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The Yellow Envelope: One Gift, Three Rules, and a Life-Changing Journey Around the World

3.79  ·  Rating details ·  2,225 ratings  ·  377 reviews

What Would You Do with a Yellow Envelope?

After Kim and her husband decide to quit their jobs to travel around the world, they're given a yellow envelope containing a check and instructions to give the money away. The only three rules for the envelope: Don't overthink it; share your experiences; don't feel pressured to give it all away.

Through Ecuador, Peru, Nepal, and

Published April 1st 2017 by Sourcebooks
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Average rating 3.79  · 
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 ·  2,225 ratings  ·  377 reviews

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Always Pouting
Apr 11, 2017 rated it it was ok
Kim is unhappy with her job and life so decides to pack up with her husband and travel, following her life long dream of writing at the same time. When they're about to leave one of their other couple friends give them a yellow envelope with $1000 to give away on their travels at their discretion with the purpose of helping them learn to be more spontaneous and help those they meet along the way. While I can empathize with the ideas behind this book, I just personally didn't connect with it. A l ...more
Mar 29, 2017 rated it liked it
Kim Dinan decided that she needed a change. She persuaded her husband that they should both quit their jobs in Oregon, sell all their possessions, and travel around the world without any specific plan. Before leaving, close friends gave them a yellow envelope containing $1000 to be given away as they saw fit on their journey. The Yellow Envelope is Dinan’s memoir of that journey. This is another book that leaves me with a mix of likes and dislikes. I liked the premise, and found the places Dinan ...more
Mar 12, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
I love a good travel story. I believe I have this from my grandmother, who also loves to live vicariously through other travellers’ stories. So when I came across The Yellow Envelope, I knew I had to request it. The story takes us through South America, India, Indonesia, and Vietnam – but there’s something that makes this book a little more special: the yellow envelope.

The concept of the yellow envelope is very simple: Kim and Brian were given an envelope of money by two good friends. The goal?
2.5 stars
Dinan is unhappy with her successful life. She plays by the rules, went to school, got the job the marriage the way society expects success to look. She decides to leave it all, with her husband and go on an adventure with no end goal. She wants to travel, see different places and experience the world. her friends give her an envelope with some money in it to spend making the world better as she saw fit.
So they go, and travel, but the book has little of the travel experience and focuse
Louise Wilson
Kim and her husband decide ti quit their jobs and travel around the world. They are given a yellow envelope with instructions to give the money away.

What a fantastic thing to be able to do. To give up everything you have and travel the world. Kim & Brian's relationship is often challenged during their adventure. This is a lovely written book.

I would like to thank NetGalley, Source. books (Non-Fiction) and the author Kim Dinan for my ARC in exchange for an honest review.
Cindy Burnett
Mar 31, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: net-galley
2.5 stars

When Kim and her husband decide to quit their jobs and travel the world, they are given a yellow envelope with $1000 to distribute to those they want to help in some way. They begin in South America and eventually make their way to India and other countries in Asia. Kim and Brian argue A LOT and that sadly was the focus far too often in the book. I think I was hoping for a book like I Will Always Write Back or even No Summit Out of Sight where the reader gains a lot of information and i
Rachel B
Jan 31, 2017 rated it did not like it
Shelves: netgalley, memoir-etc
Ugh. I expected so much more from this book. Dinan tells how she and her husband quit their jobs and left to travel the world. Some friends of theirs give them money to share with whomever they want while on their journey. Sounds intriguing, right? 
Unfortunately, there is so much wrong with this book.  
The author came across to me as a self-centered, entitled, prideful brat. She was constantly talking about the failures of others and viewed herself as a more enlightened person than others in g
Zoe Mann
Jul 12, 2017 rated it really liked it
"I'd upturned so many rocks, scavenged like the starving for the missing pieces of myself, just to learn that I'd held them all along."

Wow! Are you sure Kim Dinan was writing about her life and not mine? I have never been so moved, empowered and appreciative of a book EVER!

Kim tells the story of how she and her husband Brian came to the decision to sell all their assets and travel the world for an undecided amount of time. Before leaving for their travels they were given a yellow envelope with
Vipul Murarka
Jan 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: netgallery
You read books you may like them. But there are very few books with which you can actually connect. The Yellow Envelope by Kim Dinan is one such book. Thanks to the publishers and NetGallery for providing me the ARC of this lovely book which I could relate with.

