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Humorist and social critic Rakoff (Fraud) skewers everything from high society to lowbrow politics in this collection of trenchant essays about American culture's excesses and deficiencies. His understated, suave delivery has endeared him to throngs of public-radio fans, and it's an excellent foil for setting up his frequently stinging brand of ridicule. Like David Sedaris, Rakoff's smart writing is elevated by reading his own material, including his hilariously imagined rejoinder to fashion designer Karl Lagerfeld. Rakoff clearly writes from a liberal perspective, but his most important viewpoint is that of the savvy and often affronted outsider, whether taking wing amid the opulence of the Concorde or being offered wings in the markedly less elegant comforts of Hooters Air. Whatever the case, his deadpan style and barbed observations bring more than a few targets down to earth.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
The belly laughs start on page 7 and occur regularly throughout Rakoff's frequently impertinent, occasionally irascible, yet always inimitable take on contemporary American society. A newly minted U.S. citizen, a process he reveals in all its maddeningly hypocritical inconsistency, Rakoff embarks on a series of journalistic assignments as peculiar in their phantasmagoric diversity as, well, America itself. From the pretentious preoccupation with gourmet dining to the rigor of fasting, Rakoff contemplates the extremes to which we will go in pursuit of our particular, often downright peculiar pleasures. A trip on the Concorde is followed by a jaunt on Hooters Air, and visits to Beverly Hills plastic surgeons segue seamlessly into a tour of a cryogenics storage facility in Arizona. Whether interpreting popular culture or investigating political calumny, Rakoff's cogent observations are delivered with a comforting mixture of appropriate moral outrage and unabashed mocking wonder, as he unfailingly elicits the inherent truths behind our most cherished and churlish institutions. Carol Haggas
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
I was not familiar with Rakoff's work prior to this book, I just picked it up because I typically enjoy satire and the title gave me the impression I'd be in for a good time. Read morePublished 2 months ago by EpicFehlReader
Read this book on my honeymoon and loved every bit of it. David Rakoff is a master.Published 6 months ago by Erin Dostal
Better to have heard him live. His writing isn't as edgy as his speaking engagements were.Published 7 months ago by steve b
I finished this book only because I purchased it as an audio book. Had it been a physical book, I'd have given up. Read morePublished 7 months ago by Venkat Raghavan Rangamani
David Rakoff's essays were always complex and enjoyable to read. I have given copies of his books as gifts continuously.Published 8 months ago by lpvl