|Pages/Publication Date:||257 / 2005|
In this collection of 22 essays, Thurber Prize winner and Daedalus favorite author David Sedaris lifts the corner of the seemingly ordinary family life he grew up in—playing in the snow, going on vacation, attending a wedding, giving directions, getting his blood sugar tested—to reveal the absurdity teeming below its surface. It is a world alive with obscure desires and hidden motives, where forgiveness is automatic and an argument can be the highest form of love. With this more reflective collection, Sedaris moves into the realm of the full-fledged memoirist.
"Like his earlier performances, the essays are sardonic, funny and wry, but at the same time there is a new strain of introspection that makes for a book with more emotional resonance, a more complex aftertaste. The embarrassments of adolescence, the difficulties of connecting, the sense of being a perpetual outsider—these perennial themes of the author are not simply played for self-deprecating laughs in this volume, but are made to yield a more Chekhovian brand of comedy."—NYTimes