The classic criticism of Alain de Botton is that his arguments are vacuous and facile, and rescued by an impressive rolodex of quotations and above-average prose. My response to that criticism has historically been "well, sure, but who cares? I enjoy the book and the material!" — which was certainly true of The Art of Travel and The Architecture of Happiness, both of which were pleasant and discursive!
This book just sort of sucks though! There were a couple interesting points but it was mostly the author just gesturing wildly at stuff. Skip it.