Fans of David Sedaris rejoice--this is his best collection of essays since "Me Talk Pretty One Day"--at least in the humble opinion of this reviewer. Sedaris is in top form here on topics ranging from airline travel to the pitfalls of foreign language instruction (Japanese, German, Chinese) to the casual everyday cruelty of children--and of adults, for that matter. The tone is in turn poignant and sarcastic, and always unflinchingly honest.
Sedaris' humor has an edge to it and he doesn't spare himself from its blade, but he unfailingly finds the comedy in his experiences and invites us to do the same. His turn of phrase manages to state truths while at the same time being very funny--one example I can't get out of my head is his observation that Americans see Australians as "Canadians in a thong."
While one or two of the essays had a familiar ring to them (perhaps from a version appearing on an episode of This American Life?), the material is almost all new as far as I can tell.
Sedaris' deadpan delivery style greatly enhances the listening experience--this is certainly an instance where the audio surpasses the print version. Highly recommended!
Loved hearing the essays in Sedaris' voice made them come alive.
Absolutely. I love his writing anyway, but something in his delivery just adds an extra layer of enjoyment.
I can see myself skipping to my favorite sections on a bad day to help my mood.
I'm a big fan of David's and I love most of this book. The personal essays were great- the usual- humorous and insightful. What I didn't like were the last few stories which are fictional. I thought he crossed over the line between dark humor and just taking it a bit too far. But overall I would definitely recommend this book.
Harm None, Love All
A little dark but still great. I love the dark stuff as well. And I love the fact that he narrates all of his work.. very entertaining to see at a live read. A must see if he comes around your area.
I love listening to David's voice, his unique inflections and his impersonations of his family and friends. His family is much like my own and as a Carolinian I can relate to the places he has been down to the same cottages on Emerald Isle.
The audio books I get tend to be either 1) scifi or 2) things for my husband and me to listen to on long road trips--humor or history
Another very enjoyable “listen” from Sedaris. I love listening to his essays on long car rides; this book was everything I have come to expect from him, generating lots of chuckles and several laugh-out-loud moments. The only part I was disappointed in was the last couple of stories. He introduces them by saying he can’t understand why kids in forensics use his stories, because he doesn’t think they’re “performable.” Huh? This from a guy who makes a tidy living performing his essays out loud? As if that weren’t confusing enough, he then says he wrote the rest of the essays just for the kids in forensics, and goes on to read some of the absolute worst, most un-funny stories I have ever heard from him. I knocked this down to three stars because of these weird and inappropriate stories at the end.
I found his last two books morosely charming but not laugh out loud funny. This new one is a return to form. The best way to enjoy Sedaris is live so the live bits are especially fun. The musical interludes are a nice touch.