Tuesday, September 16, 2008

What I am Reading - No spoilers

When You are Engulfed in Flames is the latest book by David Sedaris.  His books are anecdotes from his life, many from his childhood.  He is open, honest, crude and brash.  He can be disgusting or funny as hell.  It really depends on the mood of the reader.
Sedaris brings his own experiences, his own color to his stories.  He is a middle aged gay man living in France with his partner.  His memories are about his childhood, his partner's childhood from the angle of a obsessive compulsive child, a homosexual living in Raleigh, NC, of six children.  

I started reading Sedaris when a leftover book was deposited in the nursery in Guatemala.  I was accompanying my brother on picking up his son.  We had a lot of down time, while waiting for the administration procedures to take effect, so we spent it napping, giving Theo baths, trips to the pool, etc.  I picked up one of Sedaris's books and had to leave the room because I was laughing out loud.  He captures the personalities and nuances of his characters, his family, beautifully.
Soon after, I discovered that Sedaris did spots on NPR and had podcasts and other books published.  I read more of his books.
Some of his work is brilliantly funny, other stories are just crude.  If that is your humor, great.  It isn't mine.  I prefer the family anecdotes.  I detest the drug addict memories, the bathroom humor and the stories where feces is the main character.
So, his books are entertaining, when in the right mood.
I was hoping for more of a gay man's Erma Bombeck.  He is just too crude to pull this off.

1 comment:

DamianC said...

I do remember you doing quite a few belly laughs reading his book on the pick up trip!