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The American Dream: Stories from the Heart of Our Nation [Paperback]

Dan Rather
3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
Price: 8.25 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
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Product details

  • Paperback: 268 pages
  • Publisher: Harper Perennial; Reprint edition (Jun 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 006093770X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0060937706
  • Product Dimensions: 1.9 x 13.3 x 20.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,779,008 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Synopsis

Explores the meaning of the American dream for ordinary people across the country, from a woman who left Iran in search of religious freedom to a ten-year-old entrepreneur whose nonprofit company provides supplies to poor schools. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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First Sentence
"When we describe this land of ours, in deep-down essence and everyday spirit, it is the phrase we reach for most often." Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Back Cover
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Follow Your Dreams 7 Oct 2007
Format:Paperback
Broadcast journalist Dan Rather collected inspirational stories from a cross-section of Americans who expressed their feelings about transforming dreams into reality. Themes include freedom, enterprise, pursuit of happiness, family, celebrity, education, innovation, and service. The recurring theme throughout the book is that America uniquely provides opportunities for one to not only dare to dream but also to actively pursue those dreams. That our visions can come true if we believe in ourselves, accept help when it is offered and work hard.
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Amazon.com: 4.1 out of 5 stars  13 reviews
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Outstanding! 3 Dec 2001
By Daryl Broussard - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
CBS News anchor Dan Rather gives us a truly fascinating look at 30 American Dreamers, their struggles and triumphs, and I can honestly say that the book doesn't lag in any single spot throughout, which is quite an accomplishment, when dealing with so many diffrent people's stories.
Also, Rather proves to be a very solid writer, sprinkling levity and personal anecdotes in just the right amount, in my humble opinion.
The first woman astronaut, a Food Network chef who remained illiterate until age 26, exceptional teachers, and author Jacquline Mitchard are but a handful of the folks Rather covers.
Well worth the read.
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One VERY True Story! 21 Jun 2001
By William B. McDonald - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
A reviewer has called into question the validity of the stories contained in this book. I can understand the skepticism, especially with respect to the Vietnam vet returning to adopt little Anna. I have read and re-read that story many times - and lived it too. Dan Rather captured the very essence of the experience my wife Karen and I had during our trip to Vietnam and the struggles which lead to our decision to adopt. We're disappointed only in our exclusion from the "abridged" audio book version - but will cherish this book as a legacy for our two children, Julie (home-made) and Anna.
8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars So Many Life Stories in So Few Pages 6 Aug 2001
By JON STRICKLAND - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This is an excellent book. Even the conservative thinktanks who despise the so-called liberal Dan Rather will have to agree with the often recurring theme that America uniquely provides opportunities for one to not only dare to dream but also to actively pursue those dreams.
Rather has presented a nicely condensed volume depicting stories that are summarized in less than 10 pages, but if each had been given full analytical treatment, a good number of them could possibly be 200-page parallels to Behind the Urals.
Neat. Concise. Concrete. A reminder that though freedom is almost second-nature or common sense to those of us born in America, it is a virtually ill-conceived notion for those who were not, and many in this latter group, despite obtaining U.S. citizenship, have already suffered economically and psychologically after growing up and living for several years under spartan conditions in other countries whose governments have turned both a deaf ear and a blind eye to them.
After reading these testimonies of overcoming hardship or oppression, or both, I, myself, am reminded that the U.S. is a great country and that even though there are so many unresolved issues here, we are at least, by all present-day standards, free to attempt to bring them to the forefront.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Dream is Real 19 July 2001
By John O. Cooper - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
This book attempts to discover what the "American Dream" really is to many Americans. It does so by providing brief accounts of the lives of some Americans, some famous you will recognize, some not at all famous. Dan Rather is obviously an excellent reader and in this book you will hear his "real" voice with a sometime slight and sometimes not so slight Texas drawl. You will hear it strongly when he pronounces the word "school". Even though at times the book drags a little I enjoyed it immensely and will probably listen to it again. Most of the stories are great to listen to and it reminds me of talking at "old guy" in the park. The history lesson is wonderful and the "dream" is real. I recommend this book to anyone who has an interest in American History. If you are not an American and are not interested in American history this book will be less interesting. If fact, I think it is necessary to be an American to enjoy the book but at least one Canadian liked it (see below). Just my opinion.
I listened to the book from 6 CD's converted to MP3.
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great stories, too much Rather 23 Dec 2001
By Your librarian - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
A more appropriate subtitle for this book might be, Those who achieved despite America's wrongs. Readers like me who come to this book expecting patriotic success stories of Americans aided by their nation's greatness will be disappointed by Rather's cynical view that hangs over this book.
The book is chock full of success stories that were not broadcast during Rather's "American Dream" segments on the CBS Evening News program. The stories, due to Rather's fine writing skills, are inspiring, moving and heart-warming. The Americans portrayed are certainly deserving of the praise and attention this book brings them. Their stories alone make this book worth purchasing.
But, caveat emptor, Rather brands this book with his cynicism of what is wrong with America and how the U.S. Constitution should be viewed. He profiles the successes of the heroes in this book against the failings in American society that they had to overcome. Rather's favorite American sins? Greed, big business, the wealthy, and white men in the less-enlightened past. Word of mouth will not be good among Republican readers.
Rather, for the most part, shies away from famous household names in this collection. Even the people profiled in the "fame" chapter (with the exception perhaps of author Jacquelyn Mitchard) are not household names. While the subtitle of the book indicates these people come from the "heart" of the nation, most of those profiled here come from decidedly urban environments. But that should not detract from the fine stories presented here.
This is a good book that could have been great if Rather would have checked his ego at the keyboard.
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