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Summary

If, like me, you’re sick and tired of being told how to think, speak, eat and behave, then this book is for you.

If, like me, you think common sense is being thrown out of the window, then this book is for you.

If, like me, you think the world’s going absolutely nuts, then this book is for you.

If, like me, you think NHS heroes and Captain Tom are the real stars of our society, not self-obsessed, tone-deaf celebrities (and royal renegades!), then this book is for you. If, like me, you’re sickened by the cancel culture bullies destroying people’s careers and lives, then this book is for you. From feminism to masculinity, racism to gender, body image to veganism, mental health to competitiveness at school, the right to free speech and expressing an honestly held opinion is being crushed at the altar of ‘woke’ political correctness. 

In 2020, the world faced its biggest crisis in a generation: a global pandemic. In the UK, it exposed deep divisions within society and laid bare a toxic culture war that had been raging beneath the surface. From the outset, Piers Morgan urged the nation to come to its senses, once and for all, and held the government to often ferocious account over its handling of the crisis.

COVID-19 shed shocking light on the problems that plague our country. Stockpilers and lockdown-cheats revealed our grotesque levels of self-interest and the virtue-signalling woke brigade continued their furious assault on free speech, shutting down debate on important issues like gender, racism and feminism. Yet just as coronavirus exposed our flaws, it also showcased our strengths. We saw selfless bravery in the heroic efforts of our healthcare staff. A greater appreciation of migrant workers. A return of local community spirit. And inspiring, noble acts from members of the public such as Captain Sir Tom Moore.

Wake Up is Piers’ rallying cry for a united future in which we reconsider what really matters in life. It is a plea for the return of true liberalism, where freedom of speech is king. Most of all, it is a powerful account of how the world finally started to wake up, and why it mustn’t go back to sleep again. 

©2020 Piers Morgan (P)2020 HarperCollins Publishers Limited

Critic reviews

"A fast, entertaining read." (The Guardian)

"A very timely trumpet blast." (Saga)

What listeners say about Wake Up

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    2 out of 5 stars

Like a hammer looking for a nail

Piers Morgan has written a book chronicling the strange events that have shaped the world in the past 12 months. Many people will already be familiar with his views as he is not shy when it comes to letting people know what he thinks on Twitter (7.6 million followers) and two days a week presenting GMB (0.7million viewers). This book, narrated by the author, is a selection of extracts from his diaries and we hear his bombastic tirades attacking his favourite targets of "wokies" with special levels of bile reserved for vegans, feminists and trans people. He questions the behaviour of people on social media and feigns incredulity that people do not show each other more respect even though he, himself, is possibly one of the most high profile celebrities who regularly berate others with seemingly little thought of the potential consequences of his actions. He points out that only 20% of people are on Twitter and of these 10% are responsible for the vast majority of the most contentious tweets but fails to make the obvious connection that he must be one of these. Paradoxically, however, Piers Morgan has been one of the most vocal critics of the UK government's disastrous handling of the coronavirus pandemic and has held ministers to account live on air to the extent that they have boycotted his show. And through his career there are several similar examples of how his campaigning style of journalism has lead to positive change. In this book we hear the best and worst of Piers Morgan. He comes over as a hammer looking for a nail to bash. If only he chose his targets more appropriately.

16 people found this helpful

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Fantastic

Right up until the very last chapter when he says that “obvious racists” shouldn’t be given a platform. Right. So freedom of speech is for Piers palatable material only. I don’t want to listen to a racist nut job either. Cancelling them just cancelled everything I had just listened to via this audiobook. I was about to recommend it to every member of my woke family to digest. I am sick of watching the evolving “must include” diversity and inclusion (apart from CHAVs, they can all sod off) culture whilst people are blissfully unaware of the most basic of discrimination and inequality. The whole premise of this book is discourse and freedom of speech. Don’t let anyone who says bad things loose though. Cancel those idiots. Might offend etc. Jesus. How disappointing

9 people found this helpful

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I can't admit to listening to this book...

This book has definitely made me realise how much I personally cower to popular opinion. The lightening struck when I realised I can't discuss this book with friends and family because simply admitting to listening to it, before even stating an opinion, is guaranteed to gain me a lecture in how bad this book is and why I shouldn't listen to it. This is precisely the point of the book: how can we have a reasonable conversation if even considering an opposing view is enough to earn a barrage of hate? I'm going to listen to James O'Brien's new book next and I don't expect any backlash from my friends if I admit to listening to that. This is despite the fact that the two books are likely to agree on far more than they disagree. I had a quick look at other reviews on Amazon before writing this. They're unsurprisingly polarised. At the time of writing there are 11x one star reviews. 10 of these are not verified purchases and seem like they haven't read the book because they simply say things like "it's a terrible book." The only one star review that is verified contains a complaint about the physical condition of the book and doesn't comment on it's content as it was a gift. The book was in places funny / sad / thought provoking. Not difficult to listen to and mostly enjoyable. There were parts I disagree with and parts I agree with. As a non-Twitter celebrity follower I didn't always know what or whom he was speaking about so some parts felt irrelevant to me (which is fine, it wasn't written for me personally). I found the use of name calling (brexiteer / remoaner / wokie) cringy if I'm honest - I don't think calling names does anything but hinder genuine debate. Putting that aside, the book makes a well thought out and logical case for the central premise that there is an issue with modern liberal culture that is damaging to the ideals of liberalism and is contributing to the polarization of our lives, and the rise of the right wing. "Listening is an act of the heart - a genuine desire to understand another person." I am attempting relearn how to listen - this book was a good start for me.

