• The Curse of the High IQ

  • By: Aaron Clarey
  • Narrated by: Jason Brooks
  • Length: 3 hrs and 54 mins
  • 4.4 out of 5 stars (615 ratings)

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The Curse of the High IQ

By: Aaron Clarey
Narrated by: Jason Brooks
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Publisher's Summary

Society, by statistical necessity, needs to focus on the majority. It needs to be built and designed for "the average". Society, by moral necessity, also needs to focus on the disadvantaged and disabled, helping those who cannot help themselves. But while the majority of society's resources, attention, and infrastructure is dedicated to average or below-average people, little-to-none of it is dedicated to the abnormally intelligent. And while having a high IQ is an overall net benefit in life, being a statistical intellectual freak is not without its drawbacks. Welcome to The Curse of the High IQ.

Whether you fall asleep during class, constantly ram heads with your boss, can't understand why people watch the Oscars, are an alcoholic, or are accused of having ADD, having a high IQ can be a maddening experience. What you see as the obvious solution is what the "normies" will fight against tooth and nail. Those Ds you keep getting in English? Your superior mind being held hostage by the boring and inferior mind of your teacher. And you'd like to start a family? Good luck finding an intellectual equal for a spouse. And so while the world obsesses on their own problems, no one is paying attention to the problems of the abnormally intelligent. However, that all changes now with Curse of the High IQ.

Curse of the High IQ is the first book specifically written for abnormally intelligent people. It identifies and addresses a litany of problems intelligent people face, analyzes them and provides solutions. But more importantly it aims to bring sanity to those who struggle with abnormal intelligence, especially those who are unaware they have it. So if you're constantly at odds with society, are suffering from depression or ennui, can't find any reason or agency in life, or just plain can't find any friends, consider purchasing this book.

©2016 Aaron Clarey (P)2016 Aaron Clarey

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What listeners say about The Curse of the High IQ

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Few solutions. Many complaints

A lot of this book is spent in the author distancing himself from the rest of society by placing all of his personal value in peoples intelligence and what they get on an IQ test. He is very miserable and tries to project that into everyone else with high intelligence but offers up very few solutions and paints a very dark dry image of reality. He has an extremely fixed mindset and it is this, not his IQ that has caused his world to be so dark. This is coming from a guy that scored 154 on my IQ test. This book does not reflect an optimal or even effective view of reality and is little more than a redundant advertisement for alcoholism.

20 people found this helpful

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Genuinely Horrible

Let me summarize this book in a few lines. "I'm a lonely, anti-social douchebag who blames my inability to connect with anyone on this planet on my fictional high IQ, and to prove it I'll refer to all people as being inferior to me, while at the same time offering nothing more than condescending and purely anecdotal evidence to try to convince you that this is the case". I cannot emphasize enough how terrible this book is. I was hoping to find something I could relate to. This tripe failed as miserably as the author has clearly failed in his life. Move on.

15 people found this helpful

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More like "The Curse of Being Autistic"

The author basically spends the entire time pessimistically pointing out the problems he sees in society while offering no solutions. Instead, he just hopes his readers will find solace in his explanation that society has these problems because we are forced to cater to the majority of people who have average IQs and we just have to accept that. It's literally just an endless list of complaints and the author comes off very whiney and arrogant. Very disappointing overall. This book should offer advice on how to relate better to people in order to fit in, have greater influence, and ultimately be happier. Instead, he just complains the whole time.

It is my opinion that the author has severe autism as it doesn't seem like he is able to relate to people he deems of average or low IQ. His endless rants also don't seem to serve any constructive purpose other than to show how awesome he thinks he is. It becomes painfully clear that he thinks he should be worshipped for his "high IQ," and doesn't understand why he can't get along with most "average IQ" people. He 100% attributes this to the fact that their lower IQ renders them incapable of comprehending what it's like to be him. This general lack of social awareness is a textbook autistic trait.

Don't waste your time with this book. I'm pretty sure he wrote it to try to get validation/prove that he has superior intelligence.

14 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars

covert malignant narcissism

I never write reviews, but I really feel like I have to today. I made myself listen to this entire piece of garbage, and honestly I question my own sanity for doing so. The author is angry, and lives in a constant state of victimhood. I feel sorry for those close to him because I can only assume that he is judging them with every word they say.

Being intelligent does not mean that you have to be condescending, rude, elitist, or a pure victim of society.

I test at 137, I live an overall happy life and, gasp, I like "swingy stick" aka hockey.

Please don't get this book, unless you're just looking for a reason to be angry.

