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I Only Roast the Ones I Love: Busting Balls Without Burning Bridges Hardcover – September 15, 2009

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Editorial Reviews


"If insulting somebody is an art form, then Jeffrey Ross is Pablo Picasso!" -- Chicago Tribune

"I Only Roast the Ones I Love is one of the funniest, most compelling, touching, and controversial books I've ever read. If you love the art of people onstage saying funny insults that make your whole life's work seems like a bunch of crap, then this is the book for you." -- Chris Rock

"Jeffrey Ross has a face for books, and I'm glad he's finally come to terms with that." -- Chelsea Handler

"I Only Roast the Ones I Love is Jeff Ross's most insulting work yet. An indispensable guideto making certain everyone you know hates you. Very, very funny. Jeff's writing is the reason I learned to read." -- Jimmy Kimmel

"Do yourself a favor...get Jeff's book, curl up next to the fireplace...and throw it in." -- Bob Saget

"When Jeff asked me to give a quote for his book, my first thought was to get Jeff Ross to write it. He's incredibly funny and I'm incredibly busy." -- John Mayer

"I've cooked a few meals in my day, but trust me, nobody knows how to cook someone's goose like Jeffrey Ross. He will teach you how to baste and bake all of your family and friends until every relationship is burnt beyond recognition. Ross is a flame-thrower at both ends." -- Rachael Ray

"Don't judge this book by its cover just because Jeff's face is on it." -- Sarah Silverman

About the Author

Jeffrey Ross is the current New York Friars’ Club Roastmaster General and was a roaster for Comedy Central’s Roast of Pamela Anderson in 2005. Ross has appeared on television shows, such as The Late Show with David Letterman, The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, Late Night with Conan O’Brien, and many others. He’s also a regular on The Opie and Anthony Show and has also appeared on HBO’s Six Feet Under and Showtime’s Weeds. In film, he has appeared in Stuck on You and The Aristocrats. His first hour-long Comedy Central special No Offense: Life from New Jersey aired August 2008. Jeffrey Ross, the meanest man in comedy and “one man verbal assault unit” (MTV), offers anecdotes and deconstructs the makings of a great roast—based on his own career as the Friars’ Club Roastmaster General. 21

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Gallery Books; First Edition edition (September 15, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 143910140X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1439101407
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 1.1 x 8.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.1 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (42 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,126,176 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

20 of 22 people found the following review helpful By The JuRK on October 5, 2009
Format: Hardcover
To be honest, I haven't read a lot of books written by comedians. I used to pick them up and flip through the pages and I'd see...a lot of white pages. A lot of empty space. Sometimes a successful comedian's book would simply be a list of zingers and one-liners, a transcript of their act.

Not this book!

I've enjoyed Jeffrey Ross on the Comedy Central Roasts, along with what roast footage I could find online, and I have seen him several times at the local Improv. He's just a funny, funny guy. If he works hard at it, he still makes it look like the easiest thing in the world--a true pro. (And just chatting with him between shows has also shown what a genuinely nice person he really is, despite some of the most frigid insults ever thrown from a dias).

So when I saw his book in the bookstore, I picked it up and skimmed through parts of it. I kept saying, "Oh, I remember that! I remember that too!" But it was also fascinating to hear about what he saw during his most memorable moments.

I bought the book and read it immediately. Numerous times I've laughed out loud. Many times I was even touched when he talked about his family while growing up in New Jersey and how he performs for our soldiers in the field and recovering in hospitals. As if that wasn't enough, the show business anecdotes and personal stories of famous people, especially the older generation of comics like Milton Berle and (Jeff's mentor) Buddy Hackett and the new generation of comedians like Jon Stewart, Jimmy Kimmel and Sarah Silvermann, definitely make this book worth reading.

It's a fast, lean read with some laugh-out loud comedy and some wonderful insights into being a Roastmaster General. But, for now, there's only one.

Loved it.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Linda on September 19, 2009
Format: Hardcover
This book is a great read and very well written. And yes, it's laugh out loud funny. It's so much better than I thought it would be. No offense to Jeffrey Ross, but he doesn't seem like he'd have the patience to put sentences together so well. Loved the chapter on New Jersey and the background on The Friar's Club.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Fred Smith on November 19, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I loved this book! Funny, witty and heart warming. Although I had seen the Pam Anderson roast on Comedy Central, I did not know who Jeff Ross was. I bought the book after hearing him pitch it on the Stephanie Miller radio show one morning. He had me and my car pool riders cracking up.

This book provides great insight into how and why someone becomes a comic and the kind of courage it takes to be a comic and to make fun of other people in public without crossing the line and pissing them off. The book is well written and is very funny as well as insightful. I particularly loved the story about how his dad busted Don Rickles balls by playing the same prank on Rickles that Rickles had once played on Sinatra.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By DMSjr on May 6, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Ever wanted to zing a friend or family member? Needed a verbal comeback for a jab from a co-worker? Looked to be the life of the party?

Jeff Ross shows you how. In "I Only Roast The Ones I Love," Ross (known as The Roastmaster General) explains the different aspects of being a great roaster, from writing and delivery to tough rooms and self-defense against the easily offended. Starting with fictitious "origins" of the roast, the comedian offers entertaining anecdotes about his start in comedy and career in insult humor -many revealing, some touching and most hilarious. Along with tips on telling a joke, Ross relates stories of his encounters with celebrities through the years - including old guard offenders like Don Rickles, Freddie Roman and his mentor Buddy Hackett - and the advice they gave him.

What I like best about this book is, while it sounds like it's just about the art of the insult, it's more personal than that. I've followed Ross' work for years now, through YouTube clips of old Friars Roasts to stand-up specials to the annual Comedy Central roasts which have gained popularity over the years. I knew that there was a caring side after watching Patriot Act: A Jeffrey Ross Home Film, a documentary about his travels overseas to entertain the troops through the USO. But by reading this book, you can see how personal the art of roasting is to Ross. He is a guy with a good heart to go with his wicked tongue.

If you have interest in how to insult successfully (or safely) or are just curious what the life and mind of a comedian are like, I can definitely recommend this book. It has a little bit of something for everyone (above the age of 14) and a whole lot of laughs.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Laurence Bacchus on January 19, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
If you've ever watched Celebrity Roasts on Comedy Central TV you'll most likely have come across Jeffrey Ross, an insult comic known as the Roastmaster General.

His book is not only a very entertaining behind-the-scenes, inside look into the celebrity world of the Roastmaster, but also a guide for people who want to learn how to give a roast. Part amusing autobiography, part collection of side-splitting examples from actual roasts, and part a guide to help you create your own roasts. He gives away "My secrets for writing roast jokes", taking us through techniques such as Openers, Twofers, Crossbreeders, Tags, Savers, Keep your distance, Playing dumb, Closers, Props, and Costumes. He also has a section on "A simple three-step guide to freeing your inner roastmaster".

If you're serious about learning how to do a great roast, you need this book. I also recommend Larry Miller's "Roasts and Toasts Made Easy", and "Scorched: 550 comedy roast lines for insulting occasions" ([...].).
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