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CPR for Dummies Paperback – June 9, 2008


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Raw Dog Screaming Press (June 9, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1933293586
  • ISBN-13: 978-1933293585
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 9 x 0.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,098,092 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From the Inside Flap

"Mickey Z. has thought a lot about politics and a lot about sex. He's thought about politics while having sex, and about sex while having politics. As a result, Mr. Z. has written an orgasmic Left revolt-book! I am surprised that I liked the novel, actually. I didn't know that I enjoyed anything written after 1931." -- Sparrow, poet and presidential candidate --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From the Back Cover

"Mickey Z.'s CPR for Dummies is a ribald collage of styles, points of view, and blasphemies. Written loosely in the style of a play, the novel includes the author as a character, a sex-crazed priest and a confession-booth orgy to rival the best of Rabelais. Both satiric and insightful, the book manages to invoke both Armageddon and optimism. With politics sure to rile even the most self-righteous liberal, Mickey pulls off a tour de force -- a textbook within a play within a parody within an urban memoir. It is a book that is as tongue in cheek as Vonnegut and Bukowski -- funny, sexy, surprising and entirely iconoclastic." -- Christine Hamm, author of The Transparent Dinner, poetry --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

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Customer Reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Ned P. Vizzini on September 18, 2008
Format: Hardcover
I don't think there'll be a more bizarre book released in 2008, that's for sure. CPR for Dummies combines a screenplay, a day-long gritty Lower East Side (that's NYC for people who don't know) sex narrative, a corrupt priest and his group of idiosyncratic followers, and the end of the world into something delightfully weird.

Briefly, on the last day on earth (think "Armageddon"), a sexually voracious woman and her boyfriend get trapped in a church with a priest and his small congregation, who divulge their stories as the world outside them gets crazier and the meteor gets closer. Climax of the book is a three-way orgasm in a confessional.

And that climax is previewed by Mickey himself. At the beginning of the book he tells you, in italics and parentheses, that it's going to happen. This is CPR for Dummies' central conceit -- no-nonsense meta comments from the author. (He even puts them in the back-of-the-book copy.)

They're the best thing about the book. They come at the end of every chapter (and the chapters are short an readable) -- for example, I'm almost done writing this paragraph.

(it wasn't very good, was it? You're probably bored already and clicking off to another site.)

Mickey Z's meta strategy becomes addictive; after a while you're waiting for his out-of-the-box comments, which often reveal which of the book's many entertaining anecdotes actually happened to him. When I (tried to) read A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius, I got caught up in the preface. The first sentence: "It is not necessary to read the preface." Well, I thought, that's annoying -- it's probably not necessary to read the whole book. And I put it town.

Mickey Z's meta strategies are MUCH more palatable. When you finish this book, you feel like you know him, and you also feel like you've been through a long, strange trip to obliteration.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Ashton M. Heyd on October 12, 2008
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
a.k.a. Ash Lomen

I liked this book... I'm just sure if everyone else will. Giving it a five star rating is something I'm almost hesitant to do... but after all... I am judging the book on how much I enjoyed reading it... and that was one whole hell of a lot.

CPR for Dummies isn't really a novel... it's not really even fiction... it's a story wrapped in a psychic storm of fact, fiction, opinions, and intercourse. It's a stream-of-consciousness designed for you to choke on. And swallow.

It's also (whatever it is) very funny...

Mickey Z's viewpoint is not always a popular one (or one I always agree with) but what can I say... I like a guy who asks questions. Consider the possibility that you may be (on occasion) wrong... and you might learn something.

Maybe even how to win a fight...
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Eliot Katz on October 10, 2008
Format: Paperback
CPR for Dummies is a brilliant, inventive, and thoroughly enjoyable novel. It's filled with wild, engaging characters and an interesting mix of sex and politics--part Henry Miller and part Howard Zinn. While it has a storyline that moves compellingly forward, it also uses a postmodern collage structure that carves out plenty of free space for author playfulness, surprising anecdotes about history and science, and urgent political commentary. I read it in two sittings and found it to be both a real page-turner and an educational treat. And watch out for the ending.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Alison D. Curry on October 1, 2008
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
With a copy of CPR for dummies opened to any random page, You will be the most popular person on the subway! Juicy as TimeOut's Jamie Bufalino, with a plot and engaging dialogue!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Meridian on July 23, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I would have given this a 2.5 star rating had Amazon allowed...

Janie, a girl who works for a magazine called Naughty and is a bit obsessed with sex, finds herself in a predicament when she walks into a church to get directions on her way to an audition and instead, finds a small group of religious fanatics who think she's the second coming of Christ. Led by Father Gil, a less-than-holy priest, this eccentric bunch will not allow her to leave, continue to call her J.C., and ask her all sorts of outrageous questions. Janie's answer...to lead them into the arms of sin. Oh, and let's not forget to mention that the world is about to end while all this is going on.

The positives: I like the characters, while ridiculous and somewhat far-fetched. Not much character development, but the story is so short (the span of a few hours, that it doesn't lend itself to that). The plot, while meager, was interesting and comical. I also enjoyed some of the political rhetoric in the book, especially toward to the end.

The negatives: Had the author solely focused on the story at hand and left out all the snippets of history, politics, unrelated side stories, unnecessary tests, etc...this book would have been the size of a pamphlet. I got REALLY sick and tired of the constant cutting away from the story. The author's personal interjections in parentheses, while whimsical at the beginning, got severely old and annoying after about page 10. It felt like the author was trying way too hard to be witty, but really it just came off as bad writing. There was far too much unrelated information that didn't seem to matter one way or the other to anything that happened in the story. I won't say that some of the side notes didn't relate indirectly, but at least 75% should have been removed.
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