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About Dave Barry
The New York Times has pronounced Dave Barry "the funniest man in America." But of course that could have been on a slow news day when there wasn't much else fit to print. True, his bestselling collections of columns are legendary, but it is his wholly original books that reveal him as an American icon. Dave Barry Slept Here was his version of American history. Dave Barry Does Japan was a contribution to international peace and understanding from which Japan has not yet fully recovered. Dave Barry's Complete Guide to Guys is among the best-read volumes in rehab centers and prisons. Raised in a suburb of New York, educated in a suburb of Philadelphia, he lives now in a suburb of Miami. He is not, as he often puts it so poetically, making this up.
Dave’s most recent books are “Best. State. Ever.: A Florida Man Defends His Homeland,” and “Lessons From Lucy: The Simple Joys of an Old, Happy Dog.” His next book, “A Field Guide To The Jewish People,” which he co-wrote with his friends Adam Mansbach and Alan Zweibel, will be published September 24. Dave is not Jewish, but Adam and Alan are, so it’s kosher.
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In the city of Coconut Grove, Florida, these things happen: A struggling adman named Eliot Arnold drives home from a meeting with the Client From Hell. His teenage son, Matt, fills a Squirtmaster 9000 for his turn at a high school game called Killer. Matt's intended victim, Jenny Herk, sits down in front of the TV with her mom for what she hopes will be a peaceful evening for once. Jenny's alcoholic and secretly embezzling stepfather, Arthur, emerges from the maid's room, angry at being rebuffed. Henry and Leonard, two hit men from New Jersey, pull up to the Herks' house for a real game of Killer, Arthur's embezzlement apparently not having been quite so secret to his employers after all. And a homeless man named Puggy settles down for the night in a treehouse just inside the Herks' yard.
In a few minutes, a chain of events that will change the lives of each and every one of them will begin, and will leave some of them wiser, some of them deader, and some of them definitely looking for a new line of work. With a wicked wit, razor-sharp observations, rich characters, and a plot with more twists than the Inland Waterway, Dave Barry makes his debut a complete and utter triumph.
We never know what will happen next in Florida. We know only that, any minute now, something will.
Every few months, Dave Barry gets a call from some media person wanting to know, “What the hell is wrong with Florida?” Somehow, the state’s acquired an image as a subtropical festival of stupid, and as a loyal Floridian, Dave begs to differ. Sure, there was the 2000 election. And people seem to take their pants off for no good reason. And it has flying insects the size of LeBron James. But it is a great state, and Dave is going to tell you why. Join him as he celebrates Florida from Key West at the bottom to whatever it is that’s at the top, from the Sunshine State’s earliest history to the fun-fair of weirdness that it is today.
It’s the most hilarious book yet from “the funniest damn writer in the whole country” (Carl Hiaasen, and he should know). By the end, you’ll have to admit that whatever else you might think about Florida—you can never say it’s boring.
But Seth has absolutely no idea what he’s about to get into. A simple drink or two with the boys sparks a series of events that will pit Seth and his friends against everything and everyone imaginable, from his very powerful, very disapproving soon-to-be father-in-law to the federal government to a love-struck orangutan.
Seth’s hope for smooth sailing is turning into a trip on the Titanic. And the water is getting deeper by the minute…
As Dave Barry turns seventy—not happily—he realizes that his dog, Lucy, is dealing with old age far better than he is. She has more friends, fewer worries, and way more fun. So Dave decides to figure out how Lucy manages to stay so happy, to see if he can make his own life happier by doing the things she does (except for drinking from the toilet). He reconnects with old friends and tries to make new ones—which turns out to be a struggle, because Lucy likes people a lot more than he does. And he gets back in touch with two ridiculous but fun groups from his past: the Lawn Rangers, a group of guys who march in parades pushing lawnmowers and twirling brooms (alcohol is involved), and the Rock Bottom Remainders, the world’s oldest and least-talented all-author band. With each new lesson, Dave riffs hilariously on dogs, people, and life in general, while also pondering Deep Questions, such as when it’s okay to lie. (Answer: when scallops are involved.)
Lessons from Lucy shows readers a new side to Dave Barry that’s “touching and sentimental, but there’s still a laugh on every page” (Sacramento Bee). The master humorist has written a witty and affable guide to joyous living at any age.
With fond nostalgia, Dave Barry takes readers back to a simpler time: The year is 1960, and young Doug Barnes is playing a shepherd in the Christmas pageant at St. John’s Episcopal Church—which is a very big deal. But there are problems everywhere. His fellow shepherds are misbehaving, which makes their director, Mrs. Elkins, yell at all of them; the girl he likes is playing Mary opposite a Joseph who is depressingly smart, athletic, and cute; the family dog is doing very poorly, and they have no idea what they’re going to tell Doug’s little sister, Becky, who’s playing one of the Host of Angels and who loves the dog more than anything; and his dad’s just gotten a flat tire, which means they might not even get to the pageant after all.
But Christmas is a time of miracles. And for Doug and his family, this will be the most miraculous Christmas of all.
In brilliant, brand-new, never-before-published pieces, Dave passes on home truths to his new grandson and to his daughter Sophie, who will be getting her learner’s permit in 2015 (“So you’re about to start driving! How exciting! I’m going to kill myself”). He explores the hometown of his youth, where the grown-ups were supposed to be uptight fifties conformists, but seemed to have a lot of un-Mad Men-like fun, unlike Dave’s own Baby Boomer generation, which was supposed to be wild and crazy, but somehow turned into neurotic hover-parents. He dives into everything from the inanity of cable news and the benefits of Google Glass (“You will look like a douchebag”) to the loneliness of high school nerds (“You will never hear a high school girl say about a boy, in a dreamy voice, ‘He’s so sarcastic!’”), from the perils of home repair to firsthand accounts of the soccer craziness of Brazil and the just plain crazy craziness of Vladimir Putin’s Russia (“He stares at the camera with the expression of a man who relaxes by strangling small furry animals”), and a lot more besides.
By the end, if you do not feel wiser, richer in knowledge, more attuned to the universe . . . we wouldn’t be at all surprised. But you’ll have had a lot to laugh about!
The two of them are about to collide in a swiftly escalating series of events that will send them running for their lives, pursued by the police, soldiers, subversives, bears, revolutionaries, pirates, and a black ops team that does not exist. Where all that takes them you can’t even begin to guess, but the literary journey there is a masterpiece of inspiration, chaos, and unadulterated, well, lunacy. And they might even learn a lesson or two along the way.
From three award-winning and bestselling humor writers comes a hilarious guide to everything you need to know about Jewish history, holidays, and traditions.
Why do random Jewish holidays keep springing up unexpectedly? Why are yarmulkes round? Who was the first Jewish comedian? What's "Christian humor" and have you ever even heard of that phrase? Who is "the Golem" and whom do you want it to beat up?
These baffling questions and many more are answered by comedy legends Dave Barry, Adam Mansbach, and Alan Zweibel, two-thirds of whom are Jewish. In A Field Guide to the Jewish People the authors dissect every holiday, rite of passage, and tradition, unravel a long and complicated history, and tackle the tough questions that have plagued Jews and non-Jews alike for centuries.
Combining the sweetness of an apricot rugelach with the wisdom of a matzoh ball, this is the last book on Judaism that you will ever need. So gather up your chosen ones, open a bottle of Manischewitz, and get ready to laugh as you finally begin to understand the inner-workings of Judaism.
Not everyone has to be dragged kicking and screaming through adulthood. Dave Barry will help through this process—with his hilarious takes on parenting, changing self-image, the battle of the sexes, technology, health care, celebrityhood, and even vampires!