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Stick to Drawing Comics, Monkey Brain!: Cartoonist Ignores Helpful Advice Hardcover – October 18, 2007

37 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Adams builds his latest book (after 2004's The Religion War) out of entries from his blog, which results in a lot of short chapters and abrupt changes in topic. Still, some ongoing themes do emerge, as the bestselling cartoonist discusses his wedding plans—including his fear that he'll dance like a drunken monkey at the reception—and his struggle with spasmodic dysphonia, a neurological condition which took away his voice during intimate conversations even though he could still give speeches to large audiences. He even tosses in a few Dilbert strips, with several examples of gags that were suppressed by his syndicate (he couldn't show a police officer firing a gun, for example, but a doughnut that shoots bullets met with approval). Readers who only know Adams through the comics page will discover a saltier tone to his cynicism. If you have the choice of working as the guy who craps on the carpet, or the guy who has to clean it up, runs one bit of advice, only one of those jobs lets you read a magazine at the same time. The randomness of this collection may not attract many new fans, but it's likely to keep his already sizable audience amused. (Oct. 18)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

Adams, creator of the wildly popular Dilbert comic strip and 23 books, including the best-selling Dilbert Principle (1997) and Dogbert's Top Secret Management Handbook (1997), ventures out to write his first non-Dilbert book, ostensibly against the best advice of his fans. Taken from Adam's Dilbert blog, he offers more than 150 short pieces covering every slice of life beyond the workplace, such as tips on how not to dance like a dork, comic relief on the fears of terrorism, the not-so-subtle differences between men and women, embarrassing public-bathroom moments, appropriate uses for your own clone, and so on. One can't help comparing this random collection of quips to similar observations by Dave Barry (who gets a mention), and the results are just as witty. You will constantly find yourself thinking "I wish I had said that," while you admit to sharing all of his politically incorrect thoughts that we don't dare speak of. Seemingly without consciously doing it, Adams reveals much about his personality, fears, and inner thought process. Keep this handy for your next flight. Siegfried, David

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Portfolio Hardcover; First Edition edition (October 18, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1591841852
  • ISBN-13: 978-1591841852
  • Product Dimensions: 6.3 x 1.2 x 9.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (37 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,657,321 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

35 of 38 people found the following review helpful By R S Cobblestone VINE VOICE on October 23, 2007
Format: Hardcover
I don't know whether you have to appreciate Scott Adam's "dark side" to enjoy this book, but it helps. His dark side? His non-cartoon creations, whether business-related or not. Of these, they range from The Dilbert Principle to God's Debris. The TEXT drives the deeper meanings, and not the drawings.

In Stick to Drawing Comics, Monkey Brain!, Adams steals from his blog and looks at the world through his Dilbert-framed sunglasses. You immediately are transported to Adams' world:

"Thanks to hurricane Wilma, nothing has crapped on our Eyewitness News van for hours. Back to you, Bob."

"If I'm dumb enough to buy water, I'm certainly dumb enough to pay too much for it."

"And the one thing worse than a moron with an opinion is lots of them."

"Rule 472: Before you touch a monkey god's tail to cure your leprosy, make sure the tail doesn't have a little hole in the end."

This book is organized (?) as a series of short chapters, reading as a blog in that you can "feel" his timeline as Adams vacations in Maui, plans his wedding, and so on. Don't miss Hi Jean (p. 19), Try this at home (p. 36), Adopting (p. 55), and German cannibal (p. 120). You will learn about the Scott Adams Diet (p. 101) and the Albra Cadaver (p. 107).

The book includes Dilbert strips that didn't make it past the editors, and a surprising amount of political-social-ethical insights. For example, should inDUHviduals respect the beliefs of others? Adams gets serious...

