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408 Reviews
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42 of 42 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Hilarious! The new stories are a welcome addition!
I read the original version of this collection a few years ago and really enjoyed it so I jumped at the chance of reading the stories again and the new additional stories! The new stories are definitely a welcome addition!

Of the original stories, The SantaLand Diaries starts the collection off on a hilarious note. You get to read bout the inner workings of...
Published on October 26, 2008 by Mint910

versus
26 of 31 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Bitter and violent but still funny
OK, I love David Sedaris on This American Life and loved his previous books about his family. This little book was more bitter and violent than I expected. "Santaland Diaries" is a classic and a great read, but after that there are stories of people dismembering themselves, family members treating each other cruelly, and a barnyard animal being led to slaughter. Not...
Published on December 27, 2008 by Colleen Cunningham


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42 of 42 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Hilarious! The new stories are a welcome addition!, October 26, 2008
This review is from: Holidays on Ice (Hardcover)
I read the original version of this collection a few years ago and really enjoyed it so I jumped at the chance of reading the stories again and the new additional stories! The new stories are definitely a welcome addition!

Of the original stories, The SantaLand Diaries starts the collection off on a hilarious note. You get to read bout the inner workings of being a department store Christmas elf. The crazy santas, elves and customers! Season's Greetings to Our Friends and Family!!! starts off innocently enough as a family holiday letter and quickly takes a turn for the hilariously insane, like a lot of Sedaris's stories.

Of the new stories, Jesus Shaves is by far my favorite. It had me crying from laughing so hard. I don't want to give anything away, so just trust me, it's hilarious. Six to Eight Black Men was also hilarious along the same line. Definitely learned things I didn't know about how other countries celebrate to holidays.

I wasn't totally fond of The Monster Mash, about a trip to a medical examiner's office, it spoke to my weak stomach and my stomach said no thank you. But it still had it's funny moments.

All in all this is a hilarious holiday collection and the new stories are a welcome addition helping add additional holidays to this collection.
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63 of 71 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The perfect introduction to a spectacular writer, August 9, 2000
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The holidays bring out something truly special in David Sedaris, making this more a "best of" than a mere holiday book. It's simply brilliant and, as many reviewers have experienced, one of those rare books that may cause you to laugh out loud in spite of yourself. Its only flaw is that it's a short book, but in content it's a giant.
Avid NPR listeners will instantly recognize the first essay in this book, "Santaland Diaries"; the author's reading of that story is their single most requested encore. His description of becoming a Christmas Elf at Macy's is a true guilty pleasure; scathingly unkind and screamingly funny. If you ever held an undignified job, this is somehow your story - even if you never (pardon the pun) stooped so low as to play an elf.
Sedaris writes like a post-modern Mark Twain, with a dry and piercing wit that drips with charm and cynicism in equal measure. His is the kind of writing that makes me go back to re-read a sentence, a paragraph, even a whole story hoping to savor some particular gem I only wish I'd written. His tone is often dark, even bleak, but there's a wry quality in his stories that lets you know he's really doing it all for effect - setting you up for an even bigger laugh because you know he's enjoying every minute of telling his sad, hilarious stories.
Get in on his story now so you can savor the feeling of waiting impatiently for his next book - and there's no better way to start than to read Holidays on Ice.
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40 of 45 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Read right before Christmas for great laugh!, August 11, 2001
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This review is from: Holidays on Ice (Audio Cassette)
This book was a really fantastic collection of 6 short stories regarding the holiday season. I had heard so much about David Sedaris and what a talented satirical writer he was, and I was much impressed by his ability to parody the American publics love/hate relationship during the holiday season. His life as an elf in the Macys's shopping store in New York had me laughing out loud. And the upbeat Christmas letter that includes the introduction of a Vietamese stepchild was hilarious.
I finished the book in two days of light reading and realized the author is truly dark and twisted but extremely talented. "Me Talk Pretty One Day" is next on my list. I guarantee you'll like this book, but just to add to the fervor of the writing, I suggest you read it a week before Christmas during your most hellish and frantic points of your life; it'll add to the hilarity of your situation.
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars the best way to experience David Sedaris, April 5, 2000
By 
DPK (United States) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: Holidays on Ice (Audio Cassette)
To say that David Sedaris doesn't see the world the way that others do is a grievous understatement. He finds equal humor in the bizarre and the mundane. His wit can be both razor sharp and gentle as feather. He writes and says things that maybe you've thought about before and if you haven't thought about them before you'll certainly give them plenty of thought afterwords.
Sedaris gift for storytelling is on display at its finest in this audio collection of holiday-themed stories. The most famous is, of course, "The Santaland Diaries", in which Sedaris relates in hillarious detail his experiences working as an elf at Macy's Santaland in New York. This piece is an American classic which should be compulsory reading for anyone who has worked a retail job during the holidays, not to mention anyone who has ever shopped a store during the holidays. Almost as good is "Front Row Center WIth Thaddeus Bristol" which skewers both a pompous theater critic and the sometimes attrocious children's holiday plays he's reviewing.
In all, this collection contains six stories read by Sedaris himself, his sister Amy and actress Ann Magnuson. The different voices work well to set the tone for each story over the course of the tape, and the variety helps sustain interest which can be an issue with single reader audio programs.
For many of us, the holidays mean laughter and tears. David Dedaris understands this and has given the world six of the finest tools with which to cope.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Perfect Holiday Pick-Me Up, October 26, 2008
This review is from: Holidays on Ice (Hardcover)
I have always enjoyed David Sedaris' humor, and although I generally listen to his audio books (read by him), this time I picked up the printed version, just under 200 pages. The Holidays on Ice title was originally released in 1997. This 2008 release contains some of the same stories and several new ones as well. Featured are:

