top of page
  • Writer's pictureAmy Hervey

Can a Book Save Your Life?

Updated: Jun 11

“This book can save your life.” Although that’s what the cover of my favorite book asserts, I disagree. Neither this book nor any other book can prevent you from being assaulted, attacked or killed. What it CAN do – and the reason it is my unequivocal favorite self-defense book – is cause you to think differently, make more informed choices, increase your situational awareness, and ultimately reduce your chance of being in a life-threatening situation.

I consider The Gift of Fear, by Gavin De Becker, is a must-read for women of all ages, as well as anyone who is interested in increasing his or her safety and awareness. De Becker’s unique claim that “fear is a gift” is proven true repeatedly throughout the book.

Why should YOU read The Gift of Fear? Here are my top 10 reasons:

  1. It’s full of great information, and it’s an easy read.

  2. It’s affordable and readily available in hardback, paperback, audiobook and e-book.

  3. Full of real-life accounts from De Becker’s clients, The Gift of Fear is very real. Some stories may shock you. Some stories may hit close to home, while others may exist outside the realm of possibility in your life and work.

  4. It’s exceedingly well-organized. Concerned about domestic violence? Chapter 10. Receiving threats? Chapter 7. Obsessions, death threats, stalking, child abuse, workplace violence and terrorism…it’s all in there, organized topically.

  5. Chapter 1, “In the Presence of Danger,” tells a compelling story of how one of De Becker’s clients survived being attacked and held captive.

  6. Parents can use this book as a discussion/teaching tool for kids, helping them develop their own threat assessment and personal protection skills.

  7. It’s not full of scare tactics. De Becker backs up his examples and assertions with extensive research and years of experience, and he provides the reader with context and alternatives.

  8. You’ll look at things differently. From assessing your online presence to determining who is a friend vs. a “familiar stranger” and evaluating the risk associated with a potential choice, you’ll congratulate yourself on applying your new knowledge in a practical way.

  9. Start simply. I ask my students to read Chapters 1, 2, and 4 and let me know what they think. I’ve never had negative feedback from a single reader, and in every case, they gave examples of something they read that hadn’t occurred to them previously.

  10. I’ve been teaching Taekwon-Do and self-defense since 2002, and I’ve read a lot of “self-defense” books. The Gift of Fear is far and away the single best self-defense book I’ve ever read…and it doesn’t teach you how to deliver a kick or block a punch.

This book can make a difference in your personal safety and awareness, and that can save your life.

Stay safe!

2 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page