13 people found this helpful

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Great, Real Advice, Holds No Punches

This is not a book for the faint of heart, Aaron tells it like it is. If you are highly intelligent and frustrated with life, you will find this book eye-opening. Personality tests, self-help books, spiritual practices are ways to cope with not fitting in, and ways to adapt better to a world where you do not and will not ever fit in. However, reading this book will help you realize exactly WHY you don't and will never fit in and how to make practical improvements...and hopefully stop beating yourself up.

13 people found this helpful

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Paranoia and the Dunning-Kruger Effect

I've never taken the time to write a review on Audible, but I genuinely felt that I had to in this case. I wanted to like the book. I REALLY wanted to like this book. But I couldn't even finish it. After a couple of hours, I could no longer subject myself to the egotistical ranting that constitutes the bulk of its contents.

I was looking for realistic and thoughtful strategies on dealing with the unfortunate side effects of high IQ. I do not consider myself a genius by any stretch, but I am a card-carrying member of Mensa and my IQ has been measured to be 3-5 standard deviations from the mean, depending on the test and the day.

This book is basically every basement-dwelling rant about genius and high IQ that you've ever read on UseNet or an internet message board. It offers few solutions and promotes the worst possible strategies to deal with high intelligence. The author scoffs at the prospect of honing "soft skills" and promotes that any genius should just power-through and persevere. Unfortunately, geniuses are susceptible to being wrong, just as anyone else. The Dunning-Kruger effect is in full bore, and there is a lack of willingness to accept personal responsibility or the possibility that any negative situation may be the fault of the author, or the genius who finds themselves in a bad spot. A better strategy is to be self-aware. Know yourself, your biases, what you're good at, what you're not (believe me, it's almost a certainty that you're not great at absolutely everything) and how to respond to people. The author presents a paranoid view that if someone disagrees with you that they are out to get you. This is not a realistic view of the world. Does it happen? Sure, but not as often as you might believe.

By the author's standards, I'm abnormally intelligent, and because selection bias is a thing, I have worked with, worked for, managed, and am friends with many individuals whose IQs are in the 130 - 180 range. They're all human, and they all make mistakes. From tons of personal experience, the worst people to deal with are the inflexible Howard Roark types who believe that they are always right and incapable of being wrong. When they are wrong, they blame other people, and those they consider less intelligent for their own shortcomings. Those that are completely inflexible tend to believe that they are the most intelligent person in the room, building, state, continent, or whatever graduation it takes to justify their own unwavering confidence in the face of myriad evidence against. These people literally appear delusional, and often are. This is not the way to respond to criticism or disagreement.

One thing that I can say is that the narration perfectly captures the flights of grandiosity and ego-centric blindness presented in the book. This is one of the few audiobooks where I forgot that the narrator and author were not the same person.

I'm left to believe that the positive reviews this book has earned are likely due to the confirmation bias of the listener, as even abnormally intelligent people want to fit in somewhere. Having lived in the real world for the last twenty years, the difference between someone with an IQ of 115 and 145 isn't that big of a deal, unless you make it one.

12 people found this helpful

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Good book. Disagreed with one of the conclusions.

The narrator was great, and a joy to listen to.

This book condenses a lot of information, and helped me gain some perspective. Even though I disagreed one of the arguments, I still recommend it, and found it informative.

(Spoiler Warning.)

I disagreed with one of the conclusions. What I got was basically: Use Welfare if you feel like it, as you are taking from those that take from you. I understand the sentiment, but that's not anywhere near true. When one uses Welfare, they are stealing from those that have yet to be born, as most countries are in massive debt.

10 people found this helpful

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Simply amazing

I am High Commander of the Hot Dude Army and I approve of this message in its absolute entirety.

8 people found this helpful

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Written by a pompous entitled narcissist.

Couldnt get past the first chapter. This book seems to be written by someone who's only bragging rights are based on a relative 'high' score on an IQ test. The kind of test that's been proven to be very narrow in its testing and leaves out criteria for many other types of genius.

8 people found this helpful

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I loved it!!!

I understand now why I get so annoyed at family reunions everyone talks about football smh and complains about Trump😭. I usually keep to myself because I'm the only self employed person in my family. When they ask how my biz is going I can see they're not really happy for me when I tell them my biz is growing and everything is great

8 people found this helpful

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  • Nic
  • 09-06-16

Brilliant.

If you have a brain and are not an indoctrinated leftist moron then you need this.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Gin and Tonic
  • 09-07-16

Not actually very clever

I enjoyed some of the caricaturing but was overall unimpressed by the absence of good data to back up very speculative arguments.

Bitter tone throughout. Being in the top 1% (the author by his own admission isn't) still means that 1 in 100 people are like you so you're not that rare.

