3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars
The title says it all..., Jan. 10 2004
It really does. This book is not about the technical elements of how to survive, such as how to build shelter, find water and eat in harsh conditions. You will probably end up feeling like you could do those things better after having read the book, but to focus on those skills would be to lose the point of the book. It is a detailed explanation of what it means to survive. Gonzales tells us what surval means in our brain as well as what it means to our personality, specifically the lessons that can be learned and the growth that can take place through a survival situation. What I found most powerful about the book were his regular references to his father's survival in WWII and how learning about that experience and trying to understand it steered his own life toward adventure. Gonzales uses survival as a vehicle to explore what drives people to do things others would think insane or even deadly. He also provides one of the most compelling and simple explanations for that behavior: we do it in order to build skills that will save us later. In one way or another, everyone will face a survival situation in their life from which they will either live or die. Gonzales' point seems to be that when that time comes having had some practice can make all the difference.