For Wislawa Szymborska, the catalyst is a dream; for Robert Bly, being in the company of his ten-year-old son; for Gerald Stern, it is a grapefruit at breakfast; for Billy Collins, a cigarette. Dancing with Joy includes English and Italian classical and romantic works; early Chinese and Persian verse; and poets from Chile, France, Sweden, Poland, Russia, Turkey, and India, plus a range of contemporary American and English poets.
Whether inspiration is what you need, or an affirmation of what is already joyful in life, Dancing with Joy is a welcome treat for Housden’s numerous fans, as well as anyone looking for sheer happiness, marvelously expressed.
From the Hardcover edition.
This luminous anthology brings together great poets from around the world whose work transcends culture and time. Their words reach past the outer divisions to the universal currents of love and revelation that move and inspire us all. These poems urge us to wake up and love. They also call on us to relinquish our grip on ideas and opinions that confine us and, instead, to risk moving forward into the life that is truly ours.
In his selection, Roger Housden has placed strong emphasis on contemporary voices such as the American poet laureate Billy Collins and the Nobel Prize–winners Czeslaw Milosz and Seamus Heaney, but the collection also includes some timeless echoes of the past in the form of work by masters such as Goethe, Wordsworth, and Emily Dickinson.
The tens of thousands of readers of Roger Housden’s “Ten Poems” series will welcome this beautiful harvest of poems that both open the mind and heal the heart.
From the Hardcover edition.
Through the voices of ten inspiring poets and his own reflections, the author of Sacred America shows how poetry illuminates the eternal feelings and desires that stir the human heart and soul. These poems explore such universal themes as the awakening of wonder, the longing for love, the wisdom of dreams, and the courage required to live an authentic life. In thoughtful commentary on each work, Housden offers glimpses into his personal spiritual journey and invites readers to contemplate the significance of the poet's message in their own lives.
In Ten Poems to Change Your Life, Roger Housden shows how these astonishing poems can inspire you to live what you always knew in your bones but never had the words for.
"The Journey" by Mary Oliver
"Last Night as I Was Sleeping" by Antonio Machado
"Song of Myself" by Walt Whitman
"Zero Circle" by Rumi
"The Time Before Death" by Kabir
"Ode to My Socks" by Pablo Neruda
"Last Gods" by Galway Kinnell
"For the Anniversary of My Death" by W. S. Merwin
"Love After Love" by Derek Walcott
"The Dark Night" by St. John of the Cross
A goodbye is an opportunity for kindness, for forgiveness, for intimacy, and ultimately for love and a deepening acceptance of life as it is rather than what it was. Goodbyes can be poignant, sorrowful, sometimes a relief, and—now and then—even an occasion for joy.
They are always transitions that, when embraced, can be the door to a new life both for ourselves and for others. In this inspiring and consoling volume, Housden encourages readers to embrace poetry as a way of enabling us to better see and appreciate the beauty of the world around and within us.
What is faith? It is not something we must receive from a religion, nor is it a quality we must abandon in order to be rational. "Faith is not the same as belief," writes bestselling author Roger Housden. "A nonreligious faith allows us to live with uncertainty, change, and mortality—to embrace life in all its sublime beauty." For the many who self-identify as "spiritual but not religious," Housden’s book Keeping the Faith Without a Religion offers us a way to embrace the extraordinary mystery of our lives without resorting to blind dogmatism or nihilistic scientism. He invites us to investigate:Faith and belief—how our hunger for certainty and easy answers impedes the growth of a mature spiritualityGuidance for building a personal faith based on your own inner experienceHow faith in life’s uncertainty can lift us through hard times—even when we know there are no guaranteesLove, joy, and beauty—what these experiences can teach us about the intelligence of the universe
Today, many of us seek a new approach to spirituality that honors both the rational and the mystical in equal measure. With Keeping the Faith Without a Religion, Roger Housden offers a guidebook for free-thinking seekers—an inspiring call to step beyond the need for one absolute truth and trust ourselves to the unfolding of our singular, extraordinary life.
The poets Housden has chosen are Billy Collins, Hayden Carruth, Dorianne Laux, James Wright, Naomi Shihab Nye, and Mary Oliver from the United States, D. H. Lawrence and John Keats from England, Rainer Maria Rilke from Germany, Fleur Adcock from New Zealand, and Seng-Ts’an from sixth-century China. And yes, that adds up to eleven, not ten. Housden decided to include a bonus poem for his faithful readers in this, the final volume of the series. As before, Housden’s luminous essays provide an elegant and easy passage into the sometimes daunting world of poetry, enabling readers to feel that in him they have found a trusted guide and mentor.
From the Hardcover edition.
That’s why poetry is dangerous. It gives voice to our unspoken dreams; it is a mirror to our own deepest joys, desires, and sorrows. It can tip us over into a new life, into a new way of seeing and being, that a moment ago we might even have had no words for.
In this new volume of his Ten Poems series, Roger Housden takes ten great poems and in personal, intimate essays shows how they led him, and can also lead us, into a more deeply lived and examined life. Housden says, “Every one of the poems in this book has struck me a blow, a direct hit, each of them, into the heart of hearts. Every one of them, in its own way, has opened a door for me to go deeper into my own experience, my own longings, my own sorrows and joys, and into the silence that surrounds all of this, all of us, always.”
From the Hardcover edition.
Saved By Beauty weaves a richly textured story of many threads. It is a deeply poetic and perceptive appreciation of a culture that has endured for over three thousand years, while it also portrays the creative and spiritual cultures within contemporary Iran that are rarely given any mention in the West. It is a suspense story that reflects on the philosophical and aesthetic questions of good and evil, truth and beauty. And finally, it is the story of a man in his sixties on a personal quest to discover if the Iran of his youthful imagination continued to exist, or whether it had been lost forever under a strict totalitarian regime. In Iran, Roger Housden was brought face to face with the reality that beauty and truth, deceit and violence, are inextricably mingled in the affairs of human life, and was forever changed.
From the Hardcover edition.
This volume brings together the voices of Thomas Merton, David Whyte, the Basque poet Miguel de Unamuno, Anna Swir from Poland, Stanley Kunitz, the Greek poet C. P. Cavafy, and Jane Hirshfield, as well as three of Housden’s favorites, Rumi, Mary Oliver, and Naomi Shihab Nye. His luminous essays on the poems show us how to integrate the poets’ truth into our own lives.
Roger Housden’s love of poetry and life leaps from every page—so much so that his readers feel they have found a guide and mentor through the extraordinary Ten Poems series. He has opened the eyes and hearts of many, not just to the power of poetry, but to the truth and beauty of the life of the soul. What more can one ask?
From the Hardcover edition.
