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Uncommon Character: Stories of Ordinary Men and Women Who Have Done the Extraordinary

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That thou may walk in the way of good men and keep the paths of the righteous - Proverbs 2:20 This inspiring book is filled with unforgettable people who challenged and changed their world in remarkable and admirable ways. You’ll be introduced to personalities who are living and historical, familiar and unknown, domestic and foreign. Prepare to meet pilots, farmers, missi That thou may walk in the way of good men and keep the paths of the righteous - Proverbs 2:20 This inspiring book is filled with unforgettable people who challenged and changed their world in remarkable and admirable ways. You’ll be introduced to personalities who are living and historical, familiar and unknown, domestic and foreign. Prepare to meet pilots, farmers, missionaries, engineers, martyrs, businessmen, pioneers, presidents, soldiers, writers, and scientists – whose shared motivations become a part of us and our heritage. Together they answer the pertinent questions of our time: What makes a genuine hero? Why is a hero’s life worth understanding? How does a hero personify favorable character? Each story will find its special place in head and heart – dwelling there to influence the critical choices ahead of us. Each page advocates making a positive impact on others and mastering the days we are given. Readers depart with an abiding conviction of the real difference one committed life will make. No matter our past or where we find ourselves today, we will be inspired to finish well. These are the tales told with zest; these are the tales you will long treasure. Enjoy the dynamic portraits; then share them in family, church, workplace, ministry and educational settings, because that’s how they began, and that’s why they were written. About the Author Douglas Feavel retired after thirty-seven years in technology marketing and management positions. He obtained a bachelor’s degree in political science from the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh and a master’s degree in Christian education from Bethany Divinity College. He and his wife, Barbara, have been married for nearly fifty years. Appleton, Wisconsin is their hometown, but Vincennes, Indiana is their current base. They volunteer at non-profits in teaching, outreach, and ministry roles domestically and abroad when not with their children and grandchildren.


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That thou may walk in the way of good men and keep the paths of the righteous - Proverbs 2:20 This inspiring book is filled with unforgettable people who challenged and changed their world in remarkable and admirable ways. You’ll be introduced to personalities who are living and historical, familiar and unknown, domestic and foreign. Prepare to meet pilots, farmers, missi That thou may walk in the way of good men and keep the paths of the righteous - Proverbs 2:20 This inspiring book is filled with unforgettable people who challenged and changed their world in remarkable and admirable ways. You’ll be introduced to personalities who are living and historical, familiar and unknown, domestic and foreign. Prepare to meet pilots, farmers, missionaries, engineers, martyrs, businessmen, pioneers, presidents, soldiers, writers, and scientists – whose shared motivations become a part of us and our heritage. Together they answer the pertinent questions of our time: What makes a genuine hero? Why is a hero’s life worth understanding? How does a hero personify favorable character? Each story will find its special place in head and heart – dwelling there to influence the critical choices ahead of us. Each page advocates making a positive impact on others and mastering the days we are given. Readers depart with an abiding conviction of the real difference one committed life will make. No matter our past or where we find ourselves today, we will be inspired to finish well. These are the tales told with zest; these are the tales you will long treasure. Enjoy the dynamic portraits; then share them in family, church, workplace, ministry and educational settings, because that’s how they began, and that’s why they were written. About the Author Douglas Feavel retired after thirty-seven years in technology marketing and management positions. He obtained a bachelor’s degree in political science from the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh and a master’s degree in Christian education from Bethany Divinity College. He and his wife, Barbara, have been married for nearly fifty years. Appleton, Wisconsin is their hometown, but Vincennes, Indiana is their current base. They volunteer at non-profits in teaching, outreach, and ministry roles domestically and abroad when not with their children and grandchildren.

30 review for Uncommon Character: Stories of Ordinary Men and Women Who Have Done the Extraordinary

  1. 4 out of 5

    Vicky Pilkington

    I started off enjoying this book and there are some really interesting chapters but the book became too religious for me.

