A Review of The Secret
by Rhonda Byrne
by Donald S. Whitney
Rhonda Byrne, The Secret (New York: Atria Books, 2006) 198 pages.
A video by the same title was released earlier in 2006.
I had never watched an entire episode of Oprah until her program on The Secret. In the promo for the show, Oprah announced that the program would present "the secret" to making more money, losing weight, finding the love of your life, and achieving job success. Who could resist hearing more about such a claim, especially when it is made by the most influential woman in America and touted as the key to all her success? Apparently I wasn't alone. After the show, Oprah's website was overwhelmed, emails poured in, and within hours The Secret had become the best-selling book in the nation.
A week later, while unpacking in a hotel room, I powered up the TV. Oprah and two guests from the week before appeared on the screen, effusive about the transforming power of The Secret. Her website called the episode, "A follow-up to the show everybody is talking about!"
People are not only talking about The Secret, they are buying it. I am writing this review in a Barnes & Noble bookstore, and this particular branch has completely sold out of the bookagain. Only two days agoso I am tolda storewide announcement assured a horde of anxious shoppers that another large shipment of the book had arrived and would be brought to the sales floor momentarily. Readers quickly grabbed every copy. Almost impossibly, The Secret is even outselling (at this writing) the final Harry Potter book. And if that weren't enough, the audio edition of the book follows these two as the nation's number-three seller.
The Australian author of The Secret, Rhonda Byrne, introduces the book by admitting, "A year ago, my life had collapsed around me" (p. ix). Through searching for answers in a variety of books new and old, she began to trace what she believed was a common thread in them all. She dubbed it the "Great SecretThe Secret to Life" (p. ix).
Byrne became convinced that this was the key to explaining the success of "the greatest people in history" (p. ix). As she started practicing this secret, Byrne says that her life immediately began to change in ways nothing short of miraculous. She decided to make a video called The Secret to share her discoveries with others. In March of 2006 it was released on the Internet, but soon went to DVD. By late autumn, the phenomenal success of the video placed it on two episodes of Larry King Live. Shortly after, two of the teachers featured on The Secret were guests on Ellen Degeneres' daily TV show. Before Christmas, The Secret DVD had spun off a book by the same title which Oprah Winfrey catapulted to the top of the charts in February of 2007.
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Family Worship: In the Bible, In History, and In Your Home
In this seventy-five minute CD, Don presents the content of his book on Family Worship. Also included in this enhanced CD is a printable text file with a two-page, detailed outline of the message and the entire five-part Discussion Guide as found in the book. Listeners will be able to enjoy this message individually, or use it in a class/small group setting.
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