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F U, Penguin: Telling Cute Animals What's What Paperback – August 25, 2009

64 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Book Description
Attention, all you clumsy pandas, lovable puffins, huggable bunnies, and penguins that elicit ooohs and aaahs: The jig is up! We have lived under your furry fists for too long.

There is a cute and present danger lurking out there--in the wild, in the zoos, and sometimes even in our very own homes. Spurred on by the Cute Industrial Complex, these cuddly animals have taken over blockbuster films, inspirational posters, and computer desktops everywhere, further weakening the innocent civilians who are beguiled by these fuzzy frauds.

But you are stronger than them, aren’t you? Those soft bellies and wet noses are no match for you--and their free ride has just come to an end.

F U, Penguin is the rallying cry for those who choose to fight these power-hungry cute-mongers. Loaded with color photographs and hilarious commentary, this book will have you laughing out loud while it simultaneously saves you from the tragic fate of tossing yarn with big-eyed kittens and bottle-nursing baby pandas forever.


Amazon Exclusive: A Penguin Reviews F U, Penguin

Matthew Gasteier’s latest book is a humorous, if slightly vulgar, exploration of the human tendency to anthropomorphize animals and its effect on both parties. As an animal who is currently being anthropomorphized by Gasteier myself, I thought the message was a bit lost in all of the comedy and full-color photographs. However, the average human will find the book to be very funny.

Based on his hit blog of the same title (though fully spelled out on the anything-goes internet), F U, Penguin includes 100 posts, one-third of which are entirely new. With an introduction for the book, plus forewords for all five sections (which include penguins, pets, and ugly animals), and facts about each animal, the new material adds up to about half the book, making it a worthy purchase even for the long time human reader of the site.

Granted, I only learned how to read last year, but since becoming a book reviewer for Amazon I’ve read quite a few animal-related books, and this was one of the strongest. While many of the facts are shaky at best (e.g. I’ve known quite a few seals, and they are always careful to only go to parties to which they have been invited), they are interesting enough to keep coming back for more. Obviously, as a penguin I have some issues with the “cold hard truths about penguins.” These sidebars take long-disproved stereotypes about penguins and recite them for comedic effect. At one point, Gasteier says penguins purposefully invite you to their wedding just to get a present because they know you can’t afford to attend. Quite frankly, I was rather disappointed he didn’t come, and his handmade pottery was no consolation, believe me. The section does not ruin the experience, but it’s a rare but disappointing misstep in a book that otherwise tries to stay light-hearted and fun.

It might be surprising to some that a penguin would respond well to a book that is ostensibly so derogatory towards penguins. But it’s clear that the character Gasteier has created really loves the penguins deep down, and is struggling to deal with that vulnerability. I remember my first crush on a penguin. Her name was Suzie and she smelled like seaweed. I used to stare at her while we stood on the beach. Once, she came over to talk to me, but instead of telling her how much I liked her feathers, I mumbled something about her preponderance of blubber in front of my friends to show I was tough. It hurt me, perhaps even more than it hurt her, but I didn’t yet know how to love, so I was pushing her away. Gasteier’s humor is that same kind of coping mechanism. I choose not to condemn, but to sympathize--a strong lesson in these rough economic times.

Overall, F U, Penguin is an enjoyable irreverent jaunt through the animal kingdom. While perhaps not quite as funny as John Audubon’s satirical masterwork, The Birds of America, Gasteier’s work will have you begging for more. Highly recommended. --A Penguin

Review

“[F U, Penguin] takes a long, hard look at superadorable puppies, monkeys, sloths, and moose–and tells them, in no uncertain terms, to get f–ed. Needless to say, it’s our new favorite website.”—Very Short List

“Cuddly animals get their comeuppance.”—Associated Press

“[The blog] is the ultimate antidote to puppycams.”—Wired magazine
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Villard; Original edition (August 25, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0345518160
  • ISBN-13: 978-0345518163
  • Product Dimensions: 6.2 x 0.6 x 9.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (64 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #158,310 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Matthew Gasteier is the creator of the popular blog, fupenguin.com, which is the basis for this book. He lives in Watertown, Massachusetts. Some of his best friends are penguins.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

27 of 28 people found the following review helpful By McSassypants on September 20, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I've been reading the blog for a while, but this book is even more hilarious! The author's "schtick" is that he resents the power of cuteness that animals have over us, so he gives them the gripe-out they deserve. Yet in the end, the author always succumbs to the power of the cute.

Helpful tips about each animal included, to help us avoid their manipulative cute propaganda.

A must have, and the type of picture book that you'll read over and over. Since each 2-page spread has an image and text about one animal, you can start and stop reading without losing any value.

I like to read this over breakfast, so I can get my day started with my three favorite things: Cute animals, foul language, and sarcasm.
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31 of 33 people found the following review helpful By Mary Folley on September 24, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I bought this book as a gift for a friend's birthday. Lucky for me, someone else had also given her the book. I was able to quietly slip the FUP portion of my present out of the gift-bag, and I greedily kept it for myself! The friend in question had originally introduced me to the FUP website, which regularly makes my day by making me laugh out loud. I am not talking about just a giggle or a chortle. I am talking about milk-coming-out-of-your-nose-during-junior-high-lunch kind of laughter. Mr. Gasteier's recent blog challenge of a hyrax to a throw-down actually caused me to fall out of my chair laughing. Mr. Gasteier has delivered a delightful bound version of his sarcastic takes on cute animal photos. His bravery in the face of their incessant adorableness is to be lauded. Buy this book for anyone with a sense of humor, no fear of swearing, and a healthy disdain for things best described as 'precious.'
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By JLannan on November 18, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Recieved order on time, this book is a quick way to make anyone smile. A hillarious way to insult our favorite animal friends. Not a kids book contains colorful language! :) must read!!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Sashin on January 30, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Finally... a book telling cute, adorable, wide-eyed things what's what. You don't own this world!.. and you're not the boss of me!!!! Now stop staring at me with those great big doe eyes!!! STOP IT!!!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Purgabirdie on July 25, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Short book but absolutely hilarious! Finally someone is brave enough to take on all those adorable animals out there! =D
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Jocelyn333 on October 31, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Cute pictures, hilarious, sarcastic, conversation piece ... Entertaining for anyone with a sense of humor!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By jack holt on December 27, 2012
Format: Paperback
I used to be one of those sheep. You know, the kind that would spend hours looking at cute animals and thinking to myself, "man I want three of each." Hell penguins are my favorite animals. I was sucked in; trapped. That was before FU Penguin. Forever has my life been changed by this eye opening book. No, this eye opening experience. No longer am I swayed by the cuteness of fur filled animals in ridiculous poses. No longer do I fear going outside and loving obnoxious animals. Thank you FU Penguin for saving me. Thank you for giving me my life back.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Peter Griffin on October 1, 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Such an awesome, smart-a@@, sense of humor! If someone rubs you the wrong way, this book is a great, sporadic 10-15 minute read. There is no need to read the whole thing in one sitting. Just use it to calm your frustrations if you've got a sarcastic, FU attitude/moment. It's perfect if you're having a "Hater" moment.
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