If you were a fan of Penn's radio show a few years ago, you'll recognize a lot of the stories he tells in this audiobook. There is enough new here, though, to be interesting, and I was surprised at how moved I was by Penn's descriptions of his family. This is more of an autobiography than anything else, but it's a pretty darned good one.
With all the swearing (really too much of the "F" word), I cannot imagine anyone but Mr. Jillette reading this book. It is a real performance from beginning to end. And I really enjoyed it. I was not expecting so much about his life, but they was really the best parts of the book. He is a great storyteller. And has some stories to tell, many with a lesson to be learned.
I'm a big fan of Penn Jillette, love the show Bullsh-t and his work in general. I wasn't too impressed with this book, may be i had the bar set too high. Its entertaining in general some funny stories, some interesting takes such as on proselytizing. But I was already familiar with that.
It was okay overall. Nothing new as far as atheism. like i mentioned earlier he has some interesting takes and different ways of seeing things. He's very explicit and profane but that's partly why i like him. If you are not too familiar with him and go with no expectations you will enjoy it.
I loved this book. It had me laughing out loud in my car.
The book is not a treatise on Atheism. I think the author would be the first to say others are more qualified to do that. Rather, he presents various anecdotes which testify that one can live a moral, purposeful, fulfilled life without religion. Early on he mentions the frequent criticism that atheists must be sad, empty people. He refutes this with stories from his life rather than theoretical arguments.
Yes, there is a lot of swearing, but no more than an R-rated movie and I wasn't put off by it.
The stories about other magicians show how important integrity is to the author and they are entertaining and not just filler. The sex stories show that without baseless guilt you can have a very happy life (I didn't find them particularly exhibitionistic because most of them portray him performing under par).
The book is well paced, insightful, unflinching and hysterical.
First I want to say that I love Penn Jillette...I agree with him on several issues (though not all) and as a fellow atheist I respect his dedication..That said I did not enjoy this book very much...I was expecting more explanation and a lot less naked chicks...I went in to this book completely aware of Penns free love tendencies..I just really thought this book was going to be about his being an atheist not an exhibitionist....I wasnt offended so much as really disappointed...I think he does himself and other atheists a disservice by throwing in random stories about sex in space and underwater. I guess those are suppose to be the magical tales..Not so much....
The title of Penn Jillette's is misleading in that one expects a humorous polemic on the adsurdity of religious belief, but instead we wind up with an autobiographical rant, at times somewhat angry, that covers a lot of territory including `political beliefs, and his views of others in the entertainment industry. He narrates the audio book himself in his stentorian high-volume style.
I like penn and many of his shows and documentaries, but I would not recommend this to someone I was trying to make any point with regarding religious fallacy. In that context, the language and sexual content are vulgar, and, if anything, would make the believer substantiate his own belief even more.
As usual Penn is Funny, Touching and Thoughtful. His stories are the kind no sane person would publicly talk about..Luckily Mr Gillette is far from completly sane. The mix of very serious dicussion AND adult humor is great. I listened to this on my hidden ipod at work and it renewed my will to live at my soul crushing job. Thank you Penn for the laughs the new ideas and a reson not to hang myself from the warehouse rafters on more day.
Extraordinarily funny and touching moments overwhelmed by all-too-much incivility. I understand it's his schtick and all that--but wish he could have cut out what seemed to me massively gratuitous swearing. I expect more of fellow libertarian atheists. He'd probably say "go **** yourself" which is his right. Nonetheless, it added nothing to the stories except to get the word count up.
Some of this book is about Penn Jillette's atheism, but a lot of it is just rambling rants about Naked Elvis parties, time spent in a gay bath house, criticism of other magicians, more criticisms about magicians, and other stories that barely kept me awake. If it weren't for his frequent loud dropping of the F' bomb, I probably would have fallen asleep many times. I still have 45 minutes left, and I hate to criticize an audio book before it's finished, but I'm finding this book a real struggle to get through.
Even though I don't always agree with them, I usually find books by skeptics to be interesting, thoughtful, and entertaining. God No! is lazy, self righteous, and worst of all boring most of the way through. Cut the length of this book down to about 2 hours and it would probably be a pretty solid 2 hours of entertainment. At 7 hours+ most of it is a good way to fall asleep on an exercise bike.
But it’s a Kosher frog!
One needs to take this book in context. If one approaches it as an evening at your local comedy shop, it is funny. Laugh out loud funny like an explosive sneeze. If you expect an intellectual dissertation on atheism, you will be disappointed. If one were to remove the profanity, the book would be two hours shorter. Would you expect anything else from Penn? If you hated Carlin and Bruce, you will hate Jillette also. If not, you will like a good comedy act with underlying social commentary. I enjoyed it immensely and gave it 5 “in context” stars.