I'm an introvert, and have never seen it a downside. I know our Americanised, Hollywood-inspired society is critical of introverts, but I've never fallen into the trap of "groupthink". I've always maintained that the world's best philosophers, writers, composers and scientists were introverts - people with the capability to "think outside the box". So why did I bother buying the book? Because I wanted someone else to back up my argument that introverts really are the "intellectual elite" and that there's nothing at all inferior about or wrong with us. I wanted it, I got it!
There was a lot I didn't know before reading this book. For example, the author explains the neurological differences between intro and extroverts - extroverts relying on the well-known neurotransmitter dopamine, and introverts relying on the lesser-known acetrycholine. She also explains that there are structural differences in our brains and that introverts use their frontal lobes more than extroverts, a logical explanation for our careful planning and "think before you speak" attitude. The author also highlights bias in studies that have been designed to "prove" that extroverts are happier. She points out that the studies (presumably designed by extroverts) only asked questions such as "I like to be with others" and "I'm fun to be with" rather than how introverts would define happiness - "I'm comfortable in my own skin", "I'm free to pursue my own path".
I gave the book four, rather than five stars because I didn't really find the "advice" part useful. She does give some useful advice, such as polite excuses for avoiding company, but I found other bits patronising such as in the "Introvert Survival Kit" at the end of the book, where she instructs us to carry umbarellas "in case the sun bothers you" and a colourful ski headband "in case the wind hurts your ears". I'm an academic, not a hitchhiker!
Other than my last criticism, the book was very well-written. Much recommended!