This is my first book from Sedaris and I think I'll try another. It was entertaining throughout with many parts that made me laugh out loud. He is kind of a modern, politically incorrect, cigarette-loving, drug-addled, openly gay, extra-pathetic Woody Allen with some of the clever and biting observations of George Carlin or Chris Rock. There was one or two low points where his stories dragged, and especially the one on the metro where the ending was a major letdown. His phrasing and comic timing are excellent. His live bits were the best ones. As a narrator his voice was thin and high-pitched but it fit here... especially since these was his own true (hah, probably not without some small exaggerations) life story.
The material in this book is excellent as usual, but Sedaris as the narrator is much better performing live than he is in his monotone, low-energy, non-emotional reading of this book. At times I could not believe how non-engaging this book was, and I couldn't wait for certain stories that were inserted from live performances. Again, the material is classic Sedaris, but you may fall asleep several times as you struggle through much of this narration.
Listen to all his book samples, compare his live performances and ones on This American Life to this, and you'll see what I am talking about.
David Sedaris'collection of essays may not be, in subject matter, appreciated by everyone. His talented delivery and quirky take on life (from childhood, through several stages of personal development)do however make for amusing listening. Unfortunately, the author seems to be trying very hard to show us how clever he is. Though each anecdotal segment on its own is amusing, the work as a whole can be a little tedious. This is a great car selection -- 30 minutes here and there spread over an extended period.
Boring and not read well. I did not see the point of the book or storyline. It was a random mix of tales from his life but no real substance.
David Sedaris always has me laughing and crying at the same time. His stories are so painfully real that I find myself laughing out loud and then feeling a little guilty because really the situation is sad and messed up. But it's so raw and real that it's just brilliant. You've got to laugh at life, especially when things are sad and messed up.
The author reads a hilarious account of his life. From lithping thchooldays, to hith thomewhat eccentic parentth and thiblings. Life in New York, to the French countryside and Parisian cinemas. Some of it is plain funny, some is funny-serious while much is laugh-out-loud stuff, so the folks sitting near you during your commute are going to give you some strange looks. A comparison with Woody Allen is valid, although David Sedaris is no mere clone. If you enjoy really good humour (and there's precious little of it on audio), don't hesitate!
“I like nonsense, it wakes up the brain cells. Fantasy is a necessary ingredient in living.” ― Dr. Seuss
This was my first David Sedaris book, and it won't be my last. I would listen to this going to work and found myself smiling as I walked in the door. I don't usually start out my day in a good mood so that was a great side benefit. He is absolutely hilarious and unique and makes a great narrator of his own life. The French classes and Easter story were so funny and evocative I felt like I was there with him. You get the sense he would be fun to hang out with, like a modern version of Truman Capote, and go through these experiences with. And a family that produces both him and Amy has got to be a riot as well.
David Sedaris is hilarious. His experiences growing up gay and obsessive compulsive in the South made me laugh out load. His childhod fantasy that he would some day grow up to be a cabaret star with an act consisting of his impression of Billy Holiday singing ads for local car dealerships was so insane that it made me howl and yet, I still believed it. And, amazingly, when he read the story of his music lessons, he sang the ads like Billy Holiday.
But behind the laughter is the reality and sadness that are often present in great comedy. Me Talk Pretty One Day is more than a collection of funny stories. It touches you. It makes you laugh, but you ache for this child whose elementary school thought it could "cure" his homosexuality with speech therapy.
I am no fan of abridged books. But hearing Mr. Sedaris read his own stories more than made up for anything I may have missed. And since he did the reading himself, I assume he collaborated on the process of cutting his work. This book gave me plenty of laughs on my way to work and, having heard this abridged version, I have put the book on my nightstand and plan to read it soon.