Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Most Brilliant Thoughts” as Want to Read:
Most Brilliant Thoughts
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Most Brilliant Thoughts

3.64  ·  Rating details ·  167 ratings  ·  17 reviews

You don't have to be a genius to sound like one. Here's a collection of the most profound and provocative wit and wisdom in the English language in two lines or less. Edited by entrepreneur John M. Shanahan, who created the wildly successful Hooked on Phonics program, this wonderful book presents the best that has been thought and said on every imaginable topic.

Classified by such themes atopic.


Hardcover, 324 pages
Published October 22nd 2002 by William Morrow (first published June 1st 1999)
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Most Brilliant Thoughts, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Most Brilliant Thoughts

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 3.64  · 
Rating details
 ·  167 ratings  ·  17 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of Most Brilliant Thoughts
Feb 07, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I didn't expect this book to be funny, but it made me cry laughing.
This guy included his own "brilliant thoughts" , which include these nonsensical gems:

"If you don't bring Paris with you, you wont find it there."

"Reality is the other person's idea of how things should be."

"There are three important steps in a mans life: birth, marriage, and death ... but not necessarily in that order."

1 star. But also 10/10 would recommend.
Jesse Broussard
The author is arrogant, repetitive, and careless in his citations (he attributes a quote from Ovid's Amores to Cato and enters the same quotes in multiple locations throughout the book). He apparently never thought anyone would read it cover to cover, and I wish he'd been right.

Just a tip: if you're writing a book called "The Most Brilliant Thoughts of All Time," you probably shouldn't quote yourself, and you really shouldn't quote yourself twelve times, but if you're going to quote yourself tw
Many of the quotes are lacking sources. Many are repeated. The editor has thrown in his own.
Ross Lampert
Apr 15, 2015 rated it did not like it
A high school buddy gave me this book a long, long time ago. Now that I’ve read it, I have to wonder why. In the spirit of its “(In Two Lines or Less)” subtitle, here are my thoughts.

Cynical: But Ambrose Bierce’s The Devil’s Dictionary did that better.
Repetitive: Go ahead and use the same quote in different chapters. No one will notice.

Egotistical: Never trust an editor who considers more of his own thoughts “brilliant” than those in all of the great religious works
Dominic C
Sep 26, 2015 rated it it was ok
This book is essentially a long list of quotes. Because of that, it isn't the most entertaining reading material. Don't get me wrong, the people who wrote/spoke these quotes were geniuses. The collection of these quotes however was quite boring. I think this was mostly because I read all of the quotes, page after page, until I got tired. I believe it best to read this book much differently. You should just pick up this book, go to a random page in a section you want quotes about, read the quotes ...more
Mar 25, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for:
Great book of quotes. I love to look at it whenever I have a few minutes.
Feb 27, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: People looking for inspiration
Pros: witty thoughts from every possible source
Cons: Repetitive, The author used his own thoughts in the chapters.
Aug 06, 2007 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Great book for quotes, but I wish they had more positive quotes. Some are pretty glass half empty kind of stuff.
Jun 28, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

Most people are other people. Their thoughts are some else’s opinions, their lives a mimicry, their passions a quotation.
Oscar Wilde

Moderation is the last refuge for the unimaginative.
Oscar Wilde

That all men are equal is a proposition to which, at ordinary times, no sane individual has ever given his assent.
Aldous Huxley

Endurance is frequently a form of indecision.
Princess Elizabeth Bibesco

A loving person lives in a loving world. A hostile person lives in a hostile world: everyone
Jul 12, 2018 rated it really liked it
Wonderful book filled with wise saying from scholars, writers, and a just a few very from the author to keep up on our toes.
Apr 27, 2010 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Someone gave us this compilation of "brilliant" thoughts. Yes there are a few of them but the editor picked and chose some of the stupidest ones ever. Shanahan in the section on Men, Women, and Relationships had to have picked the most pessimistic misogynist quotes available. Since when does one go to Oscar Wilde for advice on healthy male/female relationships? Even the other quotes one the subject were dripping with anti-marriage, anti-love, and anti-equality views. As a whole I'd rename this w ...more
Nov 07, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Another 50 cent find at the Hummelstown Library book sale. Some nice quotations, and the book provides them with a few chapters. Nothing super in-depth, but just the quote - the person and their dates.
Scott Macon
Feb 04, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: no one....except me
I reference this book quite often when composing emails or letters...I will also use the material in my photography work....

Quote: Philosophy....a road with many routes that lead from nowhere to nothing....

that say it all.
Mar 12, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
great quick reference quote book, just perfect for a quick pick me up. was a gift and it was perfect. i think books make great gift ideas. mom always said that, too
Apr 29, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Just ok
rated it it was ok
Feb 14, 2014
rated it it was amazing
Dec 05, 2007
rated it liked it
Oct 07, 2013
rated it it was amazing
Jan 24, 2019
rated it really liked it
Jul 01, 2012
Dmitri Gurnik
rated it it was amazing
Oct 28, 2017
rated it it was ok
Jun 24, 2014
Achraf Berryman
rated it it was amazing
Dec 30, 2012
rated it it was amazing
Jul 24, 2018
rated it really liked it
Mar 08, 2008
rated it really liked it
Jan 09, 2019
Adryenn Ashley
rated it it was amazing
Oct 14, 2014
rated it it was ok
Mar 08, 2014
rated it did not like it
Jan 10, 2011
rated it really liked it
Feb 27, 2015
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »

Readers also enjoyed

  • 20,000 Days and Counting: The Crash Course For Mastering Your Life Right Now
See similar books…