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Publisher's Summary

Andy Couturier captures the texture of sustainable lives well lived in these 10 profiles of ordinary - yet exceptional - men and women who left behind mainstream existences in urban Japan to live surrounded by the luxuries of nature, art, friends, delicious food, and an abundance of time. 

Drawing on traditional Eastern spiritual wisdom and culture, these pioneers describe the profound personal transformations they underwent as they escaped the stress, consumerism, busyness, and dependence on technology of modern life. This intimate and evocative book tells of their fulfilling lives as artists, philosophers, and farmers who rely on themselves for happiness and sustenance. By inviting readers to enter into the essence of these individuals’ days, Couturier shows us how we, too, can bring more meaning and richness to our own lives.

©2017 Andy Couturier (P)2018 Random House Audio

Critic Reviews

“We are in an overheated world - physically and spiritually. It is extremely powerful to read of people who have managed to escape that world, not by traveling to outer space but by heading toward reality. This is subversive in the best possible way.” (Bill McKibben, author of Deep Economy)

“Reading this magic book is like drinking from a fresh wellspring deep in the mountains: it slowly returns one to sanity. In an era when the allure of ten thousand digital screens eclipses the inner radiance of a stone lying among the reeds, how clarifying to encounter the eloquence and humility of these well-lived lives.” (David Abram, author of The Spell of the Sensuous)

“Couturier catches everything that is essential and beautiful in Japan with a clarity, sincerity, and openness that move me to the core. It’s been years since such a fresh and liberating voice has emerged to remind us of the true heart of a country that so many of us fail to see.” (Pico Iyer, author of The Lady and the Monk)

What listeners say about The Abundance of Less

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Eye Opener!

Loved every minute of it. It feels like these people are now also my friends!

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  • daiaenna
  • 04-11-2019

a life changing book

In my search for ways to live a kinder life after learning of the realities of mass consumption and it's detrimental effects on nature, I ventured into minimalism, which in my view is a more meaningful, simple way to live. Yet, I couldn't find real solutions to the blocks that arise when abstaining from things like...disposable plastics, food packaging, ethical products when living in an urban city. And I find food takeouts and on the go coffee especially hard to resist while working my demanding, fast-paced job. It's been a constant conflict of being drained and trying to find ways to regain that energy. Then... I found this book. And oddly enough, the answer to those questions and concerns were very simple... Simplicity. In food, life, relationship to others and nature...which so far has brought contentment in my life. I can go on and on in regards to the gems of wisdom found within this book. As the author did an amazing job, over the course of 15 years (!) to string all of this together. And yes, this is a real dense read, and you'll want to read/listen to it many times over. I've even bought a hardcopy of this book to refer to if I feel a little lost or need guidance. So yea, definitely life changing. At least...for me. :)

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  • Chris
  • 08-08-2020

Excellent narration, pieces of wisdom

This book is one of those that I have scribbled notes throughout, capturing clips of the audio, while spending mornings sitting quietly drinking coffee and staring out the window. And while I’m thankful for the bits of wisdom captured in these stories, I also want to credit narrator, Adam Riley, for his ability to bring characters to life in a way that gave them personality so that I was able to imagine the conversations that I might have with them as well. In a way, the audiobook had its own life and personality and I imagine listening to it again so that I might imagine a return to remote Japan and drink tea with friends.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 18-09-2020

an amazing, eye opening book

This book was one of the best books I've had the honor of reading, it has really opened my eyes and had a significant impact on my life. I have no doubt I will carry these words with me for my lifetime. I highly suggest anyone who is interested read this book, there is no way my review here could do it justice.

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  • Mary Mumma Brown
  • 09-08-2020

Great Book!

The whole book is great but the last two chapters are brilliant. This book could change your life.

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