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Comment: A well-cared-for item that has seen limited use but remains in great condition. The item is complete, unmarked, and undamaged, but may show some limited signs of wear. Item works perfectly. Pages and dust cover are intact and not marred by notes or highlighting. The spine is undamaged.
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Dynomite!: Good Times, Bad Times, Our Times--A Memoir Hardcover – June 26, 2012

4.2 out of 5 stars 71 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

Kirkus Reviews, 4/15/12
“A fast, funny and informative stand-up routine/memoir from one of the major comic stars of the 1970s…A unique perspective on the perils of modern comedy from a survivor with a long memory.”
 
Publishers Weekly, 5/21/12
“A solid, thoughtful, and provocative memoir about [Walker’s] nearly four-decade long career.”

Spittake.com, 6/27/12
“Without a healthy dose of humility, he couldn’t draw such a painfully honest portrait of life as a comic on the road. Whatever his reputation, he has persevered, and his story is thought-provoking and well worth the read.”
Kingman Daily Miner
“A dyn-o-mite read about a true pop culture icon and comedy legend…This is a fun read, a book, which you will remember, and one that might make you stop and pause for a moment as you ponder some of his pithy sayings. This is a five star book and one you will want on your bookshelf.”

American Profile, 8/12/12
“Paints a revealing self-portrait that also depicts the changing times of a socially charged era….It’s a dyn-o-mite read.”

Cleveland.com, 10/2212
“[An] immensely insightful, humorous memoir.”

About the Author

Jimmie Walker was born in 1947 in the Bronx. At 22, he began performing as a standup comedian and was eventually discovered by the casting director for Good Times. He continues to tour the country doing stand-up and lives in Las Vegas. Sal Manna is a journalist who has written for magazines such as Time, Playboy, Los Angeles, and People, and newspapers such as the Los Angeles Times, the Boston Herald, the San Jose Mercury-News, and Newsday.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 296 pages
  • Publisher: Da Capo Press (June 26, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0306820838
  • ISBN-13: 978-0306820830
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 6.1 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (71 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #472,159 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is a no BS show biz memoir. Refreshingly honest -- and pointedly funny. The tone is conversational like chatting with Jimmie at Cantor's Deli after a late night spot at the Improv.
You get insider stories on the many show biz friends Jimmie helped. Jimmie is his own person and not afraid to give his own sharp opinions.
His philosophy is that we should feel free to laugh because we are free.
His book is sprinkled with jokes from his act.
If you have a chance to catch Jimmie in person on the road, do. I promise you will laugh.
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Format: Hardcover
Jimmie Walker's biography 'Dyn-O-Mite', was a book I had actually been waiting to read for awhile. Even before Mr. Walker wrote it. I am a very big fan of television from the 60's and 70's, and 'Good Times' was one of my favorite sitcoms to watch as a child(though I think the show was already in re-runs when I began watching it). So as I grew older, and good television comedy began to take a nosedive, I began to rewatch many of those beloved, old programs, but this time, from an adult point of view.

Mr. Walker has the rare talent of making his early life, before stardom, seem just as interesting as what came after and how his life ended up, when his star began to ebb.

I always try and keep in mind, that when a person is writing about themselves, it is their truth that they are trying to relate. Mr. Walker's memories of the 'Good Times' cast, the storylines and the dysfunction behind the scenes, were all things I had never quite heard before. I had heard things but not quite the way he put them(for example, I thought John Amos just up and quit. I had no idea he was fired).

Mr. Walker is also brutally truthful on the subject of race, though I personally disagreed with him on two subtopics- his standing in the Black community because of his conservatism, and his reasons for not dating Black women. On the latter, some underage, Black girl that he shouldn't have been seeing, told her parents on him, they sued and after that he never dated another Black woman(mind you, she was underage so he was never dating any 'women' in the first place). He just isn't attracted to Black women and for someone who is so frank about everything else in this book, I was surprised he couldn't just outright say that.

Also, I cringed whenever Mr.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I've been a Jimmie Walker fan since before I was a teenager. I had a dyn-o-mite t-shirt and watched Good Times each week.

Even now, I watch the Good Times reruns every night.

As an adult, I because fascinated by the behind-the-scenes stories I heard about this show and was disappointed that the show did not live up to its original promise due to a lot of behind the scenes politics and emotions.

Jimmie did a great job in this book of not trashing Esther Rolle or John Amos, even though it would have been easy to do so. He presented the facts, backed up with quotes, and did not spend any time telling tells out of school.

Rehashing Good Times took about 1/3 of the book, maybe less, the fuller story was Jimmie's life in ghetto, his success as a comic and his team of comrades, many of whom rose through the ranks with him. (I think I was expecting/hoping for more Good Times memories, but the book stood on its own without the Hollywood put downs.)

Jimmie was a gentleman in this book, even when he didn't have to. (Are you listening, Jay Leno?)

Jimmie told an interesting story that kept me going. I was up until 3am and read the book in one sitting...

The best thing about Jimmie's story is that it's not over yet...
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I hate writing or reading reviews from people who do not finish a book, so before writing any review I try to commit myself to reading the entire book. I'm sorry, but with this one I just can't. I simply cannot finish reading this book.

It's mostly a series of boring stories and dropping of names of comics he's worked with. *yawn* There is very little written about the show Good Times or any behind the scenes information.

I don't know what chapter I am on but it's after he joined the TV show Good Times and I am severely bored with it. I will not be completing this book.

And I'll save you the trouble of buying or reading it by telling you the most interesting fact in the whole book, in my opinion was that Lawrence Fishburne rehearsed for two weeks as the character of Michael and then was let go when Ralph Carter was able to get his contract issues settled with Raisin.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I enjoyed reading this book as it offered a lot of insight into what Jimmie Walker endured growing up and becoming famous.

Who would have guessed he was the catalyst for Jay Leno and David Letterman success.

Reading this book prompted me to watch "The Late Show" docudrama about Jay Leno and David Letterman, that prompted me to buy "Ovitz" book about Michael Ovitz.

Definitely read this book if you want to learn about Jimmie Walker - the man.
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Format: Hardcover
An auto-biographical account of the life of Jimmie Walker . . .
You know how old people talk too much sometimes and tell way too elongated stories about their lives, droning on and on? Jimmie Walker has officially reached that age. This book is that person that sits next to you on the airplane that won't stop talking. The book is heavy with all of these names that he drops, over and over . . . and over . . . and over again . . . the same names . . . in every chapter. He barely dedicates one chapter to what made him a mainstream success and a cultural icon that still persists today: Good Times. This book is a self-validating autobiographical yawn, chocked full of tedious anecdotes that are illogically mish-mashed together. He hops back and forth from a story to a name drop back to the story. Cripes. I ended up skimming over paragraphs and putting the book down all together after the skimpy mention of Good Times.
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