• The Year of Less

  • How I Stopped Shopping, Gave Away My Belongings, and Discovered Life Is Worth More Than Anything You Can Buy in a Store
  • By: Cait Flanders
  • Narrated by: Cait Flanders
  • Length: 5 hrs and 32 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Release date: 01-16-18
  • Language: English
  • Publisher: Tantor Audio
  • 4.3 (123 ratings)

Regular price: $24.49

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Publisher's Summary

In her late 20s, Cait Flanders found herself stuck in the consumerism cycle that grips so many of us: earn more, buy more, want more, rinse, repeat. Even after she worked her way out of nearly $30,000 of consumer debt, her old habits took hold again. When she realized that nothing she was doing or buying was making her happy - only keeping her from meeting her goals - she decided to set herself a challenge: she would not shop for an entire year.

The Year of Less documents Cait's life for 12 months during which she bought only consumables: groceries, toiletries, gas for her car. Along the way, she challenged herself to consume less of many other things besides shopping. She decluttered her apartment and got rid of 70 percent of her belongings; learned how to fix things rather than throw them away; researched the zero-waste movement; and completed a television ban.

At every stage, she learned that the less she consumed, the more fulfilled she felt. Blending Cait's compelling story with inspiring insight and practical guidance, The Year of Less will leave you questioning what you're holding on to in your own life - and, quite possibly, lead you to find your own path of less.

©2018 Cait Flanders (P)2018 Tantor

Critic Reviews

"If you've ever felt there must be more to life than consumerism and its vicious cycle, you'll find inspiration to break free in The Year of Less. Cait's highly readable and personal story is encouraging, challenging, and unbelievably helpful." (Joshua Becker, author of The More of Less)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.3 out of 5.0
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  • 4.4 out of 5.0
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  • 4.2 out of 5.0
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I could not put this down

Would you listen to The Year of Less again? Why?

I loved this book. It was not what I expected it was a such a good story one we can all learn from. I loved the honesty it was refreshing. I felt so proud of this young lady and I am so happy she wrote this book.

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Year of Less?

Her honesty made me feel bot sad at times at at other times happy for her.

Which scene was your favorite?

My favorite scene was when she Tod the story of how she morned her parents divorce. It really helped me look at letting go in a different way.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

The part that moved me was what an amazing best friend she had and what she would do for her.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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wonderful and realistic insight

I loved reading this book. I've read a lot of minimalism stuff in the last few years, but I'd never before gotten a take from someone near my own age, dealing with some of the same life stages that I am. I really enjoyed hearing how Cait dealt with these challenges in her own journey. Thanks for sharing your story, Cait!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Depressing.

I try to find something positive in everything I read, watch or do. This book was a waste of money. I don't need a recap of her drinking career or sobriety. Hopefully the woman is in AA!

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Finished it

What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

Spoiler alert!
The premise is great; however, I could have done without the family drama details. I was looking for more of a motivational story and tips for decluttering & stopping impulse shopping. I listened to this story and finally had to increase the speed because the narrator's voice was grating.

Would you be willing to try another book from Cait Flanders? Why or why not?

Not really

If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from The Year of Less?

The details regarding her mother & step-father's divorce and her reaction to it.

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Epitome of Vulnerability

Lived this book for the honesty, vulnerability, and openess. Extremely motivating. and inspiring. Highly recommend!

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Loved this book!

Found this book to be honest, inspiring and bittersweet. I really related to it even though I haven't struggled with all the things the author/narrator has, or have had the same life experiences. It's a very down to earth self help book in the sense that doesn't rely on cheap gimmicks and instead reads more like a memoir. Great for anyone that wants to get better with money and is prepared to celebrate the small wins and take it as Cait says: "day by day".

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A Personal Story, Not A Self Hell Book

I really wanted to like this, I really did. I can relate to being a young adult looking for fulfillment in having less, but this novel was JUST the author recounting her life. At least it was 1 hour in. So already, 1/5 of the book is the author talking about her life. I understand a certain level, being that this is autobiographical, but I really didn’t see how this much was necessary. So if you are looking for tips/guidance to living a minimalistic life, you won’t find it here unless you grind through the authors blog-style-writing.

