From Publishers Weekly
Accomplished social satirist Frazier's latest collection reminds us why the novelist and essayist is one of America's funniest living writers. The much-quoted title piece, originally published in the Atlantic Monthly
, gives voice to every parent's battle with table manners, bath time and various laws, statutes and ordinances concerning biting (don't), sand (not edible) and pets (not to be taped). Equally entertaining are Frazier's self-declared role as spokesman for crows, complete with slogan (Crows: We Want to Be Your Only Birdâ¢) and his mock exposé on the truth behind history's most famous phrases. Caesar's I came, I saw, I conquered is, according to Frazier, simply an early example of mankind's obsession with the sound bite, a snappier version of: I came, I saw, I conquered, I had a snack, I took a bath, and I went to bed, because I was exhausted. A treat for Frazier fanatics and new readers alike, this compilation from the past 13 years has nary a misstep and begs to be read in one sitting. Researchers, Frazier says, have determined that life is too hard. But it's easier with Frazier at the helm. (May)
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Ian Frazier is an antidote for the blues. (The Boston Globe
Being a funny guy doesn't always mesh with being a smart guy. In Frazier's case, however, the two seem one and the same. (The Christian Science Monitor
Warning . . . reading [Frazier's essays] in the bathroom, on the subway, or in other heavy-traffic areas may force you to have to explain to others what's making you guffaw so loudly. (Entertainment Weekly
America's greatest essayist. (The Los Angeles Times
Frazier is a master of the trade and for those cursed with literacy, an absolute howl. (The Buffalo News
Hilarious . . . [Frazier's] sense of humor is so uncanny and surprising it's nearly impossible not to be charmed. Highly entertaining. (Kirkus Reviews
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