Everything That Remains Book Review

As some of you may have noticed, in the past few years many people have become more interested in minimalism. And as much as it makes me look like a trend follower, I am too. After reading Goodbye Things by Fumio Sasaki, I wanted to read more books on the subject. Having found the Minimalists’ podcast, I wanted to read one of there books, so here I am, reviewing Everything That Remains.

Synopsis

What if everything you ever wanted isn’t what you actually want? Twenty-something, suit-clad, and upwardly mobile, Joshua Fields Millburn thought he had everything anyone could ever want. Until he didn’t anymore. Blindsided by the loss of his mother and his marriage in the same month, Millburn started questioning every aspect of the life he had built for himself. Then, he accidentally discovered a lifestyle known as minimalism…and everything started to change.

That was four years ago. Since, Millburn, now 32, has embraced simplicity. In the pursuit of looking for something more substantial than compulsory consumption and the broken American Dream, he jettisoned most of his material possessions, paid off loads of crippling debt, and walked away from his six-figure career. So, when everything was gone, what was left? 

Not a how-to book but a why-to book, Everything That Remains is the touching, surprising story of what happened when one young man decided to let go of everything and begin living more deliberately. Heartrending, uplifting, and deeply personal, this engrossing memoir is peppered with insightful (and often hilarious) interruptions by Ryan Nicodemus, Millburn’s best friend of twenty years.

We are all dogs thrashing in the collars of our own obligations.

Review

I found this book very easy to read. Written in a conversational style the ideas presented didn’t feel threatening or overwhelming. This also matched the continent of the book quite well as it was the personal story of the two authors Joshua Fields Millburn and Ryan Nicodemus.

Those assholes the Joneses are impossible to keep up with.

This book reads half like an autobiography and half like a step by step guide to minimalism. It reminds me of some ways of the Buddha’s Hagiography (a religious biography) as all the teachings can be found in their story and the story can be found in their teachings (not that I am comparing them to the Buddha). This book was a joy to read, and I would gladly recommend it to anyone who has been wondering whether or not minimalism is right for them.

The best present is presence.

5 stars

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