The narration by the author is serviceable, but not THAT good either. I found myself not minding after awhile though.

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This book was written for me!

Thank you Cait Flanders! This is just what I needed at the exact right time in my life. I appreciate your candid story. I am ready to start my own shopping ban.

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Inspiration!

This book has inspired me to do my own year of less. Going through some shifting and changing in my own life has created a desire for more via the less route. This is giving me some information as well as inspiration to take on challenges that I may not have been willing to try before. I am excited to explore Cait’s blog and find out what else is out there. She is a fabulous narrator for her own work narrator for her own work.

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Not much there.

What would have made The Year of Less better?

This reads like a college freshmen, at best, writing a blog. I should have researched this more before buying. I'm disappointed in this read. I thought maybe I could get some ideas from it but the writing is uninspiring. It feels like it was a journal written with heart, but only quite meaningful to the person writing it. Congrats on getting it published, because that is a serious accomplishment.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 02-01-18

Life changing

I was so excited to hear that Cait was releasing a booking after being an avid follower of the podcast she creates with Carrie for the past 12 months. Last year I started my own shopping ban thanks to Caits story. I too was a blackout spender, I was in thousands of pounds of debt and was facing the very real possibility that I was about to lose my business. I decided to take control of my finances, listening to much of the advice given on the podcast. I gave myself to March 18 to get out of debt and I am so pleased to say thanks to all Caits (& Carries) advice, Jan 18 was the month I officially can say I got out of debt. Not only that, my home has been completely decluttered, my business is thriving and my mental and physical well being is so much healthier. The book was the icing on the cake to finish off such a successful year and I couldn't recommend it highly enough. I'm sure it will have the ability to change many more lives.

Thanks Cait!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 01-22-18

Brave, inspiring & motivating.

Far greater than a stuffy 'self help' book, this reads more like a diary of someone desperately trying to better themselves. We feel all the motivation & each set back, forcing us to take a look at our own spending habits as Cait struggles through her self-set challenge to find greater meaning & appreciation of what she already has. Loved this book & will be taking on the life lessons as soon as I finish this review!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Catherine Oliver
  • 02-20-18

Quite a lot of moaning

If you fancy listening to someone moan about their life then this is the book for you! It kind of sucks the energy out of you but it has made me think a little bit about a few changes I’d like to make. I wouldn’t waste your time with this audiobook.

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  • Louise
  • 02-11-18

Not what it says on the cover

I have listened to over an hour and a half of this and have decided to return it. It’s not about the Author’s year of not spending, it’s more an exploration of the troubles in her life and her various addictions. I’m really not interested in reading about failed relationships and battles with alcoholism, I just wanted to know about the year of not spending much money.
The book is definitely not what the title leads you to believe.

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  • LJC
  • 02-17-18

inspiring

i really enjoyed this book and made my 3 lists at the end but i did not expect so many personal stories. i hope my shopping ban will be as successful at Cait’s

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  • Anonymous User
  • 02-15-18

90% story 10% information

Not what I expected. Felt like 90% story and 10% useful information. Some of the diversions into her life story were unnecessary and dragged on. If you've downloaded it already and are struggling to finish skip to chapter 15 and get the short version of the useful information.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 02-15-18

Very detailed guide to ones awareness!

The author was extremely descriptive in each part of her life, from when, why and how she managed to set herself free from the circus, drama a lot of us refuse to face and grab onto that one or two distractive habits that can take over our fate slowly but surly then wonder why our lives are not going anywhere! I see this beautiful, raw book for only the ones who want to see the reasons for their life choices for what they are and take responsibility for who they! Absolutely great book! Rate it highly!

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  • Anonymous User
  • 02-04-18

Wonderful book

I loved this audiobook! Such a great message about living with less and on less, and in turn gaining more. Especially loved that it was narrated by the author herself!

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  • matt green
  • 02-04-18

Surprised

Not what I was expecting but glad I listened to this really made me think about a lot of things that have happened and is happening in my life

0 of 2 people found this review helpful