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Too Fat to Fish Hardcover – Bargain Price, November 11, 2008

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Hardcover, Bargain Price, November 11, 2008
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Spiegel & Grau (November 11, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0385526563
  • Product Dimensions: 9.4 x 6.4 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (353 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #759,408 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

This debut memoir from the comedian best known as Howard Stern's radio show sidekick is scrappy, funny, tumultuous and profane, just like its author. Lange, a self-proclaimed fat guy with a heroin problem, is difficult to love, but easy to like, his shaggy-dog life story full of derogatory self-awareness and cheerful vulgarity (often in the form of casual profanity and sexism). Many episodes from this life story will be familiar to Stern listeners, including the infamous "Pig Story," wherein Lange snorts cocaine while in full pig costume on the set of television's MADtv. Less familiar to fans will be a sobering account of Lange's suicide attempt and fond childhood memories of his beloved father. Lange's outrageous and horrific behavior involves prostitution, jail time and several trips to rehab; perhaps the saddest recurring theme is the frequency with which Lange thanks someone who's helped him, only to reveal that that person is no longer a part of his life. Glossing over Lange's penchant for alienating people is just one oversight that keeps this warts-and-all memoir from feeling fully honest. Still, for those with a taste for his aggressive, self-loathing brand of humor will find this volume full of compulsively readable stories. Photos.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


“A very funny man.”–David Letterman
“A comedy treasure…One of the funniest guys there is…The pride of New Jersey.” –Jimmy Kimmel

More About the Author

One of the most sought after live comedians and talk show guests, Artie Lange was a member of The Howard Stern Show for almost a decade and has followed this with his current gig on The Artie Lange Show.
A native of New Jersey, Lange began his career in the comedy clubs of New York City. Lange's breakout work with the popular sketch comedy group Live On Tape led to his being cast as one of the original series regulars on Fox's MADtv, on which he made his television debut.
The success of Lange on MADtv led to him being cast opposite Norm MacDonald in Lange's first starring role in the MGM feature film Dirty Work. This led to a string of feature films, including supporting roles in the Dreamworks feature film Old School, starring Luke Wilson, Vince Vaughn, and Will Ferrell, as well as New Line Cinema's Elf, also starring Ferrell. He also reunited with MacDonald as a series regular on Norm (ABC).
When Norm finished its run, Lange came back to New York City and began sitting in regularly as a guest comedian on the nationally syndicated program, The Howard Stern Show. In October of 2001 he became a regular member of the show.
Lange starred in, co-wrote, and produced his own feature film, Beer League, to rave reviews. Lange is also a regular guest on The Late Show with David Letterman, Late Night with Conan O'Brien, Jimmy Kimmel Live! and The Best Damn Sports Show, Period. He was also a guest roaster on Comedy Central's roasts of Hugh Hefner and William Shatner. Elsewhere on television, Lange appeared in episodes of Entourage, Rescue Me, Louie, and Californication.
In 2008, Artie's first book, Too Fat to Fish, debuted at number one on the New York Times bestseller list. The book is a collection of narrative episodes from throughout Lange's life, from his childhood to his USO trip to Afghanistan in July 2008, with a foreword written by Howard Stern. In 2009, Artie starred in his own special, Jack and Coke, with Joe Matarese.
Lange continues to sell out venues across the United States performing his stand-up comedy. His second book, Crash and Burn, written with Too Fat to Fish co-author Anthony Bozza, will be published by Touchstone in October 2013.

Customer Reviews

I could not put this book down, I read it cover to cover the same day I received it.
Neil Russo
I am a huge fan of the Howard Stern Show and being a loyal listener I was able to hear some of the stories in the book being told by the great Artie Lange.
J. Jacobsmeyer
I just hope that Artie will be well enough to read the entire book on his own next time.
Mary E. Arruda

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

38 of 44 people found the following review helpful By J. L LaRegina on February 22, 2009
Format: Hardcover
I picked up TOO FAT TO FISH, the autobiography of comedian and HOWARD STERN SHOW cast member Artie Lange, expecting to flip-read it. But, starting with a funny introduction from Stern that Lange matches or exceeds laugh-per-page for the rest of the book, TOO FAT TO FISH did not leave my hands until I read every word.

Despite Stern's introduction, Artie Lange does not say much about his work on the radio show in TOO FAT TO FISH until the last couple of chapters. But Lange and coauthor Anthony Bozza hold your attention throughout the pre-Stern years with tales of the comedian's charmed life. I say "charmed life" because, despite Lange's tendencies toward alcohol/drug abuse, gambling, overeating, and angry outbursts, a world of family and friends - even show-business friends - watch his back. There are a number of touching moments, especially regarding his parents. Prepare to choke up as Artie Lange realizes the only difference between homeless drug addicts and him is the support of those who loved this 296-lb. prodigal son. Nonetheless, even reflections such as that lead to some of the funniest comments in TOO FAT TO FISH thanks to Lange's ability to laugh at himself, wisecracking his way through the details of his darkest moments.

