” (The Secret #4)

Just a day or two late on posting this review… the kids and I took a little vacation this weekend, to visit my husband (who’s a Marine away at training) in Maryland. There was a few inches of snow on the ground, and we got the opportunity to stay with some wonderful friends we haven’t seen in four years, so it was a really exciting weekend. My computer, which I brought with me, never made it’s way out of my car – we were just so busy!

So, again… a day or two late in posting this review, but here it is!

This week, in keeping with our “New” theme for January, we tackled a new book, and a New Age book, Hero by Rhonda Byrne.

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This book is the fourth in The Secret series. The first book, The Secret, was a huge success, inspiring audiences to use positive thinking and affirmations to change their lives. It even inspired a documentary (which can be found on Netflix, for anyone interested).

In Hero, Byrne uses interviews and stories from successful people around the world who have used positive thinking and affirmations to become the hero in their own epic. Byrne outlines the idea that we are each a hero in our own story, and we need to live the “heroic” life to be successful. She suggests that we each have the ability to be that hero, we just need to know how – and then proposes to tell us how.

Basically, the process of becoming our own hero includes visualizing yourself as successful in something, and not doubting that positive outcome. While I am naturally skeptical about this, I have actually seen it in play. A friend of mine was inspired by The Secret, and began making vision boards. She puts up pictures of things she wants to achieve, and the idea is that, by looking at these images multiple times a day, you are sending positive energy out into the Universe (and into your own subconscious) to help these things come true. I watched her husband’s career advance, a rocky relationship with her stepson’s mother get smoothed over, and (after a long bout of trying), she finally got pregnant. While all of these things might just seem coincidental, it has been interesting to see her have positive change after positive change after positive change in her life, right after she started visualization.

This book came along in a really important time in my life. In the next six months, I will be graduating from college, looking for a job, and – oh yea – moving directly across the United States to California. With all of these things happening at the same time, my natural skeptic has taken over, and I’ve been having a rather negative attitude about the whole thing. I’ll be far away from my family. I’ll never get a job. We’ll never sell or rent our house. The drive across country is going to be miserable. No one will want to hire a “recent grad” despite my experience. But opening Hero has enabled me to realize that I cannot control the situation, but I can control how I think about it.

So I’ve started picturing myself as a working professional at some undisclosed sunny San Diego location. I’ve started picturing someone moving into our house. I’ve started picturing how beautiful and exciting our road trip is going to be. And while I haven’t seen a change in my situation (we’re still a few months away from any of this actually happening), I have seen pieces falling into place. By changing my attitude, and using visualization and positive affirmation, I now have a totally positive attitude about the next 6 months – and I know that will encourage things to work out for me.

Before reading Hero, I always felt that the “successful” people of the world either had luck, or money. The people in this story had neither – all they had was a “can do” attitude, and the ability to see a better future for themselves. It seems that our biggest road block on the way to being our own hero is our self doubt – maybe not in our abilities or knowledge, but in what we feel that we deserve. And it doesn’t have to be about material things. It doesn’t have to be about the bigger house, or the paycheck, or the job… it can be about deserving love, deserving appreciation, deserving opportunities. Once we all understand what we deserve, we will open ourselves up to that opportunity.

Okay, while I was clearly inspired by Hero, I do have a few negative criticisms. First, it was too closely related to The Secret (and presumably all the other The Secret books). It seemed to be using the exact same ideas, with different words behind it. While I’m all for “driving home” a message, are four books about the same thing really necessary? Secondly, the book seems to have been written to be an easy translation to a documentary. There’s a format that would make that easy transition – introduction to an idea, quotes from people who have been successful using that idea, and then encouragement to try that idea. This format is exactly how The Secret documentary is laid out. I haven’t read the other The Secret books, but I think it is safe to assume they are using the same format. It’s a little distracting, and, in my opinion, takes away from the point trying to be made in each chapter. I keep flipping back to the beginning of the book to remember who all these people were (the successful people from different parts of the world, and different industries).

That being said, Hero is a good book. It is a good book for anyone undergoing a major change in their life – I would recommend getting it for someone going away to college, looking for a new job, or anyone you see struggling with making a major decision. Sometimes, we all need a little reminder at how we have all the tools necessary to make ourselves successful, right inside of us! We just have to find them, and use them!

So – have you read Hero? Have you read any of The Secret books? Do you use, or have you ever used, visualization to help you? Any positive outcomes to share?? Or does it all sound like hocus pocus?

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Week 21 Reading: “Hero”

This week’s reading sticks to our “New” theme for January in two ways – it is both “New Age,” and the newest part of The Secret books (book #4). This week we are reading Hero by Rhonda Byrne.

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This book intrigues me. I have heard lots of good things about The Secret, a book and documentary that has inspired people around the world, showing how the power of positive thinking and daily affirmations can change your life. Hero uses the same formula as The Secret, using the experiences of people who are successful in various fields – people who have brought themselves up from bad circumstances, using nothing but their positive attitudes. 