3 people found this helpful

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  • John
  • 01-31-18

Probably the worst book On Audible

The writer seems to think that his 138 IQ is some sort of disability. Referring to someone with an IQ of 95 as a retard is unacceptable. His view of education and teachers is so distorted and far from the truth.
My IQ has been measured at 151 and I think that gives me the opportunity to interact with people of all intelligences without being so judgmental or feeling superior. I don’t regard those less fortunate as “parasites” which is a word frequently used in referring to those on social benefits. I might ask Audible for a refund on this rubbish.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 11-25-22

The Obvious

Great Book, funny and provocative.
But I believe that many reader of this book have need to believe they are smart.

They will after reading this book recommend the book to show of passive that they are smart, they will use quotes from the book for a while until they forget.

but if you are truly smart,bank the book in to your mind, only recommend it to your smart best friend.

I would hate meet the person who have read this book , only for him to show this book down my throat,in hope I will get that he's smart.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 03-14-22

And suddenly, it all makes sense

28 years of miserable experiences socially, financially and educationally has suddenly become very apparent. So much so that it almost feels too good to be true, but it isn’t.

Guess the world is the problem after all. 😂

At least you, like myself will have clarity and closure on what’s probably been hell after reading this if you’re higher than average intelligence. Good luck friend.

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  • Yookatz
  • 08-10-21

Thank You.

This book has helped me get my sanity back. Thank You from the bottom of my heart Cappy.

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  • Florian Sterk
  • 07-21-21

Buying this is wasting your credit / money

For seven chapters in this audio book the Author rants against ‘idiocracy’, ‘mediocracy’ and the burden of being smarter than average. If you’re gifted / smarter than average, you already know all this.
In the last chapter the Author offers his advice, which boils down to: get your IQ tested, become selfemployed, and don’t let the other non-gifteds get you down.
You also already know all this.
Don’t waste your precious time.

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  • Dan norman
  • 03-05-21

just brilliant

a great short book that puts so much into perspective without the waffle. I look forward to reading more from the author.

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  • Alexander Vik
  • 12-01-20

answers many questions I had about myself

and people around me. It's lonely, it's confusing, it can be even scary to live a life and not realizing you are too much to those around you.

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  • Mr
  • 09-01-20

Clarey's usual pugnacious and amusing style.

Aaron Clarey is one of those people that you're never quite sure how seriously to take, but who never fails to both entertain and thought-provoke. There's a lot of questionable logic in here based on his own personal prejudices. I'm not convinced that IQ is as much of a fixed quotient, or a determinant of personal traits as he claims in this book, nor am I convinced by dubious assertions like "only dumb people are religious", but despite all this, he never fails to make you think in interesting and different ways about our social norms and interactions.

His amusingly strident and provocative ranting is entertaining enough to see you through the parts of the book where one is inclined to doubt his thesis - and his argument is strong enough to interest you during the rest of it.

It's all very interesting - as long as you don't think too carefully about the angry, nihilistic premises on which it's based.

The narrator is good to, and captures the tone of the author well.

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  • Daniel
  • 09-28-22

Good book.

Enjoyed listening to this audiobook, most of it was a confirmation that I wasn’t crazy. I would recommend it to a friend.

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  • Michael M
  • 06-22-21

Great book

Couldn't agree more with the content, down to earth description of problems high IQ people encounter

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  • Michael
  • 05-08-19

Undermines its initial premise

Entertaining in parts, observant in others, yet overall too short to really dive into the premise of "changing things for High IQ people with this book", a bit too anecdotal and the tone can be downright generalising and demeaning.

I personally take a more fluid approach to intelligence - that ultimately, outside of predisposition, neuroplasticity reins supreme and that therefore intelligence is more fluid than might be coded for directly in genes; epigenetic effects are very real, and also can be heritable (not discussed in this book at all, which is ironic for a self-proclaimed mountain of intelligence).

The conclusion then, is that a lot of people, most in fact, are under achieving their potential due to social/economic factors that ensured poor genetic expression, and more linear neural pathways; it is in this understanding that I'm a proponent of shirking all elitist viewpoints on intellect because the cost is too high in any Us VS Them style of thinking.

Also the value of information is entirely on how it is delivered; the most profound thought is forever a prisoner of the mind that can't express it in a way appealing to others, thus losing all theoretical values, and, in this, the tone of the book undermines it's proposed goals.

It's a very short book, so if you're trying to hit a reading challenge based on book count, and are mildly interested in this stuff, then you can add a notch to your belt quite easily.

I wouldn't spend much money on this, though.

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  • Jon
  • 06-08-18

unabomber lite

Highlights some frustrating issues for intellectuals, very interesting, however at times it seems a bit like a rant and reminds me of how the unabomber speaks. I am sure the author is not a horrible or completely insane person who acts unethically, but I would say this book is condescending and does take a simplistic view of intelligence in general.