From his first vlog back in 2008 to his full-length film directorial debut Not Cool, Shane Dawson has been an open book when it comes to documenting his life. But behind the music video spoofs, TMI love life details, and outrageous commentary on everything the celebrity and Internet world has the nerve to dish out is a guy who grew up in a financially challenged but loving home in Long Beach, California, and who suffered all the teasing and social limitations that arise when you’re a morbidly obese kid with a pretty face, your mom is your best friend, and you can't get a date to save your life.
In I Hate Myselfie, Shane steps away from his larger-than-life Internet persona and takes us deep into the experiences of an eccentric and introverted kid, who by observing the strange world around him developed a talent that would inspire millions of fans. Intelligent, hilarious, heartbreaking, and raw, I Hate Myselfie is a collection of eighteen personal essays about how messy life can get when you’re growing up and how rewarding it can feel when the clean-up is (pretty much) done.
From stand-up comedian, actress, and breakout star of Girls Trip, Tiffany Haddish, comes The Last Black Unicorn, a sidesplitting, hysterical, edgy, and unflinching collection of (extremely) personal essays, as fearless as the author herself.
Growing up in one of the poorest neighborhoods of South Central Los Angeles, Tiffany learned to survive by making people laugh. If she could do that, then her classmates would let her copy their homework, the other foster kids she lived with wouldn’t beat her up, and she might even get a boyfriend. Or at least she could make enough money—as the paid school mascot and in-demand Bar Mitzvah hype woman—to get her hair and nails done, so then she might get a boyfriend.
None of that worked (and she’s still single), but it allowed Tiffany to imagine a place for herself where she could do something she loved for a living: comedy.
Tiffany can’t avoid being funny—it’s just who she is, whether she’s plotting shocking, jaw-dropping revenge on an ex-boyfriend or learning how to handle her newfound fame despite still having a broke person’s mind-set. Finally poised to become a household name, she recounts with heart and humor how she came from nothing and nowhere to achieve her dreams by owning, sharing, and using her pain to heal others.
By turns hilarious, filthy, and brutally honest, The Last Black Unicorn shows the world who Tiffany Haddish really is—humble, grateful, down-to-earth, and funny as hell. And now, she’s ready to inspire others through the power of laughter.
“Gaspingly funny and wonderfully inappropriate.”—O, The Oprah Magazine
When Jenny Lawson was little, all she ever wanted was to fit in. That dream was cut short by her fantastically unbalanced father and a morbidly eccentric childhood. It did, however, open up an opportunity for Lawson to find the humor in the strange shame-spiral that is her life, and we are all the better for it.
In the irreverent Let’s Pretend This Never Happened, Lawson’s long-suffering husband and sweet daughter help her uncover the surprising discovery that the most terribly human moments—the ones we want to pretend never happened—are the very same moments that make us the people we are today. For every intellectual misfit who thought they were the only ones to think the things that Lawson dares to say out loud, this is a poignant and hysterical look at the dark, disturbing, yet wonderful moments of our lives.
Readers Guide Inside
It’s not where you begin that matters.
It's where you end up.
Twenty-three year old Joey Graceffa has captured the hearts of millions of teens and young adults through his playful, sweet, and inspirational YouTube presence (not to mention his sparkling eyes and perfect hair). Yet, Joey wasn’t always comfortable in his skin, and in this candid memoir, he thoughtfully looks back on his journey from pain to pride, self-doubt to self-acceptance.
To his fans, Joey is that best friend who always captures the brighter side of life but also isn’t afraid to get real. In the pages of his first book, he opens up about his years of struggling with family hardships and troubles at school, with cruel bullying and the sting of rejection. He tells of first loves and losses, embarrassing moments and surprising discoveries, loneliness, laughter, and life-changing forks in the road, showing us the incalculable value of finally finding and following your true passion in this world. Funny, warm-hearted, and inspiring, Joey Graceffa’s story is a welcome reminder that it’s not where you begin that matters, but where you end up.
She has seen both these dreams come true.
At last, Tina Fey's story can be told. From her youthful days as a vicious nerd to her tour of duty on Saturday Night Live; from her passionately halfhearted pursuit of physical beauty to her life as a mother eating things off the floor; from her one-sided college romance to her nearly fatal honeymoon -- from the beginning of this paragraph to this final sentence.
Tina Fey reveals all, and proves what we've all suspected: you're no one until someone calls you bossy.
(Includes Special, Never-Before-Solicited Opinions on Breastfeeding, Princesses, Photoshop, the Electoral Process, and Italian Rum Cake!)
NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY
Michiko Kakutani, New York Times • Newsday • Esquire • NPR • Booklist
Trevor Noah’s unlikely path from apartheid South Africa to the desk of The Daily Show began with a criminal act: his birth. Trevor was born to a white Swiss father and a black Xhosa mother at a time when such a union was punishable by five years in prison. Living proof of his parents’ indiscretion, Trevor was kept mostly indoors for the earliest years of his life, bound by the extreme and often absurd measures his mother took to hide him from a government that could, at any moment, steal him away. Finally liberated by the end of South Africa’s tyrannical white rule, Trevor and his mother set forth on a grand adventure, living openly and freely and embracing the opportunities won by a centuries-long struggle.
Born a Crime is the story of a mischievous young boy who grows into a restless young man as he struggles to find himself in a world where he was never supposed to exist. It is also the story of that young man’s relationship with his fearless, rebellious, and fervently religious mother—his teammate, a woman determined to save her son from the cycle of poverty, violence, and abuse that would ultimately threaten her own life.
The stories collected here are by turns hilarious, dramatic, and deeply affecting. Whether subsisting on caterpillars for dinner during hard times, being thrown from a moving car during an attempted kidnapping, or just trying to survive the life-and-death pitfalls of dating in high school, Trevor illuminates his curious world with an incisive wit and unflinching honesty. His stories weave together to form a moving and searingly funny portrait of a boy making his way through a damaged world in a dangerous time, armed only with a keen sense of humor and a mother’s unconventional, unconditional love.
Praise for Born a Crime
“[A] compelling new memoir . . . By turns alarming, sad and funny, [Trevor Noah’s] book provides a harrowing look, through the prism of Mr. Noah’s family, at life in South Africa under apartheid. . . . Born a Crime is not just an unnerving account of growing up in South Africa under apartheid, but a love letter to the author’s remarkable mother.”—Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times
“[An] unforgettable memoir.”—Parade
“What makes Born a Crime such a soul-nourishing pleasure, even with all its darker edges and perilous turns, is reading Noah recount in brisk, warmly conversational prose how he learned to negotiate his way through the bullying and ostracism. . . . What also helped was having a mother like Patricia Nombuyiselo Noah. . . . Consider Born a Crime another such gift to her—and an enormous gift to the rest of us.”—USA Today
“[Noah] thrives with the help of his astonishingly fearless mother. . . . Their fierce bond makes this story soar.”—People
“[Noah’s] electrifying memoir sparkles with funny stories . . . and his candid and compassionate essays deepen our perception of the complexities of race, gender, and class.”—Booklist (starred review)
“A gritty memoir . . . studded with insight and provocative social criticism . . . with flashes of brilliant storytelling and acute observations.”—Kirkus Reviews
New York Times bestselling author Shane Dawson returns with another highly entertaining and uproariously funny essay collection, chronicling a mix of real life moments both extraordinary and mortifying, yet always full of heart.