* Santa Land Diaries
* Seasons Greetings to our Family and Friends
* Front Row Center With Thaddeus Bristol
* Based Upon a True Story
* Christmas Means Giving
* Dinah, the Christmas Whore
* Jesus Shaves
* Us and Them
* Let it Snow
* Six to Eight Black Men
* The Monster Mash
* The Cow and the Turkey

One of the funniest for me was: "Dinah, the Christmas Whore" an essay describing the dysfunctional world of David Sedaris. He tells how his sister Lisa brought her friend Dinah home four days before Christmas. He describes the humorous way in which his family reacts to her, and the questions they ask her about her interesting life in prison and about her experiences as a prostitute.

Sarcasm and cynicism fill this collection of short stories. You will be laughing your way through each story. If you are looking for something to cheer you up during the stressful holiday times, pick up this little book. It would make a fun gift for your family and friends who might need some cheering up this holiday season as well.

Although I really did enjoy this book, I am still a bigger fan of the audio books read by this author. In fact, I'm in the process of listening to his latest book: When You are Engulfed in Flames right now, and it's terrific.
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26 of 31 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Bitter and violent but still funny, December 27, 2008
By 
This review is from: Holidays on Ice (Hardcover)
OK, I love David Sedaris on This American Life and loved his previous books about his family. This little book was more bitter and violent than I expected. "Santaland Diaries" is a classic and a great read, but after that there are stories of people dismembering themselves, family members treating each other cruelly, and a barnyard animal being led to slaughter. Not denying Sedaris' talents but I enjoy it more when he is turning is razor wit and observations to his hilarious, off-kilter, endearing family and less when he is creating stories that seem designed to shock us out of whatever little holiday cheer we have. Sorry David!
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27 of 34 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent twist to the usual holiday fare., July 15, 2000
David Sedaris has a sick sense of humor, and he conveys it well in this book of Christmas shorts. It opens with the extremely funny "Santaland Diaries", giving an insider's view of elves at Macy's. Next comes "Season's Greetings", an overenthusiastic 'family newsletter' that spins off into satirical tangents with the unexpected addition of a Vietnamese daughter. "Dinah, the Christmas Whore" tells of young David's encounter with his father's "Christmas present" ::wink:: "Front Row with Thaddeus Bristol" is a theatrical review of the Christmas pageants in the elementary schools (we've all had to suffer). "Based on a True Story" is a somewhat sickeningly funny look at a hustler trying to gather holiday special ideas. Finally, "Christmas Means Giving" rounds out the collection, telling of two families who can't stop competing with each other. I'm a newcomer to Sedaris's wit, and the next book on my list is 'Naked'. This was a great way to be introduced without being overwhelmed--even if they are Christmas stories being read in July.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars embarrassed with laughter, February 14, 2006
I was sitting on an airlpane reading this book and the gentleman next to me asked me if I was "OK". I was uncontrollably laughing. Even after trying to put it down for a few minutes and gaining my composure, it was a fruitless attempt because within seconds I was embarrassing myself again.
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14 of 17 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Sedaris...Funny, Intelligent, High CQ, November 7, 1999
By A Customer
Actually, I toyed with giving this five-stars. However, I figure I should employ five-stars for IMPORTANT literary treasures, such as the collected works of Shakespeare, "War and Peace," and "Valley of the Dolls." So, need a laugh? Well, any of Sedaris' books will do. They..."Barrel Fever" and the even better "Naked"...are funny, provocative, and full of weird and colorful people. While "Holidays on Ice" takes from his other books, it is a veritable laugh-o-rama. And "SantaLand Diaries"? I have read it a half-dozen times, and I STILL chortle merrily. David, what are you writing? This Midtowner wants more. And, folks, not only is Sedaris an intelligent, witty writer and essayist, he is just as cute as a button. I enjoy getting his books so I can see his little impish face peering out from the end page. And, really, when it comes right down to it, isn't that what it's all about: the author's CQ (Cute Quotient)?
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Be wary, just a collection, July 24, 2003
This book is an excellent collection of some of Sedaris' earlier works, and the story for which the book is named is one of his best. But beware, if you are already familiar with Sedaris you may have already read this one without knowing it; all of the stories contained within appear either in Naked or Barrel Fever.
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Holidays on Ice
Holidays on Ice by David Sedaris (Hardcover - October 8, 2008)
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