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on September 11, 2004
"The Travelers Gift" is a little treasury of wisdom for living an unconventional life in a conventional world. In the spirit of Og Mandino, Andy Andrews outlines seven principles for successful living:

1. The Buck Stops Here - Taking personal responsiblity

2. Seek Wisdom - Search for understanding and discernment

3. Be a Person of Action - Being a courageous leader

4. Have a Decided Heart - Overcoming double-mindedness

5. Choose Happiness - Possessing a grateful spirit

6. Forgive others - The power of grace and mercy

7. Persist - Perservering with faith until the end

Using historical personalities (Lincoln, Anne Frank, Truman) and events (Civil War, Holocaust, World War II), Andrews draws powerful lessons from the past to inspire today's reader. This is not a particularly "Christian" book. Believers and non-believers alike will see the wisdom and usefulness of the seven decisions and their related stories. While there is an undertone of faith, the book is not certainly not a "religious" book in the traditional sense.

If you liked the Og Mandino collection, you'll really love this. An inspirational book with some meat to it. Hope you enjoy it!
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Andy Andrews absolutely practices what he preaches. His little 'novel' cum self-help book has become widely popular since its introduction to the mass market in 2002. And there is a reason why. Aside from the personal biographical data that the author lived as a street person for a period in his life before he took charge and made changes in his philosophy that led to his rather startling success as a comedian, an advisor, an inspirational speaker and an author, Andrews knows how to capture the attention of his audience, lead them through his concepts of the Seven Decisions the Determine Personal Success in the guise of a novel, and follows up his service to mankind with variations of his original platform. Not only is Andy Andrews an inspirational writer, but he is also a successful marketer!

The original book THE TRAVELER'S BOOK is so well known that repeating a summary is unnecessary. Very succinctly, David Ponder is at the end of his rope financially, emotionally, and physically when he happens to have an auto accident, an event which triggers a time travel where he meets and gathers advice from King Solomon, Harry Truman, Anne Frank, Abraham Lincoln, Colonel Joshua Chamberlain, Christopher Columbus, and the angel Gabriel, each of whom delivers him a message of how to enhance life. Those seven decisions are 1)The buck stops here: Adversity is preparation for greatness, 2) I will seek wisdom: I will choose my friends with care, 3) I am a person of action: I can make a decision and I can make it now, 4) I have a decided heart: My destiny is assured, 5) Today I will choose to be happy; I am the possessor of a grateful heart, 6) I will greet this day with a forgiving spirit: I will forgive myself, and 7) I will persist without exception: I will find way where there is no way.

