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The New Good Life: Living Better Than Ever in an Age of Less Hardcover – May 25, 2010


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Frequently Bought Together

The New Good Life: Living Better Than Ever in an Age of Less + The Food Revolution: How Your Diet Can Help Save Your Life and Our World + Healthy at 100: The Scientifically Proven Secrets of the World's Healthiest and Longest-Lived Peoples
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Ballantine Books; 1 edition (May 25, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0345519841
  • ISBN-13: 978-0345519849
  • Product Dimensions: 9.6 x 6.5 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (42 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #444,591 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Robbins, best-selling author and heir to the Baskin Robbins family, walked away from a fortune only to lose most of his own money in Bernie Madoff's ponzi scheme. As the author of the bestselling Diet for a New America, Robbins championed planet-friendly food and became a popular lecturer, talk-show guest, and feature of the hit documentary, Supersize Me. Now he taps his razor sharp insights and social consciousness to argue that, when it comes to not just our food but also our bank accounts, homes, and other aspects of our lives, bigger is not always best. Chapters like "Eating Better, Spending Less" and "Choosing Where to Live" combine research and case studies with Robbins' own personal experience, redefining our notions of a successful life and lending credibility to his own claims of enlightenment. While we may not choose to live like Thoreau on a remote island (as Robbins did), this examination will make us consider how our consumer choices impact our family and, perhaps, society as a whole.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Review

“There is today a profound hunger for precisely the information, the advice, and the perspectives in The New Good Life. I can think of few people with the authority to speak about the benefits of a leaner, wiser, healthier way of living. The literature on frugal, simple, conscious living is extensive—now and throughout the American story—but John Robbins brings so many unique talents and perspectives that his book is sure to be a bestseller and a best-loved resource.”—Vicki Robin, co-author of Your Money or Your Life

More About the Author

John Robbins is the bestselling author of Voices of the Food Revolution, No Happy Cows, Diet for a New America, and many other landmark works. He is founder of EarthSave International and the co-founder and co-host of the 100,000+ member Food Revolution Network, http://foodrevolution.org.

Robbins' books also include THE NEW GOOD LIFE: Living Better Than Ever in an Age of Less, HEALTHY AT 100: The Scientifically Proven Secrets of the World's Healthiest and Longest-Lived Peoples, THE AWAKENED HEART: Meditations on Finding Harmony in a Changing World, and RECLAIMING OUR HEALTH: Exploding the Medical Myth and Embracing the Source of True Healing.

Robbins' work has been the subject of cover stories and feature articles in The San Francisco Chronicle, The Los Angeles Times, Chicago Life, The Washington Post, The New York Times, The Philadelphia Inquirer, and many of the nation's other major newspapers and magazines. His life and work have also been featured in an hour long PBS special titled Diet For A New America.

The only son of the founder of the Baskin-Robbins ice cream empire, John Robbins was groomed to follow in his father's footsteps, but chose to walk away from Baskin-Robbins and the immense wealth it represented to "...pursue the deeper American Dream...the dream of a society at peace with its conscience because it respects and lives in harmony with all life forms. A dream of a society that is truly healthy, practicing a wise and compassionate stewardship of a balanced ecosystem."

Considered by many to be one of the most eloquent and powerful spokespersons in the world for a sane, ethical and sustainable future, John has been a featured and keynote speaker at major conferences sponsored by Physicians for Social Responsibility, Beyond War, Oxfam, the Sierra Club, the Humane Society of the United States, the United Nations Environmental Program, UNICEF, and many other organizations dedicated to creating a healthy, just, and sustainable way of life. He is the recipient of the Rachel Carson Award, the Albert Schweitzer Humanitarian Award, the Peace Abbey's Courage of Conscience Award, and lifetime achievement awards from groups including Green America. The widespread media attention he has received has included numerous appearances on national shows including Oprah, Donahue and Geraldo. When John spoke at the United Nations, he received a standing ovation.

John serves on the Boards of many non-profit groups working toward a thriving, just, and sustainable way of life. He is the Founder and Board Chair Emeritus of EarthSave International (earthsave.org), an organization dedicated to healthy food choices, preservation of the environment, and a more compassionate world.

John's life is dedicated to creating an environmentally sustainable, spiritually fulfilling and socially just human presence on this planet. He lives with his wife Deo, their son Ocean and his wife Michele, and their grandsons River and Bodhi in the hills outside Santa Cruz, California. The Robbins' offices and home run on solar electricity.

