The beginning of the book shows a young Chris Gardner, author of the book, ready to start adulthood. Even though he does not have a medical degree, his years in the army help him get many higher up jobs in medical research. But when he finds out his girlfriend Jackie is pregnant, he has to look for a better paying job. He looks and looks but he can not find a job. Jackie leaves with his son, Christopher, until Chris can get his life together. He sees a rich stockbroker and decides that he can do that job, so he applies for an internship. Jackie willingly gives Christopher to Chris since she can not care for him herself. They are homeless for many months, but things look up when he gets a chance to take the broker test for his licence. He passes the broker test, becomes the number one salesman, and Chris and him live a happy life.