Once again, Brian Willis has assembled a masterpiece. This book is a collection of 37 essays from 30 of the top law enforcement writers. However this book differs from similar collective works in the sheer passion of the writers. For once, they are allowed to write from their inner warrior's soul. Several times, you will sense certain energy from the contributors that you do not normally sense in this genre of writing. Truthfully, this is some of their finest works; they are not bound by their usual topic matter but what means most to them in their life's journey as a warrior. As I am fortunate to know most of the writers personally, I hear their voices in the passages, they are giving their very souls to you, and they are passing on the knowledge.
The questions they are answering are if you could tell a life lesson to one person, what would it be? Or, what would you like to have known that you have learned through the years of street experience? For a novice cop, these are the golden nuggets of police wisdom from the real masters. It is a must read for recruits, no question here- buy it, read it and apply. Matter of fact if you have a young man or woman in the military awaiting deployment, this book is great gift to give them a perspective from other warriors.
This work is a must for every trainer and field training officer; it will shore up your beliefs and strengthen your presentations. Most trainers and FTOs have these insights but now you have a validation of your insights. This is your one book for the year that you must add to your library and work. Chiefs and sheriffs, give this to your command staff for it will remind them of the importance of the young officer on the street who is doing the real work.
There are two essays that I found striking and these two are worth the price of the book. Staying positive is a discipline by Dan Marcou and Things I wish I'd known by Sgt Rocky Warren. These should be required on the academy reading list. All are brilliantly penned works within the covers; find one that strikes you or the training needs of the day.
I must tell you that a portion of the proceeds from every website sale of Warrior Spirit Books is donated to the ILLETA Training Foundation. Go to for information on the International Law Enforcement Educators and Trainers Association.
If I KNEW THEN
Life Lessons From Cops on the Street
Edited by Brian R. Willis
Published by Warrior Spirit Books, a Division of Winning Mind Training Inc., 396 Sienna Park Drive S.W., Calgary, Alberta T31-1 3K3, Canada