8 people found this helpful

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COVID

Ruined by COVID spent a good fraction of the book sensationalising COVID including a fake death rate for it. He talks about freedom of speech allot but anyone who doesn’t agree with him is a misinformed idiot. But it is interesting to hear someone talking about the sleep walk into fascism.

3 people found this helpful

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Piers unfiltered and holding the world to account

This is a book that all British citizens should listen to. Piers tears apart the governments response to COVID-19 and rightfully so. This book however is so much more than that. It covers a full spectrum of topics from the Royal family to the heroic Sir Captain Tom Moore. Piers offers insights into some amazing personal meetings with Caroline Flack and Meghan Markle among many others. There are even points in the book where Piers admits his flaws....yes, honestly! :) It was a wonderful listen and I really hope that this is the first of many. It offers an insight into the mind of the man that has widely been recognised as the voice of the people throughout Britain's well-documented recent challenges. Well done Piers.

3 people found this helpful

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Superb

The fact that this book will incense many people is precisely why it needed to be written. If journalism is the first draft of history Piers has given us a very entertaining, informative and challenging first draft of recent history viewed through the prism of Covid 19. It reads like a thriller read by a raconteur - and it's all true. Much of the world has gone mad with woke and cancel culture that needs challenging so that we can return to the world of liberalism, democracy and freedom of speech. In a world gone mad thankfully we have Piers to remind us what Evelyn Beatrice Hall wrote of Voltaire's beliefs: "I disapprove of what you say but I will defend to the death your right to say it". And the best thing about Piers reading his own book is that he never interrupts himself!

2 people found this helpful

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Disappointing.

Not exactly sure what I was expecting, so it's hard to be overly critical but I just thought it was a bit boring. Although I agree with most of what is spoken about, it just didn't captivate me. Sorry. I'd stick to TV Piers.

2 people found this helpful

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The best of Piers without the Shouty

Brilliantly articulated and reasoned arguments. I don’t think I can disagree with any of them. Gives context to his behaviour and interview style on GMB which, whilst I would still prefer he lets his guests speak and hang by their own words, I understand why he does it. My son is now sick of the sound of your voice however!

2 people found this helpful

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A very good listen, with many valid points

I have enjoyed this book, many points are valid and I would say it's for the most part realistic viewpoints. however, a couple of issues I do believe got skewed in my opinion, much of the general direction is aimed at coming together and going back to basics on debate, understanding, respect and diversity, points I very much respect, however I would say that Piers has lost sight of that himself, with "good theories" but "bad practice" as slurs, slights and disrespectful comments are repeatedly spoken and aimed at the opposing "faction" while principles are aimed for, the dark side has taken him somewhat, but many general points are valid, I however will not take in any slurs of any individuals or factions from a 3rd party point of view, it's not good to do in my opinion as it would just intensify division. one point I found I disagreed with was a statement on politicians and government being accountable to GMB viewers, I would say this is not the case, politicians do have a "Duty" to the public but they are not required to do this through any certain outlet, the statement "do thier duty to GMB viewers" this is an "advert" or a source of outlet favouritism, I didn't like this statement for that reason, any media outlet is acceptable so long as duty is performed. Overall this book has many informative, logical and realistic views, I would however take some of it with a pinch of salt, it's clear that Piers seems somewhat "corrupted" by a continuous barrage of life's challenges in which he speaks.

1 person found this helpful

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Brilliant

Very insightful. I'm indifferent about Morgan,. He's nailed this topic though. Highly recommended read / listen.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Meg B
  • 13-10-20

What you’d expect

Piers has huge logical flaws. For example, he’s terrified that a man winning the legal right to be a vegetarian means that now he, Piers, has been told by the government and lefties what to eat. Lots and lots of logical jumps that would make a freshman university student embarrassed on his behalf. But he has his finger on a pulse that a lot of liberals are choosing to ignore, which is that liberal rhetoric is turning people to conservativism in droves. Worth a listen IF you are a strong-minded person who can hear a bunch of nonsense and recognize it as such, and pick it apart from the truths. If you are the type who loves talk radio, and you know you can be influenced unduly by whatever you’ve heard most recently, please avoid this. It’s not based in reality, but in an aging man’s projections of his fears, while finger-pointing and calling everyone else a scaredy-cat if they don’t agree with his sensationalistic style.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Justin Adams
  • 27-10-20

Surprised how much I enjoyed this book

If you’re looking for a book discussing political correctness taking over the western world then definitely check this book out! I’ve read a few books on this subject and this was by far my favorite. I really enjoyed listening to Morgan’s personal experiences dealing with various issues related to censorship or “wholeness”. Morgan also has some very intelligent and smart opinions Witt regards to these issues.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Travis M. Erickson
  • 27-10-20