Shane Dawson shared some of his best and worst experiences in I Hate Myselfie, the critically acclaimed book that secured his place as a gifted humorist and keen observer of millennial culture. Fans felt as though they knew him after devouring the New York Times, Publishers Weekly, Los Angeles Times, and Wall Street Journal bestseller. They were right… almost.
In this new collection of original personal essays, Shane goes even deeper, sharing never-before-revealed stories from his life, giving readers a no-holds-barred look at moments both bizarre and relatable, from cult-like Christian after-school activities, dressing in drag, and losing his virginity, to hiring a psychic, clashes with celebrities, and coming to terms with his bisexuality. Every step of the way, Shane maintains his signature brand of humor, proving that even the toughest breaks can be funny when you learn to laugh at yourself.
This is Let's Pretend This Never Happened and Running With Scissors for the millennial generation: an inspiring, intelligent, and brutally honest collection of true stories by a YouTube sensation-turned one of the freshest new voices out there.
Jude is one of the top hip-hop radio hosts on Sirius Satellite radio. His self-published, print-on-demand edition of Hyena has been an indie bestseller, despite having no ebook or physical distribution. Its exploration of drugs, sex, and the human condition compares to Charles Bukowski, Hunter S. Thompson, Artie Lange, and Jim Norton. It also captures the hardscrabble culture, language, and landscape of post-industrial Detroit, from which came some of pop culture’s most compelling artists.
Written with the goal of being the most fun you've ever had reading a book, TOTAL FRAT MOVE pulls back the curtain on this world of hard-partying American decadence. The stories are unabashed. They are hilarious. And they are going to blow you away.
You're welcome, world.
--from the Introduction
Actual reader feedback:
"I am completely baffled as to how you can congratulate yourself for being a womanizer and a raging drunk, or think anyone cares about an idiot like you. Do you really think that exploiting the insecurities of others while getting wasted is a legitimate thing to offer?"
"Thank you, thank you, thank you--for sharing with us your wonderful tales of drunken revelry, for teaching me what it means to be a man, for just existing so I know that there is another option; I too can say 'screw the system' and be myself and have fun. My life truly began when I finished reading your stories. Now, when faced with a quandary about what course of action I should take, I just ask myself, 'What Would Tucker Do?'--and I do it, and I am a better man for it."
"I find it truly appalling that there are people in the world like you. You are a disgusting, vile, repulsive, repugnant, foul creature. Because of you, I don't believe in God anymore. No just God would allow someone like you to exist."
"I'll stay with God as my lord, but you are my savior. I just finished reading your brilliant stories, and I laughed so hard I almost vomited. I want to bring that kind of joy to people. You're an artist of the highest order and a true humanitarian to boot. I'm in both shock and awe at how much I want to be you."
"You are the coolest person I can even imagine existing. If you slept with my girlfriend, it'd make me love her more."
For someone who made a career out of over-sharing on the Internet, Tyler has a shocking number of personal mishaps and shenanigans to reveal in his first book: experiencing a legitimate rage blackout in a Cheesecake Factory; negotiating a tense standoff with a White House official; crashing a car in front of his entire high school, in an Arby’s uniform; projectile vomiting while bartering with a grandmother; and so much more. In Binge, Tyler delivers his best untold, hilariously side-splitting moments with the trademark flair that made him a star.
Corey Taylor has had it. Had it with the vagaries of human behavior and life in this postmodern digital blanked-out waiting room that passes for a world. Reality TV, awful music, terrible drivers, megamalls, airports, family reunions, bad fashion choices, other people's monstrous children, and badly-behaved "adult" human beings are warping life in the twenty-first century into an often-unbearable endurance test of one's patience, fortitude, and faith. Funny, profane, blasphemous, and above all right on target, You're Making Me Hate You is pure Corey Taylor unleashed, exposing the underbelly of human depravity in all its ragged glory.
"I've experienced a whole lot the last few years and I have a lot to share. So I hope that you'll take a moment to sit back, relax and enjoy the words I've put together for you in this book. I think you'll find I've left no stone unturned, no door unopened, no window unbroken, no rug unvacuumed, no ivories untickled. What I'm saying is, let us begin, shall we?"
Seriously... I'm Kidding is a lively, hilarious, and often sweetly poignant look at the life of the much-loved entertainer as she opens up about her personal life, her talk show, and more.
PRAISE FOR SERIOUSLY...I'M KIDDING
"DeGeneres's amiably oddball riffs on everything from kale to catwalks to Jesus will make fans smile." - People
"Whatever the topic, DeGeneres's compulsively readable style will appeal to fans old and new." - Publishers Weekly
"Fans will not be disappointed...[DeGeneres's] trademark wit and openness shine through and through." -- Kirkus
Even before she made a name for herself on the silver screen starring in films like Pitch Perfect, Up in the Air, Twilight, and Into the Woods, Anna Kendrick was unusually small, weird, and “10 percent defiant.”
At the ripe age of thirteen, she had already resolved to “keep the crazy inside my head where it belonged. Forever. But here’s the thing about crazy: It. Wants. Out.” In Scrappy Little Nobody, she invites readers inside her brain, sharing extraordinary and charmingly ordinary stories with candor and winningly wry observations.
With her razor-sharp wit, Anna recounts the absurdities she’s experienced on her way to and from the heart of pop culture as only she can—from her unusual path to the performing arts (Vanilla Ice and baggy neon pants may have played a role) to her double life as a middle-school student who also starred on Broadway to her initial “dating experiments” (including only liking boys who didn’t like her back) to reviewing a binder full of butt doubles to her struggle to live like an adult woman instead of a perpetual “man-child.”
Enter Anna’s world and follow her rise from “scrappy little nobody” to somebody who dazzles on the stage, the screen, and now the page—with an electric, singular voice, at once familiar and surprising, sharp and sweet, funny and serious (well, not that serious).
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 hand craft (and paddle) their own canoes.
When Carrie Fisher recently discovered the journals she kept during the filming of the first Star Wars movie, she was astonished to see what they had preserved—plaintive love poems, unbridled musings with youthful naiveté, and a vulnerability that she barely recognized. Today, her fame as an author, actress, and pop-culture icon is indisputable, but in 1977, Carrie Fisher was just a teenager with an all-consuming crush on her costar, Harrison Ford.
With these excerpts from her handwritten notebooks, The Princess Diarist is Fisher’s intimate and revealing recollection of what happened on one of the most famous film sets of all time—and what developed behind the scenes. Fisher also ponders the joys and insanity of celebrity, and the absurdity of a life spawned by Hollywood royalty, only to be surpassed by her own outer-space royalty. Laugh-out-loud hilarious and endlessly quotable, The Princess Diarist brims with the candor and introspection of a diary while offering shrewd insight into the type of stardom that few will ever experience.
