Samuel Smiles was a Scottish author and reformer, best known today as the writer of books extolling virtues of self help. These works have come to exemplify Victorian values for the modern reader and he received some criticism in his own time from socialists because of his emphasis on individual achievement.
I have found out that a lot of "self help" books that are currently on the market seem to be retreads of stuff that has always been written about how one is in charge of his own destiny regardless of his status in life. Integrity and perseverance are many times much more important than "genius" when it comes to success.
I totally agree with this idea but I also believe in saving money and I choose to read some of the earlier public domain books on this subject rather than buy the retreads.
I'm about halfway through this book and I have to say that I'm much more impressed than I thought I would be. Some of the things these guys went through to become successful is really amazing. I thought it might be a bit outdated, but the author gives great examples of how good old-fashioned hard work always works--regardless of what century you live in.
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