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Publisher's Summary

Entrepreneur and best-selling author Jesse Itzler's next adventure takes him to a monastery where he learns to unplug, pray, and live like a monk.

Thinking all monasteries were like the ones he saw in the movies, Jesse Itzler arrived at the New Skete religious community in remote Cambridge, New York, with a shaved head and a suitcase filled with bananas. To his surprise, New Skete monks have most of their hair. They're Russian Orthodox, not Buddhist, and they're also world-renowned dog breeders and authors of dog-training books that have sold in the millions.

Wait, what? Jesse Itzler living with monks? And dogs? How could that happen?

Between his entrepreneurial endeavors, motivational speaking engagements, charities, and four kids, plus running ultra-marathons and other assorted involvements and activities, Jesse doesn't have a lot of free time on his hands. In his downtime, he's more likely to be in a water balloon fight with his eight-year-old son than in anything close to quiet contemplation. But his daily turbo-tasking was catching up to him, and he found himself overwhelmed and underperforming. When he challenged his wife to a game of rock-paper-scissors during a friend's wedding ceremony he realized he needed an adult time-out.

Most people would take a short vacation, cut back on some daily activities, or get a massage. Not Jesse. He came up with his unique answer to the building stress and dwindling time in his life. In Living with the Monks, the hilarious follow-up to his New York Times best-selling Living with a SEAL, Jesse takes us on a spiritual journey like no other. Isolated in a snowbound mountain monastery surrounded by German shepherds, an intern who walked right off a page from a Stephen King novel, and an odd but lovable bunch of monks who are a cross between Tony Robbins and Cesar Millan, Jesse finds the key to unlocking a life with less stress, more self-reflection (gulp), and greater happiness. (And, as he learns, the key to happiness isn't running. Say what?)

©2018 Jesse Itzler (P)2018 Hachette Audio

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What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Another amazing book!

First, let me just say that I feel like I'm on an adventure with Jesse and it's one the reasons that I'll read and listen to anything he wants to tell his audience. It's all so authentic, powerful and informative.

Second, I love the message in this particular book that focuses on the fear of the unknown, creating a life experience, trying something new, and doing it by shutting off social media, electronics, and all the disruptions of the outside world. It's a book everybody should read, especially young people.

The performance in this audio book is also fantastic. I kept thinking, Jesse should just do animated movies in the way he brings Seal to life and the brothers at the monastery.

Will be re-listening to this a few more times and sharing with friends!

10 of 10 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Loved It!

Loved this book - funny, entertaining and I learned a lot without even trying 😊. A Great Listen

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

I didn't want it to end!

I've listened to both audiobooks by Jesse Itzler and the fact that he narrates them adds a huge plus in my book. This book was just as entertaining and insightful as "Living with a Seal". I can't recommend it enough!

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Finding balance in a busy world

Ever wanted to take a step away from your life and slow down to see how hectic it’s become? Well now you can through the eyes of the author who did just that. Jesse takes us on a spiritual retreat to show how slowing down and mono tasking can help bring more balance and fulfillment into your life. The book is well paced and filled with funny stories that keep the adventure moving.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Jesse you did it again!

After listening to you narrate the words you wrote in both Seal and Monks, I feel like I know you. True wisdom guised in hysterical stories and amazing experiences. Thank you! And please don't stop writing and narrating!

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Must-read for Jesse fans

I think anyone can appreciate the unfiltered, authentic, and fun storytelling of Jesse Itzler. “Monks” makes the pursuit of a more mindful path accessible to the typical busy person who is consumed by work, family and technology. This is not in the same genre of Thich Nhat Hanh or even Gabby B, but it’s an engaging read (er, listen!) with an amusing cast of characters, and my fave parts were his take-aways at the end of the book, and how applicable his learnings are to my own daily life.

6 of 7 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Not bad, not outstanding either

It could've been a 5/5, but the story was like dipping in the sea: sometimes on a high wave, sometimes on a low tide - there were parts it was interesting and funny and parts it was just plain boring. I started this because the free sample from Audible was witty and funny and I expected more of that when purchasing it, so in the end I was a tad disappointed.
I didn't particularly enjoy some of the author's views as they sometimes seemed very ignorant (no idea what Christian monks are like or about any type of monks in general, proclaiming to be an atheist but having no idea about the basics of religion, preconcieved opinions, jumping in head first without researching first, etc), but I appreciated the honesty on putting all of that onto paper and not trying to cover it up.
I loved the idea about the thinking place and fighting your own beasts, bravery and personal development, but the book in itself was more like a sketch than an actual book. Maybe it needed more action, or more time with the monks.
Overall, 3.5/5.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

OK ish

The beginning of the book shares a lot of the stories from Living With a Seal. A third of the book is about the process of writing the book. Then a third of the book is about Living With Monks. Not a bad book but nothing great. Feels a little forced.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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Living with the Monks

Too many of the same stories from living with a Seal. I did not enjoy this one. Disappointed after reading first book.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

not my cup of tea.

Parts of the book were somewhat interesting. The author went into way more detail the necessary throughout much of the book. It felt like he was struggling to make diary entries into a book.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful