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You Better Not Cry: Stories for Christmas Hardcover – October 27, 2009


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 224 pages
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Press; First Edition edition (October 27, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312341911
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312341916
  • Product Dimensions: 5.4 x 0.9 x 7.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (86 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #320,623 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Burroughs's holiday-themed memoir lacks the consistent emotional intensity of his earlier work, despite a few gems. Arranged roughly chronologically, the vignettes begin with concrete Christmas memories (preparing a detailed, multipart list of desired presents in Claus and Effect) and move toward musings on the spirit of the holiday (facing a flooded house with an atheist partner in Silent Night). While the childhood stories have Burroughs's trademark dry wit—he once gnawed the face off a life-size Saint Nick made of wax—they aren't particularly memorable. It's when he turns his attention to the less tangible essence of the holiday that the writing comes alive, especially in the final two pieces, The Best and Only Everything and Silent Night. In the former, Burroughs (Running with Scissors) remembers a long-ago Christmas spent with a former lover dying of AIDS and in the latter, which takes place a decade later, he describes dealing not only with a burst water pipe but also feeling ready to celebrate the season with a tree for the first time since the death of his old boyfriend. (Nov.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Review

"[Burroughs] matches fine perceptive writing with heartfelt, note-[erfect narrating, achieving an emotional power few audiobooks can match. Burrough's life can be a wild ride, and his reading can match it, but it's a ride worth taking." –AudioFile, Earphones Award Winner
 
"Burroughs reads with such ease and candor he seems more old friend than narrator. With his crisp diction, smooth delivery, and relentlessly funny material, Burroughs could easily have a new career as a performer, but for now, listeners can give thanks for this early Christmas present." – Publishers Weekly, Starred Review
 
"In his trademark wit and self-deprecating humor, author Augusten Burroughs compiles his favorite Christmas memories in his new book, You Better Not Cry." – VanityFair.com
 
"Burroughs has the sort of distinct voice that lends his stories a memorable charm." –CreativeLoafing.com
 
"...He [Burroughs] takes listeners on a rollicking, personal chronological tour of some of his more memorable Christmases...this is laugh-out-loud stuff that nevertheless, with genuine warmth and sensitivity, pays homage to the spirit of giving for which the holiday season is known." - Sound Commentary
 
"This most candid of memorists evokes poignancy and a kind of subversive nostalgia, spiked with flaws and good intentions." - BookPage
 
"He [Burroughs] matches fine perceptive writing with heartfelt, note-perfect narrating, achieving an emotional power few audiobooks can match. Burroughs's life can be a wild ride, and his reading can match it, but it's a ride worth taking." - AudioFile magazine, Earphones Award Winner
 
"Burroughs' stories about Christmas memories alternate between loopy and hilarious and poignant and heartfelt. Burroughs matches his reading style to each story superbly." - Audiopolis, a blog from AudioFile
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

More About the Author

Augusten Burroughs is the author of the autobiographical works "Running with Scissors," "Dry," "Magical Thinking," "Possible Side Effects" and "A Wolf at the Table," all of which were New York Times bestsellers. "Running with Scissors" remained on the New York Times bestseller list for over two consecutive years and was made into a Golden Globe-nominated film starring Annette Bening. His only novel, "Sellevision," is currently in development as a series for NBC. "Dry," Augusten's memoir of his alcoholism and recovery, is being developed by Showtime. In addition, Burroughs is currently creating an original prime-time series for CBS. Augusten's latest book is called "You Better Not Cry: Stories for Christmas."

Twice named to Entertainment Weekly's list of the funniest people in America, Augusten has also been the subject of a Vanity Fair cover story and a Jeopardy! answer. His books have made guest appearances in two James Patterson novels, one Linkin Park music video, numerous television shows and a porn movie.

Augusten has been a photographer since childhood and many of his images can be seen on his website, www.augusten.com. He lives in New York City.

Related Media


Customer Reviews

The stories were dull and not at all memorable for me.
Marold
I read it early in the holiday season, about 2 weeks after Thanksgiving.
Linda R. Devendorf
Because he makes you feel like like they really are true.
Roseanne D

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By A. Keith on December 12, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I have enjoyed reading Augusten Burroughs books for many years. I was thrilled to learn that he had a new book out. Being a bit of a scrooge myself, I knew this book would not disappoint. It is a compilation of several different essays. I really enjoyed reading the book and it helped pull me into the Christmas spirit.
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Claire D on October 31, 2009
Format: Hardcover
I'm a huge fan of all of Augusten's books, but I found this one just a little disappointing. I read "You Better Not Cry" in two days...not because I'm a super speedy reader, but because it's a very short book. The page count is decent, but the size of the book is very tiny so the book is over before you know it.

That's my biggest problem with the book. It's just TOO short.

