Book Reviews

I defy you! By William H Danforth – A book review

Title and author: I defy you! by William H. Danforth

Content Synopsis:

In this motivational classic from the mid-20th century, author, successful businessman and advocate for youth programs in St. Louis, Missouri, William Danforth challenges you and any other reader, to do great things and be great. Originally published in 1953, it has been republished by several sources in recent years.

Although the book is aimed at youth and young adults, challenging them to become more than they initially believe, it has motivational value for all ages. Danforth firmly believed that we limit ourselves and that by seizing opportunities and believing in our virtually limitless potential, we can exceed all expectations, including our own, and dare to be great.

In addition to providing raw motivational material, the book covers seven main areas, called “challenges”, where the author challenges the reader to go further and strive further in life. They include adventure, achievement, strength, creativity, magnetic personality, character, and the willingness to share what you have. These qualities will be recognized as common to most of the best-selling books and documents published over the past two centuries. What sets Danforth’s little book apart is that it presents his challenge as a challenge.

While the attributes that Danforth promotes are found in the works of Marsden, Hill and others, the bold approach used by this author is unique. He appealed to the young and the young, whether it was the high school kids who attended his summer camps or the young men entering the business world.

Readability/Quality of writing:

The Executive Books edition is only 144 pages. It is easy to read, having been aimed at young people. This may seem somewhat naive and simplistic by today’s standards. However, the motivational truths of this work are no less true today than they were over 60 years ago.

Notes on the author:

William Danforth was the founder and longtime president of the Ralston Purina Company. He was also president of the American Youth Foundation and was very active in the YMCA. During his summers, he devoted his time to training and helping less fortunate young people at summer camps in Michigan and elsewhere. He died in 1956.

Three great ideas you can use:

1. “Wealth, fame, place and power are no measure of success. The only true measure of success is the ratio of what we could have done to what we could have been on the one hand, and the thing we’ve done. and the thing we’re mad about ourselves about each other”.

2. Each of us has four hidden giants or resources that we must constantly develop to achieve greatness. These include physical, mental, social and spiritual aspects. To achieve a balanced and powerful life, you must fully nurture each of these aspects.

3. Continuous learning and improvement are essential to success. The author recommends a reading schedule of at least one book per month. He will pay you back multiple times.

Publication Information:

I defy you! by William H. Danforth. Copyright 2009 by Executive Books in the form presented in their publication. Published by Executive Books, Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania.

Overall Book Rating: Fair

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