After his 'time travel' learning experience David Ponder wakes up and sees his world change because of the decisions he has made. Andrews wisely does not make his issues a hard sell. He simply tells a story, one that may be a little on the fantasy side, and allows the reader to absorb and relate to the transformation that takes place. It is very much to his credit that he does not preach in this book: Andrews shares in a warm and familiar friend manner and that makes a big difference! Andy Andrews believes in these decisions and after reading his book, it is difficult not to buy into his smilingly warm philosophy. Grady Harp, February 08
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on November 22, 2003
The Traveler's Gift is a book of success principles told as a parable. It has several points in common with many other books in the self-help genre. On the plus side, if you study and follow the principles, you will probably benefit. On the downside, it is not especially original and it's not a book you would read for its literary qualities. This book also has a certain spiritual and political slant that will appeal to many readers but will alienate others. The hero of the story is David Ponder, a man down on his luck who, after an accident, finds himself hurled through history meeting many famous (and a couple of not so famous) leaders and other heroic figures. This includes two American presidents, Lincoln and Truman, Christopher Columbus, Ann Frank and King Solomon. The spiritual slant is definitely Judeo-Christian, with the archangel Gabriel even making an appearance. I suppose this aspect of the book can be appreciated as a parable even for those who don't share the author's religious perspective. The political slant I found a bit more problematic. Anyone who has qualms about the conventional American interpretation of historical events such as the dropping of the atomic bomb on Japan, the noble motives of Christopher Columbus or the pure idealism of Lincoln and the Union during the Civil War might be distracted from the self-help aspect of the book and question some of the author's assumptions and historical sources. It may be that he is aiming his message at a very specific type of reader and is not concerned with such possible objections. This bias, no doubt, is reflected in the success principles themselves, which are mostly very macho and gung-ho (one notable exception is the section on forgiveness), with many military analogies . Still, the principles, which are called "seven decisions that determine personal success" are sound and well explained. If people follow the advice to be decisive, accept responsibility for their actions, and have faith in the future, they will almost certainly have good results. I was not especially enamored with the style of this book, but I know that it has touched and helped many people and I'm sure it will help many more in the future.
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on November 8, 2002
Andy Andrews has written a thought-provoking book that will challenge you to be your best. The Traveler's Gift is written in story form which makes it fun to read and hard to put down. The incredible journey of the main character, David Ponder, is gripping and enlightening. The seven decisions revealed in his journey are timeless and applicable to all areas of our life. I loved this book because it encouraged me to live up to my fullest potential. I would encourage you to read this book and give it to everyone you care about.
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on November 11, 2002
I feel overly-qualified to exclaim this about The Traveler's Gift because I have kids, I was a kid, and I allow my inner kid to come out and play as often as she likes. When I first read The Traveler's Gift, I couldn't put it down until I had finished. I just had to know what happened to David Ponder. But when I finished it, my inner-kid pouted because she didn't want the story to end! So, we read it again! The Traveler's Gift gave us hope and my inner-kid declared, "I never knew those people my history teacher talked about in school were really real people." And I realized that the people David Ponder visited were indeed, very real people. Real people with the same hopes and dreams and fears and doubts that I have. What they did with these hopes, dreams, fears, and doubt is what put them in the history books for us to study. The seven decisions that determine personal success that David Ponder receives from these real people are decisions that I can apply in my life. I just have to make the decision to do so. Reading The Traveler's Gift has encouraged me to do so.
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on November 1, 2002
"The Traveler's Gift" is a life-changing treasure. The fact that it's entertaining, informative and inspiring is a fantastic bonus.
Most of us will see a personal reflection in the main character, David Ponder. All the cards seemed to be stacked against him and just when you think it can't get any worse ... the adventure begins. While meeting seven extraordinary people from different times in history, Ponder gets to see what each person was thinking during intense moments of decision that helped shape the world. (Luckily, you get to learn from their unbelievable minds as well.)
Of the seven visits, my personal favorite is a man of lesser fame, Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain, who played a vital role in the North's victory in the Civil War. (I get the chills just thinking about it.)
Andy Andrews has got to be one of the most brilliant, inspirational storytellers of this generation. "The Traveler's Gift" is a definite `must' read.
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on December 9, 2005
The title of this book caught my eye at my local library since I am an avid traveler. However, at the time of check-out, I didn't realize what a jewel I had really found. Once I started reading this book, I couldn't stop until I had finished it. I laughed, I cried and I took to heart the motivating decisions for success that we all know and so often forget when pit against the everyday perils of life. This book is so inspiring that I have circulated copies for everyone in my family to read, especially when they're feeling down. It's not about one man becoming a success and, as one reader put it "building fancy buildings". What the book really emphasizes is believing in yourself and pursuing your goals despite facing adversity. I highly recommend this book to anyone as I think it is the best book I have ever read.
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on November 12, 2002
I began reading The Traveler's Gift while I waited in the UPS store for a package. Three hours later, I had my package, but was still sitting in the store because I did not want to pause from my reading to drive the 7 minutes back home.
I became so involved with the story that I felt myself clenching my teeth, wiping tears in my eyes, and nodding in understanding as I identified with David Ponder. (Much to the confusion of the other UPS customers!)
The imagery, whimsy and historical context utilized in this book illustrate the Seven Decisions in a touching, flowing manner. Andy Andrews does a phenomenal job of outlining seven key issues that most people, if not all of us, struggle with daily.
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on May 22, 2003
Andy Andrews writes a "simple" tale filled with wisdom from the ages. Herein lies the power of the "Travelers Gift"! This book takes what others have complicated, and brings it back to the simple truths. My life has already changed tremendously in the two weeks since I read the book. I'm now going back for the second read. I believe strongly that there is power in simplicity. What Andy writes is simple, playfully written, and extremely powerful. Apply the principles daily for a month - I dare you :-) Life will never be the same again.
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on March 19, 2014
I felt deceived by the good reviews. After three chapters into the book, I realized the book was written in such a predictable pattern and I could not even continue reading because I know what's happening next. It is a simple message inflated into hundreds of pages and totally a waste of time.
I went back to the 1-star review and regret I did not read these earlier. Nothing is in the book, and do not waste your money on it.
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