Cities he visited include Sydney, Singapore, Moscow, Copenhagen, New York, and Shanghai, and in each place he interviewed several groups of people in the hope of finding out not only why this is happening, but also how one can increase the strength of one's emotional immune system. He asks: why do so many more people want what they haven't got and want to be someone they're not, despite being richer and freer from traditional restraints?
And, in so doing, uncovers the answer to how to reconnect with what really matters and learn to value what you've already got. In other words, how to be successful and stay sane.
Would you try another book from Oliver James and/or Oliver James?
Probably not. I was intrigued by the thesis for this book and was hoping this book would be well-researched and accurately supported. Instead, the thesis (that the quest for ever more riches and keeping up with the Jones) was something I could have come up with along with several friends drinking coffee on a Saturday morning. (We probably could have argued it better than the author). It seems like the author just relied upon the "studies" that supported his arguments. I didn't think the book was very well researched in any case, but possibly that is becaues I listened to it as an audiobook (which didn't have any footnotes or references to any studies).Some of the authors statements, arguments, and conclusions are ridiculous:1. Apparently, everything in Denmark is wonderful and great and no one suffers from Afluenza. Never mind that it is mind-numbingly expensive. If Danes could just afford to buy stuff, they would be just like everyone else.2. Going to school and college to get a job is, apparently, just so wrong. Who knew? Imagine all this time I've just been actually unhappy because I did that.3. George W. Bush's problems are all due to an overbearing mother? Really. (The author doesn't provide the psyc. report on that one). 4. The author's two examples in America: Affluenza afflicted: 20 something, single, former drug-addicted, Wall Street male who inherited a ton of money and who makes a lot of money and lives a sad, unfufilled life. Non-Affluenza afflicted: 30-something African-born undocumented married taxi driver. Did this author even talk to anyone else? Only conclusion that can be drawn from these examples: "We were poor, but we were happy."
Would you listen to another book narrated by Oliver James?
Probalby not. His voice drips with contempt and superiority.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Book is interesting if not a little elitist, but the author narrating his own book is understandable, but the worst experience.
Oliver James examines the relationship between affluence, self-esteem and happiness. He does this principally by recounting stories of people who he's met who represent one or other end of the spectrum of happiness/affluence.
My principal difficulty is that he reaches extraordinarily certain opinions based, seemingly on these cases alone. He makes a lot of assumptions about the people he talks about. I actually think he is correct about most things, but there's precious little evidence included (much like this review...) I have however changed some aspects of my life based on this, so I must have been happy enough with his conclusions.
I like books narrated by the author, but Oliver James' voice can become rather wearing after a while - not so bad that I couldn't listen, but not my favourite narration
2 of 2 people found this review helpful
Yet again I come across a really fascinating subject spoiled by the narration
It seems that some authors arrogantly think that only THEY can do their work justice and insist on doing the audio version themselves. In some cases this is fabulous and adds significantly to the text (most autobiographies, I find). In this case, it’s just bloody ruined it. Oliver James’ misplaced verbal gymnastics make it very hard to concentrate on what is being said and, I think, undermines the message
Would you try another book written by Oliver James or narrated by Oliver James?
It's an interesting idea, supported by some serious legwork on the part of the author.
Would you be willing to try another book from Oliver James? Why or why not?
I'd definitely listen to another book by the same author.
What didn’t you like about Oliver James’s performance?
The narration is okay, not fantastic. When the book quotes other people the narration attempts to mimic their speech to grating effect.
Was Affluenza worth the listening time?
Worth listening to for the ideas, probably better enjoyed in print than listened to in its present form.
I really enjoy the research done by Olivier James. However, I found the topic quite distant from my experiences as a common person who doesnt strive for being famous and rich. I aso dont know many people who are milionaires etc and probably wont know that many in my future career.
The book is interesting. However, it is too much similar information. After half of the book i had to stop listening because i wasnt mindfull anymore of what am i listening to.
I would recommend it only to milionares or social psychologists.
What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?
He makes an initial, rather obvious point that money can't buy happiness then repeats it again and again in different contexts.
Has Affluenza put you off other books in this genre?
Yes. It's just the same point repeated again and again.
I found this book really interesting and insightful. It reminds you of the importance of connection and how we are conditioned to be consumers.
Great book - a must-read for anyone concerned about how to live in the modern world. It has left me determined to make some changes - and given me plenty of concrete tips on which changes to make
Great idea, but aimed at a particular age group, I'd say 30 - 60 year olds. I could relate to the overall problem of the book, but not the individual stories. Although, I recommend it just for the underlining thought.
Very very annoying. This book rants on about the "virus" and being "infected" by Affluenza - the author's supposedly catchy description for people in the developed world who always want more rather than appreciating what they have got.
Even more annoying is that the author has one or two good points and it is well read, but these are buried under reams of junk and opinion.
The final chapter talking about childcare and the harm that it does is frankly absurd. The author has a young child and loses all objectivity, preaching wildly his views on the harms that childcare does.
1 of 2 people found this review helpful