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Publisher's Summary

For millennia, Stoicism has been the ancient philosophy that attracts those who seek greatness, from athletes to politicians and everyone in between. And no wonder: its embrace of self-mastery, virtue and indifference to that which we cannot control has much to offer those grappling with today's chaotic world. But who were the Stoics?

In this book, Ryan Holiday and Stephen Hanselman offer a fresh approach to understanding Stoicism through the lives of the people who practised it. Through short biographies of all the famous and lesser-known Stoics, this book will show what it means to live stoically and reveal the lessons to be learned from their struggles and successes. The result is a treasure trove of insights for anyone in search of living a good life.

©2020 Ryan Holiday and Stephen Hanselman (P)2020 Hachette Audio UK

What listeners say about Lives of the Stoics

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  • Sam
  • 28-09-2020

Great book, but lacks the 'it' factor

It's a great book, and Ryan and Stephen did a fantastic job, but you can't compare this to Will Durant's 'The Life of Greece'. If you want to go deeper without the fluff read Will Durant. Still 5 stars though for the making this cross-over to regular readers.

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  • Tim
  • 25-04-2021

Get a professional narrator...

Robotic and punishing to try and engage. The content is great but the author really should have paid someone to narrate for him. I couldn’t finish it.

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  • J. Cochrane
  • 15-03-2021

Uneven and hurried narration

This is my fourth Ryan Holiday book. Having read and listened to three others. The synopsis messaging here is very good for a person seeking to understand the founding thinkers and practitioners of Stoicism.
But several of the chapters are read monotonously and unnecessarily fast. There was no love shown for the words being spoken. The chapter on Cleanthes I found particularly difficult and almost gave up the book right then. The pleasant surprise is the discussion between the authors at the end of the Audio book. That was deep, true and cared-for and was well worth the listen.

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  • CESAR
  • 17-12-2020

Great in every square

Great job and for al the people who read the reviews , I am glad I went for this audio book . The reading and the content is so good and well taken care of. Than you great job

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  • Alberto
  • 04-10-2020

Great philosophy, amazing book, fantastic authors

I love stoicism and Ryan Holiday goes very deep on it. In this book he tells practical examples of this philosophy.

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  • Philip
  • 25-09-2020

Excellent as always

I have a lot to thank Ryan Holiday for popularising the subject and his writing is always accessible, engaging, well paced and insightful. But Ryan - if you're reading this - the narration seems a bit rushed and monotone. Needs a bit more colour - to my two ears at any rate. But your books are great and if anyone reading is hesitating clicking purchase - don't think twice, it's another great listen and a strong summary of the lives of the great Stoics.

5 people found this helpful

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  • Tom n.
  • 15-12-2020

The worst audio book reading ever!

Just awfully read, like a child reading a book! Really disappointed want my money back really.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 02-10-2020

Narration is overly fast and flat.

Made it through to the end but the hurried, Shatner-esque narration made it quite a chore in places. I hope that Ryan asks somebody else to narrate his next book because, as good as the content is, this left me feeling very cold. I DO recommend the book, but physical is definitely the best option for this one I think.

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  • Paul McG
  • 30-12-2020

Shame about the Narration

This is a good book, full of amazing historical detail that reflects well on the author..Alas, the same cannot be said for his narration which is like an 10 year old reading hurriedly from a book in front of a class. The narrator is not telling a story; he is merely saying the words. I am dissuaded from purchasing any of his other books where he is the narrator.

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  • Simon
  • 18-05-2021

Good content, awful narration

Good content, but could not tolerate the narration so I gave up after the first three chapters, better to read this one I would suggest .

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  • Adrian Chan-Wyles Ph.D
  • 15-05-2021

Too Many Unwarranted Assumptions About Stoicism!

A weird take on the history and meaning of the philosophy of Stoicism provided by two Americans who seem to equate Roman totalitarian imperialism with modern liberal democracy, whilst perpetuating the myth that Christianity was a persecuted, harmless religion (the Catholic Church supported fascism before, during and after WWII and is historically responsible for the death millions due to its inherent intolerance)! This misinterpretation of the classical world is to be expected from two representatives of a country that has infected the world with US anti-intellectualism.

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  • Dr. Phil
  • 27-03-2021

Disappointing Audio

Although clearly provided it was elivered throughout in a completely lifeless and monotonous commentary that made it a very difficult book to listen to.

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  • Social Work Tutor
  • 25-03-2021

Interesting, but not very useful

Interesting, but not very useful.

Having come to this from loving Holiday’s other books on Stoicism, I was perhaps a little biased in expecting more of the same.

Instead of the applicable philosophy found in his other work, you get a brief history of the lives of the founding fathers of Stoicism.

Whilst interesting, there is no new spin on these accounts and you could get the same for free online.

Ok, but not what I was expecting.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 23-03-2021

Narration wasn't good

I struggled to finish this as the narration was so monotone that it was difficult to keep tuned in

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  • N Kerridge
  • 21-03-2021

Well written book not the best narration

This book is a good introduction to the stoic philosophers and there is a lot of good information about many of them. However I think you would be best off reading the book for yourself. Narration is quite fast paced and somewhat monotone in places

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