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Every Time I Find the Meaning of Life, They Change It

Latest book by Daniel Klein.
  • Publisher Penguin Books
  • Release Date October 27, 2015
  • Formats Hard Cover, Kindle
  • Hardcover 224 pages
  • ISBN-10 0143126792
  • ISBN-13 978-0143126799

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About The Author

Daniel Martin Klein Published Author

Daniel Martin Klein (born 1939 in Wilmington, Delaware) is an American writer of fiction, non-fiction, and humor. His most notable work is Plato and a Platypus Walk Into a Bar co-written with Thomas Cathcart. Klein went to school at Harvard College where he received a B.A. in philosophy.After a brief career in television comedy, he began writing books, ranging from thrillers and mysteries to humorous books about philosophy, including the New York Times bestseller, Plato and a Platypus Walk into a Bar: Understanding Philosophy Through Jokes (with Thomas Cathcart). He lives in Great Barrington, Massachusetts, and is married to Freke Vuijst, American correspondent for the Dutch newsweekly, 'Vrij Nederland'. .

'Foreword Magazines' Book of the Year - Silver Award in Literary Fiction(2009) for novel, 'The History of Now'

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Review Book


  • When Klein resolved as a young man to find the best way to live, he began compiling a notebook of sayings culled from the greatest philosophers—Aurelius, Epicurus, Pascal, Camus, and others—hoping these maxims would open a path for him. Though he abandoned this project decades ago, judging it foolishly naive, he here retrieves that discarded notebook, offering it to readers not as a completed credo but rather as a series of engaging reflections on issues everyone confronts. As he amplifies each of the philosophical quotations with his own musings, he opens perspectives on widely shared perplexities. Readers thus join Klein in pondering with Epicurus the problem of misdirected desire, teetering with Camus on the precipice of suicide, puzzling with Pascal on the ultimate wager of faith. To the degree that any thread unifies these idiosyncratic wanderings in philosophy, it is a thread of cerebral hedonism: Klein invites readers into the intensely personal philosophizing that invests every moment with radically personal pleasure. A refreshingly spontaneous plunge into deep thought.

    - Bryce Christensen
    Library Journal. September 1, 2015 issue
  • In his early 20s and 30s, Klein (Plato and a Platypus Walk into a Bar...; Travels with Epicurus) kept a notebook titled "Pithies," containing his favorite philosophical quotes. He hoped that they would become a guide on how to live a meaningful life. However, the notebook was eventually packed away and not consulted again until now, with the author in his eighth decade. This book is Klein's musings upon the quotes he favored in his youth and what they taught, and still have to teach, him and others. The sayings include a wide range of philosophers and philosophical schools of thought while his reflections span the stories behind an entry's inclusion to a thought on a particular quote's logical implication for the individual and, sometimes, society. The chapters are short, making this a book that easily lends itself to brief, meandering reading spurts. The only downside? All the quotes are from authors in the Western philosophical tradition. VERDICT A delightful book that is easily applicable to any stage of life. Even when explaining the underlying theories behind a quote, the author's writing is understandable for readers who have no prior philosophy background. Yet, philosophy students will also enjoy seeing the discipline applied to everyday life.—

    - Laura Hiatt-Smith, Conifer, CO