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The Bedwetter: Stories of Courage, Redemption, and Pee [Paperback]

Sarah Silverman
3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (332 customer reviews)

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Amazon Exclusive: A Letter from Sarah Silverman

Dear Reader:

My name is Sarah Silverman. I was once primarily known for saying the word "poop" and getting paid above market rates for it. But those days are over, because I am now going to be known for having written a book. Why did I write a book, you might wonder? Because it just seemed like the right time to be getting into the publishing industry.

I'm kidding. Publishing is rotting like an abandoned possum carcass on the shoulder of I-95. I know that for a fact, because shortly after my book deal was announced, I kept hearing people lament the imminent demise of literature. These days there is only one reason to write a book: to be taken seriously. And that is exactly what is about to happen to me. I'm an author now! Like Ernest Hemingway and Fyodor Dostoevsky!

When I was asked to provide text for an author page, I decided to approach it in a scholarly manner, because that's what authors do. I looked to other author pages for inspiration, and I learned so much. For example, while Hemingway and Dostoevsky do not have their own author pages on Amazon.com, Paris Hilton does. And so does former teenage porn star and multi-tasking fellatrix, Traci Lords. Hemingway and Dostoevsky might be wondering, quite literally, "Whom do I have to blow to get my own author page?" If someone had a cruel sense of humor, they might respond to Hemingway, "How about your head off? Oh wait – you already DID that!" But such a remark would be in bad taste, and as a serious author, I'm above all that.

I also learned that Paris' dog, Tinkerbell Hilton, has her own book too. I read a few pages and found the prose to be overwrought, but you can imagine that, being a dog, she'd be coming from a place of needing to prove something. By the way, here's a quote from a review of Paris' book that I found on her Amazon.com author page:

"Heiress, socialite, model, actress, singer and media darling Hilton loves her life, knows how to get what she wants and matter-of-factly explains how anyone can be a glamorous, fun-loving, tiara-wearing heiress just like her… [Paris’] advice to 'channel your own inner heiress, create your own image, and project an extreme sense of confidence' is an empowering message for young women."

This was profoundly inspiring to me. It made me realize: if young women can read Hilton's book and become heiresses, they can likewise read my book and become anxiety-ridden bedwetters. And amidst this generation of disposability that favors the digital over the physical, shopping online rather than in stores (oops, this is awkward!), and reading from LCD screens rather than from print on paper, it's nice to know that I will have left a permanent stain by which future generations shall know of my existence. So read The Bedwetter, if not for me, then for the children.

--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Publishers Weekly

Starred Review. Demonstrating that her penchant for swearing began at an early age, comedian Silverman begins her hilarious memoir by describing how, at age three, she gleefully responded to her grandmother's offer of brownies with shove 'em up your ass. Growing up in New Hampshire (where cows are well done and Jews are rare), Silverman naturally gravitated toward performing and moved to New York, where she attended and eventually dropped out of New York University to pursue a standup comedy career. Mixing show business moments (she wrote for Saturday Night Live for one season, but none of her sketches made it past dress rehearsal) with stories of her childhood and adolescence (punctuated by a persistent bedwetting problem), Silverman never shies away from poking fun at her own expense. Though she's best known for sexually explicit jokes, Silverman is able to address more serious subjects in the book without losing her edge, particularly her teenage struggle with depression and that her often abrasive public persona allowed her to say what I didn't mean, even preach the opposite of what I believed.... It was a funny way of being sincere. 8-page color insert. (May)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Booklist

Comedian Sarah Silverman is an acquired taste. If you like orgasms, farts, and excrement, she is delicious. In her memoir, Silverman takes readers on a tour of the underground tunnel that is her mind, and believe me, it is as full of muck as the sewers of Paris. Only funnier. She comes by all this filth naturally. By the time she was three, her father had taught her every swearword known to man, and she quickly learned that spouting them on any occasion was adorable. (Also, yelling out statements like “I love tampons” in the grocery store was pretty cute, too.) But Silverman is not just writing this book to gross out her readers (though, honestly, that—and the money—is probably the main motivation). She is also writing to tell what it’s like to be an outsider: a Jewish girl growing up in New Hampshire; a woman comedian in a notoriously male profession; and a bed wetter of epic proportions. On the latter topic, she layers her outing with jokes and pathos, but it’s the e-mails between her and her editor that show the truth of the old adage that comedy is tragedy plus time. She wants the subtitle of this to be Stories of Courage, Redemption, and Pee. He insists on pee-pee. Like so much of this book, it’s an absurdist’s delight. --Ilene Cooper --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