Another victim of COVID-19

As the author relates at the beginning of this book, he sets out to write a book about why modern-day liberals are nuts. Being a "classic" liberal himself, Mr. Morgan seems to be a good voice for this. The elements of the book where he attacks the hypocrisy of what we, in America, call the progressive movement, are particularly enjoying as he makes good historical arguments why their positions are completely illogical. The book, however, was written during the time of the pandemic and the author couldn't choose to ignore this. But by doing so, he falls victim to his own arguments against progressives: he actually describes Dr. Fauci as "a brilliant scientist" which is a position I don't think democrats or republicans would be likely to take. He also completely trashes any benefit of the controversial drug, hydroxychloroquine, at a time when it's use is still being debated. Most importantly, being a liberal, he completely buys into the idea of lockdowns being the single-greatest solution to fighting the pandemic, which seems at odds to someone who wants to be able to live his own life as he sees fit. He doesn't get into censorship on social media platforms and seems to live and die by his own likes on Twitter. As someone who avoids social media like the plague, this brought the book down for me. Ultimately, I couldn't finish the book. With about 2 hours to go, I had to put it down as I couldn't bear to listen to him rant on and on and on about these things. He also has an odd fixation with Prince Harry and Meghan Markle which, I suppose, mostly has to do with him being British. As an American, I could scarcely care less. Maybe in these final two hours I'd be able to hear Mr. Morgan's take on the BLM movement or maybe hear him come around on lockdowns, etc., but I fear I'll never know. I enjoyed his reading of his own book, so the performance was good, but the content and delivery (reading, I'm sure, curated and probably modified entries from his diary) was underwhelming. It's a shame that the pandemic occurred for many reasons. This book is certainly a victim of it.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 27-11-20

A fantastic read

10/10 I was facinated by the themes of the book. So glad that Piers narrated his book. It felt really personal, like having a nice debate with an old friend. Well done!

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  • Alli
  • 16-11-20

Eh, it's all right

As a left-of-center American, I would say I agreed with about 80% of this book, while about 20% of it seemed to go too far in the other direction against things that I more or less find to be quite reasonable. But an 80% agreement rate's not bad. That said, there wasn't anything to take away from this book. It was just a hubristic journo's self-righteous diatribe against other hubristic people's self-righteous diatribes. There are other books on the subject that take a deeper dive, offer food for thought, and genuinely leave the reader with something to contemplate and take into the world with them. This book isn't that. This book is the ESPN version of books on "Cancel Culture." Which is fine. I'm not complaining. I was entertained, but not particularly stricken.

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  • Brenda
  • 09-11-20

Everyone should listen to this

Piers makes so much sense. We all should be able to have conversations with people who have different opinions than us AND respect their differing point of view.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 06-11-20

Started good, but then his true colors came out

For the first third of the book, I enjoyed his stories. Then the pandemic hit the world and Piers Morgan showed his true colors. He showed us he has a condition called Narcissistic personality disorder. His gloom and doom message started, and every story thereafter was very hard to listen to. The British government (and Boris Johnson) was doing everything wrong, the US (and Donald Trump) was doing everything wrong. His story line about the riots that began with the death of George Floyd in the US was totally wrong. His vision of the US as a system racist country was totally wrong. He even was able to praise the efforts of Colin Kaepernick. Piers Morgan has a distorted view of the world issues, and he tells us know how everyone else has it wrong, and he is right. Don't bother with his book.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 14-10-20

A Work For Our Times and of Our Times

A hundred years from now, our descendants will read this book to learn and study our times. Indeed, future historians have gained an insightful primary source through Pierce Morgan that will inform the future of our times today. This is rather disconcerting to say the least, since our times through woke culture has become absurdly and embarrassingly silly to the detriment of reason, common sense and freedom. The present reader might through this book do well to understand the workings of wok culture. Morgan argues that the woke tribunal is authoritative illiberal liberalism, yes, the opposite of what they proclaim to be. He marks liberals anything but tolerant as much as liberals believe they are whilst they scream and cancel people. Morgan notes the hypocrisy of the woke brigade and observes that, “Those who scream loudest about respect, tolerance and kindness tend to be the least respectful, tolerant and kind”. He tells wokees that, “If you can’t practice what you preach, then don’t preach at all”. Indeed, the self-righteousness, hypocrisy and small mindedness of wokees has led to a generation that can be dubbed The Age of Unreason. Morgan is correct to add that most of us are common sensical, and that wokees are actually a minority but who have a huge platform from where they sermonize loudly, cesure and publicly cancel. Piers Morgan urges that people observe the right of speech, and that an argument between two opposing sides can actually be a learning experience and one that is insightful and productive. To cancel, condemn, and un-platform is anything but democratic and much to do with authoritativeness. Morgan wrote a perceptive book that should be read today, and that will be read by our great great grandchildren in the future. Let’s hope that the former can learn from it, and let’s hope that the latter do not gasp and laugh too hard at us. *The performance was excellent, it was ready by Morgan himself, and it is always a treat when the author reads his or her own non-fiction book.