Book Review: The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck – by Mark Manson

The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck - Book Review

If I Had a Penny…

If I had a penny for every time I’ve said to myself while reading this book, “If only I knew this when I was twenty!”

…then I’d have enough money to buy you – and everyone who reads this book review – a copy of “The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck!

I’m  barely halfway through the book, but already rate it 5-stars.  That’s because, even if the rest of it is just ‘lorem ipsum dolor sit amet’ junk you see filling up content templates, I’d have still got more value from it than any other book I’ve read this year… or even last year.

(Update: That was when I wrote this review. Now that I’ve finished reading Mark Manson’s book, nothing about that opinion has changed!)

A teenager or young adult should grab it off the shelf. Devour it in one sitting. Think about it for the next 20 years. And will then realize how well their life turned out!

And while a middle-age reader may not find anything “new” in it, the powerful, engaging and effective way Mark Manson makes his points and drives home his messages still makes it worth a read.

That, and the twist in his tales that make what you learn from them almost impossible to forget!

Take this story I read today morning…

“In 1983, a talented young guitarist was kicked out of his band. They were about to record their first album. But a couple days before recording began, the band showed the guitarist the door. As he sat on the bus back to Los Angeles from New York, the guitarist kept asking himself: How did this happen? What did I do wrong? What will I do now? Record contracts didn’t exactly fall out of the sky. Had he missed his one and only shot?

But by the time the bus hit L.A., the guitarist had vowed to start a new band. He decided that this new band would be so successful that his old band would forever regret their decision.

He would become so famous that they would be subjected to decades of seeing him on TV, hearing him on the radio, seeing posters of him in the streets and pictures of him in magazines. He’d bathe in the tears of his betrayers, each tear wiped dry by a crisp, clean hundred-dollar bill.

And so the guitarist worked as if possessed by a musical demon. He spent months recruiting the best musicians. He wrote dozens of songs and practiced religiously. His seething anger fueled his ambition; revenge became his muse.

Within a couple years, his new band had signed a record deal of their own, and a year after that, their first record would go gold. The guitarist’s name was Dave Mustaine, and the new band he formed was the legendary heavy-metal band Megadeth. Megadeth would go on to sell over 25 million albums and tour the world many times over. Today, Mustaine is considered one of the most brilliant and influential musicians in the history of heavy-metal music.”

At this point, I’m almost jumping out of my chair, fist-pumping the air, getting goose-bumps at this “against all odds” saga – which brings back memories of how, as a much younger man, I too had let revenge be my rocket-fuel (until grey hair and the attendant wisdom taught me its folly).

But the story hasn’t ended.

When it does, it’s with this powerful twist…

“Unfortunately, the band he was kicked out of was Metallica, which has sold over 180 million albums worldwide. Metallica is considered by many to be one of the greatest rock bands of all time. And because of this, in a rare intimate interview in 2003, a tearful Mustaine admitted that he couldn’t help but still consider himself a failure. Despite all that he had accomplished, in his mind he would always be the guy who got kicked out of Metallica.”

And if you’re a typical reader (like me), you’ll go…

“What? A guy with millions of dollars, tens of thousands of fans, who’s doing what he loves, feels like he’s a FAILURE?!”

Why the F*CK would he?

But Mark Manson doesn’t answer your question.

Instead he tells you a second story – of another rockstar named Pete Best, who was thrown out of a band just as famous as Metallica… and who, years later, said:

“I’m happier than I would have been with the band.”

What. The. F*CK?!

And only now, when you’re in that malleable state of mind, does Manson slip in a nuclear-powered message – one that’ll transform you.

This happens dozens of times. Which is why I recommend that you read “The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck” now.

Now, look… this isn’t the right book for everyone.

If you’re the kind of shrinking wallflower who turns beet red and shuffles your feet when you hear the dirty little four-letter F-word (yes, the exact same one that’s in the book’s title), then you’ll squirm through all of its 224-pages.

But if you can will yourself to ignore that and focus instead on the little nuggets of wisdom strewn throughout it, you’ll be the big winner.

The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck

So go ahead and pick up a copy of ‘The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck’. The Kindle edition is here, but you can also order a print copy from Amazon here.

If you read this book and don’t find yourself thinking differently about at least some aspect of your life, I’ll buy your next cheeseburger – or paneer tikka masala!

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