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The Gift of Fear Audio Cassette – Abridged, Audiobook

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--This text refers to the Paperback edition.



Product details

  • Audio Cassette
  • Publisher: Audio Literature; abridged edition edition (Aug. 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1574532081
  • ISBN-13: 978-1574532081
  • Product Dimensions: 17.8 x 11.2 x 1.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (85 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 5,924,868 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Review

"A how-to book that reads like a thriller...provocative...empowering.""--The Boston Globe" "De Becker has a lot to say about crime and the fear of crime, and he says it persuasively...his blend of empathy, reassurance and common sense wows readers.""--Newsweek" "Chilling and fascinating."--Jeffrey Toobin, author of "The Nine" "From the Paperback edition." --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

About the Author

Gavin de Becker is internationally regarded as a leading expert on the prediction and management of violence. In 1985, de Becker received a special award from the US Attorney General and the director of the FBI in recognition of his work in threat assessment. He is also the author of more than forty articles and white papers, co-author of CONFIDENTIAL REPORT TO MANAGEMENT: UNDERSTANDING AND PREVENTING WORKPLACE VIOLENCE and the contributing-author of STALKED. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

51 of 51 people found the following review helpful By Charles Vasey TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 11 Dec. 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Gavin de Becker's book is far more than I expected. Typically self-help books tend to be rather shrill and include a lot of large font type with daft mnemonics; one suspects the material is a bit thin and has been stretched over the available space. But with de Becker he has (as he ruefully admits) a great deal more than he could (or would) ever recount.

The book's central core is to identify the signs that the author claims one intuitively detects and then to act on them rather than to dismiss them. He opens with a very powerful piece (which I have read before) on the signs that a rape-victim dismissed and those which she picked up to avoid becoming a murder victim. He also identifies the approach used by controlling men. This account completely changed how I would offer help to a woman. This is not just a limited topic however; the identified controlling strategies are ones you will all encounter when talking to salesmen, bossy people and bosses. By identifying them you can act to defuse the alpha-male. The author also does a very good feature on saying "No" clearly.

There is much else that is useful in this book, his chapters on stalkers are particularly good. The keys I took away were that de Becker was himself a victim of violence and had used it well, that his advice was not some macho dream but that stalkers are best defeated by lack of contact and that restraining orders may work in the opposite direction. He also points out that what makes these men monsters is actually what makes them the most human; they act predictably if amorally.

Well written and moderate in tone, I got a lot more than I expected when I bought the book.
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19 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Phung Minh Hoang on 28 Nov. 2007
Format: Mass Market Paperback
That's the central message of the book, and one that may save your life if you listen to it.

Through this book, de Becker has convinced me that most violence can be predicted. He goes through a great many common situations in which violence happens, from encounters with strangers, workplace violence to domestic violence and date stalking. In each situation, he describes the indicators of likely violence. Some of these indicators are so often overlooked and rationalized away by the people involved. My favorite one is called: "Refusal to take no for an answer." It can be as trivial as the new date persisting in offering you a drink. Although trivial, such incidents are very telling about his tendency toward violence.

De Becker also discusses a characteristic in many people that blunts out their intuition to actual dangers: unwarranted anxiety. Due to media and social conditioning and other influences, those people feel fear or anxiety in situations that do not pose actual dangers. Such unwarranted anxiety makes them confused and oblivious to the real signals from their intuition. De Becker offers ways for people to overcome that curse and live a life relatively free from fear and anxiety.

In short, I would highly recommend this book. It is one of the few books should be read by everyone (both men and women).
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43 of 46 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 4 Sept. 2001
Format: Paperback
Never before has a book had such a profound effect on me. The sub-title is slightly mis-leading as the strategies can be used in all aspects of every day life. It teaches you to become more aware of yourself, others and your surroundings. I bought 5 copies for my friends and they all raved about it. One friend passed it onto her brother who'd come out of a car accident with severe disabilities. It gave him the courage to take charge of his life again. Read this book.
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26 of 28 people found the following review helpful By Belochka on 27 Nov. 2012
Format: Paperback
The Gift of Fear was recommended to me as a useful resource and while it does have valuable information it wasn't quite the book I was expecting.

If you've ever found yourself in a situation where you've encountered a person who prompts a reaction of tension or anxiety, for a seemingly unknown reason, The Gift of Fear can be a valuable guide to deconstructing those situations. The author goes through case histories and his experiences of why we should learn to listen to the valid subconscious cues and information we can receive about a person's behaviour.

Chapters Two to Four are resonant reading because, sad to say, I doubt that many women can read them without thinking of at least one occasion where similar behaviour has occurred even if it did not result in the same outcomes. These sections were the genuine strength of the book by having practical and reasonable suggestions about listening to your own reactions in difficult or potentially dangerous situations.

Where I encountered some problems with the book is that, although marketed as a self-help guide, there are only a few chapters I found to be entirely relevant. The book goes from explaining why we have instinctive responses and how to use them to being a type of true crime/criminal profiling study. Whilst this may be of interest to readers of criminal behaviour and legal systems; it is based on information for a purely American audience rather than an international one, so has some very clear cultural differences between countries (prevalence of crime with guns to highlight one example).

Gavin de Becker is also not backwards when it comes to selling himself and his credentials with mentions of high-profile clients he's worked for.
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