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Theft by Finding: Diaries (1977-2002) by…

Theft by Finding: Diaries (1977-2002) (2017)

by David Sedaris

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Terrible as a long car listen, better as a going to sleep listen, Sedaris' chosen diary entries are short vignettes attesting to his skill at observation. Man, did he do a lot of drugs in his younger days. It was interesting to put together an actual timeline of the events and relationships related in his essays from previous books. ( )
  cindywho | May 27, 2019 |
Liked the explanation of the title. Maybe my least favorite Sedaris, though. ( )
  bookczuk | May 18, 2019 |
I almost didn’t get this book. I really like Sedaris and I don’t think I’ve ever read anything I didn’t nigh-on love. But why would I care about snippets from his diaries. Well, walking into a book store (yes, they are still out there – real, live, brick-and-mortar bookstores – and there is nothing quite so wonderful in the world) I saw it and, in a book-buying frenzy, went ahead and bought it.

Good choice.

Why, you might ask, would you care about snippets when we have so many wonderful David Sedaris essays? Because, I would answer, snippets of David Sedaris are just as good, entertaining, funny, thoughtful, and insightful as the essays.

These diaries chronicle Sedaris’ rise without actually emphasizing that rise. It shows his life as it is being led – no particular foreshadowing, no begging for sympathy of a hard life lived, no preconceived anything. Just interesting and fascinating things that happen around a person’s life. (if no other lesson is learned by the reader, it should be that we all need to pay more attention to the weird and interesting things going on around us that we just flat miss.) The contents show the struggling artist become the struggling literary star. But none of it is called out; again, it is just a life being lived.

Oh yea, the voyage is interesting and entertaining. There are insights into Sedaris’ life, but you also see the observational skills that make his writing so successful.

I don’t know that anyone should start their plunge into David Sedaris with this collection (I’d say Santaland Diaries is the place for that), but for those who understand they are reading something special when they read Sedaris’ work (the neophyte or the long-time fans like myself) this is a fun trip. ( )
  figre | Dec 6, 2018 |
This book is a collection of more or less unedited diary entries throughout the author's adult life. Each entry feels like a snapshot of a moment in time, told often without context about people and places. The format feels authentic as a diary, but it is not very interesting for the reader.

The beginning is filled with drugs, poverty (or as the author would describe it, "being broke," which connotes a temporary situation), and aimlessness. The world of these early times shows an astounding amount of almost casual racism, misogyny, and homophobia (by other people, not the author!). The author documents everything without expressing anger, sorrow, fear, or other emotions. He is a passive observer rather than an active agent throughout, and that often feels frustrating to read. The parts I liked best are set in Paris, and they remind me what a fabulous book is Me Talk Pretty One Day.

Recommended only for fans of David Sedaris's collections of essays, which of course are inspired by these diaries but are much better written. ( )
  librarianarpita | Oct 12, 2018 |
This is by far my favorite thing that [a: David Sedaris|2849|David Sedaris|https://images.gr-assets.com/authors/1213737698p2/2849.jpg] has written.

By opening up his diaries he has stripped away the pretension that so often accompanies his writing and instead just laid himself bare. Rather than a caustic cynical wit infesting every page there is a genuine sense of wonder at the world around him and all the oddness in it. There's insecurity, amusement, and occasional shock at the sheer hypocrisy that exists in everyone. There's also remorse, and an occasional resignation to things. This is to say, it's a very human book, and I love it for that. It's also great for how short a lot of the entries are, boiling down the essence of longer stories to the bare bones that are, at times, the funniest bits about them.

One entry reads:

In Germany the movie Groundhog Day is called Eternally Weeps the Groundhog. To me that is so beautiful.

And it is beautiful, it truly is. At the end of the day this book was everything that I wanted it to be, and it left me with a smile on my face. ( )
  Lepophagus | Jun 14, 2018 |
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For Dawn “Friendship Flower” Erickson
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Not long after deciding to release a book of diary entries, I came upon a five-pound note
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0316154725, Hardcover)

One of the most anticipated books of 2017: New York Times Book Review, New York's "Vulture", The Week, Bustle, BookRiot

From bestselling author David Sedaris, for the first time in print: selections from the diaries that are the source of his remarkable autobiographical essays.

For nearly four decades, David Sedaris has faithfully kept a diary in which he records his thoughts and observations on the odd and funny events he witnesses. Anyone who has attended a live Sedaris event knows that his diary readings are often among the most joyful parts of the evening. But never before have they been available in print. Now, in Theft by Finding, Sedaris brings us his favorite entries. From deeply poignant to laugh-out-loud funny, these selections reveal with new intimacy a man longtime readers only think they know. Tender, hilarious, illuminating, and endlessly captivating, Theft by Finding offers a rare look into the mind of one of our generation's greatest comic geniuses.

(retrieved from Amazon Fri, 03 Feb 2017 21:51:20 -0500)

Shares the author's favorite diary entries, providing a look into the mind of a comic genius.

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