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Last Words: A Memoir by George Carlin

Last Words: A Memoir (2009)

by George Carlin, Tony Hendra

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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5891316,710 (3.85)5



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» See also 5 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 13 (next | show all)
I miss George ( )
  faerychikk | Jan 5, 2016 |
I miss George ( )
  faerychikk | Jan 5, 2016 |
Memoir of the greatest stand up ever.Very funny and entertaining and sometimes simply wise book about the life and adventures of George Carlin. ( )
  TheCrow2 | Dec 15, 2014 |
George Carlin was the greatest, not only at using words, but at telling us what we miss when we look right at the elephant standing in plain sight. This 'sortabiography' was culled together from 15 years of tapes and notes of Tony Hendra's, so going into it, the writing is a little stilted. In a large part of the the book, there is fluidity and great history—George's parents, birth, growing up, education, street education!, going into comedy, family, drugs, people, TV, movies, touring, books, and words. George goes deep, speaking about how his brain works and how his career rose, fell, and then hit the summit. Nothing is left out, pouring over the details of a typical, dysfunctional family, his role as a husband and father, and the death of his first wife. His whole life is left splayed open in the book, with plenty of words.

Unfortunately, the book was not written all in one go. There are great details about his early life, up through the '70s, then the voice was lost. The storytelling becomes a little choppy, and the details drop off as the years go by, either by George's own volition, or loss of thought. And to better get through the book, George's speech style should really be adopted—this enhances the reading ten-fold! And visually, the arms and jaw are flailing!

The greatest comedian of our time left too soon, but he did leave some of his best thoughts and the meaning behind his words. ( )
  jimcripps | May 2, 2013 |
A must read for every fan of Carlin, and those who want a look inside the mind of the word-obsessed, meaning-searching stand-up comedian. What we find inside is not always pretty, but it's as honest and truthful as any memoir can be.

While the book is, at times, uproariously funny, the focus here is not on comedy, but on how comedy is made. Humor, it turns out, is no laughing matter. Carlin worked meticulously on notes on topics, slowly and carefully shaping his 'bits' over years, carefully nursing them until they were ready for public view.

This book, too, was decades in the making, and the effort paid off. Those who hate Carlin will find reason here to find him as the self-centered, uncaring, drug addled freak that they expect. And those who love Carlin will find the working class intellectual who rose above two-dimensional shtick to rip the lid off polite society and show it for the hateful, greedy, violent mess that it is, and did so with great humor.

They're each part of who George Carlin was, and what made his work unique. I miss him, I miss his work, and I am grateful that this book invited in one last time.
  kenrg | Apr 10, 2013 |
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» Add other authors (2 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
George Carlinprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Hendra, Tonymain authorall editionsconfirmed
Carlin, PatrickNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Important places
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Related movies
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"Gee, he was here a moment ago..."
--(What George wanted on his tombstone--if he'd had one.)
First words
Sliding headfirst down a vagina with no clothes on and landing in the freshly shaven crotch of a screaming woman did not seem to be part of God's plan for me.
I have this real moron thing I do? It's called thinking.
Last words
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An autobiography that the late comedian nearly completed before he died chronicles his storied career, during which he pushed the boundaries of comedy and language and influenced several generations of performers.

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