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Home » Books & writing

Book Giveaway: Ben Sherwood’s THE SURVIVORS CLUB

Submitted by on January 24, 2010 – 6:30 pm 29 Comments

It’s Monday. Do you think, “Damn, it’s gonna be another long week”? Or, “Hey, I survived my weekend”?

According to Ben Sherwood’s The Survivors Club, how you look at life can determine whether or not you live or die in a catastrophe. This book gave me anxiety because it constantly spouts statistics about one’s chances of dying in a myriad of ways. But I couldn’t stop reading because it also shares fascinating survivor stories and tips on how we can increase our chances of surviving unfortunate events, big and small.

Sherwood interviews people like the woman who lived after falling from the sky (she was a flight attendant on a plane that exploded), the man who didn’t die after his suicide jump from the Golden Gate Bridge (he changed his mind on the way down), the woman who survived a knitting needle through the heart AND breast cancer. Reading this book was like watching an episode of the ’80s show That’s Incredible!

Sherwood also talks to doctors and empiricists about the many variables that influence a person’s chances of survivability. Are you an optimist? You might die first in an extreme situation! The book contains instructions on how to take an Internet test called the Survivor Profiler to determine your Survivor Personality.

There are 5 types:

  • The Fighter attacks adversity head-on
  • The Believer puts faith in God
  • The Thinker uses his/her brain to get out of a bad situation
  • The Realist accepts life isn’t always rosy and knows how to adapt
  • The Connector draws strength from family and friends

We’ve all survived one thing or another, so which type are you? Answer this question in the comments section and I’ll enter your name in a random drawing for 1 of 5 paperback editions of The Survivors Club I’m giving away, courtesy of Hachette Book Group.


  • You must be a subscriber or Twitter follower of this site (see sidebar on right)
  • Per HBG’s request, only U.S. and Canada residents are eligible (they’ll ship books directly to winners)
  • If you tweet about this giveaway, I’ll give you 2 extra entries
  • Contest ends Friday, February 5 at 5 p.m. PST, with winners announced only here and via Twitter. Winners will have 48 hours to reply with mailing address before alternate names are chosen.

Now, tell me what kind of survivor you are!

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  • I see there is no 6th type, The Ostrich, who buries his/her head in the sand in hopes the disaster will go away? Damn.

    Best of luck to everyone with the competition!!

  • EIREGO says:

    I heard about this book, but thought it was yet another one of those Secret-ish, Law Of Attraction works that weren’t really telling you much other than to meditate 3 or 4 times per day. And who has time for that, right?

    But this sounds more practical and Paul Harvey-esque.

    Cool. I want in.

    • Pop Culture Nerd says:

      Oh gosh, no. This book says if you want to live, you’d better take action, not sit there and meditate. And I thought of Paul Harvey when I was reading it, too! LOVE The Rest of the Story.

  • FFBUFF8 says:

    All you had to do was say Free Books.

    I think I’m the Realist. I get the bumps and grinds of daily life and do my best to roll with it. Getting angry or vindictive doesn’t do anything.

  • EIREGO says:

    Okay, so there’s another category…..SPAZ. I know, I didn’t answer the question and just expected you to enter me in the contest. And since I am now using my brain to fix the situation, I guess I’m a THINKER. (Although I was not thinking earlier).

    Cheers, PCN!!!

  • norma says:

    Hi PCN Very interesting book, dramatic but real. Also interesting the types of people and the way they deal with situations. About suicidals somebody said that If you think better there´s always a solution, you have to look for the reasons that make you live. Or answers. I think some types have things in common. The realistic and the thinker seem to be only about the brain. And the connector and the believer seem to be about the love (for your family or for God). I don´t understand the fighter reasons. Perharps I should know much more about those tests of personality. (But as usual you dont´t send books to other countries and I live in Buenos Aires. )

    • Pop Culture Nerd says:

      Oh norma, I hate it that you’re not eligible but I didn’t make the rules about U.S. and Canada residents. That was by request of the publisher, who will be shipping the books.

      Thank you for your insightful comment, as usual. I think most of us have a combination of the different qualities but there’s one that dominates. You can take the test online (click here) and tell me which one you are!

    • norma says:

      HI PCN I know that you hate it, but I still had to mention it.
      The people from Hachette just need to extend the courtesy to other countries. That would be so good for our relations!

