“Look on the shelves of any bookstore and you’ll see dozens of books purporting to tell you, the questing parent (or the clueless new father like me) exactly how to raise good kids. But until now, I had never come across one that taught readers how to raise good adults. That’s exactly what What Kids Need to Succeed does, and that’s why it’s one of the most extraordinary parenting books of the past few years. Here are four principles that unite the world’s most successful people–principles that any parent could pass onto their children and give them a much greater chance of being fulfilled, happy and fully realized adults. They called these principles the Four Foundations, and What Kids Need to Succeed is built around them. In explaining the Four Foundations and how they apply to parents today, Andrea and Harry Patten have written a book that is fast, easy and entertaining to read. Dozens of small, quick chapters illustrate core principles of the Foundations and why they matter. Even better, the book is filled with the stories of people, famous and not so famous, whose lives are perfect illustrations of the power of the Foundations to produce people who can succeed against any odds. These stories form the soul of the book. I also loved the introduction, when the authors talk, with not a little wry humor, about the Deadly Sins of Parenting–transgressions that anyone who has watched a toddler throw a screaming tantrum in the supermarket checkout line will understand. No parent is perfect, and this book isn’t afraid to point it out, but it also forgives us our parenting sins and shows us the path to redemption.
As a new father, I was captivated by What Kids Need to Succeed. In about 120 easy pages, it gets past all the drippy-eyed romanticism of raising kids and gets to the practical point. It’s the way I was raised, and so many others of my generation were raised: to work hard, be respectful, meet expectations, be independent, show generosity, and if we screwed up, take responsibility. This book harkens back to those values and brings them into the present day, beautifully. If you have or will have a child, read it.”~Vince S., dad, musician
January 25, 2013