No Impact Man | LibraryThing

I’ve written before about how I now log the books I read. Oh, and my one complaint with LibraryThing from that post turns out to be wrong anyway. For the past dozen or so books I’ve read I’ve been intending to post actual reviews (rather than just /5 ratings), so here’s to me finally getting around to it.

I just finished No Impact Man: The Adventures of a Guilty Liberal Who Attempts to Save the Planet, and the Discoveries He Makes About Himself and Our Way of Life in the Process by Colin Beavan. I first heard about No Impact Man sometime before the book came out, read a couple of the blog posts, and didn’t find it that interesting, and when I started the book, I wasn’t really enjoying it.

Two things bothered me. Firstly, I hate how people who are relative newcomers to caring about stuff, do a lot better than I do, which I suppose would be better described as “guilt.” And secondly, he spoke and acted at the beginning as if nobody had ever tried very hard to do any of the things he was doing, and he was having to figure it all out for himself. I think the real problem was that he didn’t know any of the people who could have helped him out, at least not to start with.

Anyhow, after the first dozen or so pages, it got a lot better. While I expected the book to be about figuring out all the little changes he needed to do, that was just a small part. Most of the book is his prose which works through some of the scientific aspects of the project, but predominantly the philosophy, and the lifestyle changes which are largely improvements. It was great to read a book which reinforces and reminds me about what I already think and know of the better and more enjoyable lives we can all be having. A lot of ideas were actually very much in sync with the suggestions from the previous book I read (The Paradox of Choice), which I would describe as possibly the only self-help book worth reading.

In the end, I gave it 5/5. For context, you can see the distribution of my book ratings.

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