  2. 4 out of 5

    John Ebben

    I saw the negative statements about this book and I suspect that they were written by insincere people who did not really read the book but only wanted to post harsh atheistic and/or damaging liberal statements. Ignoring them, I found out that this is one of the most compelling, exciting, and interesting books available. It's non-fiction that reads better than the best fiction. All the better because it's true. The entire family has read it multiple times. In addition to great personal reading, I saw the negative statements about this book and I suspect that they were written by insincere people who did not really read the book but only wanted to post harsh atheistic and/or damaging liberal statements. Ignoring them, I found out that this is one of the most compelling, exciting, and interesting books available. It's non-fiction that reads better than the best fiction. All the better because it's true. The entire family has read it multiple times. In addition to great personal reading, it makes a fine resource in any classroom and for audiences of any age. The book is an outstanding mix of inspiration, history, and biography with even some science sprinkled in. The four stories that are presented as "parables" are even better than the twenty-two presented as straight "stories". The author's notes and appendices are very helpful and add considerable depth of color to both overall understanding and background ~ I especially like the way these extras are separate from the stories so that either can be enjoyed or bypassed independently. The book has redeeming and lasting value.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Sarah Jackson

    "Uncommon Character: Stories of Ordinary men and Women Who Have Done the Extraordinary" by Douglas Feavel, is promoted as a book of 26 inspiring stories of various men and women who have overcome adversity to create positive outcomes for themselves and others. And a third of the book is just this. The other two thirds consists of bible stories and Christian writing. I do not personally object if individuals wish to attribute the successes, personal strength and hard work of others to the deity/s "Uncommon Character: Stories of Ordinary men and Women Who Have Done the Extraordinary" by Douglas Feavel, is promoted as a book of 26 inspiring stories of various men and women who have overcome adversity to create positive outcomes for themselves and others. And a third of the book is just this. The other two thirds consists of bible stories and Christian writing. I do not personally object if individuals wish to attribute the successes, personal strength and hard work of others to the deity/supernatural being/ magical force of their choice, but I don't want to hear about it. I'm sure that it this book will do well if it is marketing to a Fundamentalist Christian audience. Its not for me. I received this eBook in exchange for a fair and honest review.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Charles A

    Uncommon characteristics An exit book for people he want to get beyond the surface and Beyond what modern science says I look into the internal person and a relationship with God. We must all develop a personal relationship with our creator to allow Him to expand his creative gifts in us.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Patricia S Winchel

    Our Life Stories Matter! The author tells of many amazing stories of people's lives that started badly, but with hard work, trust in God and perseverance, had ending results that mattered. Their stories enhanced their own lives but also enhanced the lives of many others. We all have a story to tell, and should record our testimony for it is our legacy. Our Life Stories Matter! The author tells of many amazing stories of people's lives that started badly, but with hard work, trust in God and perseverance, had ending results that mattered. Their stories enhanced their own lives but also enhanced the lives of many others. We all have a story to tell, and should record our testimony for it is our legacy.

  6. 5 out of 5

    William Maroney

    Enjoyable and Very Interesting Book Very interesting book. I truly enjoyed it, although it is long. It was a very enjoyable read for a relaxing day.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Barbara Zuleger

    A book filled with interesting and inspiring character sketches, which also includes some well-throughout current perspectives on American society's history of, and need for, character. I read all the reviews before reading the book and I've concluded that the author speaks the Truth with love, conviction, and solid understanding. The naysayers appear to be those with unChristian and unAmerican bias or fuzzy and flaky world-views. The book also includes helpful sub-themes dealing with change and A book filled with interesting and inspiring character sketches, which also includes some well-throughout current perspectives on American society's history of, and need for, character. I read all the reviews before reading the book and I've concluded that the author speaks the Truth with love, conviction, and solid understanding. The naysayers appear to be those with unChristian and unAmerican bias or fuzzy and flaky world-views. The book also includes helpful sub-themes dealing with change and with choice as well. I highly recommend this excellent book.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Nicole's Bookish Tidbits

