Greenlights Summary

#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • Over one million copies sold! From the Academy Award®–winning actor, an unconventional memoir filled with raucous stories, outlaw wisdom, and lessons learned the hard way about living with greater satisfaction
“Unflinchingly honest and remarkably candid, Matthew McConaughey’s book invites us to grapple with the lessons of his life as he did—and to see that the point was never to win, but to understand.”—Mark Manson, author of The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck

I’ve been in this life for fifty years, been trying to work out its riddle for forty-two, and been keeping diaries of clues to that riddle for the last thirty-five. Notes about successes and failures, joys and sorrows, things that made me marvel, and things that made me laugh out loud. How to be fair. How to have less stress. How to have fun. How to hurt people less. How to get hurt less. How to be a good man. How to have meaning in life. How to be more me.
Recently, I worked up the courage to sit down with those diaries. I found stories I experienced, lessons I learned and forgot, poems, prayers, prescriptions, beliefs about what matters, some great photographs, and a whole bunch of bumper stickers. I found a reliable theme, an approach to living that gave me more satisfaction, at the time, and still: If you know how, and when, to deal with life’s challenges—how to get relative with the inevitable—you can enjoy a state of success I call “catching greenlights.”
So I took a one-way ticket to the desert and wrote this book: an album, a record, a story of my life so far. This is fifty years of my sights and seens, felts and figured-outs, cools and shamefuls. Graces, truths, and beauties of brutality. Getting away withs, getting caughts, and getting wets while trying to dance between the raindrops.
Hopefully, it’s medicine that tastes good, a couple of aspirin instead of the infirmary, a spaceship to Mars without needing your pilot’s license, going to church without having to be born again, and laughing through the tears.
It’s a love letter. To life.
It’s also a guide to catching more greenlights—and to realizing that the yellows and reds eventually turn green too.
Good luck.

Book Reviews


The Best Story by the Greatest Storyteller of Our Time5 star

I have read a lot of books and listened to quite a few audiobooks; and, Greenlights is by far the best. The insight into Matthew McConaughey’s life was written (and read) so well it was as if you were standing by his side as these events were happening. This is a story, not of an actor trying to create a legacy, but of an actor recording a legacy he created on paper. His prescribes and poems are not just an enjoyable interlude from his story, but tidbits of wisdom that will stick with you forever. This is a book I will read a year from now for inspiration on whatever I am working on by then. “Keep on Living!”55


Great book5 star

One of my favorites55


Was Not Impressed1 star

Thought this would be a good read but just another way to pat himself on the back.15

tx girl 95

Interesting1 star

Alright alright alright. Pretty good, pretty weird.. I wish he went into detail more about things he glazed over. Sometimes rambled on and on and found myself skimming his journal writings. It is MM though. Good read. Wild yet introspective dude.15

Sir. Willow

A different style…5 star

Getting to know someone, on a different level then watching their movies and scrolling on Instagram. Is different then hearing them talk about their family and their life style. I would totally recommend this book55

dont make this difficult

Genius and free5 star

This man is the perfect mix of manly man and hippie, if Joe Rogan and John Muir had a baby it would be Mathew. From his tales to his lessons I thing anyone could take from this book.55



From the first page you can hear McConaughey’s voice55


As if I needed another reason to love him more!5 star

Wonderfully written and so enjoyable to read.55


Wonderful5 star

I absolutely loved this book!! I laughed I cried I feel inspired !!! Great read!!!55

Fox News Lovet

Greenlights5 star

It kept me glued to the pages. An easy read, great stories.55

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