Regular price: $7.93

Free with 30-day trial
Membership details Membership details
  • A 30-day trial plus your first audiobook, free
  • 1 credit/month after trial – good for any book, any price
  • Easy exchanges – swap any book you don’t love
  • Keep your audiobooks, even if you cancel
  • After your trial, Audible is just $14.95/month
In Cart

Publisher's Summary

In this audio, Anna Quindlen, the best selling novelist and columnist, reflects on what it takes to "get a life" - to live deeply every day and form your own unique self, rather than merely to exist through your days. "Knowledge of our own mortality is the greatest gift God ever gives us," Quindlen writes, "because unless you know the clock is ticking, it is so easy to waste our days, our lives." Her mother died when Quindlen was nineteen: "It was the dividing line between seeing the world in black and white, and in Technicolor. The lights came on for the darkest possible reason...I learned something enduring, in a very short period of time, about life. And that was that it was glorious, and that you had no business taking it for granted." But how to live from that perspective, to fully engage in our days? In A Short Guide to a Happy Life, Quindlen guides us with an understanding that comes from knowing how to see the view, the richness in living.

Hear an exclusive interview with Quindlen.

Producer: Lisa Cahn
Original Jacket Design: Allison Saltzman
Original Jacket Photo: Barnaby Hall/Photonica
Author Photo: © Joyce Ravid
©2000 Anna Quindlen
(P)2000 Random House, Inc.

Critic Reviews

"We have to teach ourselves how to live, really live - to love the journey, not the destination." - Anna Quindlen

What members say

Average Customer Ratings


  • 3.8 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
  • 4 Stars
  • 3 Stars
  • 2 Stars
  • 1 Stars


  • 3.9 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
  • 4 Stars
  • 3 Stars
  • 2 Stars
  • 1 Stars


  • 4.0 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
  • 4 Stars
  • 3 Stars
  • 2 Stars
  • 1 Stars
Sort by:
  • Overall

short=thin=not worth the price

I generally like the author's short works (her old columns), and if this were priced by the word (or minute) on the scale where 20-hour audiobooks cost $30, then I would say go for it. But it is terribly pricey for what seems like an NPR feature segment. I think the paper version of this book sold because it made a great graduation present that could be read completely while standing in line to get into the graduation ceremony.

I recommend instead This American Life (a whole month -- 4 hours -- of something with a similar mood for only a few more dollars), a deeper self-help book (or better still, literature that really delves into the happy life), or Al Franken's great send-up of this book and its ilk ("Oh, the Things I Know" -- a great audiobook, read by the author).

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall


This is an important reminder to remember to look for the beauty of life..even in the dark. Thank you!

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story


What am I listening to???? This was a random and worthless use of my time. What is the freaking takeaway?

  • Overall
  • Terri
  • Fall Chruch, Vatican City State (Holy See)
  • 01-09-06

No Kidding

Don't waste your time, money or credits on this one. There is nothing new or insightful here.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Life Priorities

I enjoy Anna Quindlen's books very much so when I saw Audible had her book, "A Short Guide to a Happy Life" I was ever so glad. This to me is the best 17 minutes of listening anyone can do and by all means share with others.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful