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Life's Little Instruction Book: 511 Suggestions, Observations, and Reminders on How to Live a Happy and Rewarding Life Paperback – September 27, 2000

4.7 out of 5 stars 101 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

H. Jackson Brown, Jr. is a New York Times number-one-best-selling author who lives in Nashville, Tennessee.

He is the author of Life's Little Instruction Book (volumes I, II, and III), Live and Learn, and Pass It On (volumes I, II, and III), When You Lick a Slug Your Tongue Goes Numb, The Little Book of Christmas Joys, with Rosemary Brown and Kathy Peel, and with Robyn Spizman, A Hero in Every Heart. He has also written fourteen Life's Little Treasure Books and two Kids' Little Treasure Books.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 160 pages
  • Publisher: Thomas Nelson; Revised edition (September 27, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1558538356
  • ISBN-13: 978-1558538351
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.5 x 4.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (101 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #126,762 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Advice of both the common sense variety and the kind based on bitter experience is offered here in this pocket-sized volume. Non-controversial, cutesy-but-true helpful hints make up the bulk of its alleged 511 suggestions.

A random sampling of these spattered tidbits includes:

Learn to listen. Advice sometimes knocks very softly.

Be courteous to everyone.

Read to your children.

Be enthusiastic about the success of others.

Be brave. Even if you're not, pretend to be. No one can tell the difference.

Keep secrets.

Never criticize the person who signs your paycheck.

Lie on your back and look at the stars.

And one I especially liked:

Evaluate yourself by your own standards, not by someone else's.

So as you can see, these are nice little gems of wisdom. Not Confucius-level material, perhaps, but I doubt there's anyone who can't find something to grin over, agree with, or be improved by, all for less than ten bucks.
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Format: Paperback
There are literally dozens of these little books, or little books like this one around today. You can seem them on many a desk of offices across the country. Most of them are pretty good at best, and rather mundane at worse. This one though is quite a few notches above most of the pack. H. Jackson Brown Jr. has given us over 500 (511 to be exact), short bits of wisdom in the form of little one liners. I've read them all and to be frank, actually learned much from most of them and was reminded of a lot of things that have been pushed to the back of my mind over the years. These are little thoughts and zaps of wisdom that simply make your life more pleasing to live and most of them make you smile and feel a bit better. Little things like "floss your teeth everyday," sort of reminds me of my dad. Little things, yes, but don't all the little things all add up in our lives to make a whole? This is a great gift or a great buy for yourself. You will be richer for having read it.
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Format: Paperback
This book is just wonderful for making you feel warm and fuzzy all over about how simple life could be if only you simplified and got back to the basics. The instructions are useful and will make you a better person. This is better then 99% of the motivational and self-help books out there. Life a simple and honorable life, and this book will help.
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Format: Paperback
My sister had this book sitting on her coffee table. Whenever I was over her house I couldn't resist picking it up. As the rest of the family was interacting with each other, I would be pouring over H. Jackson Brown's practical words of wisdom.

The genesis of this book is a wonderful and heart-warming story. When the author's son was heading off to college, Brown decided to jot down a few words of wisdom to help his son through his college years. He typed it up and presented it to his son as they dropped him off at his dorm. A few days later his son called to express his appreciation of this "best gift ever".

The theme of these little instructions can be summed up by saying, "Be responsible, be positive and be appreciative." Still, you have to love the humor, joy, and practicality of each one. Some of my favorites are: No. 274 "Leave everything a little better than you found it." No.503 "Be alert for opportunities to show praise and appreciation." And No. 30 "Never buy a house without a fireplace." (Oops! Too late.)

Finally, to everyone who enjoyed this book I would encourage you to read another book of wisdom, The Book of Proverbs. Its words of wisdom are even better. (After all, Instruction No. 115 is " Give yourself a year and read the Bible cover to cover.")
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
First purchased this tiny book in the 1990's at the University of Notre Dame Bookstore. In one of the relocations lost the original so ordered it from Amazon to give to a grandchild. It is a book that every parent should give to each child and every grandparent to each grandchild.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I ran across an old copy of this little book and wondered why in the world I never gave it to my children who are now in their 50s. So, I ordered one for each grown child so that they could share the wisdom with their children.
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By A Customer on July 17, 1998
Format: Paperback
This is an easy to pick up and read for one minute or read the entire book. I love to use it as a graduation gift for my students. They say it gives them all the things I have been teaching them over the years in one compact little book.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Some years ago my Mother gave me a copy of this book. In it she had a simple hand written note that she may have forgotten to mention some things during my upbringing and maybe this little book would bridge the gap. Lighthearted and good advice is contained within its pages. I ordered a couple for my own family and gave them out for the same reason. Try it, I think you will find it will do the same for you and your family.
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