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Summary

New York Times Best Seller

Surfing icon Laird Hamilton offers inspiration to anyone who wants to elevate their ordinary, landlocked lives to do extraordinary things. 

“When Laird Hamilton surfs, you must watch. When he speaks, I listen. And when he writes a book, I’m damn sure gonna read it. Twice.” (Eddie Vedder, Grammy Award-winning lead vocalist of Pearl Jam) 

Millions of us increasingly seek happiness in fads and self-help books, reaching upward every day toward some enlightened state that we wish to attain. Laird Hamilton is more intent on looking inward and appreciating the brilliant creatures we already are. In Liferider, Laird uses five key pillars - Death & Fear, Heart, Body, Soul, and Everything Is Connected - to illustrate his unique worldview and life practices. This is Laird Hamilton in his own words - raw, honest, and unvarnished - on topics he has rarely explored before. 

Based on extensive interviews and conversations between Laird and his coauthor, Julian Borra, with additional insights from Laird’s wife, pro-volleyball player Gabby Reece, Liferider takes on human resilience, relationships, business, technology, risk-taking, and the importance of respecting the natural world, all through the lens of Laird’s extraordinary life both in and beyond the ocean.

Praise for Liferider

“Laird is a hero, if you want him to be. That’s up to your perception. He challenges himself, and he challenges those around him. He shows us that the deeper we puncture into life, the more vibrant the colors get. The Laird Hamilton I know - real, faulty, moody, deeply loving, and communal - comes through on every page of Liferider.” (Josh Brolin, award-winning actor)

©2019 Laird Hamilton and Julian Borra (P)2019 Random House Audio

Critic reviews

“This book is like a one-on-one chat with Laird, a personal conversation about his philosophies. You can’t be champ without an untamable fire inside, and you can feel that here. His spirit is raw and to the point. As athletes retire and sail into the sunset, Laird keeps pushing, finding and finding new ways to improve.” (Joakim Noah, two-time NBA All-Star)

“A powerful message from Laird on what it means to ‘go beyond’ and how it can be applied by all. He hones in on the dualities of life and death, focusing on what’s most important: making the most of the time we have, and living aloha, connected to and caring for each other and our environment.” (Tulsi Gabbard, Congresswoman serving Hawaii's 2nd district)

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Lairds story and is outlook on life is awesome

Laird shares a outlook of love as he shares his story. Great book, really enjoyed, thanks Laird.

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  • SI
  • 15-03-19

Good but short

Enjoyed it. has some nice insights but wanted more of a biography of laird and his exploits.

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  • Deanmc
  • 27-03-19

Nothing Earth Shattering

Maybe my expectations were too high for this book by Laird who I see as a superhero. I have tons of respect and admiration for what he's accomplished as an athlete and human being. The book delves into many topics including; Hawaiin traditions, technology, entrepreneurship, health, spirituality and the environment. The common theme is about how all this "stuff" (a word that was so overused It became annoying) is interconnected. Even though part of the subtitle is "Life Beyond the Ocean" he winds up talking about the ocean quite a bit! All in all this book was just OK

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  • Rick Killpack
  • 02-04-19

Inspirational on many levels... thank you!

From the massive ocean and environment, down to our own physical bodies, the importance of how we live and respect our Earth as well as ourselves ...has been laid before us in this book... thank you for this well written inspiring work ! ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Rick K.

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  • Runner93
  • 17-11-21

So disappointed!

Like many other reviewers have stated, I am a fan of Laird Hamilton. This book however was simply awful. It’s disjointed beyond anything I’ve read or listened to. I have just finished the book and if I was asked to summarize it, I’m not sure that I could. So many random quotes, ideas, and narrators. It felt like a six hour rant.

At times I felt like Laird was simply saying, “the world has become too complicated for me and I’m terrified of technology and AI”!

The rest of the book was listening to how Laird is better than everyone else at everything else. Business, athletics, relationships, connectedness, so philosophy, and meditation. Oh, but he is also the most humble guy in the room! 🤷🏻‍♂️

For the record, I attempted to return/exchange this book after the first 30 minutes, but it was gifted to me and apparently that’s against Audible policy.

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  • Bryant Melton
  • 29-09-20

Tremendous Lessons from one of Earth’s baddest Mofos

Loved this book! I hate a biographical book that just tries to make the person sound cooler than they actually are and I’ve heard/read quite a few of those. This wasn’t about putting Laird’s ego in print but more about spreading the vital lessons that he has learned throughout his life. Everyone should read this book from CEOs of major corporations to confused teenagers wondering where to find purpose. Thanks to all involved! Ohana! 🤙🏽

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  • Drew2016
  • 09-08-20

Inspired Insights from a Legendary Human

Really great listen with various insights that are prescient and powerful. Laird gets to the heart of being human in the 21st Century through the soul of the ocean and the pursuit of meaningful entrepreneurship.

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  • Dylan
  • 07-10-19

Not what you expect

This isn’t Laird on foils or SUP. It’s his philosophy on connectedness. It’s not a bro-ography nor is it a blog book (can we stop the cheater reviews calling books “blog posts”?). Enjoyed it, learned some things, appreciated the message. Only wished he would have narrated, but folks get busy. Worth the listen!

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  • Suzanne Breder
  • 15-07-19

Connect with the Earth!

This book was written by someone we can all admire for sharing his spin on how the world spins. It is very timely as we are all so connected to each other and the Earth as a living organism part of the vibrant Universe. Read up so you can connect more with Planet Ocean and become a more active part of the amazing energy it exudes.

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  • John J.
  • 01-02-22

Brilliantly Insightful, Exceptional Narration!!

This is one of those rare books, so masterful in its writings, so intuitively perceptive, bold, yet humble, it just speaks to your Soul. Between content and a brilliant narration that compels your attention, this is one of those works you will listen to, over and over. Information I needed, when I needed it. Thank you Laird!!

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  • Don long
  • 28-10-21

THE VOICE

I have written one book in my life including publishing it for sale on Amazon. It is about knee replacement.
One of the biggest compliments/honors the readers can offer me is two things, One, I can hear your voice when you write, Two, your book helped me out in the process of a knee replacement. This is what made Laird's book special for me. I had the opportunity to do a two-week exploration of Costa Rica with Laird and a few friends before reading this book. I always looked up to Laird for his surfing talents and innovation. But during reading, this book showed me a side of Laird that was much bigger than I ever imagined. His insight his wisdom commands 100% respect. Not just some surf-fueled pages about all of his surfing accomplishments but the genuine struggles and victories along the pathway to greatness. I listen to this book on Audible and it is not his actual voice but instead a narrator but I could still hear Laird's voice which resinated powerfully on message delivery. Laird and his wife Gabby reignited my energy to get off my ass and start moving to make myself better healthier and more success-driven. I highly recommend the book to surfers and nonsurfers alike. 5 stars

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  • Aaron LaRue
  • 29-11-20

A great book on the philosophy of one of the worlds top athletes

Great book and great insight into the philosophy that drives one of the worlds most incredible athletes. Not just some shallow pointers on how to “be Laird”, more so the underlying philosophy that drives the man. Great insights from his wife Gabby Reece, an incredible athlete herself. From spiritual connection to business philosophy this book covers many parts of this complex man. A great book for anyone interested in what drives one of the worlds greatest big wave surfers.