This site uses cookies to deliver our services, improve performance, for analytics, and (if not signed in) for advertising. By using LibraryThing you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your use of the site and services is subject to these policies and terms.
Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

When You Are Engulfed in Flames by David…

When You Are Engulfed in Flames (original 2008; edition 2009)

by David Sedaris

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
7,506238704 (3.89)213
Title:When You Are Engulfed in Flames
Authors:David Sedaris
Info:Back Bay Books (2009), Edition: Reprint, Paperback, 336 pages
Collections:Your library

Work details

When You Are Engulfed in Flames by David Sedaris (2008)

  1. 00
    Dry: A Memoir by Augusten Burroughs (sweetiegherkin)
    sweetiegherkin: These two nonfiction books deal with giving up a vice (alcohol and, to a lesser extent, drugs for Burroughs; cigarettes for Sedaris) and both do so with dark humor scattered throughout their memoirs. That being said, Sedaris's work is more funny than serious while the opposite is true for Burroughs's. Also, Sedaris's book is largely short stories/vignettes while Burroughs's follows a more traditional narrative. Both men are homosexual and that plays some factor in their books, although it's not the overarching story and/or theme.… (more)
  2. 00
    Swish: My Quest to Become the Gayest Person Ever by Joel Derfner (echo2)
  3. 00
    Fraud: Essays by David Rakoff (Cynara)

Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

No current Talk conversations about this book.

» See also 213 mentions

English (235)  Dutch (1)  All languages (236)
Showing 1-5 of 235 (next | show all)
[b: When You Are Engulfed in Flames|1044355|When You Are Engulfed in Flames|David Sedaris|https://images.gr-assets.com/books/1440552572s/1044355.jpg|3255908] is understandably considered one of [a: David Sedaris|2849|David Sedaris|https://images.gr-assets.com/authors/1213737698p2/2849.jpg]'s best collections. While not necessarily more cohesive than some of his other books it contained within it a lot less of the caustic essays that tend to characterize his writing. Yes, there is still the amusement of people dressed nicely and cursing like sailors, the amusement of being labeled something that you aren't, the jarring realization that... well, you might just deserve what you've got. Added to all of that, though, is a good deal more self-reflection and maturity. Over time, it seems, Sedaris has mitigated some of the pretension: now it's employed only in more humorous ways.

This is so far my favorite of his books. The last essay in it, a chronicle of his decision to stop smoking, was utterly hilarious for its reflections of being a foreigner in Japan. Other high points included the gifting of a human skeleton to his partner, a jarring ride with a cab driver to his sister Amy's that ended with him actually taking the cab driver's questionable advice, and a chronicle of what might have been the most New York neighbor one could ever hope for.

It's a good collection, but as has been said before, if you like Sedaris you'll love it - if you don't like Sedaris, well, this won't change your mind. ( )
  Lepophagus | Jun 14, 2018 |
This just wasn't for me. I was expecting something that would make me laugh out loud, and that wasn't what I got. I'm sure for the right person, it would be great. I listened to the audiobook. Perhaps reading it might have made a difference... ( )
  ptkpepe98 | Mar 19, 2018 |
After attempting to read one of his books - I forget which - I've learned that a big part of my enjoyment of David is listening to him.... ( )
  kmajort | Feb 9, 2018 |
Enjoyable. I only skipped one weird story completely. My favorite was "April in Paris," about his love affair with a spider. The story from which the book derives it's nice is long, but nicely layered, a truth within a truth somewhere. I'll read pretty much anything he writes, though. I'm a fan. ( )
  MsKathleen | Jan 29, 2018 |
A collection of stories on various topics- all quite hilarious! A laugh out loud book! ( )
  camplakejewel | Sep 27, 2017 |
Showing 1-5 of 235 (next | show all)

» Add other authors (6 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
David Sedarisprimary authorall editionscalculated
Colombo, MatteoTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Deggerich, GeorgTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Richard, NicolasTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Sedaris, DavidNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Series (with order)
Canonical title
Original title
Alternative titles
Original publication date
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
For Ronnie Ruedrich
First words
My friend Patsy was telling me a story.
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Publisher series
Original language
Canonical DDC/MDS

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English (3)

Book description
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0316143472, Hardcover)

"David Sedaris's ability to transform the mortification of everyday life into wildly entertaining art," (The Christian Science Monitor) is elevated to wilder and more entertaining heights than ever in this remarkable new book.
Trying to make coffee when the water is shut off, David considers using the water in a vase of flowers and his chain of associations takes him from the French countryside to a hilariously uncomfortable memory of buying drugs in a mobile home in rural North Carolina. In essay after essay, Sedaris proceeds from bizarre conundrums of daily life-having a lozenge fall from your mouth into the lap of a fellow passenger on a plane or armoring the windows with LP covers to protect the house from neurotic songbirds-to the most deeply resonant human truths. Culminating in a brilliant account of his venture to Tokyo in order to quit smoking, David Sedaris's sixth essay collection is a new masterpiece of comic writing from "a writer worth treasuring" (Seattle Times).

Praise for When You Are Engulfed in Flames:

"Older, wiser, smarter and meaner, Sedaris...defies the odds once again by delivering an intelligent take on the banalities of an absurd life." --Kirkus Reviews

This latest collection proves that not only does Sedaris still have it, but he's also getting better....Sedaris's best stuff will still--after all this time--move, surprise, and entertain." --Booklist

Table of Contents:

It's Catching
Keeping Up
The Understudy
This Old House
Buddy, Can You Spare a Tie?
Road Trips
What I Learned
That's Amore
The Monster Mash
In the Waiting Room
Solutions to Saturday's Puzzle
Adult Figures Charging Toward a Concrete Toadstool
Memento Mori
All the Beauty You Will Ever Need
Town and Country
The Man in the Hut
Of Mice and Men
April in Paris
Old Faithful
The Smoking Section

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:00:43 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

A collection of essays celebrates the foibles of the author's everyday life in France and America, from an attempt to make coffee with water from a flower vase to a drug purchase in a North Carolina mobile home.

(summary from another edition)

» see all 8 descriptions

Quick Links

Popular covers


Average: (3.89)
0.5 2
1 21
1.5 8
2 88
2.5 28
3 416
3.5 134
4 919
4.5 78
5 513

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.


About | Contact | Privacy/Terms | Help/FAQs | Blog | Store | APIs | TinyCat | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | Common Knowledge | 130,183,245 books! | Top bar: Always visible