Savater writes in the form of letters to his son; thus the book is a primer on ethics written in an engaging manner and format suitable for the serious beginner. He projects an intimacy with both his subject and his audience as he starts off with a deceptively simple assertion: The key to a good life is to know what suits you, and do it. "Do what pleases you" is a refrain that permeates the book, but Savater quickly thickens the soup by showing that what distinguishes humans from other creatures is our ability to think and to make choices. In fact, making choices is a necessity, for we cannot not choose, and in the harsh words of Sartre, "We are condemned to freedom." Since we are inexorably responsible for the consequences we create, it serves us best to choose with deliberation and care, that is, thoughtfully. We must take our freedom seriously in order to use and preserve it, for it is the possession that distinguishes us from everything else in the universe.