Funnyman Adam Carolla is known for two things: hilarious rants about things that drive him crazy and personal stories about everything from his hardscrabble childhood to his slacker friends to the hypocrisy of Hollywood. He tackled rants in his first book, and now he tells his best stories and debuts some never-before-heard tales as well. Organized by the myriad "dumps" Carolla called home—through the flophouse apartments he rented in his twenties, up to the homes he personally renovated after achieving success in Hollywood—the anecdotes here follow Adam's journey and the hilarious pitfalls along the way.
Adam Carolla started broke and blue collar and has now been on the Hollywood scene for over fifteen years, yet he never lost his underdog demeanor. He's still connected to the working class guy he once was, and delivers a raw and edgy, fish-out-of-water take on the world he lives in (but mostly disagrees with), telling all the stories, no matter who he offends—family, friends or the famous.
With a New Afterword by the Author
"By turns hilarious and heartbreaking, Hannah Hart’s new book is a roaring, beautiful, and profoundly human account of an extraordinary life."—John Green
"Hannah shares her truth with an honesty that is inspiring—one that makes me believe her when she says that it’s going to get better or that laughter is just around the corner or that you aren’t alone."—Jenny Lawson, #1 New York Timesbestselling author of Let's Pretend This Never Happenedand Furiously Happy
The wildly popular YouTube personality, star of Food Network's I Hart Food, and author of the New York Times bestseller My Drunk Kitchen is back! This time, she’s stirring up memories and tales from her past.
By combing through the journals that Hannah has kept for much of her life, this collection of narrative essays deliver a fuller picture of her life, her experiences, and the things she’s figured out about family, faith, love, sexuality, self-worth, friendship and fame.
Revealing what makes Hannah tick, this sometimes cringe-worthy, poignant collection of stories is sure to deliver plenty of Hannah’s wit and wisdom, and hopefully encourage you to try your hand at her patented brand of reckless optimism.
Hello, my darlings! I am incredibly pleased to present BUFFERING: Unshared Tales of a Life Fully Loaded!
As a big fan of memoirs, I wanted to try my hand at writing about the events of my life that deserve a little more consideration than can be accomplished in 140-characters or a 6-minute vlog. Now on the cusp of turning 30, I'm ready to expose some parts of my life that I haven't shared before. Before, it was all about privacy, process and time. And now the time has come! I’m ready to put myself out there, for you.
I'm a little nervous about all these vulnerable words going into the world, these tales about my love life, the wrestling I’ve done with faith, how I feel about sex and my family and myself. I’ve had a lot of trials, a lot of errors, but also a lot of passion. Here’s the thing--I've always found comfort in the stories shared by others, so I hope my stories, now that I feel ready to tell them, will bring you some comfort too.
And when you read this book please remember: Buffering is just the time it takes to process.
Wildflower is a portrait of Drew's life in stories as she looks back on the adventures, challenges, and incredible experiences of her earlier years. It includes tales of living on her own at 14 (and how laundry may have saved her life), getting stuck in a gas station overhang on a cross country road trip, saying goodbye to her father in a way only he could have understood, and many more adventures and lessons that have led her to the successful, happy, and healthy place she is today. It is the first book Drew has written about her life since the age of 14.
In this universally accessible New York Times bestseller named for her wildly popular web series, Issa Rae—“a singular voice with the verve and vivacity of uncorked champagne” (Kirkus Reviews)—waxes humorously on what it’s like to be unabashedly awkward in a world that regards introverts as hapless misfits and black as cool.
I’m awkward—and black. Someone once told me those were the two worst things anyone could be. That someone was right. Where do I start?
Being an introvert (as well as “funny,” according to the Los Angeles Times) in a world that glorifies cool isn’t easy. But when Issa Rae, the creator of the Shorty Award-winning hit series The Misadventures of Awkward Black Girl, is that introvert—whether she’s navigating love, the workplace, friendships, or “rapping”—it sure is entertaining. Now, in this New York Times bestselling debut collection written in her witty and self-deprecating voice, Rae covers everything from cybersexing in the early days of the Internet to deflecting unsolicited comments on weight gain, from navigating the perils of eating out alone and public displays of affection to learning to accept yourself—natural hair and all.
The Misadventures of Awkward Black Girl is a book no one—awkward or cool, black, white, or other—will want to miss.
Tough Sh*t is the dirty business that Kevin has been digesting for 41 years and now, he’s ready to put it in your hands. Smear this shit all over yourself, because this is your blueprint (or brownprint) for success. Kev takes you through some big moments in his life to help you live your days in as Gretzky a fashion as you can: going where the puck is gonna be. Read all about how a zero like Smith managed to make ten movies with no discernible talent, and how when he had everything he thought he’d ever want, he decided to blow up his own career. Along the way, Kev shares stories about folks who inspired him (like George Carlin), folks who befuddled him (like Bruce Willis), and folks who let him jerk off onto their legs (like his beloved wife, Jen).
So make this your daily reader. Hell, read it on the toilet if you want. Just make sure you grab the bowl and push, because you’re about to take one Tough Sh*t.
By the host of The Grace Helbig Show on E! and the it’sGrace YouTube channel, comedian Grace Helbig offers an irreverent and illustrated guide to life for anyone faced with the challenge of growing up.
Infused with her trademark saucy, sweet, and funny voice, Grace’s Guide is a tongue-in-cheek handbook for millennials, encompassing everything a young or new (or regular or old) adult needs to know, from how to live online to landing a job to surviving a breakup to decorating a first apartment, and much more. Charmingly illustrated, Grace’s Guide features full-color photos, interactive worksheets, and exclusive stories from Grace’s own misadventures, including her disastrous interview for NBC’s Page Program, her lifelong struggles with anxiety, the first (and also last) time she entered a beauty pageant, meeting her first boyfriend at a high school Latin convention, and many other hilarious lessons she learned the hard way.
Amusing and unexpectedly educational, this refreshing and colorful guide proves that becoming an adult doesn’t necessarily mean you have to grow up.
Brittany Gibbons has been a plus size her whole life. But instead of hiding herself in the shadows of thinner women, Brittany became a wildly popular blogger and national spokesmodel—known for stripping on stage at TedX and standing in Times Square in a bikini on national television, and making skinny people everywhere uncomfortable.
Talking honestly about size and body image on her popular blog, brittanyherself.com, she has ignited a national conversation. Now in her first book, she shares hilarious and painfully true stories about her life as a weird overweight girl growing up in rural Ohio, struggling with dating and relationships, giving the middle finger to dieting, finding love with a man smaller than her, accidentally having three kids, and figuring out the secret to loving her curves and becoming a nationally recognized body image advocate. And there’s sex, lots of it!
