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Reviewed by Erin McKibbin

Biking in Foothill Ranch, California, Anne Hjelle is attacked by a mountain lion. She survives the attack. JAT Flight 364 explodes in the air over Czechoslovakia. The only survivor is Vesna Vulovic, a flight attendant, who plummets 6 miles to the ground and lives. Brian Udell is forced to eject from his plane going faster than Mach 1 at sea level. The impact breaks both his legs and severely dislocates one shoulder, rendering that arm useless. Despite having only one working limb, Udell manages to inflate a raft, climb aboard, and wait to be rescued. In the Gulf of Mexico, Tim Sears falls off of the cruise ship Celebration wearing nothing more than his boxer shorts, a t-shirt, and a sweatshirt. Without any floatation devices and without anyone coming to his rescue (the ship’s crew never knew he was missing), Sears literally swims for his life over a course of 17 hours where he is finally rescued by a Maltese ship.

What all these people have in common is that they are all survivors of situations that would normally be fatal to the average person. Ben Sherwood, journalist and author, sets out to discover why some people live where others would perish in his book The Survivors Club. Sherwood takes the reader on a tour of the remarkable and the astounding while all along collecting research into the sciences of extreme first aid, faith and prayer, fear, will power, adversity, and luck. He includes countless tales of survival and death defying feats as well as advice from rescue workers and scientists who investigate the various forms of death.

The Survivors Club is more than just a study in the art of survival; it is also a reference manual. Sherwood invites the reader to take a quiz that will provide him/her with a “survivor profile.” This individual profile identifies the test taker’s “survivor type” (fighter, believer, connector, thinker, or realist) and details the top three survivor tools in the test taker’s arsenal. The reader is then invited to join an online community of survivors where members can share their stories and “build a private support group of friends and family.”

Ben Sherwood’s The Survivors Club is a must read for those who desire a long life and wish to be prepared for all eventualities in life.

Rating: 5/5

Erin fell in love with the written word as a small child and subsequently spent most of her life happily devouring literature. She works as a freelance news, marketing, and technical writer as well as a full-time researcher/investigator in the sign industry. Erin lives just outside of Cleveland, Ohio enjoying the beauty of life with her children and grandchildren.

Review copy was provided free of any obligation by Grand Central Publishing. No monetary or any other form of compensation was received.