A hilarious collection of essays from 'the premier observer of our world and its weirdnesses,' New York Times bestselling author David Sedaris (Adam Kay, author of This is Going to Hurt)
Anyone who has heard David Sedaris speaking live or on the radio will tell you that a collection from him is cause for jubilation. A move to Paris from New York inspired these hilarious pieces, including 'Me Talk Pretty One Day', about his attempts to learn French from a sadistic teacher who declares that 'every day spent with you is like having a caesarean section'.
His family is another inspiration. 'You Can't Kill the Rooster' is a portrait of his brother, who talks incessant hip-hop slang to his bewildered father. And no one hones a finer fury in response to such modern annoyances as restaurant meals presented in ludicrous towers of food and cashiers with six-inch fingernails.
'Fantastically funny book which gets better and better'
'Oh how I loved this book. David Sedaris and his adventures in learning to speak French made me cry with laughter, especially the terrifying teacher at the language classes'
'Why have I not discovered him before'
Sedaris is Garrison Keillor's evil twin: like the Minnesota humorist, Sedaris (Naked) focuses on the icy patches that mar life's sidewalk, though the ice in his work is much more slippery and the falls much more spectacularly funny than in Keillor's. Many of the 27 short essays collected here (which appeared originally in the New Yorker, Esquire and elsewhere) deal with his father, Lou, to whom the book is dedicated. Lou is a micromanager who tries to get his uninterested children to form a jazz combo and, when that fails, insists on boosting David's career as a performance artist by heckling him from the audience. Sedaris suggests that his father's punishment for being overly involved in his kids' artistic lives is David's brother Paul, otherwise known as "The Rooster," a half-literate miscreant whose language is outrageously profane. Sedaris also writes here about the time he spent in France and the difficulty of learning another language. After several extended stays in a little Norman village and in Paris, Sedaris had progressed, he observes, "from speaking like an evil baby to speaking like a hillbilly. `Is thems the thoughts of cows?' I'd ask the butcher, pointing to the calves' brains displayed in the front window." But in English, Sedaris is nothing if not nimble: in one essay he goes from his cat's cremation to his mother's in a way that somehow manages to remain reverent to both of the departed. "Reliable sources" have told Sedaris that he has "tended to exhaust people," and true to form, he will exhaust readers of this new book, tooDwith helpless laughter. 16-city author tour.
Customer ReviewsSee All
You talk pretty one day
I have only recently discovered David, and then only through his BBC4 radio show, Meet David Sedaris. Having read the book now I can genuinely recommend both. I would advise any readers to first listen to one of readings and get a feel for his pacing and delivery before moving on to the books. Whilst I am sure the text would stand alone it is massively enhanced by his presentation. Hugh, his Father, Mother and sisters all have voice and it helps when reading to know when they would pause or emphasise different words or phrases. I shall be Dressing my family in corduroy next and I'm sure I won't be disappointed.
Me talk pretty one day!
The best book I have read in years, I physically laughed out loud so many times. I just want to hang out with this guy, truly looking at life from another angle yet making 100% sense. I just spent a year in Paris learning french and its as if he were there with me. Brilliant, Brilliant.