Fat Girl Walking isn’t a diet book. It isn’t one of those former fat people memoirs about how someone battled, and won, in the fight against fat. Brittany doesn’t lose all the weight and reveal the happy, skinny girl that’s been hiding inside her. Instead, she reminds us that being chubby doesn’t mean you’ll end up alone, unhappy, or the subject of a cable medical show. What’s important is learning to love your shape. With her infectious humor and soul-baring honesty, Fat Girl Walking reveals a life full of the same heartbreak, joy, oddity, awkwardness, and wonder as anyone else’s. Just with better snacks.
Cronus liked to eat babies.
Narcissus probably should have just learned to masturbate.
Odin got construction discounts with bestiality.
Isis had bad taste in jewelry.
Ganesh was the very definition of an unplanned pregnancy.
And Abraham was totally cool about stabbing his kid in the face.
All our lives, we’ve been fed watered-down, PC versions of the classic myths. In reality, mythology is more screwed up than a schizophrenic shaman doing hits of unidentified…wait, it all makes sense now. In Zeus Grants Stupid Wishes, Cory O’Brien, creator of Myths RETOLD!, sets the stories straight. These are rude, crude, totally sacred texts told the way they were meant to be told: loudly, and with lots of four-letter words.
Skeptical? Here are a few more gems to consider:
• Zeus once stuffed an unborn fetus inside his thigh to save its life after he exploded its mother by being too good in bed.
• The entire Egyptian universe was saved because Sekhmet just got too hammered to keep murdering everyone.
• The Hindu universe is run by a married couple who only stop murdering in order to throw sweet dance parties…on the corpses of their enemies.
• The Norse goddess Freyja once consented to a four-dwarf gangbang in exchange for one shiny necklace.
And there’s more dysfunctional goodness where that came from.
It's no lie: Chelsea Handler loves to smoke out "dumbassness," the condition people suffer from that allows them to fall prey to her brand of complete and utter nonsense. Friends, family, co-workers--they've all been tricked by Chelsea into believing stories of total foolishness and into behaving like total fools. Luckily, they've lived to tell the tales and, for the very first time, write about them.
"I laughed so hard and uncontrollably I could hardly breathe. Reading this on public transport is not a good idea." (Penthouse magazine)
"Brilliantly funny." (Jezebel.com)
From the notorious Internet troublemaker who brought the world the explosively popular "Next Time I'll Spend the Money on Drugs Instead", in which he attempted to pay his chiropractor with a picture he drew of a spider; "Please Design a Logo for Me. With Pie Charts. For Free," which has been described as one of the most passed-on viral e-mails of all time; and, most recently, the staggeringly popular "Missing Missy", which has appeared everywhere from The Guardian to Jezebel to Andrew Sullivan's The Daily Dish, comes this profoundly funny collection of irreverent Internet mischief and comedy.
Featuring all of Thorne's viral success, including "Missing Missy", The Internet Is a Playground culls together every article and e- mail from Thorne's wildly popular website 27bslash6.com, as well as enough new material, available only in these pages, to keep you laughing-and, indeed, crying-until Thorne's next stroke-of-genius prank. Or hilarious hoax. Or well-publicized almost-stint in jail (really).
You believe you are a rational, logical being who sees the world as it really is, but journalist David McRaney is here to tell you that you're as deluded as the rest of us. But that's OK- delusions keep us sane. You Are Not So Smart is a celebration of self-delusion. It's like a psychology class, with all the boring parts taken out, and with no homework.
Based on the popular blog of the same name, You Are Not So Smart collects more than 46 of the lies we tell ourselves everyday, including:Dunbar's Number - Humans evolved to live in bands of roughly 150 individuals, the brain cannot handle more than that number. If you have more than 150 Facebook friends, they are surely not all real friends. Hindsight bias - When we learn something new, we reassure ourselves that we knew it all along. Confirmation bias - Our brains resist new ideas, instead paying attention only to findings that reinforce our preconceived notions. Brand loyalty - We reach for the same brand not because we trust its quality but because we want to reassure ourselves that we made a smart choice the last time we bought it.
Packed with interesting sidebars and quick guides on cognition and common fallacies, You Are Not So Smart is a fascinating synthesis of cutting-edge psychology research to turn our minds inside out.
Life doesn't get more hilarious than when Chelsea Handler takes aim with her irreverent wit. Who else would send all-staff emails to smoke out the dumbest people on her show? Now, in this new collection of original essays, the #1 bestselling author of Are You There, Vodka? It's Me, Chelsea delivers one laugh-out-loud moment after another as she sets her sights on the ridiculous side of childhood, adulthood, and daughterhood.
Family moments are fair game, whether it's writing a report on Reaganomics to earn a Cabbage Patch doll, or teaching her father social graces by ordering him to stay indoors. It's open season on her love life, from playing a prank on her boyfriend (using a ravioli, a fake autopsy, and the Santa Monica pier) to adopting a dog so she can snuggle with someone who doesn't talk. And everyone better duck for cover when her beach vacation turns into matchmaking gone wild. Outrageously funny and deliciously wicked, CHELSEA CHELSEA BANG BANG is good good good good!
CHELSEA HANDLER ON...
Being unpopular: "My parents couldn't have been more unreasonable when it came to fads or clothes that weren't purchased at a pharmacy."
Living with her boyfriend: "He's similar to a large toddler, the only difference being he doesn't cry when he wakes up."
Appreciating her brother: "He's a certified public accountant, and I have a real life."
Arm-wrestling a maid of honor: "It wasn't her strength that intimidated me. It was the starry way her eyes focused on me, like Mike Tyson getting ready to feed."
By the actress, writer, and one of the funniest women on Twitter, an outrageous, hysterical memoir of acting on impulse, plotting elaborate hoaxes, and refusing to acknowledge boundaries in any form
Jenny Mollen is an actress and writer living in Los Angeles. She is also a wife, married to a famous guy (which is annoying only because he gets free shit and she doesn't). She doesn't want much from life. Just to be loved—by everybody: her parents, her dogs, her ex-boyfriends, her ex-boyfriends' dogs, her husband, her husband's ex-girlfriends, her husband's ex-girlfriend's new boyfriends, etc. Some people might call that impulse crazy, but isn't "crazy" really just a word boring people use to describe fun people? (And Jenny is really, really fun, you guys!)
In these pages, you'll find stories of Jenny at her most genuine, whether it's stalking her therapist (because he knows everything about her so shouldn't she get to know everything about him?); throwing a bachelorette party so bad that one of the guests is suspected dead; or answering the eternal question, Would your best friend blow your husband on a car ride to dinner if she didn't know you were hiding in the backseat?
I Like You Just the Way I Am is about not doing the right thing—about indulging your inner crazy-person. It is Jenny when she's not trying to impress anyone or come across as a responsible, level-headed member of society. With any luck it will make you better acquainted with who you really are and what you really want. Which, let's be honest, is most likely someone else's email password.
