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Everybody into the Pool: True Tales Paperback – July 5, 2005


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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Lisick, a natural storyteller, plunges not only into the pool but also into details, some undeniably gory, about her transformation from ultratanned homecoming queen (high-school freshman with a hunky senior as her date) in a puffy-sleeved, plaid dress of royal blue, lime green, canary yellow, bright pink, and hues of purple into a young woman living illegally in a warehouse as raw sewage falls from broken pipes and the upstairs occupants. Well, that's a slide into drug-culture squalor for you. That warning posted, let it be said that Lisick employs a whacked-out, loopy humor that many will find charmingly off-the-wall as she recounts such larks as traveling as the sole straight girl with a lesbian punk band and spending an evening at a Catholic charity fund-raiser selling raffle tickets (and filching some of the cash) to fund an abortion her vacationing boyfriend can't. Readers will also learn of Lisick's open-minded, not entirely successful quest for bisexuality in the early 1990s and her stint as a giant banana. Whitney Scott
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

Review

“The tales veer from razor sharp to hilarious. A” (Entertainment Weekly (Editor’s Choice))
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: William Morrow; 1St Edition edition (July 5, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0060778776
  • ISBN-13: 978-0060778774
  • Product Dimensions: 8.2 x 6.4 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (26 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,637,073 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

A native of the San Francisco Bay Area, Beth currently lives in Brooklyn. In addition to writing books, she acts in independent films and occasionally performs in small theaters and comedy venues. She co-founded the Porchlight Storytelling Series in San Francisco, a monthly show that's been running since 2002.

Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Colleen on January 21, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Some days I resent life as a Midwestern suburban mom. I don't discover trends or talents until they've been around long enough to bore my hipper and more cosmopolitan friends. That feeling was never more acute as I read Everybody Into the Pool: True Tales by Beth Lisick.

Every other paragraph had me laughing out loud, even as I lamented the fact I identified more with her naïve and sincere parents than her. I swear she channeled my own Catholic school girl experience with The Apostles Creed (the solo performance of all the memorized prayers, a bored yet perfectly timed recitation delivered hip thrust out) and those early days as a new mom with all the other mommies so together and their babies so stylish while I considered it a huge accomplishment to get in the shower at some point.

Sure, Everybody Into the Pool isn't for everyone. Readers of a more conservative nature might not appreciate her gung-ho yet futile attempts at bisexuality nor the irony of her temp job selling raffle tickets at a Catholic church fundraiser so she could raise the last $40 she needed to fund an abortion. She writes of life among IV drug user, child drug runners, and a day of sewage raining down upon her boyfriend's illegal warehouse apartment without gloss or angry defiance. It just is, like everything else in Lisick's world: sometimes sad, sometimes a struggle, but always worthy of a good laugh. I look forward to her next book, Help Me Help Myself. This time I'm only a few weeks behind.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Christina I. Winn on September 14, 2005
Format: Paperback
I laughed and I cried but most of all I just enjoyed every minute - nay second - of reading this book. My poor husband had to endure the constant: "Oh babe, I just HAVE to read this part to you....."

Beth Lisick's humor and her art of storytelling is taking hold of you and you can't put down this book even if you try. I missed a doctor's appointment and a movie date. Darn.

And if you ever have a chance to see her in person read any kind of story to the audience, make sure you don't miss it. I went last week to one of her readings in the city. You are in for a ride. Believe me.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By M. Therion on August 24, 2005
Format: Paperback
Beth Lisick may well be the funniest person in America. This book not only transcends and redefines its ostensible genre (the humorous chick memoir): it turns it inside out and stomps all over it. It is the perfect antidote for the precious-er than thou hey-let's-go-shopping-and-talk-about-our-periods type of book that seems to be everywhere nowadays. But more than that, the stories in this book will remain with you long after you've read them.

There are one-liners a-plenty, and a good supply of offbeat, caustic observations, and they work great. Behind all that, though, is an original, engaging voice with a lot of heart and a truly unique take on the trials of enduring the ordinary. Beth also manages the neat trick of summing up each story with a coda that suddenly throws the barrage of one-liners into a new, contemplative perspective that can really be quite moving. Yet it never feels forced or contrived; and each one somehow managed to take me by surprise just a bit. After you finish each story, you want to close the book and stare off into space for a while, thinking about life. I got all choked up by several of them, in fact. This is great, great writing.

The best book I've read this year so far, by far.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Jane Hunter on October 7, 2005
Format: Paperback
I thought I was the only one who enjoyed Hallmark "Mahogany" cards, until I read Beth Lisick's "Everybody Into The Pool." This is just one of the many things that resonated for me in this collection. And here's an added bonus that shows how art can make an impact and connect people: I was on the Larkspur-to-San Francisco Ferry reading the final tale, "Little Bundle of Entropy," and laughing so hard that I was crying. The woman sitting next to me started laughing too, because she could relate to a moment like that. I read her the sentence that had sent me over the edge, and she laughed even harder. What normally would have been a typical, solitary ride--where you're staring straight ahead, trying not to look at what the person next to you is writing in their notebook--turned into a great human conversation about how important it is to look at the world with a sense of humor.
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10 of 14 people found the following review helpful By H. F. Corbin TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on October 27, 2005
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
As I read Beth Lisick's EVERYBODY INTO THE POOL, I kept thinking of Lily Tomlin, the highest compliment I can give this comic writer. While I am not suggesting that Lisick imitates Tomlin or that her work is derivative-- humor by its very nature must be original-- this writer has that same for-the-most-part gentle, unhurtful wit about her, that is always abundant in Ms. Tomlin's humor, that makes you smile, even if you are the butt of her joke; and that's a rare talent indeed.

Two of my favorite chapters are "My Way Or the Bi-way" and "A Bed and a Breakfast." In the former chapter Lisick recounts her dabbling-- to perserve the metaphor of her book title-- into the lesbian/bi-sexual waters. Will she or won't she? The first time she finds herself naked in bed with another woman, she describes her experience as follows: "There's no doubt I enjoyed myself, but it was similar to the way I enjoyed waterskiing for the first time or eating uni. I jumped in with a positive attitude, realizing it was an activity beloved by millions, but it didn't exactly push me over the edge." To use a phrase of her own, Ms. Lisick "soldiers on," meeting "full-on" women who appreciate "the art of the perfectly formed beer belly, the beauty of filthy hair, the decadence of a homespun knuckle tattoo." (I believe that would with a ball-point pen.) In the "Bed and Breakfast" segment, the writer's observations about this strange phenomenon that sprang up in the last years of the 20th century are as accurate as an arrow from an Amazon's quiver: "Sometime in the mid-eighties, the idea that you might want to pay to spend a weekend sharing a house with strangers in a contrived country setting somehow got shoved over the transom and fell into the ever-expanding, handwoven basket of bourgeoise leisure activities. . .
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