For information about John, for access to his articles and posts, or to sign up to be notified of his future posts and events, visit http://www.johnrobbins.info, or join the Food Revolution Network at http://www.foodrevolution.org

Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
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That's what Mr Robbins is and that's what this book is.
Deborah
Robbins helps us understand what is truly important in life and how to live in accordance with our deepest values.
Catlover
The New Good Life guides us to make wise choices, from the small to the big ones.
Katchie Ananda

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

90 of 93 people found the following review helpful By S. Reich on May 25, 2010
Format: Hardcover
I had read some of Robbins other work, namely Diet for a New America, and was impressed by his passion and enthusiasm for healthy living. This book takes it to another level, and applies that passion to reshaping our ideas of wealth and happiness. Frankly, it couldn't have come at a better time, what with our recession and financial troubles these days. He makes the case for living... I almost want to say simply, but thats not right, its much more than that. Its about trying to be content with the things many folks seem to take for granted, and not seeking happiness in the superficial materialism. Really, an excellent read, I highly recommend it whether you're a fan of his other books, and especially if you're new to his work. We all need to learn a new way of living (since clearly the old way wasn't working, for us or the planet!) and this book is a big step in the right direction. A+
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51 of 53 people found the following review helpful By Olivia on May 27, 2010
Format: Hardcover
I didn't work today, so I went to the bookstore and sat down and read this book cover to cover. I really loved it. I have read most of his other books, ('The Food Revolution, Diet for a New America, Healthy at 100, and May All Be Fed: a Diet for a New World) and this one offers a nice medley of things from his other books. There is a chapter on your money spending archetype, i.e. 'the saver' or 'the sensualist?' And many true stories and outcomes of people who have these spending personalities. Full of great advice! There are recipes for having a smaller waistline (Robbins says that some Americans have a larger waistline due to the Old Good Life-and obesity is a disease of affluence). There is a very educational chapter on the question of having children or not.
Robbins is such a compassionate person, and he has lived his life in such a humble, loving way. Helping so many people. In this book he explains that 'The Old Way' was the way of the consumer who equated material wealth as happiness and weighed his or her self-worth with how much he/she was able to consume. With these hard economic times, the definition of the 'good life' is changing, (thankfully) and he helps alleviate the pain of "not having enough" or as much as you may have had in the past, helps you take back your humanity, and makes you feel incredibly grateful for learning the new skills he has in this book to lead a more humble life. A life that is free of the old material clutter-which was so often connected to a deep confusion we had about our own worth.

I also highly recommend his other book, 'The Food Revolution'
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Melissa on February 15, 2012
Format: Hardcover
I wanted to like this book, I really did. But the whole thing reeked of privilege. I just could not identify with it. I was born into poverty and grew up on less. I wish there was a book for people in my situation where they are born poor, continue to be poor and will most likely always be poor but to help find happiness in their situation. It's different to have grown up rich and made a decision to walk away from money for whatever reason. For those of us who don't have a choice, living on less takes on a whole new meaning. That doesn't mean we also wouldn't like to do it with integrity and mindfulness of how our choices affect the planet.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Happy Vegan on May 31, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book, like John Robbins' other books (which I also loved), is life-changing. This book takes his message of compassion and integral living to a whole new level. You will be glad when you buy and read this book, and your life will be enriched when you live it. It is both intimate and expansive, personal and universal. It tells the very personal story of his own financial ups and downs, and why he has made the choices he has in his own life. It is also a book written to help the readers to a deeper understanding of their own relationship to money, and to what they define as "success." It is more than a self-help book, and more than an autobiography. In a gentle, thoughtful, and compelling way, it invites us to discover what we really value in our lives, and to build a deeper connection to it by the choices we make with our money, our relationships, and our daily choices. Highly recommended.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Katchie Ananda on June 1, 2010
Format: Hardcover
John Robbins' new book is utterly captivating! The New Good Life guides us to make wise choices, from the small to the big ones. We can take heart that there is an other way to live. As I read The New Good Life, I felt something growing in me steadily and surely. My capacity to live with joy was expanding, as was my ability to live with compassion for myself and for others.

This man really walks his talk. With every page we can feel his integrity on how to integrate the new good life into our lives and the pages are full of a smart, entertaining and practical wisdom in a time where we need it so much.

I highly recommend this book and learned so many good tips along the way. It's a very entertaining, touching and informative read and it couldn't have been timed more perfectly.
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38 of 46 people found the following review helpful By K. Ranabargar on October 1, 2010
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Let me begin by saying that the author's other books are great - Diet for a New America is fantastic and should be read by EVERYONE. I heard a podcast interview with John about this book and based upon that interview decided to give it a read. The book is broken into main sections. The first "Healing Your Relationship with Money" is excellent. Just as America needed (actually still needs) the principles found in his first book (Diet for a New America), we need the insights and information found in this first section of the New Good Life. The only complaint I have about this section is the lack of discussing lessons learned from his own personal financial downfall. Hate to spoil the story, but the author lost 95% of his assets (gained from books I assume) through indirect investments in Bernie Madoff. There is a valuable lesson there for everyone which is to NEVER put all of your eggs in one basket (no matter how good the basket looks). A fundamental principle good investors follow is diversification. Too many people have lost their hard-earned fortunes by not following that basic principle, which is a shame.

The second part of the book is simply awful. It includes long discussions about how to save by insulating your house, buying bulk foods, washing your clothes only in cold water, etc. All of those items make complete common sense and have been covered as tips in magazine and on talk shows for years. There is an entire chapter on children and their financial expense. Why? Do we have an overpopulation problem in the US? I don't believe so. China perhaps, but not here. I may have missed the true point of that chapter, but I questioned why it was even in this book.

This could have been a great book, but it didn't even come close.
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