Bert Kreischer doesn't know how to say "no." If he did, he wouldn't have gotten himself mixed up with a group of Russian mobsters on a class trip to Moscow, earning him his nickname: "The Machine." He wouldn't have wrestled with a bear or swum with sharks on national television. He wouldn't have (possibly) smoked PCP with a star of Saturday Night Live. And he wouldn't have been named the Number One Partier in the Nation by Rolling Stone, inspired the movie National Lampoon's Van Wilder, or performed standup to sellout crowds across the country.
The stories Kreischer shares in Life of the Party are a guidebook on how not to grow up. From his fraternity days at Florida State University, to his rise as a standup, to his marriage and first brushes with fatherhood, Kreischer shows you a path that may not lead you to maturity or personal growth. But it will lead you to a shitload of fun.
People I want to punch in the throat:
• anyone who feels the need to bling her washer and dryer
• people who treat their pets like children
Jen Mann doesn’t have a filter, which sometimes gets her in trouble with her neighbors, her fellow PTA moms, and that one woman who tried to sell her sex toys at a home shopping party. Known for her hilariously acerbic observations on her blog, People I Want to Punch in the Throat, Mann now brings her sharp wit to bear on suburban life, marriage, and motherhood in this laugh-out-loud collection of essays. From the politics of joining a play group, to the thrill of mothers’ night out at the gun range, to the rewards of your most meaningful relationship (the one you have with your cleaning lady), nothing is sacred or off-limits. So the next time you find yourself wearing fuzzy bunny pajamas in the school carpool line or accidentally stuck at a co-worker’s swingers party, just think, What would Jen Mann do? Or better yet, buy her book.
Praise for People I Want to Punch in the Throat
“People I Want to Punch in the Throat is so good that it’ll make you want to adopt all the cats in the world. I’m not sure about the correlation, but it’s that good. It should come with a warning.”—Jenny Lawson, author of Let’s Pretend This Never Happened
“Jen Mann has an amazing way of telling stories that will make you cringe and burst out laughing at the same time. From swinger parties to racist toddlers, she makes the suburbs unbelievably funny.”—Karen Alpert, author of I Heart My Little A-Holes
“Jen Mann says the things we’re all too afraid to say. Her honest and hilarious writing style reminds me of David Sedaris and Tina Fey.”—Robin O’Bryant, author of Ketchup Is a Vegetable: And Other Lies Moms Tell Themselves
“Jen Mann’s shrewd and unrelenting assault on the absurdity of suburban life is an honest peek into the occasional nightmare that is part of living the American dream. I love Jen. I wish she was my neighbor. It’s so refreshing to know that I’m not the only one who wants to punch almost everyone in the f***ing throat.”—Nicole Knepper, author of Moms Who Drink And Swear
Podcast king Adam Carolla first shared his unique, but always funny world view in his New York Times bestseller In Fifty Years We’ll All Be Chicks—but he’s not done.
In President Me, Carolla shares his vision for a different, better America free from big issues like big government down to small problems like hotel alarm clock placement. Running on an anti-narcissism platform, President Carolla calls for a return to the values of an earlier time when stew and casserole were on every dinner table and there were no “service dogs” on airplanes. President Me hits right at the heart of what makes our country really annoying, and offers a plan to make all of our lives, but mostly Adam’s, much better.
You've either done it or know someone who has: the one-night stand, the familiar outcome of a night spent at a bar, sometimes the sole payoff for your friend's irritating wedding, or the only relief from a disastrous vacation. Often embarrassing and uncomfortable, occasionally outlandish, but most times just a necessary and irresistible evil, the one-night stand is a social rite as old as sex itself and as common as a bar stool.
Enter Chelsea Handler. Gorgeous, sharp, and anything but shy, Chelsea loves men and lots of them. My Horizontal Life chronicles her romp through the different bedrooms of a variety of suitors, a no-holds-barred account of what can happen between a man and a sometimes very intoxicated, outgoing woman during one night of passion. From her short fling with a Vegas stripper to her even shorter dalliance with a well-endowed little person, from her uncomfortable tryst with a cruise ship performer to her misguided rebound with a man who likes to play leather dress-up, Chelsea recalls the highs and lows of her one-night stands with hilarious honesty.
Encouraged by her motley collection of friends (aka: her partners in crime) but challenged by her family members (who at times find themselves a surprise part of the encounter), Chelsea hits bottom and bounces back, unafraid to share the gritty details. My Horizontal Life is one guilty pleasure you won't be ashamed to talk about in the morning.
A one-woman media phenomenon and a leading YouTube influencer takes readers behind the camera, and deep inside her world.
Justine Ezarik has been tech-obsessed since unboxing her family’s first Apple computer. By sixth grade she had built her first website. A decade later, she became one of the Internet’s first—and most popular—“lifecasters,” inviting people around the world to watch her every move, twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week. But it was a one-minute video about an itemized AT&T bill that gave Justine her first taste of viral success: Within ten days of release, her “300-page iPhone bill” had garnered more than 3 million views and international media attention. These days, iJustine is a one-woman new media phenomenon: The popular techie, gamer, vlogger, and digital influencer has an army of nearly 3.5 million subscribers across multiple YouTube channels, with total views approaching half a billion.
Now, Justine is giving friends and fans a look behind the scenes, sharing never-before-told stories about the hilarious (and sometimes heartbreaking) reality of sharing your life online. With her trademark wit and delightfully weird sense of humor, Justine delivers an inspirational message in support of creativity, entrepreneurship, and the power of staying true to yourself, while reminding readers that the Internet is a very small world—you just never know who you’re going to meet.
His previous excursion along the Appalachian Trail resulted in the sublime national bestseller A Walk in the Woods. In A Sunburned Country is his report on what he found in an entirely different place: Australia, the country that doubles as a continent, and a place with the friendliest inhabitants, the hottest, driest weather, and the most peculiar and lethal wildlife to be found on the planet. The result is a deliciously funny, fact-filled, and adventurous performance by a writer who combines humor, wonder, and unflagging curiousity.
Despite the fact that Australia harbors more things that can kill you in extremely nasty ways than anywhere else, including sharks, crocodiles, snakes, even riptides and deserts, Bill Bryson adores the place, and he takes his readers on a rollicking ride far beyond that beaten tourist path. Wherever he goes he finds Australians who are cheerful, extroverted, and unfailingly obliging, and these beaming products of land with clean, safe cities, cold beer, and constant sunshine fill the pages of this wonderful book.
Australia is an immense and fortunate land, and it has found in Bill Bryson its perfect guide.
As a young kid growing up in a farm town, Ross Mathews might as well have wished for a pet unicorn or a calorie-free cookie tree to grow in his front yard. Either of those far-fetched fantasies would have been more likely to come true than his real dream: working in television in Hollywood, California. Seriously, that stuff just doesn't happen to people like Ross. But guess what? It totally did.
