Encyclopedia of an Ordinary Life: A Memoir Kindle Edition

4.5 out of 5 stars 236 ratings
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ISBN-13: 978-1400080458
ISBN-10: 1400080452
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Editorial Reviews

Review

“Entries are consistently amusing, revelatory, poetic, or strike that “That’s exactly how I see/experience it!” synapse in the brain…A+.” —The Plain Dealer (Cleveland)

“[Rosenthal] shines her generous light of humanity on the seemingly humdrum moments of life and shows how delightfully precious they actually are…a marvelous memoir.” —The Chicago Sun-Times

“Encyclopedia has miles of pillow book charm…Rosenthal’s humor is generous and endearingly scattershot.” —The Village Voice

“Reading it, you get the feeling that not only would you like Amy to be your best friend because she’s so thoughtful and endearing but because the most ordinary of moments do not escape her own unique sense of profundity.” —The Detroit News

“The perfect postmodern memoir, collecting the bits and pieces of a so-called average life and filing them into a clever narrative that reveals “ordinary” is anything but.” —Sun-Sentinel (South Florida)


From the Trade Paperback edition.

Amazon.com Review

"I have not survived against all odds. I have not lived to tell. I have not witnessed the extraordinary. This is my story."

Amy Krouse Rosenthal, one-time Might magazine columnist and self-confessed hater of the segue has written a snappy, random, remarkable memoir--the first of its kind to give readers an honest flaws-n-all perspective of what it's like to be...ordinary. Initially inspired by the "bizarre, haphazard arrangement" of The Pillow Book of Sei Shonagon, Rosenthal has collected a lifetime of thoughts, observations, and decisions, and created an alphabetized personal encyclopedia, complete with cross-referenced entries and illustrations. Rosenthal reveals the minutiae of her life, from pumping gas ("Every. Single. Solitary. Time I go to get gas I have to lean out the window to see which side the tank is on"), to witnessing her son's accident ("I saw with front-row-seat clarity, just how quickly, randomly, and mercilessly your child can be taken away"), and in turns both playful and poignant, engages the reader in effortless and stimulating conversation.

Whether you are laughing aloud or nodding along, reading Encyclopedia of an Ordinary Life is like being introduced to a new friend--one that you automatically connect with and feel compelled to share. Fans of Dave Eggers, David Sedaris, and shows like Arrested Development and Scrubs will appreciate Rosenthal's quirky, conversational humor and dead-on observations. Writers will see the book as a contemporary portrait of the fledgling artist, and should enjoy her aptly named, "Evolution of this Moment"--a timeline tracking her growth as a writer from her first word ("more") to publication of her fourth book.

Modesty prevents Rosenthal from acknowledging herself as anything other than ordinary--that, and the fact that she has not "survived against all odds"--but that certainly does not mean she has nothing to say, or to share. Her delightful memoir is a reminder that life is not always an adventure, but it can be full of sad, silly, and important moments that make it worth living. Witness the generosity of an author who is willing to reveal so much of herself, not just as a writer, but also as a person--share this delightfully quirky, utterly enjoyable book with family and friends with a note, "Here is someone I think you should meet." --Daphne Durham

Amazon.com Exclusive Content

The Lost and Found Project
Between January 25th and February 1st, hundreds of copies of Encyclopedia of an Ordinary Life were intentionally left in random places (taxis, public bathrooms, laundromats) in Chicago, New York, and San Francisco. Each book was inscribed with a note from the author, and the finder was encouraged to report back to Rosenthal's website (www.encyclopediaofanordinarylife.com) when and where the book was discovered.

Watch the "Lost and Found" video directed by filmmaker Steve Delahoyde, documenting Rosenthal's test run and featuring her theme song, "This is My Story."
Listen to the theme song written by Tony Rogers.


Ordinary Life from A to Z
How do you interview a smart, creative, clever author like Amy Krouse Rosenthal? You agree to let her start with the questions, and hang on for the ride. Find out more about Amy and sneak a peek behind-the-scenes at Amazon.com with this decidedly ordinary email correspondence between Ms. Rosenthal and senior editor Daphne Durham.

Read our unusual interview with author Amy Krouse Rosenthal.



Extra Ordinary Excerpts
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--This text refers to an alternate kindle_edition edition.

Product details

  • ASIN : B0013ALNMA
  • Publisher : Crown (December 18, 2007)
  • Publication date : December 18, 2007
  • Language : English
  • File size : 90726 KB
  • Text-to-Speech : Enabled
  • Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
  • X-Ray : Not Enabled
  • Word Wise : Enabled
  • Print length : 242 pages
  • Page numbers source ISBN : 1400080460
  • Lending : Not Enabled
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.5 out of 5 stars 236 ratings

Customer reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5 out of 5
236 global ratings
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Top reviews from the United States

Reviewed in the United States on March 16, 2017
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Reviewed in the United States on May 3, 2017
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Reviewed in the United States on April 15, 2017
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Reviewed in the United States on February 28, 2007
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Reviewed in the United States on July 4, 2018
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Top reviews from other countries

Hayley
5.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on March 12, 2020
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Claire T
5.0 out of 5 stars OK
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on February 28, 2019
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Sandra Margret
5.0 out of 5 stars Read This Book
Reviewed in Canada on April 25, 2017
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Bob
5.0 out of 5 stars Recommended? You bet...!
Reviewed in Canada on April 2, 2017
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D. Brown
5.0 out of 5 stars A quirky, enjoyable read
Reviewed in Canada on March 18, 2017
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