      • norma says:

        About me I´ve been all these types. I was a fighter but I didn´t know what was pulling me. Now I know that I was a connector. Then I became realistic (which implies only the mind so I became a non believer). Then I became a thinker. Now I want to believe in God forever. So I hope I will become a fighter or warrior of the light(or guerrero de la luz) or lightworker.
        To know myself and to meditate is essencial for this.

  • Lydia says:

    I am such an optimist – I think I need this book if you expect me to survive the year! I’m going to remain optimistic and at least tell myself I can survive long enough to take over the top commentator spot. I don’t know which of the five I am – but from the comments, I align most closely with Eirego’s – that of a SPAZ!

    • Pop Culture Nerd says:

      Haha! I LOVE your optimism. Sherwood doesn’t say we have to get rid of that attitude (I’m an optimist, too), we just have to supplement it with preparedness. There’s an interesting section on how plane travelers never listen to the safety instructions because they think, “In a crash, I’m going to die anyway.” Sherwood found out that’s not true, that 96% of passengers survive if they know what to do about evacuating, life vests, etc., and how quickly they need to do it.

      If you want to take over the top commentator spot, I think you need to leave only 27 more!

  • WotV says:

    Hello! I follow you on Twitter! I’ll tweet my results and your contest. I am, apparently, a Connector.

  • I am a fighter – I always attack adversity head-on. For me, it is hard to relinquish control. Rather than taking a passive approach, I jump right in and attempt to fix the problem. While it would certainly be easier to be a realist or believer, a fighter personality displays a different kind of strength. Being active empowers you.

    • Pop Culture Nerd says:

      You sound badass—I LIKE it! I’m a fighter, too, because I don’t like feeling helpless and waiting for someone to rescue me. Plus, the alternative is giving up, which I usually don’t accept as a choice.

  • Elizabeth says:

    I’m a combination Realist / Thinker: I understand and accept that life isn’t always rosy, so I adapt by using my brain to get out of a bad situation. 😉

    Sounds like a fun read. Thanks for the contest.

  • Alana says:

    An intriguing idea! I imagine that I’m a Thinker, though my life-or-death choices are somewhat limited to “Choose Your Own Adventure” books, which seem totally geared towards Thinkers.

    I’d certainly be curious to see what this book has to say on the matter, so please enter me in the drawing.


    • Pop Culture Nerd says:

      I used to love those Choose-Your-Own-Adventure books! When I was a teen, I participated in this experiment where I (and several others) watched a movie in a theater specially equipped with hand controls in each seat. We got to decide which paths the characters took by entering our choices in the remote (the actors would cue us by saying, “Oh no! What do we do?”). The choice with the most votes would show on screen.

      It was a blast and I wondered why it didn’t take off. And then I realized many years later—“Oh yeah, it’s called a video game.”

  • le0pard13 says:

    The results of their quiz lists me as a Realist. Hmm…

    I’d heard of Sherwood’s book before, and it sounded like an interesting read. The one book that I re-read from time-to-time (in book or audio form), and sounds somewhat similar in scope, is the one by Laurence Gonzalez, Deep Survival: Who Lives, Who Dies, and Why. And it’s one that I always recommend to friends. Thanks, PCN.

  • Christine says:

    I’m the Connector type, occasionally falling into the Spaz sub-category. Sometimes I just need someone that’ll draw me back from the edge…or push me off the cliff when I know I should jump, but I’m talking myself out of it. 😉 And, sometimes, it’s just knowing that I’ve got resources to draw on that helps me. Plus, it also improves how I view myself, if others see me as someone that they can draw strength from.

    Does Sherwood talk any about people trying to be a “type” that they’re not? On occasion, I have to tell myself that needing that back-up/support does not make me less or weaker than another. Which is funny, because if someone else was asking me for themselves, I’d be on my soapbox promoting that acceptance of help can be a great blessing! I assume, that like most, I’m my own worst enemy sometimes.

    • Pop Culture Nerd says:

      Christine, I think it takes smarts and strength to ask for help. I used to be stubborn and think I could handle everything by myself but that was just foolish. Knowing when and whom to ask shows you’ve made a proper assessment of the situation.

      Sherwood doesn’t discuss people trying to be one type or another. It’s more like we’re predominantly one kind of survivor and that trait instinctively comes out when we’re tested.

  • Rebecca Graham says:

    Following you on Twitter: rhoneygee. Sounds like a very helpful book.

    rhoneygtn at yahoo dot com

  • Marjorie says:

    I would like to win this book for my brother Bill.
    He is 70 and just learning how to use a computer.
    He could use this book.

    I follow by email.

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