Hero explores the idea that we are each the hero in our own epic (our lives). I tend to be a bit of a skeptical person, and have a hard time thinking anything more than motivation, dedication, and a lot of elbow grease can get me anywhere. This book might be good for me, and is certainly coming along in an important time of my life. I just started my last semester of college, and am looking into jobs. I want to be successful, and maybe it’s time to change my attitude to achieve that. Hero promises to show me that I have all I need already inside of me.

We’ll see how this one goes. Like I said, it’s coming along at an important time in my life, and I sure could use an attitude adjustment!

Are you reading along? Have you read any of The Secret books, or seen the documentary (it’s on Netflix if you’re interested!)?

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New Year, New Reading List

Happy New Year, my friends! It’s hard to believe it’s already 2014 – I feel exceptionally old! I know I missed my initial post for this week’s reading, but my little bug came back, and I’ve been battling what I think to be The Dreaded Flu for the last week. This week we are reading I am Regina by Sally M. Keehn, which is technically a children’s book.

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I picked it anyway, because it is a beautiful piece of historical fiction about a young girl kidnapped by Native Americans in the late 18th Century American wilderness. That, and I haven’t read a youth fiction for his book challenge, yet! But more on that this weekend!

It’s time for the reveal of the January reading list. In honor of the New Year, the theme for January reading is “New.” I think I’ve assembled a pretty interesting group of books that will inspire us to keeping up with this reading challenge this month, and for the rest of 2014!

Jan. 5 – 11 – The White Queen – Philippa Gregory

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Okay, so this book isn’t technically (or in any way) “new,” having been published in 2009. But it is “new to me.” My sister actually got it as a Christmas present from our mother, but as she has already read it, she passed it on to me for a quick read before returning it to her ever expanding bookshelves (a girl after my own heart). I’m very excited to read this book, as I’ve heard wonderful things about it, and it was actually recommended to me by my friend Dee (hi, Dee!) back when I started my blog. With great reviews from my sister, I decided it was time to open this brand-spanking-new book, and give it a shot. It should prove to be a wonder work of historical fiction (my favorite, as I’m sure you know by now), and I always love a good, strong female lead.

 

Jan. 12 – 18 – How to Kill a Rock Star – Tiffanie DeBartolo

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I’m SO EXCITED to finally crack this book open. I actually won this book in an online drawing (I never win ANYTHING!), from an awesome book blog I follow, called The Book Bosses (thanks ladies!)… if you haven’t been to their site, you should check them out! This book actually came to me personally signed by the author (which makes it extra awesome!). When I opened it up, my friend Anna was with me and snatched it right out of my hands, singing DeBartolo’s praises for another novel she had written. With such praise for the author, I know this one will be a winner as well, and I can’t wait to dive in. The story is a contemporary romance (“contemporary” = new… and it is “new to me”), and while we all know I’m not a HUGE fan of romance novels, this one looks pretty promising!

 

Jan. 19 – 25 – Hero – Rhonda Byrne

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This book falls under the “new” requirements in two ways: it is the newest in the The Secret series (and was published in November of 2013), and is a New Age book. If you know nothing about The Secret, the books (Hero being #4) are about the power of the mind, and how self-affirmation can truly change your life. If you have Netflix (or YouTube), watch the documentary entitled The Secret to learn more about the power of suggestion! This book expands on The Secret, exploring how we can all be our truest selves and live our most fulfilling lives – simply by being our own heroes. This one might also inspire some New Years Resolutions, and help us all have a super successful 2014. I hope you’ll read along with me for this one!

 

Jan. 26 – Feb. 1 – Celtic Moon – Jan DeLima

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I’ll be honest – I picked up this book because I was struggling to pick a fourth book for the “New” theme for the month. I walked into the book store, walked over to the Sci-Fi section (in an attempt to put a different genre into our reading this month), and saw a “New in Science Fiction” section. On those shelves, I found Celtic Moon. The book was published in September, making it relatively new, and is the first in a series, called the Celtic Wolf series, so I thought that would count as “new” as well! I usually wouldn’t look toward this book, generally avoiding paperback sci-fi (and most sci-fi in general… I like the shows and the movies, not usually the books), but this is the whole point of the book challenge – pick up books I wouldn’t have read before.

So there it is – our reading list for January and our “New” theme for the month. I hope you’ll pick one (or more) to read along with me, and start off your 2014 reading list with something good! I look forward to some engaging discussions about these books, as I promote a “book club” type of atmosphere. Remember, I not only encourage, but LOVE, comments and reviews from my fellow readers! This blog isn’t about me telling you what I think, it’s about inspiring you to read (and inspiring me to stop being a Netflix addict and read more!), and talk about books!

I hope you all have a healthy, prosperous New Year! Happy Reading!

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