Review on Forrest Fenn’s New Book: Once Upon A While

I have to say, when I opened my package with Once Upon A While in it, I was most pleasantly surprised by the size of Forrest Fenn’s new book.  It’s a heavy 176 pages!

I was mistakenly thinking, because it was paperback and only contained 39 stories, it was just going to be a thin volume.  I’m so glad I was thoroughly wrong!

The book is exceptional.  Like his previous two, it is bursting with entertaining, heartwarming, comical, and thought-provoking stories.

Forrest’s memoir impresses upon a person’s heart, mind, and soul in a way that is difficult to describe.  After reading the powerful snippets, I can only say I was touched, shaped differently, as if his words were able to carve off rough edges of my spirit. The result is I feel uplifted, impassioned, and craving to do more.

I had recently shared the following thought on my Facebook page, “The difference in living an ordinary life and living an extraordinary life is adding the extra to it.” 

That sentiment helps expound what is revealed in Forrest’s stories. Forrest has brilliantly added ‘The Extra’ while living his life, and from doing so, he unobtrusively inspires each of us to do the same.  His words ignite something deep inside which fills a person with a belief to do it too.

I’m sure each story shapes a person’s spirit uniquely, but I don’t feel anyone can go away after reading the book without sensing a change in themselves for the better, or to appreciate life more beautifully. I feel because you admire the life lived, experiences and wisdom gained, and the humbleness felt while reading the stories, it just naturally happens. The tales of Forrest’s lifetime relate and spur a person higher.

As Lou Bruno mentioned in a recent Six Questions about his working with Forrest, ‘Forrest is demanding and that, at times, has caused much stress.  But Forrest has reminded me with every project that, ‘if it were easy, everyone would do it…’.  Forrest often pushes us to our previous ‘end of the line.’  But alas, that is how greater things occur.”

Forrest has a rare talent to be able to arrange words to do just that. They encourage us to explore our self-limiting edges, and realize ‘Extra’ is beyond them!

On one of the pages of the book, Forrest’s pen cleverly and secretly summed up his own book:

Some great objects just stand out above everything else.

Like said, I believe Once Upon A While is one of those objects.

Here is a video of the above review:


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18 Responses

  1. Joe says:

    Thank you for your review. I may have to re-think my decision, or at least my hesitance to decide, in not yet buying this book. I found many of your thoughts insightful, and when you stated, “Forrest’s memoir impresses upon a person’s heart, mind, and soul in a way that is difficult to describe”, my thoughts immediately went to Forrest’s first memoir, “The Thrill of the Chase.” The Chase has taken my life in a new and positive direction, and I am forever grateful for the opportunity, and its impact, that would not have been possible without Forrest’s efforts.

    The comment I found most profound, though, is this one: “The difference in living an ordinary life and living an extraordinary life is adding the extra to it.” I’m often amazed at how the seemingly simplest thoughts can inspire the deepest reflection and broaden the mind’s horizons. What is a human life if not a series of choices? Each decision adding to and shaping the basis for the next, each choice another stone in our life-path, its direction dependent on each decision we make, and what we make of it. Can “Once Upon a While” have the same impact on my life as TTOTC? I guess I’ll have to decide, and after reading your review, I am encouraged to add it to my humble collection.

    Thanks so much.

  2. Jenny Kile says:

    Thanks Joe for your comments. Best of luck in the drawing!

  3. Twingem says:

    Thanks as always Jenny.

    Well said Joe.

  4. JDA says:

    Like you Jenny, I found that the “Extra” things found in the book, the difference between the ordinary, and the Extraordinary”. For me, some of the “Extra” things are “Hints” or “Nudges” that I feel have brought me closer to finding Indulgence. I MAY just have a great imagination, or MAYBE there ARE “Extras” in between the lines – JDA

  5. What a great review Jenny! I enjoyed reading this. You definitely have a way with words. I still have not received my copy yet but I’m eagerly waiting to read it.

  6. crimsonblazeblog says:

    I just look at the pictures, the way he writes is too confusing.

  7. Strawshadow says:

    Thanks Jenny, a very fine review.

  8. Iceman says:

    My copy arrives this week. This should be interesting.

  9. JC1117 says:

    Thank you, Jenny for the excellent review.

    I have been enjoying my copy very much. I received it a little while ago…hot off the press!

    There is a lot of EXTRA! EXTRA!…to read all about…

    Lots of interesting aberrations…again.

    Now to try to make sense (scents?) of it.

    Sweet Fragrances…in deed.

    • Buckeye Bob says:

      I was up until 5:00 AM working through hints of leads. lol
      I have been trying to work at it more casually in order to get a break and refresh my head innards.
      But I keep getting drawn in.

  10. Buckeye Bob says:

    OUAW is a trove of hints.
    What’s good about it, for me and those like me, is that it brings up a lot of stuff that was before my time. The “Words” and the “Scrapbooks” it was too much all at once for us late comers.

    With this book, it allows us to concentrate on what’s in it. The other stuff that’s not in it I have no doubts also have hints galore. But this way it divides the load up and it feels less daunting. more manageable.

    I also think this particular set of hints are the stronger ones that, at this point, people have hinted at. This is in keeping with FF’s strategy of adding hints to what people have found and made public.

    It’s “Catsup” season. Open to the public.

    I wonder if there is a someone out there who has it figured out, if they are a little peeved at FF for this?
    They shouldn’t be, it’s all in keeping with the same strategy he’s shown all along. (From what I can see.)

  11. Crimsonblaze says:

    I think I will read the lost city of z.

  12. Lifesablaze says:

    Yes, it will be interesting to see who bails for South America. Rats.

    Everything you need to know is in the train scene of Trading Places. Interesting names and addresses on the boxes to be delivered. When you’re done with that go watch Lord of War.

    I’m sure someone will put it together. Maybe you.

  13. Crimsonblaze says:

    Something just seems to be pointing me in that direction.

  14. Lifesablaze says:

    Which direction are you going, Crimsonblaze? From Philadelphia to Manhattan?

    Truly funny. Have you checked the Schumann resonance charts lately? Lol!

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