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Publisher's Summary

Fortune favours the bold. All great leaders of history have known this, and were successful because of the risks they dared to take. But today, so many of us are paralysed by fear. 

Drawing on ancient Stoic wisdom and examples across history and around the world, Ryan Holiday shows why courage is so important, and how to cultivate it in our own lives. Courage is not simply physical bravery but also doing the right thing and standing up for what you believe; it's creativity, generosity and perseverance. And it is the only way to live an extraordinary, fulfilled and effective life. 

Everything in life begins with courage. This book will equip you with the bravery to begin.

©2021 Ryan Holiday (P)2021 Hachette Audio UK

What listeners say about Courage Is Calling

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    4 out of 5 stars

Great book but ironically too scared to take a stance

Overall it’s a great historical set of examples of courage and the values and dangers of courage and cowardice. Holiday’s greatest strength is his ability to distill and repackage information for broad adoption. I’m a big fan of his repackaging of the Stoics and he has taken inspiration from many great writers on the topic of Courage and packaged them into a digestible book.

My biggest issue with this book is that Holday will give all these examples of courage and how freedom is more important than life etc but then bring it back to covid and say that lockdowns are courageous which to me is the exact opposite interpretation of the point he makes time and time again.

On that note it doesn’t seem that Holiday is brave enough to actually qualify what kind of things it is courageous to fight for. When compared with Nietzsche or CS Lewis et al. He appears reluctant to take a stance, all the examples of courage are very safe bets and he doesn’t give guidance to how to know if you’re being courageous on the side of good.

Otherwise it’s a great book and would recommend.

4 people found this helpful

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Don't miss this

this is one of the greatest writing by Ryan Holiday. so far.
it is amazing to see how he has matured as an author and this is just a testament to his work as what I would call a stoic in his own right.

2 people found this helpful

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Great reminder for courage

This book is a great reminder for courage.
It’s written and read really well. I think I’ve read all of Ryan’s work now and I’ve always enjoyed the experience.

But it’s important to note, it is not amazing. It is good. And good is enough when there is so little on the topic.

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Loved it highly recommended

Great book Really well designed thoroughly enjoyed it and found great value in it.

courage is something that is so important and not just in the big picture but most importantly in every single moment and every single opportunity.

now thanks to this book whenever there is an opportunity for courage and I can't be bothered or would prefer not to be there's a big nagging voice that encourages me to do the right thing where previously I would have just stayed quiet or not worried about it.

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amazing

this book spoke to my soul, both the brave part and coward parts of me. it will be on my re-read list. highly recommend 👌

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Up to the high standard Ive come to expect of Ryan

So pleased to say that I enjoyed this book as much as his other stoic works. Obstacle, Ego, and Key are books that I keep returning to so there was a little bit of apprehension if this would live at the same level as them Having just finished it, in my opinion, it really does. So many authors don't quite make it in their next big attempt, and while I know Ryan has written a whole heap of other books as well as other medium I'm really pleased to say that I'm sure this new set of stoic virtues is going to be just as successful as the previous trilogy.

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Impressive and inspiring

Loved it! An inspirational and we'll researched book. Looking forward to Ryan's next book in the series.

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  • Jet
  • 06-10-2021

If not now When, if not you then who?

This book is Calling, will you read it?
Hesitation is when your resolve should solidify.
This is one of the most enlightening reads I personally have felt resonate. I hope it opens your mind too

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Another inspiring book by Ryan Holiday

Ryan wrote about his doubts if to include in the last chapter some of his personal successes and failures of acting with courage. It gave the entire book a clearer perspective and made it much more personable. I loved it, as I loved the entire book.

I always hugely enjoy the references to and anecdotes from historic events, stories make concepts stick.

This book is the first of a four part series, I look forward to the other three.

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  • Sarah Warugongo
  • 12-01-2022

Ryan Holiday is a real treat!

Courage is calling is a treat to the soul. Loved the narration, the context, references of great men & women in history & how he frames why we should all embody courage as a virtue. I’ll be listening to it again and again - thank you!!!

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  • Jeremy O'Connor
  • 29-10-2021

Great book

Not only are the stories great but every chapter makes you feel more courageous in your own life

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  • Reading Addict
  • 22-10-2021

Simply amazing, great stoic philosophy

Great stoic principle, courage is vital to achieve greatness at any levels. Heroism (the 3rd part) is even more inspirational. Highly recommended if you’re into personal development (you are if you are reading this).

Thanks for another great book and the transparency (at the last chapter) 🔥🔥👍👍

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  • Anonymous User
  • 22-10-2021

Love you Ryan, but get a new narrator

Ryan Holiday's books are amazing and this is no exception. Do not be put of by my 3 stars for Performance, I think Ryan should not narrate himself and there surely is better talent out there.
This book gives you so much; info, history, mythology and literature about courage, being brave as one would expect. The shortness of the chapters lend themselves to using the book as a journal, to meditate on.
If you have read Ryan before, you'l encounter his favorite characters again, which only makes you understand them better.
Highly recommended for people who would speak truth to power against real injustices of the world.

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  • minicoopers
  • 10-10-2021

The First Virtue

1st out of 4 virtue of the stoic. the virtue that is the fundamental that other virtue stands on. There is no progress without courage, taking risk and being bold

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  • Anonymous User
  • 08-10-2021

Great Book for Gain Courage

Best book I have read that talks about courage. A glad to hear the name of my country Sri Lanka 🇱🇰 in best selling book.