Howard Stern hired Artie Lange on his radio show in 2001 after joke whiz Jackie Martling left. But the void Lange filled best was that of Sam Kinison, a regular HOWARD STERN SHOW guest whose combination of comic talent, substance abuse problems and volatile personality made for hours of compelling radio until his untimely 1992 death.

While there are not as many HOWARD STERN SHOW-related anecdotes as you may expect, TOO FAT TO FISH has a number of celebrity stories. For example, Artie Lange's work with the likes of Tom Cruise and Chevy Chase result in two of his most memorable tales about the ups and downs of the entertainment industry.

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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By J. Ruiz on February 9, 2009
Format: Hardcover
Artie Lange is a great comedian, and although I'm not an avid listener of the Howard Stern show, I can see why Howard considers him to be a great comedic mind. Every story in this book isn't just funny, it allows you to delve into the mind of Artie, and kind of allows the reader to understand why he is who he is.

I would and have recommended this book to everyone I know. This book doesn't just make you laugh out loud (which for me is very hard to do), it makes you empathize for him, and wish nothing but great health, and well wishes throughout his life. I hope you all enjoy.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Howard Fan on December 26, 2008
Format: Hardcover
I have always loved Artie, but after reading his book I love him even more. His stories about his dad are so sweet and heartbreaking. The stories about his drug use break your heart as you realize how he has not yet escaped that demon. His love for his mom and sister and the pride he takes in financially providing for his mother make you realize what a sweetheart he is. It also seemed that he was trying to repair damaged relationship and professed his love for former friends and managers with whom he has lost touch. Finally, the reader also gets a better glimpse into his heroin breakdown while filming his movie. Wish he could repair his relationship with Dana. She seemed to really love him.

Great Read!
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Format: Hardcover
As a longtime fan of Stern, I was one of his faithful legions that had a hard time accepting Lange in "Jackie's Chair". I have to admit that now almost a decade later, Artie has won me over.

I was excited to pick up "Too Fat to Fish", but for some reason it really took me awhile to crack it open and read it. Well I just finished and I have to say, there are some excellent stories in here. Specifically, the parts of the book dealing with Lange's father were extraordinary. You can really feel the emotions and care put into those chapters. If nothing else, "Too Fat to Fish" is a great testimony to a loving father/son relationship.

As Lange moves further into his career as a stand-up comedian, and onto the set of Madtv, things begin to unravel. Any fan of Howard's radio show, will have heard these stories (multiple times in most cases), but in the book format, Artie is able to go into greater detail than he has on the air. Some of the stories are genuinely repulsive, and some will have you chuckling. It's scary to see someone so intent on self destruction, that he recognizes his weaknesses, but he seems so helpless to stop himself from participating in the life threatening vices.

The book covers Langes life from Childhood, through his career as a cab driver, long shoreman, stand-up comedian, television star, movie stardom, to co-hosing the Stern show, up through his recent trip to Iraq. It's a very interesting story, but since being published, fans of the show know that Artie has again fallen off the wagon (December 08), that he is consistantly lying, and seems to be pushing away the folks who care so much about him. As I read the chapters, I began wondering, just how much is truth and how much has Artie embellished?
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By M. Navarro on November 28, 2008
Format: Hardcover
If you are an Artie Lange fan you will love this book. Sure some of the stories have been told on the Howard Stern Show but not with all these details. I really enjoyed this book and can't wait for book #2.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I bought this book because I have been a loyal Stern listener for over 14 years. I have really enjoyed Artie Lange on the show.

I read the reviews before I bought the book on and I wish I listened to them. I agree with previous reviewers that the stories can mostly be gotten from listening to the Stern show.

I feel personally cheated by Artie, because I found out recently that he was lying about going to rehab for heroin addiction. I think in a way I believed he was honest, but he recently came clean that he had been lying to Stern Show staffers about it all.

I am concerned about him and would like for him to GET HELP and stop lying to Howard and the subscribers.

Back to the book: it is casually written, kind of like he is speaking with a buddy. How he lost his virginity is new (not on the show), as is his suicide stuff.

At the end of the book he asks the people who bought the book to tell their friends to buy it too - and maybe it's working because today he's #1 on amazon in 2 genres and #28 overall for book sales. However, after finding out that I was inadvertently lied to, I respectfully request that others Save Their Money and borrow the book from a friend for a fun, quick read - why knowingly support a celebrity caught in the downward spiral and his drug&vices habits?

UPDATE - he is getting help and is sober now, so I decided to give the book 4 stars.
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