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Your Wildest Dreams, Within Reason Paperback – March 1, 2011


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Your Wildest Dreams, Within Reason + And Here's the Kicker: Conversations with 21 Top Humor Writers on their Craft + Poking a Dead Frog: Conversations with Today’s Top Comedy Writers
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 200 pages
  • Publisher: Tin House Books (March 1, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1935639021
  • ISBN-13: 978-1935639022
  • Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 4.9 x 7.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #177,877 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Sacks (coauthor of Sex: Our Bodies, Our Junk) offers 54 short humor pieces, including 25 written in collaboration with fellow humor writers Todd Levin, Scott Jacobson, Bob Powers, Jason Roeder, Scott Rothman, Will Tracy, Ted Travelstead, and Teddy Wayne. The essays, many of which were published in McSweeney's and the New Yorker, is a selection of contemporary social satires, such as signs a college is not very prestigious ("Marching band uses only handclaps") and a bridegroom on Twitter ("Attempting to fist-bump rabbi"). The essays include icebreakers to avoid ("This party reminds me of 9/11"); a director's commentary on the DVD rerelease of a 1990 bar mitzvah video; and a rejection letter to Anne Frank: "Unfortunately, we receive so many unsolicited teenage diaries composed in European attics that it is impossible to publish each one." Highlighting this often hilarious book are Yu's many illustrations, such as the inclusion of Pynchon's muted post horn, and Sancton's 10 drawings depicting "Everyday Tantric Positions" as well as an eight-page pantomime comic strip from Esquire about frustrating Ikea assembly instructions. (Mar. 15)
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From Booklist

Previously published in such publications as McSweeney�s and the New Yorker, these comic pieces should appeal to fans of offbeat humor. It�s difficult to categorize the book because, as Sacks freely admits, the pieces have no �overarching theme, no recurring characters, nothing that links one piece to another.� The pieces, many of them cowritten with Sacks� fellow humorists, range from satire to parody to faux-autobiography (�My Parents�) to instructional articles (�When Making Love to Me: What Every Woman Needs to Know�) to fake correspondence with famous writers to, well, the just plain indescribable (�The Rejection of Anne Frank�). Sacks and his various coauthors are gifted humorists, and it�s safe to say that any reader will emit chuckles, guffaws, and chortles while perusing nearly every page. Some of the material here is rather graphic, especially the illustrated �Everyday Tantric Positions!� and �Kama Sutra: The Corrections.� Recommend this one to adult readers with highly developed funny bones. --David Pitt

More About the Author

Mike Sacks was born in Virginia and raised in Maryland. He attended Tulane University in New Orleans.

He has written for Vanity Fair, Esquire, GQ, The New Yorker, Time, McSweeney's, Radar, MAD, New York Observer, Premiere, Believer, Vice, Maxim, Women's Health, and Salon. He has worked at The Washington Post, and is currently on the editorial staff of Vanity Fair.

His first book, And Here's the Kicker: Conversations with 21 Humor Writers About Their Craft, was released in Summer 2009. Some of those interviewed include: George Meyer, Harold Ramis, Al Jaffee, Buck Henry, Bob Odenkirk, Stephen Merchant, David Sedaris, Jack Handey, Robert Smigel, and Daniel Clowes.

Sacks co-wrote Sex: Our Bodies, Our Junk, with the Pleasure Syndicate, a comedy-writing group consisting of Scott Jacobson (Daily Show), Todd Levin (Tonight Show), Jason Roeder (Onion), and Ted Travelstead (Esquire). The book is scheduled for release August 28, 2010.

In addition, Sacks has sold a collection of his published humor pieces to Tin House Books, to be released in February 2011. The book, Your Wildest Dreams, Within Reason, will contain pieces from The New Yorker, Esquire, Time, Vanity Fair, McSweeney's, and other publications.

