By David Sedaris
*A collection of personal essays - surprising, disarming, heartbreakingly funny - from the No. 1 bestselling writer Time named America's Favorite Humorist.
In David Sedaris's world, no one is safe and no cow is sacred. A manic cross between Mark Leyner, Fran Lebowitz and the National Enquirer, Sedaris's collection of stories and essays is a rollicking tour through the American Zeitgeist: a man who is loved too much flees the heavyweight champion of the world; a teenage suicide tried to incite a lynch mob at her funeral; and in his essays, David Sedaris considers the hazards of rewards of smoking, writing for Giantess magazine, and living with his scrappy brother Paul, aka 'The Rooster'.
With a perfect eye and a voice infused with as much empathy as wit, Sedaris writes and reads stories and essays that target the soulful ridiculousness of our behaviour. Barrel Fever is like a blind date with modern life - and anything can happen.
With sardonic wit and incisive social critiques, David Sedaris has become one of America's pre-eminent humor writers. The great skill with which he slices through cultural euphemisms and political correctness proves that Sedaris is a master of satire and one of the most observant writers addressing the human condition today.
David Sedaris is the author of Barrel Fever and Holidays on Ice, as well as collections of personal essays, Naked, Me Talk Pretty One Day, Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim, When You Are Engulfed in Flames and his most recent book, Let's Explore Diabetes with Owls, each of which became an immediate bestseller. The audio version of Let's Explore Diabetes With Owls was a Grammy nominee for Best Spoken Word Album. He is the author of the New York Times-bestselling collection of fables entitled Squirrel Seeks Chipmunk: A Wicked Bestiary (with illustrations by Ian Falconer). He was also the editor of Children Playing Before a Statue of Hercules: An Anthology of Outstanding Stories. Sedaris's pieces appear regularly in the New Yorker and have twice been included in 'The Best American Essays'. There are a total of ten million copies of his books in print and they have been translated into twenty-nine languages.
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- Publication date:
06 Jul 2006
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So often Sedaris's phrasing is beautiful in its piquancy and minimalism...His life is extraordinary in so many ways - the drug addiction, the eccentric family, the crazy jobs, the fame, the globetrotting - but one of the more unlikely achievements here is in making it all seem quite ordinary. Ultimately, his masterstroke is in acting as a bystander in his own story — Guardian
He makes me laugh so much. In an era when US satire is outpacing our own he's a sharp, humane and hilarious voice that never fails to make you smile - and sometimes weep. Apparently effortless humour is difficult, and precious. He's the real thing — James Naughtie, Radio Times
A deadpan, darkly comical portrait of the American underbelly . . . Sedaris shares something of [Alan] Bennett's detached curiosity, and they both have a thirst for amusement — Craig Brown, Mail on Sunday
I don't very often find myself moved by a book to emit loud noises in public, but when I first read David Sedaris's essays and short stories, they made me laugh so hard I had to stop taking them on the tube. All his collections are good but 'Barrel Fever — is the best’
#NAME? — 'A satirical brazenness that holds up next to Twain and Nathaneal West’
New YORKER — 'David and Amy Sedaris have a deadpan delivery as ironic as the words they read. The two of them create a nuclear barrage of humour you could never replicate by reading this material on your own’