It was my first time reading a travelogue and second time in a long time reading a memoir. When I had requested this book on NetGallery I actually thought that the book would be boring but because the synopsis appealed to me, I went ahea
Mar 04, 2017 rated it really liked it
The Yellow Envelope by Kim Dinan

On May 11, 2012 Kim left a job that she was earning 50% more than her former job. Her husband Brian had one week of work remaining. They sold their home and new car and most of all their possessions except a few boxes filled with sentimental things that they were going to drop off for family to store for them. Kim was a runner and it was out during one of her morning runs that it dawned on her that her life had veered off track. On the surface she had married her
Yvonne (It's All About Books)

Finished reading: March 28th 2017

“At the end of the day, the money itself is just paper. What gives the whole experience meaning are the thoughts, emotions, and feelings that come with giving the money away in ways that make you smile and make your heart sing.”

*** A copy of this book was kindly provided to me by Netgalley and Sourcebooks in exchange for an honest review. Thank you! ***

(view spoiler)
Paula Vince
Mar 29, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: non-fiction
Kim Dinan tells the story of her own true adventure. She and her husband Brian decided to leave the rat race and set out on a journey around the world. They had to sell everything, and sacrifice their lifestyles in order to do so. It's a pipe dream for many of us, so since these guys were prepared to make such a hardcore decision for real, I was happy to grab the book and live vicariously through their experiences.

The yellow envelope was given to them by their friends Michele and Glenn, who want
Nov 29, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Full Disclosure: I know Kim and until today I thought this was just an amazing book written by a good friend. It's about her journey, her love and her life. Set on the back drop of amazing countries filled with good times and hard times. Today, I too tried to randomly commit an act of kindness and now I understand. Kim's ability to be vulnerable, bare her soul and lay down her dark thoughts, fears and hopes is what makes this book worth the read. You will think she is insecure, selfish and fille ...more
Jun 29, 2017 rated it liked it
Three stars for the countries visited and all the people who had to come to the aid of the helpless and hapless for her preferred brand of tourism.

This voice, Kim's- it is honest. Actually that's one of the best aspects of Kim. Most of the rest, not so much.

Her husband Brian is a saint and knows what a vow means. Kim doesn't connote any such definition or most (maybe all?) aspects of life that doesn't reveal or entrap her own "plan" or destiny as she changes or perceives change. Most else, if
I'm a big believer that not every book is meant for every reader BUT that every book, if read with an open heart (or should that be: clear eyes, full hearts?), holds something worthwhile for every reader. That said, there is no pleasure quite so sweet as discovering a book that is so perfectly meant for you that you cherish every word of it and immediately feel a kinship with its author and start daydreaming about how you would be best friends in the real world.

Such was the case with THE YELLOW
Jan 06, 2017 rated it really liked it
The Yellow Envelope is a memoir of Kim and her husband Brian's travel experiences when they decide to quit their jobs, sell everything, and go abroad with no particular plans. Friends gift them with a yellow envelope of money before they leave to be gifted as they go along, and from their first encounters struggling and failing to give yellow envelope money to it becoming second nature, they learn more about who they are as individuals, as a couple, as people in the world.

This was a fairly larg
Apr 16, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: kindle, non-fiction
3.5 stars

I received a free digital copy from the author/publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review

Kim Dinan is unhappy and wants to explore the world. So she and her husband sell their house, and all their worldly belongings, so they can travel around the world for an entire year. The journey ends up being one of person self-discovery and comes close to destroying their relationship for good. Keeping them going is The Yellow Envelope - an envelope of money that is to be used to hel
Mareli Thalwitzer
Mar 26, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley, kindle
"The yellow envelope taught me how to give, not just money, but to give of myself." I've never been fond of memoirs, can't give any good excuse why not, it's just not my reading-thing. But this travel memoir by Kim Dinan might just change my future views on memoirs.

