David C. Cook
The Ultimate Journey by Jim Stovall speaks of bequeathing a special gift to those you leave behind after your death. Jason Steven’s grandfather, Howard Stevens, has recently passed away. Howard’s chauffer, Jim, is now responsible for taking Jason and his wife Alexia on a trip called “The Ultimate Journey.” Howard feared that Jason didn’t fully understand how to live a fulfilled life, so he devised a plan to help give back to Jason what money and privilege had taken away from him. The purpose of this book is to record the events of that very special journey and to show how life can be fulfilling and happy. In each of the book’s fifteen chapters, Grandfather Howard takes one aspect of life and tells of his experiences. He then teaches Jason how to learn from that experience as he did. For example in Chapter 5, Grandfather teaches Jason and Alexia about friends and companions, how the friends in his life impacted him and how people should be allowed to impact Jason as well.
Stovall is a highly celebrated motivational speaker, weightlifter, investment broker, and entrepreneur. He is a man who has experienced a great deal and knew Howard Stevens very well, as he was his driver for many years. Stovall supports his ideas in the book by describing Howard’s lessons to Jason and Alexia, which were recorded on DVDs and are played during the trip. The main point of each chapter is supported by the reading of Howard’s personal journal, which contain entries that deal with that topic, and then Stovall’s own personal insights and opinions. A quote that I think that explains the book is found near the end. “Life indeed is a gift. Often it takes us on a journey to faraway places to be met with exciting people and transforming experiences. Then inevitably, our journey leads us back into the familiar place where we started, but we are somehow changed as we go home to a place we have never been before” (p. 137).
Bottom line, this book is truly amazing. The organization and structure of the book make it easy to read and understand, and the message is very touching. I can think of a verse that goes along perfectly with the point of the book: “My son, do not forget my teaching, but keep my commands in your heart” (Proverbs 3:1). I would highly recommend this book to people of college age or older. It will make an impact on all adult readers. – Isaac Hamlin, www.ChristianBookPreviews.com
In this touching follow-up to Jim Stovall's The Ultimate Gift and The Ultimate Life, Jason Stevens has managed to impress a judge, win back his alienated family in spite of a bitter lawsuit, and get the girl he loves. Now on his wedding day, he learns his long-deceased grandfather has one last gift. And as he and Alexia set off on the journey to their beach-side honeymoon, they unwrap Red Stevens's journal and learn a story no one ever knew.