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Lizz Free or Die: Essays [Kindle Edition]

Lizz Winstead
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (75 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $16.00
Kindle Price: $7.99
You Save: $8.01 (50%)
Sold by: Penguin Group (USA) LLC

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Book Description

The hilarious and poignant account of how one woman found her comedic voice.

Growing up in the Midwest, the youngest child of Catholic parents, Lizz Winstead learned early that the straightforward questions she posed to various authority figures around her—her parents, her parish priest, even an anti-abortion counselor—prompted many startled looks and uncomfortable silences, but few plausible answers. Her questions rattled adults because they exposed the inconsistencies and hypocrisies in the people and institutions she confronted.

Yet she didn’t let that deter her. In Lizz Free or Die, Winstead vividly recounts how she fought to find her own voice, both as a comedian and as a woman, and how humor became her most powerful weapon in confronting life’s challenges.

Uproarious and surprising, honest and poignant, this no-holds-barred collection of autobiographical essays gives an in-depth look into the life and creativity of one of today’s most influential comic voices. In writing about her naive longing to be a priest, her role in developing The Daily Show, and her often problematic habit of diving into everything headfirst, asking questions later (resulting in multiple rescue-dog adoptions and travel disasters), Lizz Winstead has tapped an outrageous and heartfelt vein of the all-too-human comedy.




Editorial Reviews

Review

“Sharply witty and iconoclastic.”—Elle

“Searching and lively … and moving. … Ms. Winstead writes with a feel for the sound of words.” – The New York Times

“Engaging…Winstead proves that she’s got a writer’s touch.”—Minneapolis Star Tribune 

 “Charming… with insight and understated humor.”—Mother Jones

“A sometimes-hilarious look at a woman who often plunged into life without much forethought but kept on going.”—St. Paul Pioneer Press

Lizz Winstead is a sharp-witted truth-teller, and Lizz Free or Die will inspire anyone who has ever talked back to the television or wished they could come up with satire as insightful as The Daily Show. It’s also a book about family, friendship and a zest for comedy that transcends political differences. In good times and bad, Winstead found her way by going toward the light and the laughter.”—Ms. Magazine

“Lizz Winstead is down-to-earth and wonderful and nice…read her book. You’ll start to think the same thing.”—Bust Magazine 

“[An] indelible, hilarious, often poignant romp.”—American Way

“Political satirist and stand-up comedian Winstead… [is] shrewdly observant, linguistically adept, bravely soul-baring, and caustically smart.”—Booklist

“Funny, thoughtful… recommended.”—Library Journal

“Intelligent and witty…with honesty and humor.”—Publishers Weekly

“With this book, Lizz Winstead takes us on a hilarious, honest, moving and insightful journey. It is the journey of a funny, fearless woman as she finds her voice and shares it with the world.”—Arianna Huffington

“Reading Lizz Winstead's hilarious collection of very personal essays somehow leaves you changed.  You laugh, and yet there are nutrients in her words.”—Sarah Silverman

“Lizz Winstead has written a fantastically readable collection. I really did laugh, and then, I really did cry.  Most important, though, I found someone I can leave my dogs with, should I have to flee the country.” – Julie Klam

"Lizz Free or Die is brilliantly funny and razor sharp. Lizz Winstead observes our times with candor, hope and a gimlet eye. She is a national treasure."-- Adriana Trigiani

"Reading Winstead is like hanging out with Winstead: invigorating, infuriating, and hilarious." -- Patton Oswald

About the Author

Lizz Winstead is co-creator and former head writer of The Daily Show and one of the founders of Air America Radio. A performer and stand-up comedian, she frequently appears on MSNBC, CNN, and Comedy Central. She lives in Brooklyn. Learn more at www.lizzwinstead.com or follow her on twitter @lizzwinstead.

Product Details

  • File Size: 826 KB
  • Print Length: 333 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1594631425
  • Publisher: Riverhead; Reprint edition (May 10, 2012)
  • Sold by: Penguin Group (USA) LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0072O018I
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #151,930 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
13 of 16 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Lizz Leaves Too Much Out July 31, 2012
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I first heard of Lizz Winstead when she joined forces with Al Franken on Air America, a radio station harder to find than the Fountain of Youth. Those were the days Franken was duking it out with Bill O'Reilly and writing books with titles like RUSH LIMBAUGH IS A BIG FAT IDIOT, so I would have listened if I could've found it.

Then I heard she was the co-creator of "The Daily Show". Yes, that's the Jon Stewart "Daily Show." I've never actually seen Lizz Winstead on television, which is strange since I watch her protégé Rachel Maddow from time to time.

