Each story shows how quitting something worked out for the person in question. Some, like “I Quit the American Dream”—a narrative built around the questions “Why isn’t what I have enough? Why am I feeling so discontent?”—find Behal’s subjects quitting a variety of specific behaviors and beliefs in service to quitting a more generalized concept. Several chapters, like “I Quit Evangelical Christianity” and “I Quit Being a ‘Good Little Black Girl’” center on challenging issues and daring to make courageous changes in the face of systemic societal forces.
Though it’s clear the book is meant to convey a certain type of message about living authentically, not being afraid to let go, and how giving up opportunities can sometimes allow for other new ones to appear, Behal offers little explicit guidance to that end. Readers who have less of a certain grasp of how to take steps to make affirmative change, or who are seeking direct advice on how to walk away from something, would benefit from insight into the difference between healthy and unhealthy quitting. Still, those seeking positive stories of self-actualization and empowerment will find this a relaxing, supportive read, and perhaps a good example to encourage change.
Takeaway: This collection of real-life stories of people who dared to quit in favor of something better will appeal to readers eager to make a change.
Great for fans of: Susan Shapiro’s Unhooked, Amy Johnson’s The Little Book of Big Change.
Design and typography: A
Marketing copy: A
One of the biggest differences between good and great is knowing when and how to quit. This book is filled with memorable stories and meaningful insights to guide you toward thinking more deeply about the question.
A well-written, humorous, and empathetic look at a topic that I feel most people shy away from. My whole life I've been taught that quitting is losing, and "hanging in there" and sticking with a bad situation is a virtue no matter the cost to your own mental (and sometimes physical) well-being. Through a series of insightful interviews, along with her own life experiences, the author helps frame a new way of looking at quitting without the pandering, "life-coach" vibes other books in this genre sometimes have. I can't recommend this book highly enough!
Behal writes with wit and compassion about the sheer joy and wisdom of quitting. But here I also found a whip-smart chronicle of our life and times - our Silicon Valley highs and our racial justice lows, our understanding of gender and love and our misunderstandings of identity and belonging. I thought I was entering a book about (happy) quitters and I emerged with a deeper appreciation for life itself. Read this and you will laugh, cry, quit, thrive.