The Optimist: One Man's Search for the Brighter Side of Life and over 2 million other books are available for Amazon Kindle . Learn more
FREE Delivery in the UK.
Temporarily out of stock.
Order now and we'll deliver when available. We'll e-mail you with an estimated delivery date as soon as we have more information. Your account will only be charged when we dispatch the item.
Dispatched from and sold by Amazon.
Gift-wrap available.
Quantity:1
The Optimist: One Man's S... has been added to your Basket
FREE Delivery on orders over £10.
Condition: Used: Good
Comment: This book is eligible for free delivery anywhere in the UK. Your order will be picked, packed and dispatched by Amazon. Buy with confidence!
Have one to sell?
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See this image

The Optimist: One Man's Search for the Brighter Side of Life Paperback – 22 Jan 2009


See all 8 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle Edition
"Please retry"
Paperback, 22 Jan 2009
£10.99
£0.01 £0.01
Audio CD
"Please retry"
£17.35
£10.99 FREE Delivery in the UK. Temporarily out of stock. Order now and we'll deliver when available. We'll e-mail you with an estimated delivery date as soon as we have more information. Your account will only be charged when we dispatch the item. Dispatched from and sold by Amazon. Gift-wrap available.


Product details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Canongate Books (22 Jan. 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 184767061X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1847670618
  • Product Dimensions: 13.5 x 2.5 x 21.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 842,308 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Discover books, learn about writers, and more.

Product Description

Review

'A delightfully quirky journey of self-discovery that will make your spirits soar, and possibly lead you to enlightenment. Possibly.' Mick Brown

Book Description

A hilarious antidote to the January Blues.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
Browse Sample Pages
Copyright | Excerpt
Search inside this book:

Customer Reviews

3.1 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By little miss happy on 9 Feb. 2009
Format: Paperback
I was won over by the accessbility of the writing and the endearing way in which the narrator contrasts the 'big' ideas with the challenges he faces in his own everyday existence. Laurence Shorter writes with assurance but is unafraid to to lay himself bare. I found by the end of reading the book it had managed to awake some pretty dormant positive attitudes and my outlook had noticeably brightened - a result that is surely worth a few quid of anyone's money?
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By B. Consulting on 11 Sept. 2010
Format: Paperback
Laurence Shorter's ¨ The Optimist ¨ is a great read, one of those that I could not put down. The writing is funny and thought provoking at the same time. I found myself asking some rather deep and yet simple questions about life in general and the society we live in today. His spans the globe meeting all kinds of people, famous ones and regular everyday folks like you and I, the journey is most interesting and you will at least see some things in a new light. As one who has not bothered reading the paper and listening to the news for about a year now I have truly found that I do not need to!!!There is less clutter in life, less stuff to worry about,you can ¨wake up and smell the coffee¨ life is simpler, more enjoyable and I and my wife are much happier. Dare I say you will be less 'pessimistic' and more optimistic !! A definite recommended read, great job Mr.Shorter !!
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Format: Paperback
One man's very personal search for meaning and optimism in the face of constant bad news in the media, and too many pessimistic friends and family. Accepting his connection to Western values and attachments, he searches for a way to develop his JBF (Jump out of Bed Factor), through consultations and interviews with successful people from all walks of life - people who have developed their own mental models for success.

He doesn't develop any grand unified model for optimism or success, but seems to find his own way through observing others and questioning their approach. His beliefs make it challenging for him to accept contradictory notions at the same time, but he comes to accept that success requires passion and drive to want something badly at the same time as building strength to carry on whether it happens or not. Developing the attitude of life as one great experiment.

That's all OK as a personal journal of discovery, but it is disappointing in conclusion for the reader seeking more. The book promises a lot, in interviews with the big names and obscure success stories ... but ultimately is one person's diary rather than anything more illuminating.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
9 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Justin Marozzi on 7 Feb. 2009
Format: Paperback
What do we most need at a time of near universal gloom and feeble-minded pessimism? A shot of optimism, that's what. It's one of Laurence Shorter's triumphs to provide this welcome boost, to remind us of what we already have rather than what we think we need and put a smile on our faces while he's at it. Insightful, highly amusing and a wonderful read. Memorable encounters with some of our planet's most optimistic minds make this a lively and informative romp across a subject that has exercised homo sapiens from the earliest times. Bravo!
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
8 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Andy Cope on 15 Mar. 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I can't believe that some readers have rated this book as 1 star! I think this is exactly what Lawrence is talking about in his book. The bloke comes up with a great idea and then puts it into practice. He makes loads of brilliant points and manages to make us laugh and think along the way. The book challenges our current way of thinking while managing to avoid jargon and big words. It's awesome and I loved it

For people to score it as 1 or 2 stars says it all. As a society, we're stuck in a habit of being negative. Pessimism rules. It's a doddle to be critical. Energy vampires are infectious!

I'd advise anyone to read Lawrence's book and take it in the manner he intended. As a bit of light relief in a doom-laden society

PS, writing this review has made me happy!
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
13 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Toby Rowland on 3 Feb. 2009
Format: Paperback
Over time, in general, things turn out for the best - that's the historical lesson anyway. And I think that a lot of us experience that in our own lives too: We end up with the right person, or we end up happily alone for the right reasons. We find the occupation that interests us, or are glad that we quit our job. We realise that we are happier now than we used to be. So why is it sometimes so hard to be optimistic, to believe that things simply will get better for us, and the world, in the long run? Reading 'The Optimist' helped me to access my own logical and inherent optimism again, even today. Maybe it can help you too.

The book follows Laurence Shorter's many trials as he brightly struggles to identify the essence of optimistic feeling, and grasp the optimism opportunity. His description of his own life living with his father while in his mid-30s and unfortunate love life, is juxtaposed with a gripping account of his own route to optimistic thinking during which Laurence meets a generally random selection of optimists, some famous and some just, well, quite random. Some of the off-the-cuff repartee with the interviewees, and also just people the author meets during his quest, is inspired, and while the interviews are often unsatisfactory, the author's treatment of them is invariably superb.

Recommended for those who are ready to think positive, but need some humorous and charming support to get their Jump-Out-Of-Bed-Factor back.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again

Most Recent Customer Reviews



Feedback