Kim turns into a wonderful storyteller through her travels across the globe. Ecuador, Peru, Nepal, India, Vietnam - all these places reel by in your mind and yes, they are all so infinitely google-able. Every time Kim and Brian touch
Gillian Page
Feb 16, 2019 rated it really liked it
I can see how this book could get on some people’s nerves. An American woman who quits her job and sets off to travel the world while giving away someone else’s money along the way. There’s certainly a thick veil of privilege HOWEVER at the core of things, if more people did what she did, even on a smaller scale, the world would be a better place. It’s important to challenge the ways we are told to live. Travelling and choosing to put yourself in vulnerable states forces one to change one’s pers ...more
5 stars

Very good book. I really enjoyed this one. It was nice to see Kim and Brian's journey. Their travel sounded really fun. Would recommend to anyone who is a fan of biographies.
Erin Seidemann
Jun 01, 2018 rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed the parts about how they gave away the yellow envelope money but wished that there was more about that. This is a nice, feel-good book.
Oct 20, 2016 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Rebekah Crain
Oct 22, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Kim and Brian lived a good life in Portland, Oregon. They both had good jobs, lived in a great house, and had amazing family and friends to spend their days with. Yet, for Kim, something was missing. Then one day a lightbulb went on inside Kim's head and she knew what it was she wanted- needed- to do. She needed an adventure, and what better way to find one than to travel the world?!

Agreeing to join his wife on her quest, Brian and Kim downsized their lives completely and prepared to set out on
Heather T
Apr 20, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Gah, my feelings on this are SO mixed!

I haven't read anything previously by this author, so I went in with no knowledge about how it was going to turn out. I'm an avid traveler who would love to travel the world someday, but so far it's been "limited" to the US and most of Europe. I was fascinated by the places visited in this book, but felt like their details often lacked depth. I felt like more time was spent on the relationship between the author and her husband, vs the author and the places
Jan 20, 2017 rated it liked it
love to travel and was quite intrigued by the idea by the envelope to share with who they thought needed it. I felt that the book could have focused more on those experiences with the envelope than with themselves. I enjoyed learning how a couple grew with their experiences. Kim and Brian were brave to try this experiment out, it can be quite stressful to a relationship. I enjoyed their adventures and the places they visited. They visited places that I probably would not visit. I thought Kim re ...more
Aug 16, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: travel
Kim wants to quit her job and travel the world. She convinces her husband, and they sell all their belongings as well as their house. But, before they leave they are given a yellow envelope. A yellow envelope that ultimately helps shape their adventure and is there with them through love, loss, and making new friends. An adventure that takes them on a journey around the globe and changes their lives forever.
Deanne Smithey
Sep 02, 2018 rated it liked it
This book made me long for the ability to pick up and go and travel the world. I did find myself to be annoyed with the author in the first third of the book. Her husband gave up his job, home, friends and family to join her on this adventure, but in the beginning she seemed to be very selfish and more concerned about her experience than his. In the end things were better. I do like the idea of taking a yellow envelope and sharing with others during your travels.
May 13, 2017 rated it did not like it
Shelves: audiobooks
Sorry Kim. Maybe this book would have been better in print vs audio. The writing sounds like a high school exercise in creative writing. The content is self congratulatory.

I can't believe I listened to the whole thing! The synopsis said there was a twist in the end. There was no twist.

The only redeeming part of this book is the challenge to do good in the world.
KayLee Parson
Jul 01, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This is a BEAUTIFUL memoir about finding yourself, loving others, mending relationships, and traveling. Loved it! I felt like I was able to travel along with Kim as I read. The emotions she shares are ones I think everyone can relate to and it was lovely to read such honesty. It's the perfect book for a book club!
Dora Okeyo
Mar 12, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley
A beautiful memoir about taking a leap of faith, travelling the world and spreading kindness.

Kim and her husband quit their jobs and embark on a journey around the world. Their friends give them a yellow envelope that contains a thousand dollars with three simple instructions:
1. Don't overthink it.
2. Share your experiences.
3. Don't feel pressured to give it all away.

They travel through Nepal, Ecuador, Peru and beyond and their relationship is challenged and tested.

I loved their travel experience
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Kim Dinan is the author of The Yellow Envelope and Life on Fire. Endlessly curious about the world, she has backpacked to over twenty-five countries on five continents and has called India, Mexico and numerous campgrounds around the USA home. Her love of the outdoors landed her a coveted job on Backpacker Magazine’s Get Out More Tour and has compelled her to climb mountains in the Himalayas, raft ...more

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35 likes · 11 comments
“My life was wailing like a beautiful prayer, the moments stretching into hours, the days to years. I could see now that it was possible to live a long life poorly, or a short life well, and that at any moment one might shift their position and, after years of hibernation, decide to crawl out of the den and live.” 3 likes
“At the end of the day, the money itself is just paper. What gives the whole experience meaning are the thoughts, emotions, and feelings that come with giving the money away in ways that make you smile and make your heart sing.” 1 likes
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