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  • Michael van der Galien
  • 01-10-2021

A timely and necessary book: a new standard work

As a fan of Ryan's work, I was looking forward to this title. Ryan did not disappoint. Courage Is Calling is a fantastic work - a standard work, really, about what courage is, how it should be used, and why it is such an important virtue. Actually, why it's one of stoicism's four virtues.

Ryan uses historical example after historical example to explain, point by point, what courage is, what difference it makes, how it should be used. It is EXTREMELY inspiring - and more than that, there's a lot of wisdom in it too. It's not just a "pep talk." It's much more that. It really is a historical and philosophical explanation and collection of heroism. Profiles In Courage for the 21st century, and based on Stoicism as a philosophy.

This book will guide me for years to come. It is already guiding me now. As a business owner, there are hard decisions I have to make. Decisions I've been putting off. Courage Is Calling gives me the a) courage to make those decisions and b) the right approach to use that courage to make the right decisions.

That's such an important point Ryan makes here; it's not just courage for courage's sake. There's heroism. There's valor. There's thinking you're courageous, but actually you're being stupid.

I don't leave an Audible review very often, but I took the time to do so here, because it's truly freaking brilliant and because I am CONVINCED that it'll help many, many people.

Is there 'nothing' that can be improved? Yes, there is. Ryan's a good narrator, but I felt that in this audiobook, especially compared to some of his other narrating work, he doesn't perform as strongly as he can. It's still good - but not excellent. So that's a point of attention for next time.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 18-11-2021

Painful to listen to and not very insightful

I bought this book as Ryan Holiday was repeatedly suggested by Audible algorithms.
I found this book was mostly anecdotes on the importance of courage with exanples of figures who went against the thinking of their time or who risked embarassment, loss of status or their life for what they believed was right.

Thats fine but I found little practical guidance here on  how to develop this courage in my own life or why it is that some people become more couragous than most. He doesn't write about the blocks that come from self image formed during a person's development growing up and the impact that self image has on confidence and asseriveness. It might feel good to put myself in the shoes of Serpico as he uncovered crooked fellow police officers and imagine I could do the same but its not that simple.

The  book is broken into mostly short chapters. The chapters should be a clue as to the lessons as they each have titles like " seize the offense". or "You have to own it" but 4 hours in, I felt I had not really learned anything or felt very inspired.

The author narrates the book which was painful to listen to. He leaves odd pauses in his sentences at time and nt enough at other times. He also had a tone that sounded like he was reading an essay or giving a lecture, like he was projecting to be heard at the back of the room.

Finally the writing itself made me feel like I was constantly being berated for not being couragpus enough. I dont think that wa the intention but it seemed like every chapter implied "Look at how great and courageous these people were, if you could just stop being a cowardly idiot you might be successful too"
With 90 minutes to go I gave up. It started to feel like torture.

7 people found this helpful

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  • Jamie
  • 30-09-2021

One of the best books I've read

I absolutely loved this book through and through.
Easy listen, concise short chapters. Brilliant writing with practical lessons and good narration.
10/10 recommend.
Very much looking forward to the next 3 books, especially the next one on self discipline/temperance.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Pete M
  • 03-10-2021

Verbose

Usually, Ryan Holiday books read well. It appears this new style of writing is excessively complicating lamenting the same point.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 02-10-2021

Superb.

A brilliant book with a very important and relevant message.

Excellent narration from Ryan Holiday.

I'm happy with my purchase and I'm looking forward to Ryan's next book in the virtue series.

2 people found this helpful

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  • brian smyth
  • 01-10-2021

loved this book

this book is a nudge for all of us to do the right thing.it is a well written and thoughtfull book about the best people have to offer the world.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 31-01-2022

Ryan gets better and better in each book he writes

I started listening to this book on the 1st of January this year, and it gave me so much fuel for my plans for this year. I absolutely loved all the real people and stories Ryan brings in to describe the real meaning of courage. It brought me a deep sense of accountability. It gave me perspective to how I should face all the challenges life throw at us.
I love all his books, but I have to say that this one has been my favourite one so far.
Thank you Ryan for sharing so much knowledge and kindness with us.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Filippo
  • 11-11-2021

One Of The Best Resource On Courage.

I have spent time reading books on overcoming fear and listening to audios on overcoming fear. This audiobook by Ryan Holiday is one of the best. Ryan has really done his research regarding this subject. He gives very good examples of people who have had to overcome fear in their lives and also offers encouraging words so that we can overcome the fears in our lives. While listening to this audiobook the thought came to me that cowards are not in the history books. Only those who have taken a stand of bravery and courageousness are remembered. Enjoy the audiobook.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Oliver
  • 06-04-2022

Continued rambling...

Didn't get too far through this book despite few attempts - felt and long and rambling.

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  • Kayle I
  • 31-03-2022

Fortune favours the brave

Excellent production. Thank you for the message. I am grateful for such an inspirational work of art

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  • Anonymous User
  • 05-03-2022

Worst book of Ryan Holiday

I read/listened most of his previous books and i was so excited to absorb Courage is Calling quite close to the publishing time.

Back to the point, the best part of the book is the last part he talks about himself. The rest is rumbling the same thing here and there all the time. His examples are the same over the book so i lost my sense of location in the book, i frequently found myself thinking “wait a sec, i already listened this, he already mentioned this” also his examples are so hard to relate for me eg.politicians, warriors, etc. Even Florence Nightingale was too far away from our era. I wish he gathered the courage examples people around him rather than ancient books. Again i am a huge fan of the author but not this book frankly.

I forced myself to finish the book and thank god at the end there was a part i could relate.

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