    “All of us have a unique purpose in life; and all of us are gifted, just gifted differently.” – Douglas Feavel, Uncommon Character. For Non-fiction November, I decided to try to read, at least, one non-fiction book…not my favourite to read – at all – but, I knew I could learn something new, which I like to do. So, I did what I do best…scroll through Amazon’s library of free books (big smile)…and came across this book, “Uncommon Character”, and after reading the synopsis, decided to give it a read “All of us have a unique purpose in life; and all of us are gifted, just gifted differently.” – Douglas Feavel, Uncommon Character. For Non-fiction November, I decided to try to read, at least, one non-fiction book…not my favourite to read – at all – but, I knew I could learn something new, which I like to do. So, I did what I do best…scroll through Amazon’s library of free books (big smile)…and came across this book, “Uncommon Character”, and after reading the synopsis, decided to give it a read. This book is a combination of true, untold stories of ordinary people who did extraordinary things that impacted life as we know it, but they are not mentioned in history books. It speaks about people like: Irena Sendler, a woman who helped rescue children from the Holocaust and suffered unspeakable pain and hardship while doing so; Joseph Merrick aka John Merrick aka Elephant Man, who was born with several deformities and a rare condition that made him resemble an elephant, but because of his belief in God’s word and his love for human kind, chose to inspire others instead of focusing on his physical looks; and Dave Roever, a man who served his country (U.S.) in the war and was severely injured, and returned home deformed, but decided to use his experiences to help, serve and minister to those who were in need. The book also includes parables – such as the parable of the Four Farmers and the Giving Fit – and Douglas Feavel’s (the author) life experiences that serve as teachable moments and lessons for readers. Feavel, focused on ordinary people who had their foundation and values based in biblical teachings, like himself, and how this belief helped them live out their life’s (God’s) purpose. He then concludes by encouraging readers to allow God into their lives and so live out His purpose for them. Uncommon Character starts out with a prologue that I hurried through because I wanted to get to the good stuff. The book is a collection of some really good stories and some okay stories but each one had a lesson that could add value to someone’s life. I will also admit that I skimmed quickly through some stories…they just weren’t as interesting as the others…but even while skimming, I picked up something of value. What I liked about this book: 1. I learned quite a bit of history – American and European – and I am a strong believer in continuous learning. 2. I found inspiration from each story…even the ones I skimmed. 3. There were so many great points that I felt the need to save and share them. 4. The stories covered a variety of topics, including (but not limited to): overcoming prejudice and discrimination; learning to accept and appreciate our gifts and talents; learning to appreciate what’s on the inside, not the outside of a person; and so on. Although the stories had different topics, they all served one purpose…to inspire. What I didn’t like about this book: 1. It was disappointing that the historical stories were mostly in North America and a few European countries. 2. The tone was formal and informative. I prefer my books to be conversational…yes, even the non-fictional ones. What I found most interesting about this book was the many inspirational quotes that I picked up along the way. I, literally, had to keep stopping to write them all down. So, it got to the point where I was more interested in collecting inspirational quotes than reading the stories…go figure.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Robert Cowan

    Fundamentalism The author tries to warn you that he is going to sermonize, until you want to scream Get In With The Story. Then under George Washington he shows his lack of interest in facts. Fort Necessity is South of Uniontown near where General Braddock was buried in a secret grave near by. Fort Duquesne is essentially downtown Pittsburgh at the point where the Monogahela and Allegheny Rivers converge. When is the Annie Oakley store did he speak about the second amendment as if it is in page tw Fundamentalism The author tries to warn you that he is going to sermonize, until you want to scream Get In With The Story. Then under George Washington he shows his lack of interest in facts. Fort Necessity is South of Uniontown near where General Braddock was buried in a secret grave near by. Fort Duquesne is essentially downtown Pittsburgh at the point where the Monogahela and Allegheny Rivers converge. When is the Annie Oakley store did he speak about the second amendment as if it is in page two of the Bible . Finally when he spoke lovingly about Sarah Palin, you know the woman who should have been institutionalized instead of being allowed to run for vice president U had to stop reading a fundamentalist confuse conservatives doctrine as Christian dogma. Well the country as long as you force everyone to be Christian.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Cory Briggs

