Like The Tao of Pooh and The Gospel According to Peanuts, Toni Raiten-D'Antonio's new book, The Velveteen Principles draws on well-known children's literature for inspiration. The author skewers the prevalent worldview that equates wealth, beauty, public acclaim, power and popularity with happiness. True happiness, she says, only comes from being "Real," and "Real" rarely means conforming to the standards of the "United States of Generica." Instead Raiten-D'Antonio extracts 12 principles for becoming real from the charming children's classic, The Velveteen Rabbit. It begins with realizing that "Real is Possible," confesses that "Real Can Be Painful," and defines "Real" as Generous, Grateful, Flexible and Ethical. "Real," she insists, is "a life well-lived, where we are true to ourselves," and "all the struggles and challenges only make us more Real."

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