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My Heroes: Extraordinary Courage, Exceptional People

3.74  ·  Rating details ·  156 Ratings  ·  15 Reviews
The 'World's greatest living explorer' as described in the Guinness Book of Records, writes about the people who have inspired him, 'from a London policeman hacked to death by a local mob to the bravest, boldest, parlour maid in the world'.

Ranulph, or Ran as he likes to be called, gives lectures all over the world and the question he is asked more often than not is 'who ar
Hardcover, 304 pages
Published September 29th 2011 by Hodder & Stoughton (first published September 1st 2011)
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Sarah O'Toole
Jan 05, 2012 rated it liked it
This was an exciting and informative read, but not particularly well-written. The chapters in which he tells a story rather than discusses an overall situation tend to flow better. There is no real sense of conclusion either to each story or to the book as a whole. The penultimate quotation, regarding adrenalin, optimism and action, is fascinating, but contains ideas which are not mentioned elsewhere at all and which if explored might have given greater focus to the writing. He definitely writes ...more
Jan 23, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: people
I had mixed feelings reading this book. At times, I felt a sense of amazement which I have not experienced in a long time. At other times, I felt a sense of pride in my fellow man but mostly, what I felt was a sense of shame to be related to a species capable of actions that made me cringe just reading about them, much less experience them.

In this book, Sir Fiennes describes his heroes, and they are fascinating. He recaps stories that have been retold before in greater detail of some heroes tha
Jun 20, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Ranulph takes you through a selection of "heroes" that he has chosen. All are in the modern era and not all are soldiers. Many of the stories are stomach churning documenting in detail man's in-humanity. In this book the term hero indicates extraordinary courage.
Not everyone's cup of tea.
Neville Ridley-smith
Dec 25, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: owned
Who are your heroes? This is a curious book. It's apparent from the introduction that the title is a misnomer. And yet it's not. You think it's going to be about who Ranulph's heroes are, in the sense of who inspired him to do all the things he's done. But it's not that at all. So what is it? When asked to write the book, he decided to try and figure out who his heroes actually could be. And then he writes about those. So, if you were to ask him that question now, he could give you an answer.

John Westworth
Jan 17, 2016 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I was really disappointed with this book. By his own definition of hero, he was contradictory throughout. For example, in chapter 1 alone he calls out the Navy Seals bravery when surely the one who should have been singled out was the village elder. Chapter 10 called out the bravery of soldiers. Chapter 11 starts with a quote that contradicts this. The book is riddled with inconsistencies like this, and is a bit of a gore fest at times. Not my type of book.
Julian Walker
Mar 23, 2016 rated it it was amazing
A quite stunningly inspirational series of stories about ordinary people who have performed heroic feats – because it is the right thing to do.

Rarely do you come across such altruistic behaviour and reading about a whole collection of such people in one volume is a humbling experience and one which everyone – whatever their normal reading preference – should buy.

An incredible, moving and, in the true sense of the word, awesome selection of heroism.
Carl Wells
Jan 13, 2012 rated it did not like it
Terrible book picked up at the airport on a whim. Fiennes writing is shockingly bad; his tone is patronizing, simplistic, dull, and meandering. In his preface he even admits that he didn't think about his heroes until the publisher asked him to write this book. The best reason to not read this book is that every story he retells has been told really well elsewhere.
Feb 11, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Not what expected from Ranulph it was interesting and in places uncomfortably graphic which has helped emphasise important scenes. Although a powerful book I was not as gripped as with some of his previous books. I would still recommend this book I learned a great more detail about world events I knew so little about previously m
Jim Gilmour
Dec 21, 2014 rated it liked it
A book I visited off and on at a time when I was busy and couldn't get a good run at it. I find I enjoy biography so I liked the idea of being able to select the different stories at at random almost, of which were each remarkable in their own right.
Jul 30, 2014 rated it liked it
Decent book, easy read. Interesting how Ranulph chose some of the lesser known heroes of the world. Those that rarely receive recognition but fought against impossible odds none the less.
Jun 27, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Eleven short stories of real-life heroes. Good read!!
Jul 26, 2012 rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: No many people
An interesting book although I feel Ranulph Feinnes went over the top with his graphic descriptions of Cambodia and Ruanda. At times it was almost gratuitous. Recommended? Not really.
May 14, 2013 rated it liked it
Some of the stories are indeed inspiring whereas others seemed a little rushed in the storytelling. Overall a good read.
Oct 21, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Wow. Not what I expected (a collection of stories about famous individuals). This collection is actually about ordinary people doing extraordinary deeds.
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Sir Ranulph Twisleton-Wykeham-Fiennes, 3rd Baronet, OBE, better known as Ranulph (Ran) Fiennes, is a British adventurer and holder of several endurance records.

Fiennes has written books about his army service and his expeditions as well as a book defending Robert Falcon Scott from modern revisionists. In May 2009, aged 65, he climbed to the summit of Mount Everest. According to the Guinness Book o
More about Ranulph Fiennes...

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