That said, it's an entertaining read. The book progresses chronologically through Augusten's past. The stories of his childhood are generally quite funny. Generally speaking, I actually like stories of his adult life better than stories of his childhood (i.e. I like "Dry" and "Magical Thinking" even more than "Running With Scissors"). This also holds true with "You Better Not Cry". My favorite stories in the book are of his adult life. My favorite story in the book is "Silent Night." This heart-warming little tale makes me really sad that Augusten and Dennis are no longer together.

I found his story titled, "The Best and Only Everything" terribly sad and it's the longest story in the book. But there are amusing stories, too. I really enjoyed the title story, "You Better Not Cry."

All in all, it's a worthwhile read. And with Amazon's discounted price, I'm glad I bought it. I just wish it were longer! Keep writing, Augusten. I just can't get enough of your words!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Fred on December 21, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Not at all what I expected to read ---. I had not known the author and had not realized he was gay. That didn't change my mind though as I read; it was truly fun and sad at the same time. I believe the hour you spend with this book will not be wasted --- obviously, it's heartfelt and I got a sense that Christmas was longed for, as it should be. The childhood glimpses were tough, sad and tragic. The flood was also extremely sad but brought the whole Christmas theme to light. Thank you
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Dee18 TOP 1000 REVIEWER on December 18, 2010
Format: Hardcover
You can keep your Brad Pitt and Johnny Depp crushes. . . if I am being 100% earnest and honest, my number #1 fan-girl crush is unashamedly on gay American writer, Augusten Burroughs.

I have read every one of his books and gotten a stomach cramp from laughing too hard at each one. He is my author/reader soul-mate and I'm sure that if we ever met I would fall at his feet and beg him to be my friend. I love his sense of humour, I love his brutal honesty and I just love him. . . `You Better Not Cry' is further evidence of why Augusten Burroughs holds a special place in my heart.

Augusten Burroughs (originally Christopher Robison, until he changed his name at the age of 18) started out writing fiction with his first novel released in 2000 called `Sellevision'. That first novel was about four greedy and ambitious people who work at a television company. The novel was good and funny, but it wasn't until the 2002 release of Burrough's novel `Running with Scissors' that he made a name for himself and was touted as the voice of a generation. . .

`Running with Scissors' was Augusten Burrough's first memoir, and it was as harrowing as it was hilarious. It told the story of Augusten's early teen years, when his addict/poet mother gave him up for adoption. . . to her therapist. What followed was years spent at Dr. Finch's madhouse where the good doctor frequently gave Augusten drug samples, called the family into the bathroom to see his weird-shaped bowel movements and Augusten happily played `shock therapy' with Finch's youngest child, Natalie. `Running with Scissors' was heralded as a uniquely sharp comedy of unflinching honesty, and was adapted into a 2006 film.

Thus began Burrough's true writing career.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By A. Hansen VINE VOICE on January 6, 2010
Format: Hardcover
I found this book to be just like his others! Places in the book are witty, interesting, heartfelt...and then there's the other side-dark, sad, and unnnerving. But with all the other books I found this to be right up there in style and character. I enjoyed this small book of about 200 pages. It was quick to read in between the hustle and bustle of the holidays. For a Burrough's fan...this will be enjoyed!
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28 of 38 people found the following review helpful A Kid's Review on November 1, 2009
Format: Hardcover
We waited at least two years for this? The title was great, catchy, made you think it was going to be funny but it wasn't. To me it seems like this book was thrown together because of some deadline, it didn't seem to have much heart. The stories were long and drawn out and couldn't keep my attention much as his work usually is so intense you cant put it down. I was also expecting more humor but it wasn't the case for this book. I was really, REALLY looking forward to this book so it's quite the disappointment. I guess I'll be camped out until the next one though as I still have a ton of faith in this man. Sorry Augusten but I'm being honest........
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Citizenjess on June 1, 2010
Format: Hardcover
I feel bad leaving anything but a decadent review for something written by Augusten Burroughs. Long have I pimped out his treasure trove of memoirs, as well as "Sellevision," which seems to be tailored to his wild and crazy life a little bit more each time I pick it up.

Simply put, "You Better Not Cry" lacks the spark that Burroughs' previous books (and novel) contain. I eagerly hunkered down with the small tome during spurts of free time, eager to read about the author's caustic family and his almost alarmingly domestic adult life. Augusten's collection of Christmas stories is easy enough to follow, given time lines and events from previous books, but I felt like something was missing. All of the author's trademarks were there, but I wasn't being tugged in any particular direction emotionally. There was no pig's head statue moment like in "Dry"; no "toilet reading" scene, a la "Running With Scissors"; nor nothing particularly harrowing or painful to read, the way most of "Wolf At the Table" was. Bad (and sometimes, good) things certainly happen to Augusten at Christmastime, but he didn't make me feel them this time.

In addition, "YBNC" showcased a lack of cohesiveness, which is unusual for Burroughs. Upon waking up next to a French Santa, who may or may not have put the moves on him, Burroughs-the-character makes a list of all the guys he's ever known in the Biblical sense, in hopes of determining any patterns, a la a fetish for white-bearded old men. It's a funny moment, but there's a distinct lack of mention of Dr.
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