Nobody's Fool

Why We Get Taken In and What We Can Do about It

Hardcover, 336 pages

Published July 11, 2023 by Basic Books.

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4 stars (1 review)

From phishing scams to Ponzi schemes, fraudulent science to fake art, chess cheaters to crypto hucksters, and marketers to magicians, our world brims with deception. In Nobody’s Fool, psychologists Daniel Simons and Christopher Chabris show us how to avoid being taken in. They describe the key habits of thinking and reasoning that serve us well most of the time but make us vulnerable—like our tendency to accept what we see, stick to our commitments, and overvalue precision and consistency. Each chapter illustrates their new take on the science of deception, describing scams you’ve never heard of and shedding new light on some you have. Simons and Chabris provide memorable maxims and practical tools you can use to spot deception before it’s too late.

Informative, illuminating, and entertaining, Nobody’s Fool will protect us from charlatans in all their forms—and delight us along the way. 

2 editions

A book that tries to equip you with ways to see through scams.

4 stars

A fascinating book that looks at why people often fall for tricks and scams that, usually on hindsight, appear so obvious. As the authors explain, it is due to our natural tendency to believe what we see or accept what we have being told as the truth. What this book does is show how scammers take advantage of this tendency, and also try to equip the reader with the necessary ways to look closer or dig deeper for more information to reveal the scam.

The book is divided into two parts. The first part covers the habits we use that make us fall for scams. These habits are:

  • focusing too much on what is being presented. This leads us to exclude or ignore other information that would reveal the scam. A prime example is survivorship bias, where we only have information on those who make it (how to be a …