    Overall good This book is about where faith meets history. It talks about ordinary people doing extraordinary things. Parts of the book where really great; such as the chapter on John Merrick. Some parts were a little dry and tedious; like parts of the appendices. Let me be fair rather than mean: I have read alot! That means that my view of this book may be somewhat jaded. I have heard so much about Reagan to the point where it seems conservatives worship him. To the author's credit though, he br Overall good This book is about where faith meets history. It talks about ordinary people doing extraordinary things. Parts of the book where really great; such as the chapter on John Merrick. Some parts were a little dry and tedious; like parts of the appendices. Let me be fair rather than mean: I have read alot! That means that my view of this book may be somewhat jaded. I have heard so much about Reagan to the point where it seems conservatives worship him. To the author's credit though, he brings Reagan down to Earth where we can appreciate him and copy his good examples. If you where history and faith intersect, read this book for you will be uplifted!

  11. 4 out of 5

    tramendous

    As much as I appreciate the historical aspects and the extraordinary individuals, more than half of this book is about Christianity. The author uses religion to explain the success of the aforementioned characters; i.e. Irena Sendler is courageous because she owns a 'holy card', Colonel George Washington survives many battlefields because it was God's plan, or God blesses America because the U.S honoured the Bible. The last chapters are difficult to digest as Feavel criticises anything that stoo As much as I appreciate the historical aspects and the extraordinary individuals, more than half of this book is about Christianity. The author uses religion to explain the success of the aforementioned characters; i.e. Irena Sendler is courageous because she owns a 'holy card', Colonel George Washington survives many battlefields because it was God's plan, or God blesses America because the U.S honoured the Bible. The last chapters are difficult to digest as Feavel criticises anything that stood on the way of his only God, i.e. scientists and Mulsim.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Matthew Ewoldt

    This book is both uplifting and challenging. The stories of people achieving greatness in the face of overwhelming challenges will inspire all of us to search out ways to serve our communities and nation. After the inspirational stories, comes a very sobering look at the state of our nation that challenges us to become agents of change at all levels of our society. One should buy at least two copies of this book, one to keep and reread and one to pass onto a local leader such as a teacher, membe This book is both uplifting and challenging. The stories of people achieving greatness in the face of overwhelming challenges will inspire all of us to search out ways to serve our communities and nation. After the inspirational stories, comes a very sobering look at the state of our nation that challenges us to become agents of change at all levels of our society. One should buy at least two copies of this book, one to keep and reread and one to pass onto a local leader such as a teacher, member of a local government board or dean of a college.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Sherry

    I really enjoyed reading this book. I discovered a whole lot of things I had never heard about. And found a lot of people I could admire for their bravery and spunk. The stories were just the right length to sit down and read when you only have a few minutes to spare. I will be searching for more books by this author. Thanks for putting this on Goodreads to let us know of this very informative book.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Denzel L Struchen

    Good reading for the factual part. While presenting several good fact based stories the author failed to stop when he completed his presentation. The last quarter of the book is nothing more than his description of how to write a book like this. This is called extra pages that detract from the excellent work he started with and made me question the editors who allowed this.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Mike Hill

    Absolutely inspiring One of the greatest books I’ve ever read. I wish everyone; Americans, Christians, Schools would read this fine book. I hope the author writes volume 2

