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Publisher's Summary

Audie Award Finalist, Humor, 2014

The legendary Deep Thoughts and New Yorker humorist Jack Handey is back with his very first novel - a hilarious, absurd, far-flung adventure tale.

"Are you a fan of books in which famous tourist destinations are re-purposed as unlivable hellholes for no particular reason? Read on!

"Jack Handey's exotic tale is full of laugh-out-loud twists and unforgettable characters whose names escape me right now. A reliably unreliable narrator and his friend, who is some other guy, need to get out of town. They have a taste for adventure, so they pay a visit to a relic of bygone days - a travel agent - and discover an old treasure map. She might have been a witch, by the way. Our heroes soon embark on a quest for the Golden Monkey, which takes them into the mysterious and stinky foreign land of Honolulu. There, they meet untold dangers, confront strange natives, kill and eat Turtle People, kill some other things and people, eat another thing, and discover the ruins of ancient civilizations.

"As our narrator says, 'The ruins were impressive. But like so many civilizations, they forgot the rule that might have saved them: Don't let vines grow all over you.'"

©2013 Jack Handey (P)2013 Hachette Audio

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 3.7 out of 5.0
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Performance

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Story

  • 3.6 out of 5.0
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  • Overall
  • Performance
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  • Nate
  • Jackson, MS, United States
  • 07-29-13

Dry. Incoherent. Hilarious.

It's basically Deep Thoughts crammed into a flimsy plot. I love his stuff, but I could only take so much at a time due to dryness desensitization. Then I'd come back to it and it was hilarious again. His tone is hysterical, and I could definitely see re-listening to this in the future.

9 of 10 people found this review helpful

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  • Raleigh
  • greensboro, NC, United States
  • 09-30-14

perfect off-speed pitch

? do most modern comedians just seem too frantic for you
? do their manic ravings tend to wear you out after a while
? does " funny " always need to be mach3 with your hair on fire

SNL's jack handey is the practitioner of the sly comedic off-speed pitch
he's the absolute master of the wry, kick-in-the-pants, backdoor laugh
at times, the jokes would hit me as i was about to " drive by them "

i've listened to the book three times, always on a long road trip
the relaxed " don't rush me " style of the prose fits car travel well
if you're more thoughtful than hyper, it might just suit you too










2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Mitchel
  • Swampscott, MA, United States
  • 07-29-14

The Most Terrible Protagonist

Every little bit of The Stench of Honolulu is too much. The protagonist is the worst human being ever, and it's told entirely from his perspective. Every plot device is ridiculous, every character is an over-the-top cartoon. Every "fact" is made up, including everything about Hawaii and Honolulu. Every sentence contains a joke, usually a really dumb one. It's read by the author. It's very short, which is good because it's so intensely funny you can't take too much of it at once.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Very Entertaining, Great Narration

What did you love best about The Stench of Honolulu?

I loved the jokes. They are timeless, carefully crafted and honed, and memorable. They are silly in the same way that Monty Python or Sid Caesar is silly.

What did you like best about this story?

This is a wild expedition of a story that somehow manages to hang together in a crazy logical way. The dialog is given in short bits, frequently with lists of things like "Warnings", "Inventions", "Ways I'm Going to Kill Don". There are lots of observations on life, like "What kind of world to we live in." The story is really very clever in its twists and turns. (I didn't know there were Japanese soldiers on Hawaii. Oh well. I guess if you can believe a SKELETON can shoot a machine gun...)

What does Jack Handey bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Handey is perfect as a narrator of his book. He has what I think might be a midwestern accent which totally matches the silliness of the main character. Arte Johnson who narrated A Confederacy of Dunces would I think have been able to handle this material too, but Handey is so goofy and charming.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

There were very few flat spots in the story line. It was pretty funny all throughout, but frequently there are bits that are really hilarious.

Any additional comments?

I think this book deserves to be a classic of comedy writing. It's timeless. I want more Jack Handey! I want a detective mystery. And a ghost story, with SKELETONS.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

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  • Cathleen
  • Corrales, NM, United States
  • 07-05-14

Mildly Entertaining, Not a good read

What would have made The Stench of Honolulu better?

The read was not up to Audible's usual standards.

What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

It had it's funny moments.

You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

He is a clever writer. Needed a better reader, and maybe some music or something to pull it together.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

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Just buy it.

I don't often re-listen to audiobooks. I've listened to this one three times and keep laughing. It is hilarious.

If you clicked on this book recognizing the name Jack Handey, just buy it now and get ready to laugh until your face hurts.

You're welcome.

6 of 8 people found this review helpful

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Do you know where your brain is?

Would you listen to The Stench of Honolulu again? Why?

The 0-2 star reviews are from people that wanted this to be David Sedaris or something. You bought a Jack Handey book. You get Jack Handey. Fun read, I've listened to it a few times through and still laugh.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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buy it you will not regret it.

funnier than you could ever imagine. i still have nightmares of turtleman.
and no jack handey is not just Al Franken.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Insane?!?

Where does The Stench of Honolulu rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

Can anyone tell me which insane asylum this author lives? Funny and totally bazaar.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • cd
  • randolph, nj United States
  • 02-02-14

Awful. Don't listen to the hype

What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

A better flow to the narrative. It's almost as if someone wrote an entire book on twitter using the most bland jokes possible.

What was most disappointing about Jack Handey’s story?

The story was simply awful. Full of unfunny jokes, unfunny setups, with no actual humor.It's not even a real story, just a sequence of unfunny one liners strung together.

How did the narrator detract from the book?

I'm not sure if the book has no punctuation but it was certainly narrated that way.

If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from The Stench of Honolulu?

If I was an editor, I would have rejected this as a book.

Any additional comments?

I can only believe the rave reviews were plants. On the other hand, if you thought the "Ernest goes to,," series of movies was funny, this is probably the right book for you.

5 of 9 people found this review helpful