Now, with his first book, Ross takes us inside his journey as a super-fan, revealing the most embarrassing and hilarious moments of his small-town life and big-city adventures. From learning to swear like a hardened trucker to that time in high school when had to face down the most frightening opponent of all (his girlfriend's lady bits), Ross holds nothing back. Oh, then there's his surprisingly shady past involving the cutest pair of plus-sized women's pajama bottoms, deliciously dangerous pot butter, and embezzled sandwiches. And, of course, how he's managed to turn an obsession with pop-culture into one-on-one interactions with celebrities like Gwyneth Paltrow, Tiffani-Amber Theissen, Madonna, Michelle Kwan, and countless more without ever having a single restraining order issued against him.
Infused with Ross's trademark humor, unique voice, and total honesty, Man Up! is a mission statement for anyone who doesn't fit the mold. His hasn't been the most traditional way to build a career in Hollywood, but Ross has somehow managed to make his mark without ever compromising who he is. He is as serious about this as he is about Golden Girls trivia: You don't need to change who you are to achieve your dreams (although there's nothing wrong with a makeover every now and then). You just need to Man Up!
Perhaps you want to know what Mindy thinks makes a great best friend (someone who will fill your prescription in the middle of the night), or what makes a great guy (one who is aware of all elderly people in any room at any time and acts accordingly), or what is the perfect amount of fame (so famous you can never get convicted of murder in a court of law), or how to maintain a trim figure (you will not find that information in these pages). If so, you’ve come to the right book, mostly!
In Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me?, Mindy invites readers on a tour of her life and her unscientific observations on romance, friendship, and Hollywood, with several conveniently placed stopping points for you to run errands and make phone calls. Mindy Kaling really is just a Girl Next Door—not so much literally anywhere in the continental United States, but definitely if you live in India or Sri Lanka.
From the Hardcover edition.
People make a mess.
Marc Maron was a parent-scarred, angst-filled, drug-dabbling, love-starved comedian who dreamed of a simple life: a wife, a home, a sitcom to call his own. But instead he woke up one day to find himself fired from his radio job, surrounded by feral cats, and emotionally and financially annihilated by a divorce from a woman he thought he loved. He tried to heal his broken heart through whatever means he could find—minor-league hoarding, Viagra addiction, accidental racial profiling, cat fancying, flying airplanes with his mind—but nothing seemed to work. It was only when he was stripped down to nothing that he found his way back.
Attempting Normal is Marc Maron’s journey through the wilderness of his own mind, a collection of explosively, painfully, addictively funny stories that add up to a moving tale of hope and hopelessness, of failing, flailing, and finding a way. From standup to television to his outrageously popular podcast, WTF with Marc Maron, Marc has always been a genuine original, a disarmingly honest, intensely smart, brutally open comic who finds wisdom in the strangest places. This is his story of the winding, potholed road from madness and obsession and failure to something like normal, the thrillingly comic journey of a sympathetic f***up who’s trying really hard to do better without making a bigger mess. Most of us will relate.
Praise for Attempting Normal
“I laughed so hard reading this book.”—David Sedaris
“Funny . . . surprisingly deep . . . laced with revelatory insights.”—Los Angeles Times
“Superb . . . A reason that [it] is a superior example of an overcrowded genre—the comedian memoir—is Mr. Maron’s hardheaded approach to his history, the wisdom of experience.”—The New York Times
“Marc Maron is a legend because he is both a great comic and a brilliant mind. Attempting Normal is a deep, hilarious megashot of feeling and truth as only this man can administer.”—Sam Lipsyte
Praise for Marc Maron and WTF
“The stuff of comedy legend.”—Rolling Stone
“Marc Maron is a startlingly honest, compelling, and hilarious comedian-poet. Truly one of the greatest of all time.”—Louis C.K.
“I’ve known Marc for years and I can tell you first hand that he’s passionate, fearless, honest, self-absorbed, neurotic, and screamingly funny.”—David Cross
“Revered among his peers . . . raw and unflinchingly honest.”—Entertainment Weekly
“Devastatingly funny.”—Los Angeles Times
“For a comedy nerd, this show is nirvana.”—Judd Apatow
From the Hardcover edition.
What’s up guys? It’s me, Eva!
You may know me from my YouTube channel, MyLifeasEva. If that’s the case, then you might also know that I have a munchkin cat named Paris, a weird obsession with patterned sock collecting, and the tendency to say “HOLY SCHNITZEL!” at all the wrong moments. Like...embarrassing moments.
I’m so lucky to have my fans—over seven million besties and counting! It has been amazing to meet so many of you since I started making videos. Growing up, books are what got me through life—a lot of the good times, and the really really bad times. And no matter how challenging life got, I promised myself that I would get through it, in hopes that someday I’d have the chances to help people who need that one piece of great advice, at just the right time.
So here’s a book by me, totally for you. I’ll tell you a ton of my secrets, a lot of fail stories, and how I made it through—and you can too!
Think of my book like a best friend you can turn to at any time.
NAMED A BEST BOOK OF THE YEAR BY:
NPR, ESQUIRE, The LA Times, and NEWSWEEK
WINNER OF THE STRANGER GENIUS AWARD
Shrill is an uproarious memoir, a feminist rallying cry in a world that thinks gender politics are tedious and that women, especially feminists, can't be funny.
Coming of age in a culture that demands women be as small, quiet, and compliant as possible--like a porcelain dove that will also have sex with you--writer and humorist Lindy West quickly discovered that she was anything but.
From a painfully shy childhood in which she tried, unsuccessfully, to hide her big body and even bigger opinions; to her public war with stand-up comedians over rape jokes; to her struggle to convince herself, and then the world, that fat people have value; to her accidental activism and never-ending battle royale with Internet trolls, Lindy narrates her life with a blend of humor and pathos that manages to make a trip to the abortion clinic funny and wring tears out of a story about diarrhea.
With inimitable good humor, vulnerability, and boundless charm, Lindy boldly shares how to survive in a world where not all stories are created equal and not all bodies are treated with equal respect, and how to weather hatred, loneliness, harassment, and loss, and walk away laughing. Shrill provocatively dissects what it means to become self-aware the hard way, to go from wanting to be silent and invisible to earning a living defending the silenced in all caps.
Crazier than a sack of rabid weasels?
Country as cornflakes?
Gooder than grits?
You bet he is!
Week after week, millions of viewers tune in to Lizard Lick Towing to watch Ron Shirley outsmart the fist-swinging, gun-toting folks whose vehicles he’s been hired to repossess. Staring danger in the face, Ron disarms them not with his size or his strength but with his wit—and especially with his trademark funny sayings that have come to be known as “Ronisms.”
