Parks and Recreation actor Nick Offerman shares his humorous fulminations on life, manliness, meat, and much more in his first book.
Growing a perfect moustache, grilling red meat, wooing a woman - who better to deliver this tutelage than the always charming, always manly Nick Offerman, best known as Parks and Recreation's Ron Swanson? Combining his trademark comic voice and very real expertise in woodworking - he runs his own woodshop - Paddle Your Own Canoe features tales from Offerman's childhood in small-town Minooka, Illinois - "I grew up literally in the middle of a cornfield" - to his theater days in Chicago, beginnings as a carpenter/actor and the hilarious and magnificent seduction of his now-wife Megan Mullally. It also offers hard-bitten battle strategies in the arenas of manliness, love, style, religion, woodworking, and outdoor recreation, among many other savory entrees.
A mix of amusing anecdotes, opinionated lessons and rants, sprinkled with offbeat gaiety, Paddle Your Own Canoe will not only tickle readers pink but may also rouse them to put down their smart phones, study a few sycamore leaves, and maybe even handcraft (and paddle) their own canoes.
©2013 Nick Offerman (P)2013 Penguin
Secular humanist. Atheist. Dog lover (having had as many as four dogs in my pack). Skeptic.
I don't think I've ever laughed so much listening to a book. Admittedly I'm in the ideal demographic for this book: a middle age male who enjoys living life with gusto, eating and drinking heartily, and working with wood. Still, I suspect that anyone who enjoys the TV show "Parks and Recreation" will enjoy this book. This is essentially an autobiography but with a lot of wit, wry humor and frequent acknowledgement that he's been lucky. It leaves no doubt that Nick is someone you'd be happy to call a friend.
Warning: If you're a fundamentalist christian you're likely to be offended by his observations regarding religion in the early part of the book. But if you're an atheist or at least religiously liberal you'll enjoy those parts as much as everything else he has to say.
Yes, I read through half of the printed edition until I found out the author read the audio version. Without hesitation I downloaded this book and let ten hours fly by as I listened to this gentle, bear-like man recite prose that made my chest hair grow
Is this a question? Have you heard him talk? His man giggle? Phenomenal stuff, really.
I laughed much, but more importantly I could feel my twenty-something-year-old inner yuppie child quiver before a new mountain man like giant of self reliance and well roundedness
You'll love it more than Ron Swanson. I read this book going in with the idea that it'd be more of a book on life from the humorous outlook of Ron Swanson ( A character played by Offerman on Parks and Rec.) Instead, I was delightfully surprised to hear Nick's recounts of growing up with larger than life parental figures, his often humor infused humility, and his down to earth life lessons. I Will listen to it again.
This was a fine audiobook. Not as funny or touching as Tina Fey's Bossypants, but nice company while I was working around the house.
It was a pleasure to hear the author tell his own tales - it definitely adds atmosphere to hear it in his own voice, like sitting at a bar listening to stories of his youth.
Nick Offerman is not Ron Swanson.
The book includes stories of Offerman's childhood on a farm in Illinois which were sweet and charming to hear. He also talks about his time in drama school and early days on stage, as well as moving to LA.
Offerman is primarily an actor who performs works written by others, so his book isn't as polished or tight as one written by someone who is primarily a writer. I'm not sure, for example, why a chapter about his thoughts on religion and politics was included. It wasn't very groundbreaking or particularly insightful, nor was it what I was wanting. This book is only tangentially "a guide to delicious living." It's mostly "a guide to how Nick Offerman has spent his delicious life."
Offerman seems to have a positive and grateful outlook on life, which colors all of the memories and anecdotes he shares and makes listening to the book a good experience. When I started listening, Offerman and his Parks and Recreation character, Ron Swanson, was linked firmly in my mind, but by the end I heard him as an artist who is currently on TV.
Niet, I thought this would be fun, much like Tina Fey's, but this is, I guess, for hardcore Offerman fans. This is the first audiobook I didn't finish because I didn't sympathize with the author.
Say something about yourself!
