Men of Renown, an Author's Review

Posted by rjagilbert on March 3, 2014 at 9:55 PM

(If the online publishing sites that feature my book would allow a message from the author, this is what I would say.)


Dear prospective reader,


I did not write this book to sell it. I wrote it because I wanted people to read it. It is a story about priorities—about two contrasting definitions of success. Saph must choose how to measure his success. Will he define himself by the wealth, power, fame, and glory like his kinfolk? Or will he join with an obscure old hermit who was mocked by all who knew him? A hermit who has since become one of the most famous heroes of our time—one who is remembered best not for what he did, but for what he gave to the next generation.


I can’t make you read this book. I can’t make anybody read this book. God knows I’ve done my best; I’ve given copies to friends, relatives, strangers, and church members, but beyond putting the book in their hand, there is nothing I can do to force them to read it.


I would love to hear reviews from those who have read this book. There have been a few, from the friend who told me “Excellent page-turner” in an email or the young man who verbally expressed his disappointment with the way the story ended. But most of all, the basic review I have been given over and over again is, “I’ve been too busy. I haven’t gotten around to reading your book.”


This book was written for two men, neither of whom has read it. Both have copies sitting somewhere on their bookshelves, but both have admitted to me that they don’t have time to read it. I know them both well enough to know that they read plenty of other books—bestselling books lauded by the media giants and bookstore publicity machines of this world. (In fact, I know well enough that many of the people to whom I have given this book have read plenty of other books while leaving this one forgotten on the shelf.) Sadly, in the last few years I have seen both of these men suffer through disasters that I’d like to think might have been averted had they heeded the messages I was trying to send them through this book.


What you read controls what you think. What people want you to think dictates what they want you to read. Being an independent thinker has forced me to be an independent writer. My message is not in line with the message being pushed by the media masses. I do not have famous pastors, businessmen, and marketing agencies working for me to promote this book. When I chose to self-publish this work, I thought that I did not need those things, because I was not trying to create an international best-seller. Unfortunately, in a world where readers look to “giants” of leadership to tell them what to read, what to watch, and what to listen to, I have very little chance of being read, seen, or heard by anyone.


I have done my best to put this book into the hands of the people who need to read it, but like I said, I cannot force this generation to read it. Having spent the last few years, having spent more hours and money than I should have on self-promotion, I feel that I know what the true hero of this book must have felt like. In the end, despite all he said, he finally had to give up on trying to make a difference in the world he knew and instead focus his energy on building his own boat. At this point, I think I need to do the same.

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