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The Best of Me by [David Sedaris]

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The Best of Me Kindle Edition

4.6 out of 5 stars 4,935 ratings

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

David Sedaris is the author of eleven previous books, including, most recently, The Best of Me, Calypso and Theft by Finding. He is a regular contributor to The New Yorker and BBC Radio 4. In 2019, he was inducted into the American Academy of Arts and Letters. He is the recipient of the Thurber Prize for American Humor, Jonathan Swift International Literature Prize for Satire and Humor, and the Terry Southern Prize for Humor. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

“The genius of The Best of Me is that it reveals the growth of a writer, a sense of how his outlook has changed and where he finds humor… The subject, in many of the pieces Sedaris has selected, is the judgment and pain we inflict on one another, and by ‘we’ Sedaris does not mean people in general. He means him. And he means you. And he means me… You must read The Best of Me. It will be a new experience, knowing that enough time has passed to find humor in the hardest parts of life. More than ever—we’re allowed to laugh.”―Andrew Sean Greer, New York Times Book Review

“An excellent introduction to Sedaris’ work if, somehow, you’re not among the millions who have made him a mainstay on bestseller lists and flocked to his ticketed readings. Even if you’ve read or listened to every word he’s ever written, it’s a terrific highlights reel and a chance to view the arc of Sedaris’ development as a writer over 25 years… In his more serious moments, Sedaris expresses surprise and gratitude for his good fortune. Even his father, “that perpetual human storm cloud,” has finally, in his late 90s, acknowledged his elder son’s fantastic accomplishments.
The Best of Me is a well-earned victory lap.” ―Heller McAlpin, Christian Science Monitor

“A comprehensive retrospective… The essayist collects his best stories spanning his career, from previously published volumes and magazine features.”―
Barbara Vandenburgh, USA Today

“The collection magnifies many of the attributes that have made Sedaris such a beloved writer, not least of which is the sense of wit... Across 46 stories and 400 pages, Sedaris’ clarity as a writer comes through. The pieces can be painfully funny and painfully poignant for the same reason: He’s economical with words, thoughts, jokes and emotions.”―
Andrew Dansby, Houston Chronicle

“If you’re looking for some comic relief, look no further than David Sedaris.” ―
Tonya Mosley, NPR

“Longtime fans and astute readers will understand that the title doesn’t refer entirely to the author; he has chosen and arranged works to highlight his funny, often dysfunctional and always loving parents, siblings and partner, Hugh—the people he believes are the best of him.”―
Bethanne Patrick, Washington Post

The Best of Me encompasses a wide swath of his past work, from early entries in The New Yorker’s Shouts & Murmurs section to fan-favorite essays like 2000’s ‘Me Talk Pretty One Day’ (in which he recounts taking French-language classes from a merciless teacher) and 2016’s ‘The Perfect Fit’ (about shopping for outrageous clothes in Tokyo).” ―Seija Rankin, Entertainment Weekly

“A generous and rollicking collection… Sedaris is a fun, wickedly funny companion. But for all his playful irreverence… he also brings a sharp moral eye to his subjects—which tend toward the eclectic. Writing about everything from family tragedy to international travel to taxidermied owls, he illuminates the manifold wonders (and weirdness) of everyday life. For those new to Sedaris’s work, this book will serve as a delightful introduction. For longtime fans, it will offer a familiar comfort, like catching up with an old friend.”―
Cornelia Channing, Vulture

“Sedaris’s brilliant knack for observational humor is on full display in this terrific retrospective essay collection… Sedaris finds ample fodder for his keen satiric sense in his life and the lives of those around him. Sedaris can take even the most serious subject and evoke both empathy and laughter. He can also be just plain hilarious… This is the perfect introduction for the uninitiated, while Sedaris’s fans will enjoy rediscovering old favorites.”―
Publishers Weekly (starred review) --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Product details

  • ASIN ‏ : ‎ B089SPTBWX
  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ Little, Brown and Company (November 3, 2020)
  • Publication date ‏ : ‎ November 3, 2020
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • File size ‏ : ‎ 590 KB
  • Text-to-Speech ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Screen Reader ‏ : ‎ Supported
  • Enhanced typesetting ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • X-Ray ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Word Wise ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Sticky notes ‏ : ‎ On Kindle Scribe
  • Print length ‏ : ‎ 401 pages
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.6 out of 5 stars 4,935 ratings

About the author

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David Sedaris lives in Paris. Raised in North Carolina, he has worked as a housecleaner and most famously, as a part-time elf for Macy's. Several of his plays have been produced, and he is a regular contributor to ESQUIRE and Public Radio International's 'This American Life'.