Customer Reviews

This book is very funny and extremely creative.
Bfitz35
It's the kind of book where you read a few short pieces, laugh out loud, get your comedy fix, then go about your day.
Phillip Schwarzmann
I highly recommend it if you like odd, smart humor.
WarrenG76

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Midwestern Lady on February 6, 2011
Format: Paperback
I was lucky enough to get my hands on an advance copy of this book during the crazy Chicago snowstorm of 2011. I almost didn't mind being locked inside my house because I had this hysterically funny book to read. I was already a fan of Our Bodies Our Junk so I had a hunch I would like this one too. And I was right. The entire book conveys Mike's ability to poke fun of the absurdity of our lives in a way that is clever enough that we are left impressed and charming enough that we don't mind being mocked one bit. Witty, creative and recommended reading.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By housefinch on February 14, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
When I saw David Sedaris blurb on the cover, I figured Sacks must've gotten ahold of pictures of Sedaris doing something hetero in a park. But the famed humorist's "glowing remark" carries substance.

Your WIldest Dreams is hysterical-you will see yourself in its well-meaning, inept, deranged heroes like Rhon Penny (silent h), Mike the Talking Horse, and Jimmy Jam Johnson, classic rock DJ having a nervous breakdown. You will learn that philosopher Thomas Aquinas was "hung like a champ" and what you might do with someone you've just met at a hospital chapel. Your sobs and laughter will be indistinguishable.

In a million years, as archaeologists search for answers about the decline of the once mighty American white man, they shall find what they seek in Your Wildest Dreams.

I promise Sacks' jokes are funnier than mine.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Alana Quirk on February 7, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This collection illustrates perfectly why I have been following Mike Sacks's humor for more than a decade now: he is a complete - and completely hilarious - original. Reading his work is like stepping through a door to a world that's been rotated one quarter-turn toward Absurd O'Clock. You recognize the features of the landscape, but the ground is constantly shifting. The people of this world have their own logic, and it's not your own. This is especially true of the piece that kicks off the book, "Whoops!" This is one of my favorite bits of humor writing, not only from Mike Sacks, but of all time.

What is perhaps most impressive is that, somehow, a visit to the World of Sacks highlights the absurdities inherent to our own, real world: office culture, relationship hiccups, communication misfires. I don't often laugh out loud at words on the page; when I do, it seems almost like magic. Mike Sacks is this kind of word magician, and Your Wildest Dreams, Within Reason is a virtuoso performance.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By David Meltzer on February 10, 2011
Format: Paperback
Mr. Sacks has a knack for producing wonderfully absurd stories with a satiric heart. The Anne Frank piece alone is worth the price of admission. Do yourself a favor and pick up this collection if you enjoy good humor writing.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Jason R. on February 11, 2011
Format: Paperback
I've been a big Mike Sacks fan for a long time thanks to his work in McSweeneys and the New Yorker, and his collection of interviews with comedy writers, And Here's the Kicker: Conversations with 21 Top Humor Writers on their Craft, is a comedy nerd's wet dream. This collection doesn't disappoint. Hilarious, weird and cerebral all at once -- if you're not familiar with Mike's work, this is your chance to get on board. Great stuff.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Julie on February 13, 2011
Format: Paperback
I'm not really the book-reviewing type, but I felt I needed to weigh in on Mike Sacks' book because I honestly can't remember the last time I laughed out loud this much while reading. He strikes a tone that goes straight to my funny bone. I can't recommend it enough.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Steve Wilson on February 11, 2011
Format: Paperback
Most people who write humor for the New Yorker, McSweeney's or other publications sound like they're just filling in pegs, not producing original (or truly funny) work. That's why Mike Sacks' writing is so refreshing. When the pieces in this collection appeared in various markets, they stood out as something boldly, perplexingly and hilariously different from "the usual."
They made you really laugh, instead of just chuckle knowingly. I don't think I could survive a trip to the place where he gets his ideas, but I'm glad he goes there for us.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Will T on February 11, 2011
Format: Paperback
I believe Mike Sacks is one of the funniest writers going right now and I was super excited to finally see a proper collection of his stuff. He's been doing weird, hysterical stuff for The New Yorker and McSweeney's for years and I've loved basically everything he's ever done. And the book was worth the wait, it's hilarious. Seriously. A must read.
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