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Publisher's Summary

In this generation-defining self-help guide, a superstar blogger cuts through the crap to show us how to stop trying to be positive all the time so that we can truly become better, happier people.

For decades we've been told that positive thinking is the key to a happy, rich life. "F*ck positivity," Mark Manson says. "Let's be honest, shit is f*cked, and we have to live with it." In his wildly popular Internet blog, Manson doesn't sugarcoat or equivocate. He tells it like it is - a dose of raw, refreshing, honest truth that is sorely lacking today. The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck is his antidote to the coddling, let's-all-feel-good mind-set that has infected modern society and spoiled a generation, rewarding them with gold medals just for showing up.

Manson makes the argument, backed by both academic research and well-timed poop jokes, that improving our lives hinges not on our ability to turn lemons into lemonade but on learning to stomach lemons better. Human beings are flawed and limited - "not everybody can be extraordinary; there are winners and losers in society, and some of it is not fair or your fault". Manson advises us to get to know our limitations and accept them. Once we embrace our fears, faults, and uncertainties, once we stop running and avoiding and start confronting painful truths, we can begin to find the courage, perseverance, honesty, responsibility, curiosity, and forgiveness we seek.

There are only so many things we can give a f*ck about, so we need to figure out which ones really matter, Manson makes clear. While money is nice, caring about what you do with your life is better, because true wealth is about experience. A much-needed grab-you-by-the-shoulders-and-look-you-in-the-eye moment of real talk, filled with entertaining stories and profane, ruthless humor, The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck is a refreshing slap for a generation to help them lead contented, grounded lives.

©2016 Mark Manson (P)2016 HarperCollins Publishers

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.5 out of 5.0
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  • 4.7 out of 5.0
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Story

  • 4.5 out of 5.0
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The author doesn't give a 'F*ck' about your time

I think their is some merit to the ideas of Mark Manson, but they do not give enough content for a whole book, which was rather a waste of time. The first parts of the book were interesting, but later on it was just dragging on and on with no real content. Most of the writing is " I think" rather than "I know" - there are rarely examples or evidence. It's like a living-room chat with a friend.
You could probably sum this book up in a 20 min TED talk without losing anything that matters...

67 of 72 people found this review helpful

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A book for 20-somethings, but not me

I think The Subtle Art... might have had more impact upon me if I was 20-something instead of 59-years-old. The language isn't really an issue (it just becomes another word that doesn't even seem to have much meaning); it's more that Manson is repetitive and doesn't offer anything original that most people haven't learned for themselves in a few decades of experience. For me, the same ideas are expressed much more elegantly, cogently, and thoroughly in The Antidote: Happiness for People Who Can't Stand Positive Thinking by Oliver Burkeman.

1,530 of 1,729 people found this review helpful

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average

a bit pointless really. the first chapter quite interesting but then devolves in to irrelevance.

12 of 13 people found this review helpful

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NGAF - Not as simple as it sounds

Part of me bought this book because I thought it was funny and quirky, part of me bought it because I was sick of giving a f*^k about so many little things that ate up my day, I didn't have any energy for the things that really mattered.

This book isn't about throwing everything to the wind and turning in to a useless blob. It's about giving f^*ks where f^*ks deserve to be given, placing your f^*ks where they're going to do you good instead of drag you down. I highly recommend it, but if you pass on it, I really don't give a f^*k.

1,519 of 1,753 people found this review helpful

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Horrible

I always wonder why people who are alive don't read their own books. Too busy, too cool, I guess Mark doesn't give a fuck. I struggled to get through the beginning as this is basically Mark offering his opinion with very little substance basically encouraging us to not care of our lives are miserable and to not expect much so we won't be disappointed. what a sad, depressing philosophy. But then he tries to illustrate a point by saying that we shouldn't give a fuck of we never get to touch Jennifer Aniston's tits. Right. If you're not smart enough to come up with a better argument than that, you're not worth my time.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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Targets 20-somethings

Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

Probably not. It has an interesting premise, and a lot of the points the author makes are useful and logical, but as a 34-year-old woman, I found it hard to relate to a lot of what the author said. It seems he's garnered most of his wisdom from years of partying and traveling. Both of those are things I haven't done extensively and don't really do now. The principles still hold true, but I probably didn't need a whole book to learn them. I think a simple blog post would do.

Which character – as performed by Roger Wayne – was your favorite?

I really liked the narrator. Even when the book became repetitive, I was able to pay attention to him, which is saying something for me.

303 of 361 people found this review helpful

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He takes one concept and beats it to death for several hours

This must be a book for the intellectually challenged. He takes the Buddhist concept of suffering being the central element of life and the acceptance of this in the 21st century then hits you on the head with it for many hours. This epiphany comes after many years apparently getting it wrong and now at the sage age of 30 he rediscovers it like an undergrad sophomore and should perhaps reread his book again. Anyone who purports to get it, doesn't get it.

378 of 462 people found this review helpful

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Read with caution!

What did you like best about The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck? What did you like least?

He puts a few things in perspective. That is it.

What was most disappointing about Mark Manson’s story?

