The Four Doors: A Guide to Joy, Freedom, and a Meaningful Life by Richard Paul Evans
(Simon & Schuster, 2013, 142 pages)
Bestselling novelist Richard Paul Evans has met hundreds of thousands of people and heard many of their stories in his travels over the past two decades. Most of the people he meets are hungry for inspiration; they love his novels because his characters are also searching for meaning and understanding.
The Four Doors is Evans’s message to those who seek inspiration in their lives. It began as a talk he gave on the spur of the moment, and over the course of ten years, it has evolved into a message he has shared with successful business people, students, and even addicts and prisoners. It includes stories his readers have told him, stories about great achievers who overcame hardships, and stories about his own struggle growing up in a large family with financial difficulties and a suicidal mother, and about his diagnosis of Tourette’s Syndrome later in life. These inspiring stories are woven through his identification and careful explanation of the four doors to a more fulfilling life.
Richard Paul Evans is a wonderful writer so I knew that this book would be a fascinating read. I must admit I had some trepidation when I started reading it because I’m just so used to reading his novels, which have all been wonderful. By the time I was finished, though, I was very impressed indeed. This book is not a novel – it is inspiring, enlightening, and a very interesting and quick read. This book gently prods the reader to examine their own thinking and views on the world. I really appreciated his use of “Mental Maps” and found his analogies throughout the book profoundly thought-provoking.
Richard’s personal experiences and stories of others that he conveys in this book are heartwarming and eye-opening. The many quotes and affirmations he shares are relatable to everyone. There is so much depth in this book and yet it is easy to read and understand. I think it will touch each person who reads it in a different personal way. When I read the book I found it to be equal to his other books and very encouraging and inspiring. Very good and thought-provoking. I highly recommend it.