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Thank You for Smoking by Christopher Buckley
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Thank You for Smoking (original 1994; edition 1994)

by Christopher Buckley

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1,536324,781 (3.86)42
Member:jclyde
Title:Thank You for Smoking
Authors:Christopher Buckley
Info:Random House (1994), Edition: 1st, Hardcover, 272 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:****
Tags:None

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Thank You for Smoking: A Novel by Christopher Buckley (Author) (1994)

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Watch the film instead. ( )
  ars-poetica | Sep 9, 2016 |
This is a great satirical look at the tobacco industry. The humor is sly and subtle which is the best kind of satire. I needed some humor and this book provided a light touch, with great characters and a controversial topic to boot. I didn't see the movie so I had no pre-conceived notions heading into the story.

Nick Naylor is on the chopping block. He needs to come up with the next brilliant idea to get cigarettes back into the hands and lungs of the public. He has a shady boss who emerged from the world of vending machines and would like nothing better to rid himself of Nick.

Nick conferences with his social group, the Merchants of Death or MOD Squad as they call themselves. The other two in the squad are the reps for the firearms industry and the alcohol industry. He does an end around on his boss and goes directly to the head man in the tobacco industry, a man known as The Captain. He falls in love with Nick and his ideas and Nick is off to the races.

However, a lot of people want Nick gone. There is the Tumbleweed Man – long representing the rugged smoker and now suing the industry that made him famous as he dies of lung cancer; Nick's overheated co-worker and lover of his boss, Jeanette; his boss BR; and a host of unnamed individuals who call in to the talk shows on which Nick appears to threaten his life.

Nick survives a close call and from that point on, a cat and mouse game erupts as Nick tries to figure out who tried to kill him and the FBI tries to pin it on Nick, suspecting that it was all a publicity stunt.

This is a great little read. Satirical, topical and with some really great writing. I enjoyed it and will keep my eyes peeled for more by this author. ( )
  ozzieslim | Jul 7, 2016 |
This is classic Christopher Buckley-- taking a very serious topic and treating it with such a dose of satire that it becomes truly comic. I haven't seen the movie yet, because I wanted to finish this book first, but now I'm really looking forward to it. ( )
  BraveNewBks | Mar 10, 2016 |
Very funny and very entertaining! You find yourself at times agreeing with Nick Naylor and going "Yeah, that's right, I never thought about it like that!" Then, you remember he's fighting for cigarettes and this little world actually does exsist!!

The movie did the book justice. Though, it was weird reading sentences and conversations line-for-line that were the same as the dialogue of the movie. Made me have to remember that this book came BEFORE the movie and is not one of those movie novels written solely for more product profit. ( )
  elle-kay | Jan 27, 2016 |
A political satire skewering the tobacco, alcohol and gun lobbyists, the media, and the politicians who all have a role in public policy regarding these “legal vices.”

Nick Naylor is the chief spokesman for the Academy of Tobacco Studies, an organization funded entirely by the big tobacco producers. As such, he is frequently vilified, and the target of threats. His boss, BR, and his chief rival at the Academy, Jeanette (who happens to be the boss’s “main squeeze”) seem to be trying to angle him out of his job. But when he goes on Oprah, he becomes a hero to “The Captain,” and the golden boy of the Academy. Next he’s on Larry King Live where he is, once again, subject to irate callers, including one very specific threat on his life.

He shrugs this off, but he does commiserate with his friends Bobby Jay (spokesperson for the gun lobby) and Polly (spin control for alcohol industry) – collectively calling themselves the Mod Squad (for Merchants of Death). He also begins a relationship with sympathetic reporter Heather Holloway. Still the industry wants to ensure their golden boy is safe, so the Captain assigns him heavy duty security. When Nick ditches them, he finds himself kidnapped in the lobby of his own office building, tied and blindfolded, taken to a remote location, and covered in nicotine patches before being unceremoniously dumped on the National Mall and left for dead. Then the fun REALLY begins.

The story is somewhat dated today, but as political satires go it’s fast-paced and quite funny in places. ( )
  BookConcierge | Jan 24, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 32 (next | show all)
How often have you heard about flacks from the tobacco industry smoothly insisting that there's still no proven connection between smoking and disease, and asked yourself in outrage, "How can they live with themselves?" Well, Christopher Buckley supplies some answers in his savagely funny new satirical farce, "Thank You for Smoking," a novel so timely that you have to wonder if Mr. Buckley has been orchestrating recent events in tobacco-land, among them a full-page ad in The New York Times on Tuesday that was sponsored by the R. J. Reynolds Tobacco Company and called for "an informed debate" instead of a ban on smoking.

Mr. Buckley's fictional protagonist is Nick Naylor, chief spokesman for the Washington-based Academy of Tobacco Studies. He lives blithely enough with the knowledge that he works for an industry that kills 1,200 human beings a day: "More than 400,000 a year! And approaching the half-million mark."

But, as he says to one audience of "health professionals," "It's always been my closely held belief that with an issue as complex as ours, what we need is not more talking about each other, but more talking to each other." After all, the right to smoke is an issue of freedom, and "if we go tampering with the bedrock principles that our Founding Fathers laid down, many of whom, you'll recall, were themselves tobacco farmers, just for the sake of indulging a lot of frankly unscientific speculation, then we're placing at risk not only our own freedoms, but those of our children, and our children's children." . . .
 
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Nick Naylor had been called many things since becoming chief spokesman for the Academy of Tobacco Studies, but until now no one had actually compared him to Satan.
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0812976525, Paperback)

"Nick Naylor had been called many things since becoming chief spokesman for the Academy of Tobacco Studies. But until now no one had actually compared him to Satan." They might as well have, though. "Gucci Goebbels," "yuppie Mephistopheles," and "death merchant" are just a few endearments Naylor has earned himself as the tobacco lobby's premier spin doctor. The hero of Thank You for Smoking does of course have his fans. His arguments against the neo-puritanical antismoking trends of the '90s have made him a repeat guest on Larry King, and the granddaddy of Winston-Salem wants him to be the anointed heir. Still, his newfound notoriety has unleashed a deluge of death threats.

Christopher Buckley's satirical gift shines in this hilarious look at the ironies of "personal freedom" and the unbearable smugness of political correctness. Bracing in its cynicism, Thank You for Smoking is a delightful meander off the beaten path of mainstream American ethics. And despite his hypertension-inducing, slander-splattered, morally bankrupt behavior--which leads one Larry King listener to describe him as "lower than whale crap"--you'll find yourself rooting for smoking's mass enabler. --Rebekah Warren

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:07:42 -0400)

(see all 4 descriptions)

Nick Naylor, chief spokesman for the Academy of Tobacco Studies, undertakes a media blitz to defend the rights of smokers, a job that has unexpected repercussions when he is targeted by someone out to prove just how hazardous smoking can be.

(summary from another edition)

» see all 2 descriptions

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