Stay Alive! by John D. McCann

Posted on: June 14, 2013

Some of you may recall that I’m a big fan of Build the Perfect Survival Kit by John D. McCann. When I picked up his new book, Stay Alive!, at the Living Ready Expo a couple weeks ago, I figured it was a no brainer.

Man, was I correct!

In Stay Alive!, McCann teaches you how to use all the good stuff he said you should carry with you in the first book. He goes through all the different areas of survival skills:

First aid
Signaling for help
Knives and tools

He also covers the survivor mentality as well as common wilderness hazards. All along the way, McCann shows you in great detail how to accomplish the different survival tasks you’ll need to complete in order to stay alive.

This book is profusely illustrated, with COLOR PHOTOS appearing on just about every page. In many of these photos, it is the author himself demonstrating a skill or technique. These aren’t just stock photos the publisher found online somewhere.

At a little more than 250 pages, this book is jam-packed with critical survival information. While the writing is a bit dry at times (hey, YOU try to make map reading exciting!), it is blatantly obvious McCann truly knows his stuff. One of the areas in which this book truly shines though is with McCann’s ingenuity. Survivalists and preppers need to be creative and think outside the box. McCann has these skills in spades. While the book is full of brand-name suggestions for gear, he also takes the time to show you how to get by with what you might already have around the house.

Really, about the only complaint I have about Stay Alive! is that in all the photos, McCann never smiles. Seriously, John, could you at least look like you’re having a good time?

Among the things I learned in Stay Alive!:

How to make a blowing tube to help with fire lighting.
What a “Baldric rig” is and how badly I want one now.
Why a few small balloons should be in your survival fishing kit.
And really, the entire chapter on navigation is a Godsend for anyone who has never studied the subject before.

There is a small amount of duplication between Stay Alive! and Build the Perfect Survival Kit. Given how closely the topics are related, it’d be hard to avoid. But, even so, I highly suggest you get both books. Both of them are available at all major bookstores. Here’s a link to Stay Alive! on Amazon.

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