4 out of 4 stars
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"Nothing is a substitute for gratitude, integrity, and hard work. Remain grateful, walk upright, and put in the effort--then watch the transformation."
Chris Harris is the founder of Roku Jutsu Combatives. He describes teaching combatives as a "feast-or-famine business," but because he finds it so fulfilling, he supplements financially lean seasons in a variety of ways. Beginning with his childhood in the projects of Dayton, Ohio, where he faced bullies daily, Harris shares his experiences, insights, and principles in I GO THRU: Breaking Through With Expert Power. Each chapter features a specific expert action or characteristic which Harris supports with personal examples and "Power Quotes" from famous people, such as Abraham Lincoln, Bruce Lee, St. Augustine, and Steve Jobs. Readers need not consider themselves experts to glean from Harris's principles, as he stresses that expert power is based upon passion and persistence rather than talent. Harris sums up his purpose for writing the book: "The success that I want for myself, I want for everyone."
Harris exemplifies transparency in his writing, whether he is discussing his business practices, faith, strengths, or weaknesses. "From a spiritual perspective, I accredit every good thing in my life to God's amazing grace, and I try not to read into it much further than that." Given his extremely unstable childhood, I admire his determination to walk in forgiveness and forego a victim mentality, which speaks volumes about his character.
I particularly like Harris's emphasis on positive character traits, including a few unexpected values that I don't typically associate with the competitive nature of combative programs. While character strength and integrity didn't come as a surprise to me, the examples he provides of gratitude and humility are a refreshing change. Harris consistently mentions their importance and acknowledges those he admires for practicing these strengths, as well as recognizing times he has fallen short in these areas.
There isn't anything I dislike about the book's content or Harris's writing style. However, regarding editing, a few "Power Quote" sections are missing the "r" in the titles. As the quote titles are included at the top of pages in bold type, the typos really stand out, detracting from the otherwise professional appearance of the book.
Even so, the editing issues are minimal in light of the positive message that will encourage a wide range of readers. Overall, I rate the book 4 out of 4 stars. I recommend it to those who enjoy reading about overcoming adversity, as well as readers who are interested in Harris's specific principles teaching how to persevere in a multitude of difficult circumstances.
I GO THRU: Breaking Through With Expert Power
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