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The McSweeney's Joke Book of Book Jokes by…

The McSweeney's Joke Book of Book Jokes

by McSweeney's

Other authors: John Hodgman (Introduction)

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Some of these are trite, and some are great ideas thinly executed (Cormac McCarthy's letter to his city council complaining about a traffic light is lots of fun, but frankly, I could do a better job of it), but a good half of these entries are just plain genius and make the whole book worth it. ( )
  Snoek-Brown | Feb 7, 2016 |
With a wonderfully entertaining introduction by John Hodgman, The McSweeney’s Joke Book of Book Jokes is an interesting mix of hilarious and “huh?” collected from McSweeney’s Internet Tendency.

As with any compilation using a number of different authors, McSweeney’s… is hit or miss. The hits are hysterical.

In my opinion, the best, “Words and Expressions Commonly Misused by Insipid Brothers-In-Law” by Dennis DiClaudio. If you have any pet peeves you will completely relate to the growing intensity of this three page diatribe (I sure hope I'm using that word correctly). This is the one that made me laugh out loud.

Also, well worth a mention, “Yesterday’s Book Reports from Today’s Notables” by Wayne Gladstone. Here you’ll find Matthew McConaughey reporting on Alice in Wonderland, Ralph Nader on The Jungle, Matt Damon on A Separate Peace and Chris Hansen of Dateline‘s “To Catch a Predator” series, reporting on The Trial.

OK. A few more on the hit list. In no particular order:

“Shakespeare’s Interrogatories, or Why He Wanted to Kill All the Lawyers” by Mike Warner and Michael Pardo
“Unpublished Coda to Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird” by Tim Carvell
“Postcards from James Joyce to His Brother Stan" by Martin Bihl
“Submission Guidelines for Our Refrigerator Door” by Christopher Monk
“Social Security Denies Gregor Samsa’s Disability Claim” by Alex St. Andrews

and, last, but by no means, least (although it is the last entry in the book)

“A Series of Letters to Homer from Thimines, Odysseus’s College Roommate” by William Hughes

Your humor may vary.

Because these are short entries, the really good news is that the bad don’t last too long. And, they make the good look that much better. ( )
  retropelocin | Dec 13, 2013 |
Ugh, this was really kind of painful, except the "Gregor Samsa applies for disability" bit, and the one about future titles for the Sue Grafton series (", is Almost for Coma", heh.)

( )
  JenneB | Apr 2, 2013 |
Yesterday, I stumbled upon The McSweeney's Joke Book of Book Jokes at the bookstore. Although I tend to be leery of joke books (bad memories from 3rd and 4th grades), I usually enjoy reading the posts at McSweeney's Internet Tendency, and $12.95 later, I was reading this book on the subway and quickly discovering that this was not a book filled with knock-knock jokes or really bad puns. Instead, it is a book of humorous retellings and reimaginings of literary works. For instance, it includes a stump speech by presidential candidate Jane Eyre. It also has a fabulous confrontation between Dateline: To Catch a Predator's Chris Hansen and Humbert Humbert, the main character from Lolita.

In other words, this is a joke book for the literary set. However, despite the writers' unending fascination with James Joyce, not all of the scenarios involve classical books. One of my favorite essays is entitled "Winnie-the-Pooh is My Coworker" (click on the title to read it at the McSweeney's site). The writers also use other childhood books such as Charlotte's Web, The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants (written from Jenna Bush's perspective), and the Hardy Boys series.

Although the essays are sometimes inconsistent in quality, this book provided a pleasant diversion and has the added bonus of making you use that knowledge you learned in English class. Go forth, read, and enjoy "Lady Macbeth on Ambien." ( )
  sweeks1980 | Jan 18, 2009 |
The McSweeney’s Joke Book of Book Jokes is part New Yorker Shouts & Murmurs and part McSweeney’s Lists -- with the focus of each of the dozens of short pieces on some aspect of books (e.g. “Possible Titles for Future Sue Grafton Novels After She Runs Out of Letters”)
... or characters (“Social Security Denies Gregor Samsa’s Disability Claim”)
... or writers (“From the Found Notebooks of the Members of Homer’s Writing Group”)
... or writing (“Submission Guidelines for Our Refrigerator Door”)
... or language (“Words and Expressions Commonly Misused by Insipid Brothers-in-Law”).

Although books of humor -- and anthologies in general -- can be uneven, this collection is clever and funny throughout. ( )
  DetailMuse | Jan 15, 2009 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 030738733X, Paperback)

As John Hodgman says in this book's introduction, “We all know that books are funny. First, they are made of paste and cloth, which is funny, as is the fact that people still buy and read them.” With that in mind, the McSweeney's Joke Book of Book Jokes collects the best book-related humor from the humor-laden archives of McSweeney's Internet Tendency. Open it and be regaled by such sketches, lists, letters, and spoofs as:

Postcards from James Joyce to his Brother Stan
Winnie-the-Pooh is My Coworker
Ikea Product or Lord of the Rings Character?
Popular Children's Fairy Tales Reimagined Using Members of My Family
The Very Unauthorized Biography of Steven Seagal
Chuck Norris Erotica
John Updike, Television Writer
Jane Eyre Runs for President
Cormac McCarthy Writes to the Editor of the Santa Fe New Mexican
Holden Caulfield Gives the Commencement Speech to a High School
Letters from Odysseus's College Roommate

And many dozens more.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:23:00 -0400)

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