"Morland's philosophical, extremely well-written book suggests that while some people are obviously wired to relish dangerous lives, the timid rest of us may be braver than we think." ―Daily Mail
"Compelling... an appealing and original account of one of the greatest human virtues, full of powerful stories. It leaves you hopeful." ―Sunday Times
"Morland approaches her subject with energy, tenacious curiosity and, however much she may protest that she is lily-livered, courage... a bracing, moving and uncommon book" ―Observer
This book is a modern investigation of an ancient virtue, inspired by a group for stage-frightened musicians in 1940s Manhattan. Coinciding with the terrifying height of World War Two, it was called The Society of Timid Souls. Seventy years later, as fear about everything from terrorism to economic meltdown has become part of our daily lives, Polly Morland reconvenes the society, setting out to discover what it means to be brave in an age of anxiety.
Her journey-and this book-is full of amazing people and surprising ideas. It explores how and why people are brave, from battlefield to hospital ward, circus tightrope to suburban street, disaster zone to political protest. It throws light on some of the myths and lies that surround our favourite virtue. And most of all, it asks can we learn to be brave?