This year, as regular readers know, I am recommending a series of books as Christmas presents, the common denominator being that they are all written by people I know. You can see the first installments here, here and here.
Recommendation number four is Hugh Hewitt’s The Happiest Life. Hugh, one of the wisest people we know, explains what it takes to be happy. Scott has already plugged Hugh’s book, so I can’t do much better than to quote:
Hugh Hewitt is a happy man and he is also the cause of happiness in others. He has discovered the secret of happiness. It is a secret sought by many and discovered by deep thought or natural inclination only by a few. I have seen Hugh act on his understanding of happiness many times since I first met him and been struck by the fact that I have never met anyone quite like him. Indeed, I stand in awe of him. Now I understand why. In this book Hugh happily shares the secret of happiness with his readers. This is therefore a book that gives the gift that keeps on giving. I am most grateful for it. It belongs on the bookshelf along with classic reflections on the sources of happiness by Aristotle and Thomas Aquinas and C.S. Lewis.
Hugh is one of the most effective people I know. When I first met him, I thought: Wow, I’ve never seen anyone network quite like this! But eventually, upon getting to know Hugh better, I realized that what he does is not networking in the cynical sense. Rather, Hugh, out of a genuine impulse of good will, helps people–hundreds of them, maybe thousands–without expecting anything in return. Hugh is a sort of new media Johnny Appleseed, strewing seeds wherever he goes without asking anything in exchange. All giving, no expecting.
If you want to understand how one of the most effective conservatives on today’s public stage does it, order The Happiest Life.
As good as The Happiest Life is, it isn’t any better than another inspirational, self-help book by my good friend Paul Batz, titled What Really Works. This is something I have been struck by for many years: there isn’t really any significant debate over how human beings should live. We all know–experience tells us–what really works, and what doesn’t. But Paul Batz’s book pulls together the recipe for successful living in the modern age as well as, or better than, any book I know of. It centers on the “Seven Fs”–Faith, Family, Finances, Fitness, Friends, Fun, and Future. There is more at Paul’s web site. I encourage all who are trying to make better sense of their lives, or who want to forge a better link between the spiritual and the mundane, to check out Paul’s book. It is really very good.
So those are book recommendations 4 and 5. Christmas is just around the corner, only one more to go!