In Lizard Tales, Ron takes readers on a side-splitting trip through his wacky, colorful life. Growing up and raising heck in the Carolina countryside—where sushi is still called “bait”—young Ronnie was known to gig frogs, mooch moonshine from his pops, hunt, and cruise the strip in Myrtle Beach. He continues to get himself into hilarious scrapes and jams as an adult by tarring a roof during a lightning storm, inviting an angry deer onto his cousin’s brand-new boat, drinking (and fist-fighting) with a priest, matching wits with his wife, Amy, and running repo with his sidekicks at the towing company. So kick back, help yourself to some ’shine (if you got it), let Ron tell you some stories, and prepare yourself to get licked!
From the Trade Paperback edition.
Most people might not get angry at someone for going the speed limit. Or for liking coleslaw or cantaloupe. Or for someone not responding to a ridiculously hilarious text message. Or reality show recaps. But lucky for you, Rachel Ballinger is not most people. She will yell at people and inanimate objects. Why? Because that person or thing Pissed. Her. Off.
101 Things That Piss Me Off is a quick-witted and comical collection based on Rachel's hit Youtube series "You Know What Pisses Me Off", featuring never-before-heard rants, along with photographs and illustrations to help demonstrate. Using light-hearted anger, Rachel aims to show that being heated, passionate and expressive about things we care for is important. And fun.
Sick of deeply personal accounts written in the first person? Seeking an exciting, interactive read that puts the “u” back in “aUtobiography”? Then look no further than Neil Patrick Harris: Choose Your Own Autobiography! In this revolutionary, Joycean experiment in light celebrity narrative, actor/personality/carbon-based-life-form Neil Patrick Harris lets you, the reader, live his life. You will be born to New Mexico. You will get your big break at an acting camp. You will get into a bizarre confrontation outside a nightclub with actor Scott Caan. Even better, at each critical juncture of your life you will choose how to proceed. You will decide whether to try out for Doogie Howser, M.D. You will decide whether to spend years struggling with your sexuality. You will decide what kind of caviar you want to eat on board Elton John’s yacht.
Choose correctly and you’ll find fame, fortune, and true love. Choose incorrectly and you’ll find misery, heartbreak, and a hideous death by piranhas. All this, plus magic tricks, cocktail recipes, embarrassing pictures from your time as a child actor, and even a closing song. Yes, if you buy one book this year, congratulations on being above the American average, and make that book Neil Patrick Harris: Choose Your Own Autobiography!
Don’t miss Norm’s new Netflix special, Hitler’s Dog, Gossip & Treachery!
When Norm Macdonald, one of the greatest stand-up comics of all time, was approached to write a celebrity memoir, he flatly refused, calling the genre “one step below instruction manuals.” Norm then promptly took a two-year hiatus from stand-up comedy to live on a farm in northern Canada. When he emerged he had under his arm a manuscript, a genre-smashing book about comedy, tragedy, love, loss, war, and redemption. When asked if this was the celebrity memoir, Norm replied, “Call it anything you damn like.”
Praise for Based on a True Story
“Dostoyevsky by way of 30 Rockefeller Center . . . the best new book I’ve read this year or last.”—The Wall Street Journal
“This book is absurd fiction. . . . Scathing and funny.”—The New York Times
“Hilarious and filled with turns of phrase and hidden beauty like only a collection of Norm Macdonald stories could be.”—Esquire
“Raucous . . . a hilarious, innovative work.”—A.V. Club
“Part personal history and part meta riff on celebrity memoirs, the book, it quickly becomes clear, is also just partly true (and all hilarious).”—Vulture
“Very, very, very funny! Thanks, Norm, for letting me be part of this Booker Prize–for–literature–quality effort.”—David Letterman
“Norm is brilliant and thoughtful and there is sensitivity and creative insight in his observations and stories. A lot of comics over the years have been compared to Mark Twain, but I think Norm is the only one who actually matches the guy in terms of his voice and ability. I seriously f**king love Norm Macdonald. Please buy his book. He probably needs the cash. He’s really bad with money.”—Louis C.K., from the foreword
“Norm is one of my all-time favorites, and this book was such a great read I forgot how lonely I was for a while.”—Amy Schumer
“I always thought Normie’s stand-up was the funniest thing there was. But this book gives it a run for its money.”—Adam Sandler
“Norm is one of the greatest stand-up comics who’s ever worked—a totally original voice. His sense of the ridiculous and his use of juxtaposition in his writing make him a comic’s comic. We all love Norm.”—Roseanne Barr
“Norm Macdonald makes me laugh my ass off. Who is funnier than Norm Macdonald? Nobody.”—Judd Apatow
“Norm Macdonald is more than a triple threat—he’s a septuple threat. He is smart, funny, wry, rakish, polite, rakish . . . no, wait. He is polite, insightful, and . . . aaaaah . . . warm. No. He’s exciting. Yeah. Exciting! You never know what he’ll do. Okay, then make that unpredictable. Add that up. He’s amazing.”—Alec Baldwin
“Norm is a double threat. His material and timing are both top-notch, which is unheard of. He is one of my favorites, both on- and off-stage.”—Dave Attell
“Letterman said it best: There is no one funnier than Norm Macdonald.”—Rob Schneider
When her daughter Melissa gives her a diary for Christmas, at first Joan is horrified—who the hell does Melissa think she is? That fat pig, Bridget Jones? But as Joan, being both beautiful and introspective, begins to record her day-to-day musings, she realizes she has a lot to say. About everything. And everyone, God help them.
The result? A no-holds-barred, delightfully vicious and always hilarious look at the everyday life of the ultimate diva. Follow Joan on a family vacation in Mexico and on trips between New York and Los Angeles where she mingles with the stars, never missing a beat as she delivers blistering critiques on current events, and excoriating insights about life, pop culture, and celebrities (from A to D list), all in her relentlessly funny signature style.
This is the Diary of a Mad Diva. Forget about Anais Nin, Anne Frank, and Sylvia Plath. For the first time in a century, a diary by someone that’s actually worth reading.
Back in America after twenty years in Britain, Bill Bryson decided to reacquaint himself with his native country by walking the 2,100-mile Appalachian Trail, which stretches from Georgia to Maine. The AT offers an astonishing landscape of silent forests and sparkling lakes—and to a writer with the comic genius of Bill Bryson, it also provides endless opportunities to witness the majestic silliness of his fellow human beings.
For a start there's the gloriously out-of-shape Stephen Katz, a buddy from Iowa along for the walk. Despite Katz's overwhelming desire to find cozy restaurants, he and Bryson eventually settle into their stride, and while on the trail they meet a bizarre assortment of hilarious characters. But A Walk in the Woods is more than just a laugh-out-loud hike. Bryson's acute eye is a wise witness to this beautiful but fragile trail, and as he tells its fascinating history, he makes a moving plea for the conservation of America's last great wilderness. An adventure, a comedy, and a celebration, A Walk in the Woods has become a modern classic of travel literature.
From the Trade Paperback edition.