“Hilarious memoir...Silverman never shies away from poking fun at her own expense. Though she’s best known for sexually explicit jokes, Silverman is able to address more serious subjects in the book without losing her edge, particularly her teenage struggle with depression.” (Publishers Weekly (starred review))

“Deftly mixes the spit-take funny stuff with an unsentimental but enlightened look back at her not-so-charmed life and career.” (Vanity Fair)

“Readers...get a fully realized portrait of Silverman: tales from a youth spent moistening mattresses and fighting depression in New Hampshire; her salad days as a struggling comedienne in New York; and the various trials that have come with being the filthiest, funniest woman on television.” (Elle)

“In this book, as onstage, she has the power to shock—not so easy in these times. Lenny Bruce and Richard Pryor crossed lines; now that the controversy has faded, we remember their genius. And so we will with Sarah Silverman.” (People)

“An engrossing (and grossing) journey from childhood to childish adulthood.... Silverman’s standup, normally marked by a detached persona and thick outer layer of snark and irony, is off-putting for some, but here she hits previously unseen levels of honesty and sincerity while still retaining her expected level of filth.” (Heeb Magazine)

“Odd, shambling, and funny... as close to an explanation of Silverman and her comedy as we’re likely to get. It seems to be saying, Obviously I’m joking, but it’s also me up there.” (New York magazine)

“Without curtailing her trademark potty-mouth humor and shock tactics, comedian Sarah Silverman has written a memoir that’s sweet, funny, real and, dare I say it, occasionally even touching… Silverman’s book suggests that, behind the cute face and dirty mouth, there’s a clever woman with a warm heart.” (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)

“It’s irreverent, funny and sometimes winningly serious…. Though Silverman’s book provides her customary shock-and-awe humor ... it is Silverman’s honesty and vulnerability that are most surprising.” (Los Angeles Times)

“Often hilarious and occasionally revelatory.… More than just a collection of gags and stand-up leftovers, ‘The Bedwetter’ is a mostly cohesive narrative of how a rebellious comic perspective evolved and became inseparable from the person who employs it, and how anyone who could find offense in that is really the butt of the joke.” (New York Times)

From the Back Cover

Warning from publisher to reader:

At HarperCollins, we are committed to customer satisfaction. Before proceeding with your purchase, please take the following questionnaire to determine your likelihood of enjoying this book:

1. Which of the following do you appreciate?

(a) Women with somewhat horse-ish facial features.
(b) Women who, while not super Jew-y, are more identifiably Jewish than, say, Natalie Portman.
(c) Frequent discussion of unwanted body hair.

2. Are you offended by the following behavior?

(a) Instructing one's grandmother to place baked goods in her rectal cavity.
(b) Stripping naked in public—eleven times in a row.
(c) Stabbing one's boss in the head with a writing implement.

3. The best way to treat an emotionally fragile young girl is:

(a) Murder the main course of her Thanksgiving dinner before her very eyes.
(b) Tell her that her older sister is prettier than she, and then immediately die.
(c) Prevent her suicide by recommending she stay away from open windows.

If you read the above questions without getting nauseous or forming a hate Web site, you are ready to buy this book! Please proceed to the cashier.

About the Author

Sarah Silverman is the co-creator and star of The Sarah Silverman Program. She won an Emmy in 2009 for her video I'm F***ing Matt Damon, and was nominated for a Primetime Emmy for her role on The Sarah Silverman Program. Silverman lives in Los Angeles with her dog, Duck, presuming he does not die prior to publication, which is moderately to extremely likely.

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