  16. 5 out of 5

    moxieBK

    Uncommon Character: Stories of Ordinary Men and Women Who Have Done the Extraordinary — Douglas Feavel (Prologue + 26 titled chapters + Epilogue) Nov. 1-Dec. 3, 2021 If I only knew you had to be of Christian faith to have character…… This wonderfully named book had so much hope and promise. Alas, it was named wrong. Character is not just a (c)hristian belief. Nor is it just a Catholic or Jewish belief. However, all of the people covered were faith-based. It would have made more sense to include br Uncommon Character: Stories of Ordinary Men and Women Who Have Done the Extraordinary — Douglas Feavel (Prologue + 26 titled chapters + Epilogue) Nov. 1-Dec. 3, 2021 If I only knew you had to be of Christian faith to have character…… This wonderfully named book had so much hope and promise. Alas, it was named wrong. Character is not just a (c)hristian belief. Nor is it just a Catholic or Jewish belief. However, all of the people covered were faith-based. It would have made more sense to include brilliant men and women outside of the author’s worldview. All of these stories were somehow tied to a scripture in the Bible and all had stories that wove in storytelling, a not always reliable form of history. Heck, even one of these characters was Jesus himself. That’s too far back to be able to ask people likewise George Washington's story which felt a lot more fictional than purely historical. Written words can be hedged slightly and the story can become fiction in a quick swish of the pen. There were only about two stories that I cottoned to, and an additional one I really liked only to find out the author had “refined” it to fit the narrative better. Not that these stories of legit persons are all made-up, but when the author states this storytelling right in the beginning, I start to question which parts are story and which parts are true. I probably didn’t spend as long with each character when I started to feel fiction creeping in, but there are some real nuggets (if you can blinder your way through the scripture notes,) specifically the first story about Irena Sendler and also Rose Valland. Ultimately, I was glad to finish, although I neither read the epilogue nor the three following appendix. Overall a good attempt at bringing to light some much-deserved attention to these very good person’s deeds. But I’ll tell ya: don’t say I didn’t warn you. Two stars.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Aussch

    It’s hard to apply a single rating to a book that is a compilation of stories, so many of which I was intrigued and even inspired by. The unfortunate truth is, though, getting through to the end of this book began feeling like a chore. Maybe it was the writers style? Often I felt like he belabored his explanations or droned on a bit like a grandfather telling old war stories. It got tedious and, by about two-thirds, I stopped reading most of the (lengthy) authors comments at the end of each chapt It’s hard to apply a single rating to a book that is a compilation of stories, so many of which I was intrigued and even inspired by. The unfortunate truth is, though, getting through to the end of this book began feeling like a chore. Maybe it was the writers style? Often I felt like he belabored his explanations or droned on a bit like a grandfather telling old war stories. It got tedious and, by about two-thirds, I stopped reading most of the (lengthy) authors comments at the end of each chapter. Each chapter stands on its own, so really I feel like I could have enjoyed it much more by reading only the chapters that piqued my curiosity and ignoring those that didn’t. With that said I learned a lot about many significant people and am enriched for having done so. Stand out chapters: Irena Sendler Joseph Merrick Arland Williams Jr. Rick Rescorla Phoebe Ann Mosey Eva Mozes Kor Haym Salomon

  18. 5 out of 5

    Amy Sparks

    I got a free copy of this book in exchange for a review. After reading the forward, I was excited about reading the book. I hadn't expected the Christian emphasis based on the description I had been provided, but I appreciate books that have a moral backbone. I was disappointed with the execution. The first story left me asking, "Who is she?" for too long because Feavel spent more time talking about her impact on him instead of introducing her to the reader. I was interested in meeting the influe I got a free copy of this book in exchange for a review. After reading the forward, I was excited about reading the book. I hadn't expected the Christian emphasis based on the description I had been provided, but I appreciate books that have a moral backbone. I was disappointed with the execution. The first story left me asking, "Who is she?" for too long because Feavel spent more time talking about her impact on him instead of introducing her to the reader. I was interested in meeting the influential characters, but Feavel spent more time preaching about how we should feel about them instead of letting us reach our own conclusions. I would have preferred less telling and more showing.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Virginia Corley

    The author will feel hurt I wrote this. This book is too damn preachy. I count myself a christian but dont need to be beat to death with the bible. And I'm a Democrat. Go biden. Your chapter on Reagan borders on sickly sweet hero worship. And your hes better than sliced bread attitude sickens me. Perhaps this book was never meant for the mainstream market. You have a right to your beliefs and I respect that. Damn it my dad put his ass on the line so I had it drummed into me from day one respect The author will feel hurt I wrote this. This book is too damn preachy. I count myself a christian but dont need to be beat to death with the bible. And I'm a Democrat. Go biden. Your chapter on Reagan borders on sickly sweet hero worship. And your hes better than sliced bread attitude sickens me. Perhaps this book was never meant for the mainstream market. You have a right to your beliefs and I respect that. Damn it my dad put his ass on the line so I had it drummed into me from day one respect others rights to believe what they believe maybe you should do the same

