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This review is from: The Pleasures and Sorrows of Work (Hardcover)This book provides a wry, sympathetic, ironic look at work and what it means to us. I bought it because I was at risk of redundancy and was terrified at the prospect of unemployment; it helped me think through my options more calmly. De Botton explores all kinds of work, including many that I never knew existed. His portraits of the biscuit designer and the career adviser are wonderfully poignant and fillet out the notion that some kinds of work might be more meaningful, or rewarding, than others. I also enjoyed the way the author revealed himself in the discourses he held with others, showing his own vulnerabilities in terms of his career choices - just when we thought he must be the only person on the planet to have it all sussed. De Botton describes his first essay as a 'photo-essay', and this is a very reader-friendly way to introduce us to his theme. The photos throughout the book are pleasant and in some ways not all that remarkable; but they cause you to slow down and compare the text with the photos, and thereby allow you to think more reflectively - a great result for a philosophical tome. This was a wonderfully soothing book for me at this point in my life; it left me wishing for more, especially on his suggestions, undeveloped in this book, on the comparisons of work with love. I recommend it to anyone who has any itching of dissatisfaction with the way they earn their crust.