I'm a fan of Parks & Rec. Loved Amy Poehler's book "Yes, Please". Am generally a fan of the Ron Swanson caricature Offerman has played.
But in the first hour, this book is nothing but is Offerman lecturing the listener about organic foods (he's in favor of them), the joy of meat, and religion (keep your fictional stories to yourself) in a fairly condescending why-isn't-this-obvious-to-you manner.
All of which would be forgivable if the book were funny. It's not. Not so far, anyway, and my patience is running out.
OK, so the author isn't into religion or other people who openly profess their beliefs. I get it. But after the sixth time of going onto other topics and coming back to express his dislikes on this topic yet again? You don't see the hypocrisy and banging on and on about the same topic here?
As for the rest of the story? Moderately interesting and sometimes gave me the odd chuckle. Not great and not terrible.
I don't know how helpful this review will be, because I am finding it difficult to contain the gushing adolescent praise that keeps bubbling up. What is this book? It is kick ass. It is awesome. Oh my god, it's totally awesomely kick ass. If you hate deep wisdom carved right in the middle of gut laughs, then sister, you have found your Mein Kampf. However, if you like things that are manufactured with care, love, and absolutely not one iota of pretension or sense that in order to be intelligent you have to be obtuse and obfuscating, then... what are you waiting for? Click the thing, and get crackin', friend.
Nick's story is great not because I am interested in how to become a famous actor (although he crafts a pretty good blueprint for that) or because I was an athlete who grew up in a small town (I did grow up in a small town around the same time as him, and one state over, but I really didn't care for the jock archetype at all) or because I am unsure of how to become a proper man (all the chest hairs are present and accounted for)... it's just that there is so much humor, warmth, intelligence, and wisdom in the words here writ that I challenge you to not find yourself guffawing, talking to friends about it, and hitting repeat so that you can nod along with what he's saying in an attempt to milk every bit of understanding from this comely and delicious basket of concepts. This is A Good Book, the best book I have read or listened to this year, and probably one of my very favorite works of humor ever. Nick Offerman: 21st Century Mark Twain? Maybe not, but probably as close as we're likely to get. For god's sake, why are you still reading this? Download the book!
I listened to this in one sitting. I couldn't stop. Partly because Nick Offerman has a hypnotic voice, and partly because I was simply curious about what he had to say. He is a fascinating man that legitamately loves his life.
I reccomend it highly. It seems many people wanted a book written by Ron Swanson, but I prefer this. There is a depth of charm and wisdom that wouldn't be there had this book been on meat and scotch.
Its a fascinating tale that would begin on may 5th, 1989 in Mease Dunedin hospital and from there the legacy grew. I am adult now.
Funny nonstop listen
It was narrated by nick offerman
Just as entertaining as his well written character.
I laughed and felt his passion for life.
Please narrate more books nick. Genius.
The life lessons in this book combined with Nicks insights on American Patriotism and the film industry made it hard to put down. Simply amazing and honest, just what this country needs.
"Nick Offerman isn't Ron Swanson"
I do not own the printed book, but it appears there is an abundance of visual matierial included within.
Autobiographies read by the author, have those little flourishes that they experienced at the time. Hearing Nick giggle as he repeated events from his past, if it's good enough for the author to laugh at it's fine in my book.
The whole section on belief, in relation to others. The fact people will always confuse a character for an actor and having differing opinions is an almost constant
NOT RON SWANSON, the story of woodworker turned actor.
I highly recommend this to anyone who has enjoyed Nick Offerman's acting.
"great book, inspiring, amusing, charming"
A great insight into happiness, show business and good prosperous living in general with the entertaining and oh so wise Mr Offerman. highly recommended
"He is better than his father ."
Listen to the book. You will find out what that means, why it's true, and why this is possibly the best autobiography on audible. And his awesome voice doesn't hurt either .
"The most amazing and joyous listen"
As a massive Ron Swanson fan, I really thought that this audiobook would be completely different, but I'm so glad it surprised me! I truly enjoyed listening to his point of views and side with him on most, he is also a very funny dude but as you go on realise very intelligent. Thoroughly recommend this book!!
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