FACE YOUR FEAR: Living with Courage in an Age of Caution

Shmuley Boteach, Author . St. Martin's $23.95 (272p) ISBN 978-0-312-32672-2

Boteach's newest book reads like a film that stretches two hours but could have been wrapped up in 30 minutes. All fear, he posits, is a "toxic emotion" rooted in the "fear that you don't matter." In Part I, "The Case Against Fear," he draws on innumerable anecdotes from his work as a rabbi and counselor, but his generalizations are backed by little proof. ("No woman ever fears breast cancer," he writes. "Rather she fears her inability to deal with it.") To help readers eradicate fear from their lives, he presents 32 practical strategies in Part II that include dedicating your life to something higher, becoming a leader, "killing" your television, reconnecting with family, doing good, raising fearless children and building community. Each chapter begins with a biblical citation, but it is only in Part II that Boteach draws out that religious content. Boteach's approach veers from personal friend to questioning therapist to exhortative observer of American life, with an occasional shot of humor. The book's value lies in his insistence that fear is something entirely within readers' control, a choice that he correctly calls "immensely liberating." (Nov. 3)

Forecast: Boteach will promote the book on his nationally syndicated radio show and do a multicity author tour.

Reviewed on: 09/27/2004
Release date: 11/01/2004
Genre: Nonfiction
Paperback - 258 pages - 978-0-312-32673-9
Open Ebook - 272 pages - 978-1-4668-5313-3
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