"Many of our biggest world problems are caused by different religious views. But its not socially acceptable to even discuss whether those views originate from the almighty or a drunken guy whizzing on a tree stump.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By JGM on January 5, 2008
Format: Hardcover
I love Dilbert, but after reading this book, I find I don't much like Scott Adams. By his own admission, many of these recycled blog posts were written in stream-of-conciousness fashion, often on a blackberry while waiting in airports and the like. That's fine for a blog, I guess, but no way to write a book.

The two stars I am awarding come mostly from the sections that are, ironically given the title, actually about drawing comics. When Adams actually discusses his work and the foibles of the syndicate, newspaper editors, and disgruntled readers, it's funny and fascinating. Unfortunately this stuff comprises only a handful of the dozens of short chapters. Elsewhere, when Adams shares his not particularly insightful observations about religion, marriage, politics, and psychology, he comes across as self-impressed, shallow, and sometimes willfully ignorant.

If you like Dilbert, borrow this at the library and skim for the comics sections. Otherwise, don't bother.
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17 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Laugh Lover on October 21, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Scott's blog is an uncensored hysterically funny look at everything.
This book is based on the blog and it's seriously funny while also taking my mind places it never would have gone on its own. You're gonna laugh till it hurts.
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Format: Hardcover
I am one of the millions of fans of Scott Adams comic strip Dilbert. But unlike many of those fans, I have never read his blog, nor viewed any of his other books. So the complaints from other fans who've reviewed this book, regarding that portions of this book were previously displayed for free on his blog, have no negative effect on my review. I started reading this book with absolutely no bias or pre-conceived notions. What I found during this "reading" adventure, is a witty author, who really seems to have his deeper views shackled by his mass media comic strip editors. There seems to be so much angst and torment begging to get out from inside Scott's "true-self", that I feel getting to know the "real" man behind Dilbert, is like peeking behind the curtain in "The Wizard Of Oz."

Scott, is a very intelligent writer who can take you full circle, all the way around an argument or point he's trying to make, and in one circular trip, agree with you, disagree with you, congratulate you, and lambast you, and you sometimes feel that you've never left the place you started in.

The author makes it painstakingly clear, that he doesn't believe in G-d or miracles, and he just as strongly feels there is not a politician or voter that should be trusted with the position or the vote. He does feel that rigging voting machines would probably benefit us more in the long run than an honest election. Though I admit to not doing an actual count, I believe it is safe to say that one of Scott's ten favorite words is "TURD".

Scott also seems to enjoy asking questions. A few of which are: "Who is holier-Mother Teresa or Bill Gates?" - "If Santa Claus fought Jesus, who would win?" - "I have a nickname for your nose. Do you want to hear it?" - "Is that the way you usually walk?
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Sheri S. VINE VOICE on November 13, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Rating: 3.5

Scott Adams is the creator of the infamous Dilbert comics, which I must admit to never having read. If anything though, not being a Dilbert groupie makes me an unbiased reviewer. The title of Scott Adam¡¦s latest book is pretty reflective of its contents: funny, silly, self-deprecating and slightly offensive. The book contains over 150 short pieces which are not so much stories as they are random musings on human behavior, dating, sports, travel, dieting and everything in between (and some topics that I could definitely have lived without, such as Chinese striptease funerals). Adams also includes some Dilbert comic strips and provides some background explanation and commentary on them, which I found pretty interesting.

Adams is a good writer and there were quite a few times when he did make a good point or provided some interesting insight. Then I would question my opinion after reading on to a crazy comment, such as the idea of the asterisk being the most obscene letter in the English language (I wasn¡¦t aware that it was a letter¡Khmmm). But to be fair Adams adds that ¡§the asterisk protects you from seeing naked cuss words that would otherwise blind you and put you on the slippery slope to porn addiction¡¨. Thanks for clearing that one up Mr. Adams º

On a serious note, this book cannot nor should not be taken too seriously. It¡¦s intended to make people laugh and so it succeeds. There were some sections I loved, others I liked, some I found offensive and others just left me dumbfounded. No matter what my specific reaction was though, I think the point is that I did react. It made me think. It made me laugh. It made me blush.
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