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Dating Your Mom Paperback – May 31, 1996


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 136 pages
  • Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux; 1st edition (May 31, 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0374524823
  • ISBN-13: 978-0374524821
  • Product Dimensions: 8.2 x 5.5 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #5,327,296 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Open Dating Your Mom to any page and begin to read; chances are you won't make it 10 seconds without laughing. ("In today's fast-moving, transient, rootless society, where people meet and make love and part without ever really touching, the relationship every guy already has with his own mother is too valuable to ignore. Here is a grown, experienced, loving woman...") A collection of Ian Frazier's New Yorker pieces from the 1970s and '80s, it's a tremendous book. Frazier is undoubtedly one of the finest living humorists--a Thurber Prize-winner--and Dating Your Mom is what cemented his reputation. His jokes are turned just so, and if the subject matter can be a little elliptical, (as in the story "Bob's Bob House") that flaw is more than excused by the guffaws that surround it.

From Library Journal

Something less than short stories, something more than mere jokes, the pieces collected in this volume (most of them first published in the New Yorker ) poke fun at all kinds of cultural pretensions, both highbrow and lowbrow. Among the offerings: a musicological essay that extracts preposterous biographical information from an old telephone bill of Stravinsky's; a literary history of the "age of Niven" that analyzes books by movie actors; and a page from Mrs. Solzhenitsyn's daybook that records such big events as taking Al's old Siberia clothes to the Fire Department rummage sale. Frazier's humor is reminiscent of fellow New Yorker contributor Donald Barthelme's, but is generally less philosophical and more slapstick. It's intellectual, but it's also pretty dumb. Recommended for some fiction collections. Edward B. St. John, Loyola Marymount Univ. Lib., Los Angeles
Copyright 1986 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

More About the Author

Ian Frazier is the author of Great Plains, The Fish's Eye, On the Rez, and Family, as well as Coyote v. Acme and Dating Your Mom, all published by FSG. A frequent contributor to The New Yorker, he lives in Montclair, New Jersey.

Customer Reviews

3.6 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 19, 2000
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
In between some failed pieces and some merely funny ones, there are some works of mind-melting satire. Throw in a viscious vision of pretention at all levels of society, and you've got Frazier at work. "The Death of Bob's Bob House" was one of the strangest and funniest things I have read in quite some time. He does not always connect, but when he does, Frazier can smack that puppy out of the ballpark.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 13, 1998
Format: Paperback
Ian Frazier's "Dating Your Mom," despite its rather disturbing title, is an unparalleled collection of the author's early writings, most or all of which appeared in "The New Yorker." The book reels from essays reviewing the Bloomsbury Group's appearance at the Apollo Theatre to the delightful speculation on what kind of an airline pilot Samuel Beckett would have been. Although Frazier stumbles occasionally--one or two of the essays are rather banal--the overall effect is superb.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By An Amazonian on June 14, 2003
Format: Hardcover
Frazier is a brilliant stylist and the ideas behind his pieces are equally brilliant. I was thinking this morning that perhaps "Dating Your Mom" (the title piece itself) is making a point about the banality of evil in self-help books--that is, saying that self-help books encourage you to look out for number one without noticing what the cost may be, as epitomized by the earnest advice that one should date one's mom, perhaps the greatest taboo in Western culture.
Or maybe not. But the essays made me SCREAM with laughter and I used to re-read them every six months, dreaming that I might ever find something so funny again. "You've really kept your figure Mom, and don't think I haven't noticed." Perfection.
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By A Customer on April 26, 2002
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a collection of short humorous pieces and in my view there is not a dud in here, although my favorite essay is the one about what happened to his Greenwich Village apartment after it fell to the North Vietnamese. I've loaned and given this book to upwards of a dozen friends and every single one has come back to me raving about how hilarious it was. I consider this book to be right in the mainstream of the magnificent New Yorker humor tradition, and I'd recommend it to almost anyone. Having said that, looking at the various one-star reviews on this page, I have to say that I would NOT recommend it to the excessively literal-minded.
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By T. ORourke on February 10, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Ian Frazier is perhaps a bit too hip for most, and this is very obvious in this collection. I didn't laugh all that much, but it is very clever and inventive. It might have been funnier when it was first published, but a fan like me still enjoyed it all (though some more than others). If you're a bit unsure, you can't miss with any of the newer stuff.
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6 of 10 people found the following review helpful By John J. O'Sullivan on March 28, 2000
Format: Paperback
This has to be one of the funniest things I have read in recent history. Although there are a few pieces in the book, such as "Bob's Bob House" and "How I Did It" that sorta flopped on the ground like a beached tuna, the essays that worked were hysterical. I lost most of my tea reading most of the essays. (I think this book has absorbed more tea than I have.) A must for any lover of bizarre humour.
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