I really think his message could be dangerous for some type of minds. I initially liked his approach, but at the end of the day he seems to be putting a damper on wanting life to be great. He makes life seems as though it will suck most of the time so you need to find joy or "feel goods" in the most simplistic aspects of life, therefore, lower your expectations and have less stress until you die. He has a refreshing take on some things in the beginning, but then it fizzles bad to me after chapter 4. I will admit that my take is probably extreme, but in all, it's still accurate. He says some good stuff, but there is nothing wrong with striving for success and trying to be the best you possible.

Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Roger Wayne?

Roger Wayne was a great narrator.

189 of 232 people found this review helpful

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not worth it

Will definitely be getting my money back. Just very generic advice typical self help book for people with too much anxiety.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Gordana
  • Iowa City, IA, United States
  • 11-02-17

Poor and not worthy time and money!

Terrible language used to express incoherent thoughts and questionable ideas followed by poorly substantiated conclusions. No reason to read but it is surprising that this book was rated at all! Maybe times in which we live...

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 08-24-17

changed my life

its not for everyone, dont know if its right for me, but it made me hopefull, and thats somerhing I havent fellt in a long time

9 of 10 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 01-16-17

Light hearted with a lot of truth.

The reason I love this book is because it doesn't take itself too seriously, it's written for the average joe who worries to much about daily life. If you're uptight/snobbish you probably won't enjoy this but if you're just a normal person stumbling through life I believe there's a lot you can take away from giving this a listen/read.

19 of 22 people found this review helpful

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  • A.Leon-Joyce
  • 01-05-17

Good, but with some tiresome problems.

Any additional comments?

Honestly, this isn't a bad jumping off point for kicking off some deeper thinking. However, it is pretty damn sexist in places, and straight up lazy in others. Mark is definitely someone who, despite all his self work, hasn't really thought that some of his readers might be, y'know, um.. women. Still it doesn't take away from what is being said most of the time, just a shame no one in the whole editing process pointed out some of his goddawful lazy stereotypical ideas might want to have an equality update. From the smallest things (like calling men, well 'men' but women the infantilizing and unequal 'girls') to the glaring fact that he maybe shouldn't put on an array of mock squeeky 'girl voices' when quoting words of women.. ... .. Yep. That really happens. Definitely not intended for women listeners, which is a shame as I don't think the ideas behind this apply to any one gender alone.

139 of 169 people found this review helpful

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  • m
  • 12-08-16

a bit overrated

lots of swearing and immaturity initially followed by patronising generalisations. profanity masquerading as wisdom. disappointing but good in small parts. sorry for non use of capitals. I'm being lazy and don't give a f#ck

93 of 113 people found this review helpful

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  • BarefootRonin
  • 01-03-17

Stuff you should know about self-help :)

If you're looking for (another) self help book with lists, tactics and reviews of your life so far and feel good ways to 'fix' broken you then don't by this. Throw your money at the people that cite numbers of successful candidates but always omit those that fell by the wayside (because their method doesn't work for most).
I purchased this almost as entertainment but it seems I have found at least one of the few 'gurus' that give an honest appraisal of life. Not so much a negative or stoic view as such, but the author simply offers some facts that will hopefully give you a little more perspective and guidance on how to live the life you want. Or not. Who gives a f**k?

26 of 32 people found this review helpful

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  • P. Healey
  • 03-30-17

First half interesting, second half meh

The first part of the book, with its slight over use of vulgar language, gives a different perspective on how to approach life. I liked the description of where best to place your "f**ks to give".

Unfortunately the second half of the book descends into waffle about the authors life experiences, which are not particularly interesting.

29 of 36 people found this review helpful

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  • Glen
  • 05-25-17

Great

Loved it, gives you an honest take on self improvement and life. Uses some concepts found in 'the chimp paradox ' and 'the 7 habits of highly effective people ' with a comical honesty.

6 of 7 people found this review helpful

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  • jason piggott
  • 02-27-17

F*cking great

This is more about choosing what to care about than not caring about anything and actually reflects a lot of learning from Buddhist principles. Humour and personal examples help to apply the theories. Book is written in a logical way, so you go through a journey with the narrator. Great book!

15 of 19 people found this review helpful

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  • Dinesh Tulsidas
  • 01-12-17

by far the best book I've read or heard in my life

after ariana Huffington I was not expecting much. the title was a bit misleading and i was not expecting to learn much spiritually. however this book mesmerised me. it is modern and adapted to our generation. the examples used are hilarious. there are so many great moments. his conclusion of the romeo and Julie wad epic. I would definitely consider buying the actual book. the approach was easy to understand yet very deep. I have personally related to so many of these concepts and he wraps it up so beautifully. hope I get a chance to meet mark one day in mauritius.

13 of 17 people found this review helpful

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  • Alberto Rizzoli
  • 06-22-17

Awful narrator

The book contains many self praising statements and anecdotes where the author glorifies himself to sometimes cringeworthy levels, but the message is agreeable. The book could have the same effect as a 20 page essay, most of it seems to be filler and personal anecdotes.

What absolutely ruins the experience is the narrator. With the most condescending voice, he emphasises curse words like an edgy teen like the rest of a sebt and mimics the voices of women in falsetto

10 of 13 people found this review helpful