Customer reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5
4,935 global ratings

Top reviews from the United States

Reviewed in the United States 🇺🇸 on November 22, 2022
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Reviewed in the United States 🇺🇸 on February 24, 2021
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5.0 out of 5 stars Stellar Sedaris— compilation of classics
By CC on February 24, 2021
This review covers both the print version as well as the audiobook.

A solid collection for longtime Sedaris fans, as well as a great intro for those just becoming acquainted with his writing for the first time.

Of particular interest is that these “favorite” essays are the choosing of the author himself.

I purchased both the print copy & Audible versions because of the added hilarity of hearing Sedaris read his own work.

Re: the audiobook version it should be noted that the chapter order differs from the print book.
Additionally, a couple of essays have been newly edited, 2-3 pp. worth, giving them a fresh feel. One of my favs, “Incomplete Quad”, now reads tighter, the excised parts unmissed.

Chapter 12 (audiobook) is a real treat: A 54 min. long interview by Paul Constant. Sedaris is questioned about his take on the pandemic, how quarantine affects his writing, daily habits, etc. He also remarks on several of his titles, offering evaluations (incl. some regrets) in hindsight. It concludes with a “lightning round”, largely re: his amusing plans upon his demise, such as how he’ll finally ‘get into Yale’.

The physical print book: sewn binding, with bright yellow boards capped with cheery red head/tail bands. Dust jacket has raised lettering in a variety of colorful fonts. Pages are deckle-edged, with lt. cream colored, lighter-weight paper*. (See photo)

The overall presentation hints at a fun read— and it is!

*While I’m not fond of the thin paper so many publishers use as of late, it does make for easier carrying for ‘real book’ loving readers such as myself.
(Altho I own e-books & various e-readers, I’ve never warmed to them. Doubtful I ever will.)

As per Sedaris... his next offering will be a “second volume of (his) diaries”.

As with nearly every title from this author— highly recommended!

Thanks for reading,
-CC, Amazon Prime Member-Reviewer
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Reviewed in the United States 🇺🇸 on December 13, 2021
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Reviewed in the United States 🇺🇸 on September 8, 2022
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Reviewed in the United States 🇺🇸 on March 8, 2022
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Reviewed in the United States 🇺🇸 on December 14, 2020
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Reviewed in the United States 🇺🇸 on January 25, 2022

Top reviews from other countries

Otter
1.0 out of 5 stars Lacks Verve
Reviewed in the United Kingdom 🇬🇧 on November 16, 2020
3 people found this helpful
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Nemesis
4.0 out of 5 stars Missing the Radio Voice
Reviewed in the United Kingdom 🇬🇧 on January 15, 2022
Wronster
5.0 out of 5 stars Lovely present spoilt by careless packing
Reviewed in the United Kingdom 🇬🇧 on March 5, 2021
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5.0 out of 5 stars Lovely present spoilt by careless packing
Reviewed in the United Kingdom 🇬🇧 on March 5, 2021
Delighted to get this as a present but disappointed it came with a swathe of card from the envelope stuck down the side. Doesn't stop me reading the book but ruins the pleasure of a pristine new book to read. More care needed with packaging!
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Kali
5.0 out of 5 stars His best yet
Reviewed in Canada 🇨🇦 on November 4, 2020
5 people found this helpful
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Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars David Sedaris' The Best Of Me is a good volume to have at hand
Reviewed in Canada 🇨🇦 on December 1, 2020
4 people found this helpful
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