- Hardcover: 128 pages
- Publisher: G. P. Putnam's Sons; 1st edition (June 1979)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0399123040
- ISBN-13: 978-0399123047
- Product Dimensions: 7.8 x 5.4 x 0.6 inches
- Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars See all reviews (58 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #116,597 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Cruel Shoes Hardcover – June, 1979
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Top Customer Reviews
The best passages in the this book are "Cruel Shoes" and "The Diarrhea Gardens of El Camino Real". These passages poke fun at women's desire for shoes and environmentalists with the wrong idea. Other classics include "The Turds", "Wrong Number", and "Comedy Events You Can Do". "The Last Thing on My Mind" is the kind of thought prvoking comedy that is the trademark of George Carlin. "Society in Aspen" also has its moments including naming Jesus as a frequent horse shoe player.
The only soft spot in the book is the poetry. I am not sure where Martin was going with it, but it really does not work. Also many of the pages are pictures which seems somewhat wasteful when the pictures are poor quality.
With all of the classic humor in the book, there is no reason it should be out of print. It is a bargain at the available used prices.
I don't think anyone can really understand how bizarre Martin's humor is until they read his short (very short) stories. Most of the stories seem to be a bizarre twist on the small things of our everyday life. Did you ever stop to think if apologizing was a sufficient penance for dialing a wrong number? Did you ever wonder how far women's obsessions with shoes could go? Have you ever envisioned dogs leading a separate life? If you've been too short-sighted and overlooked these weighty matters, Steve Martin will right this wrong in your life.
Most of the stories are brilliantly funny (for some reason, THE SMOKERS just kills me), some are just too bizarre for words. Some of the stories seem to be a random jumble of sentences - which sometimes works (Shuckin' the Jive) and sometimes fails (The Vengeful Curtain Rod). It's not perfect, but definitely worth a look if you're looking for a unique kind of comedy.
He writes as the deepest of his thoughts came, and he twists what the ordinary mind sees as reality into something far more entertaining.
The cruelty of the shoes he writes about in "Cruel Shoes" is troublesome, but quickly overcome by so many of the other pieces in the book.
Steve Martin has been seen as a comic genius for many years. "Cruel Shoes" allows the reader to see beyond the silliness of his standup routines with a dive deep into his heart and soul.
I loved the book. I recommend it for anyone and everyone who has ever seen or heard of Steve Martin or any of his visual works.
When I was growing up, this book was in my moms book collection, and I pulled it out and started reading it. It was actually the first book I read that wasn't bought off a comic rack.
From the moment I started reading, I fell in love, and I firmly believe it's this book that made me as interested in reading as I am today.
It's a collection of short, weird bizarre stories that seem baffling at first, until you get into the "Martin mindset", at which point you will be completely hooked! The stories are all very brief which means they can be read in quick chunks, and set down, only to be picked back up later without having to remember what was going on before. It's quick to read and easily digested. My personal favorite story is "The Day The Dopes Came Over", which is still as entertaining to me today, as it was when I read it all those many years ago.
If you are a Steve Martin fan, and for whatever reason you don't yet have this book? Do yourself a favor, and pick it up. You owe yourself that much!
Most Recent Customer Reviews
When I was a kid I had this book...I laughed like crazy....but my kids don't think soPublished 5 months ago by Texas4570
I've had this book for 30+ years.
I'm not sure I should admit this, but it's one of the few books I get out and read parts of regularly.
It's arbitrary weirdness. Read more
After reviewing "The Object..." these other Martin books I've read keep popping up, so I thought I'd review them. Read morePublished 10 months ago by octopibingo
This book is dangerous. Do not purchase this book unless you understand that Steve Martin was consulting a Ouija board and an unnamed 'spirit' to find inspiration for each deadly... Read morePublished 20 months ago by Maximilian Lucado
A silly, surreal and sometimes non-sensical collection of Steve Martin's short (sometimes very short!) prose pieces from his famous stand-up years in the mid 70s. Read morePublished 21 months ago by GradyTripp