Book Review: “I Dare You” by William H. Danforth

It is a rare and beautiful thing to read a book and know that your life will never be the same after having read it. Your mind becomes alert to new truths that you’ve always known but now have seen them articulated in writing and understood.

You can never forget this book. You will either apply its instructions and see your life change in unimaginable ways or you will not and live with the regret to know that if you had summed up the courage and energy, your life could be very different.

This is really powerful stuff, if properly wielded.


I found this book in a thrift store for $3.99. It was a hardcover book, a little dirty, in the business section. I know you’re not supposed to judge a book by its cover, but it said, “I Dare You!”, and I just can’t back away from a dare. And I’m eternally grateful that I dared. It’s a short read; I finished it in a day since it dared me to (ha!) but this is a book that I’ll need to keep by my bedside and refer to until I’ve internalized its lessons.

I don’t know if this is a popular book. I haven’t heard it talked or written about, so I’m going to guess that it isn’t. But that makes its teachings all the more valid to me. I’m so fed up with those feel-good self-help books that make it seem like all you need is “positive thinking” and “visualization” to “manifest” the life of your dreams. I know that those techniques can help, but there is a heck of a lot of old-fashioned hard work and hustle that goes into living the life you want as well, which is conveniently omitted from these books. I guess it makes sense to leave that important part out — you probably won’t sell as many books if you tell it like it really is because who wants to hear that you need to continually learn, demolish your comfort zones, be stronger, faster and smarter than the average person to live an extraordinary life? No one. At least no one who isn’t serious about making some really big shifts in their life.

This is where this book differs. It gives you the concrete four-fold development program (physical, mental, social and spiritual) that will need to be applied each and everyday to be one of the 4% or 1% who actually go on to succeed with their “magnificent obsession”. You won’t know what I’m talking about unless you read this book and I’m not going to be able to better articulate it than Mr. Danforth. This book is for you if you want a method for getting the most out of life and you want a real, solid plan in place to accomplish that. Granted, some of the information in the book is dated (it was published in 1978) but the program allows for personalization so that it can be adapted for any era. So read it — I Dare You!!



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