Anyway, LIZZ FREE OR DIE is a book of essays, held together by her progressive personality. We Minnesotans get a good look at the music scene as it first began to explode as Lizz and her friends go dancing at The First Edition frequented by Prince and Soul Asylum. It was there a friend recommended that she try stand-up comedy. This was when Minneapolis was one of the havens for new comedians, led by Scott Hansen and including Louie Anderson. Even Roseanne Barr and Tom Arnold get a mention. Lizz eventually gets a job as the MC at First Edition.

There are times when the book skips over some possibly absorbing information. Lizz's hockey boyfriend gets her pregnant and she sees a sign offering help to wayward girls. The place sounded like the Texas House of Representatives; they put heavy pressure on her to have the baby, but Lizz never mentions the name of the place. It sounds a whole lot like Birthright. Considering the hammering Planned Parenthood is taking lately, one would think she would have jumped at the chance. Then the essay just stops; we can guess that she had an abortion but she never says where, tells us how she felt about it or anything. She just leaves it out.
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13 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Funny. Real. Loved. May 11, 2012
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Fantastic insight into a smart hilarious woman. If you are a fan of Lizz Winstead, you will be able to hear her voice through the pages. If you are not already a fan, you will fall in love with her through this collection of "messays" about her career and family life. Of course it's funny but it is also poignant and quite honest. I love this book.
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Loved this book May 11, 2012
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Just finished reading this book. Since I'm a senior who was brought up Catholic,
I really related to the parts about religion and family. The rest of the book wasn't too shabby either.
A really fun read!
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11 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Smart, funny, and inspiring May 11, 2012
By Bookbin
Format:Hardcover
What's there to really say? It's as smart and funny as one would expect from the co-creator of The Daily Show, one of the founders of Air America, and the person who plucked Rachel Maddow out of obscurity. And yet, what really makes this book great is that it's about family and communion, and about the struggles we all face every day of our lives.

I couldn't recommend this more highly! Buy this book!
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Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
it made me giggle, laugh out loud, occasionally snort... it transported me back in time to my own childhood... and brought me forward again with tears and finally hope... this is a wonderful book from an amazing woman.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Lizz Free or Die March 27, 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
A great for anyone who questions events that occur in life. Laugh out loud funny, too. Thoughful look into her personal and public life.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Love it March 2, 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Easy to read. Laugh out loud. Reminds me to feel good about all the little things in life, to laugh and learn from mistakes. Solid read for anyone.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Lizz Free or Die: February 7, 2014
By MAVDAP
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This book had me laughing during most of my reading of it. She is a terrific writer. So glad I could purchase it on Amazon.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Lizz Free or Die:Essays
Her life was interesting, but I thought there would be more comedic stuff in the book, I was a little disappointed.
Published 2 months ago by Brenda J. Myers
5.0 out of 5 stars So funny!
I love Lizz Winstead. She's hilarious. This book is an easy read with short chapters. I would read it again.
Published 3 months ago by Jessica Christian
5.0 out of 5 stars Funny, Funny, Funny, a little sad... did I say Funny?
I laughed, I cried... it became a part of me!!! Super book! I never knew how Rachel Maddow got her start - amazing...More please Lizz...
Published 4 months ago by David Wagner
5.0 out of 5 stars hilarious
I absolutely loved this book. The writer wrote a book that is both amusing and inspiring. laugh out loud funny. I highly recommend it.
Published 8 months ago by nerenttt
5.0 out of 5 stars Lizz is briliant.
I'm usually wary of books made up of previously published material. I've learned to read them over a course of days or weeks so I don't get saturated and then bored with the whole... Read more
Published 9 months ago by Good Gracia
4.0 out of 5 stars Nicely Balanced
I found Lizz Free or Die a healthy mix of humors and vigors (that's old timey talk for sad and humorous).
Published 9 months ago by Tiffany
4.0 out of 5 stars Until the End
I bought this book not knowing what to expect. I didn't even know who Lizz was. I saw on the book's synopsis that she had something to do with The Daily Show but I didn't think she... Read more
Published 9 months ago by SB
1.0 out of 5 stars One of the worst human beings
She was awful on Adam Carolla. One of the most biased people I've ever listened to this book is no different. The tornado comment should show you what type of person this is. Read more
Published 11 months ago by J
1.0 out of 5 stars Perfect read for narrow-minded people, don't waste your time and money
I know we live in a country where freedom of speech is everything, but when people with heavy political agendas get a publisher they just spread their ignorance and biased views... Read more
Published 11 months ago by Nerdy Geek
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