  20. 5 out of 5

    Toni

    This is quite a big book and I'm about half way through. The first third of the book featured stories that fascinated and intrigued...stories that truly did seem to featured the common every day man (or woman)...the unsung hero. But now....well, its losing me! I have been really enjoying it up to this point, and I am really hoping it will go back to the enjoyment of the first third, or I probably won't bother with the rest! This is quite a big book and I'm about half way through. The first third of the book featured stories that fascinated and intrigued...stories that truly did seem to featured the common every day man (or woman)...the unsung hero. But now....well, its losing me! I have been really enjoying it up to this point, and I am really hoping it will go back to the enjoyment of the first third, or I probably won't bother with the rest!

  21. 4 out of 5

    Judith A

    I would have liked to have read 26 truly amazing stories, however, there were not quite that many. I also think a lot of the history could have been researched a bit better and expanded upon . I enjoy reading stories about "unknown" heroes, along with the more known people (Ronald Reagan). I would have liked to have read 26 truly amazing stories, however, there were not quite that many. I also think a lot of the history could have been researched a bit better and expanded upon . I enjoy reading stories about "unknown" heroes, along with the more known people (Ronald Reagan).

  22. 5 out of 5

    Diane Secchiaroli

    Christianity While I enjoyed learning about uncommon characters, I found this book too focused on Christianity and sermonizing than I would have liked. The book would be liked by evangelical religious individuals.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Sheila Myers

    The stories were enjoyable, there was just too extra "fluff" for me to rate this book higher. I would've gave it 5 stars if Douglas Feavel would've stuck to the synopsis he provided for the book and gave the simple stories of the people. The stories were enjoyable, there was just too extra "fluff" for me to rate this book higher. I would've gave it 5 stars if Douglas Feavel would've stuck to the synopsis he provided for the book and gave the simple stories of the people.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Lynn Hudzik

    Wish I could say 5 I found the beginning very intriguing and educating them I feel that the author became preachy and I skipped many sentences at a time. The last chapter though is awesome!

  25. 5 out of 5

    Chad A. Pentecost

    Just ok This was not what I expected. It a book with an agenda. I agree politically with the author but I wasn’t looking for a political diatribe. I wanted a book of short biographies but got a sermon. It was just ok.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Cheryl Rogers

    A must read for everyone. Absolutely one of the best written nonfiction books I've read lately. Insightful, informative and backed up with fact. I challenge those who consider themselves literate or of the good side to read all the way to end. A must read for everyone. Absolutely one of the best written nonfiction books I've read lately. Insightful, informative and backed up with fact. I challenge those who consider themselves literate or of the good side to read all the way to end.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Jane Patterson

    Everyone should read this book. It talks about people we may be familiar with and others we have not heard of They had one thing in common - what they they did in their life helped shape America or the world. These people are true hero's. Highly recommend. Everyone should read this book. It talks about people we may be familiar with and others we have not heard of They had one thing in common - what they they did in their life helped shape America or the world. These people are true hero's. Highly recommend.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Pamela & Frank Goring

    One person can make a difference Uncommon character, yes, but the way we were meant to be..and even more so. Worth keeping around to reference and share with your children and grandchildren.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Tim Deaton

    A lot of good content, but a bit long-winded. I appreciated all of the stories and the points the author is trying to make. But the sermons he preaches about the stories often go on too long. Stories grab my attention. But sermons can put me to sleep.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Susanne Alethea Larssen

    It seems like the author had a compulsion to inject Christianity and Christian motives into absolutely every person written about. I could live with the occasional bible verse, but it turned to the absurd when God was to be thrown into the mix.

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