Books at Fopp!
Here at Fopp, we proudly offer an enticing selection of the witty humorist David Sedaris books, and what’s even better, they are all part of our special 2 books for £7 promotion. Let’s dive into some of the titles from this remarkable author that grace our shelves.
David Sedaris, born on the brink of the ’60s in Johnson City, New York, is a beacon in the murky sea of contemporary American humor. He’s not your typical humorist; he’s a raconteur with a knack for wielding wit as sharp as a switchblade. Sedaris kicked off his literary escapade with Barrel Fever in 1994. But his game-changer was Me Talk Pretty One Day (2000). It’s the tome that earned him the Thurber Prize for American Humor and catapulted him into the stratosphere of comedic writers. What makes Sedaris a renegade wordsmith is his ability to make the ordinary downright extraordinary. Whether he’s recounting the intricacies of family gatherings or the peculiarities of beach vacations in Calypso or delving into the poignant complexities of familial bonds in Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim. Sedaris unearths the profound within the everyday. But don’t be fooled; beneath the chuckles lies a reservoir of profound insight. He’s not just about laughs; he’s a literary outlaw who wields humour as a weapon to dissect the human condition. His stories are a reminder that hilarity is a subversive force, capable of shining a spotlight on the absurdity of life in a world that often feels one twist away from farce.
If you’ve ever laughed your way through David Sedaris’s cheerfully misanthropic stories, you might think you know what you’re getting with Calypso. You’d be wrong.
When he buys a beach house on the Carolina coast, Sedaris envisions long, relaxing vacations spent playing board games and lounging in the sun with those he loves most. And life at the Sea Section, as he names the vacation home, is exactly as idyllic as he imagined, except for one tiny, vexing realization: it’s impossible to take a vacation from yourself.
With Calypso, Sedaris sets his formidable powers of observation toward middle age and mortality. Make no mistake: these stories are very, very funny – it’s a book that can make you laugh ’til you snort, the way only family can. Sedaris’s writing has never been sharper, and his ability to shock readers into laughter unparalleled. But much of the comedy here is born out of that vertiginous moment when your own body betrays you and you realize that the story of your life is made up of more past than future.
This is beach reading for people who detest beaches, required reading for those who loathe small talk and love a good tumour joke. Calypso is simultaneously Sedaris’s darkest and warmest book yet – and it just might be his very best.
Back when restaurant menus were still printed on paper, and wearing a mask-or not-was a decision made mostly on Halloween, David Sedaris spent his time doing normal things. As Happy-Go-Lucky opens, he is learning to shoot guns with his sister, visiting muddy flea markets in Serbia, buying gummy worms to feed to ants, and telling his nonagenarian father wheelchair jokes.
But then the pandemic hits, and like so many others, he’s stuck in lockdown, unable to tour and read for audiences, the part of his work he loves most. To cope, he walks for miles through a nearly deserted city, smelling only his own breath. He vacuums his apartment twice a day, fails to hoard anything, and contemplates how sex workers and acupuncturists might be getting by during quarantine.
As the world gradually settles into a new reality, Sedaris too finds himself changed. His offer to fix a stranger’s teeth rebuffed, he straightens his own, and ventures into the world with new confidence. Newly orphaned, he considers what it means, in his seventh decade, no longer to be someone’s son. And back on the road, he discovers a battle-scarred America: people weary, storefronts empty or festooned with Help Wanted signs, walls painted with graffiti reflecting the contradictory messages of our time: Eat the Rich. Trump 2024. Black Lives Matter.
In Happy-Go-Lucky, David Sedaris once again captures what is most unexpected, hilarious, and poignant about these recent upheavals, personal and public, and expresses in precise language both the misanthropy and desire for connection that drive us all. If we must live in interesting times, there is no one better to chronicle them than the incomparable David Sedaris.
A Carnival of Snackery
If it’s navel-gazing you’re after, you’ve come to the wrong place; ditto treacly self-examination. Rather, his observations turn outward: a fight between two men on a bus, a fight between two men on the street; collecting Romanian insults, or being taken round a Japanese parasite museum. There’s a dirty joke shared at a book signing, then a dirtier one told at a dinner party-lots of jokes here. Plenty of laughs.
These diaries remind you that you once really hated George W. Bush, and that not too long ago, Donald Trump was a harmless laughingstock, at least on French TV. Time marches on, and Sedaris, at his desk or on planes, in fine hotel dining rooms and Serbian motels, records it. The entries here reflect an ever-changing background-new administrations, new restrictions on speech and conduct. What you can say at the start of the book, you can’t by the end.
Sedaris has been compared to Truman Capote and Tennessee Williams, Lewis Carroll and a ‘sexy Alan Bennett’. A Carnival of Snackery illustrates that he is very much his own, singular self.
Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim
David Sedaris plays in the snow with his sisters. He goes on vacation with his family. He gets a job selling drinks. He attends his brother’s wedding. He mops his sister’s floor. He gives directions to a lost traveler. He eats a hamburger. He has his blood sugar tested. It all sounds so normal, doesn’t it?
In his latest collection of essays, David Sedaris deftly uncovers the hidden absurdities lurking beneath the veneer of ordinary life. With his trademark wit and insightful gaze, he guides readers through a world where the commonplace becomes extraordinary. He revels in the peculiar desires and concealed motives that shape human existence, transforming the mundane into a stage for uproarious comedy and heartfelt reflection. Amid the laughter, he probes the depths of human relationships, where forgiveness flows freely, and arguments serve as acts of love. Through each essay, Sedaris invites us to embrace life’s quirks, finding humor and wisdom in its delightful absurdity.
Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim stands as yet another indelible testament to the literary prowess of David Sedaris, firmly establishing him as one of the wittiest and most innovative writers of our time. His narratives serve as portals into a universe teeming with eccentric characters, odd desires, and hidden motivations, offering readers a delightful expedition into the realm of human idiosyncrasies.
The Best Of Me
For more than twenty-five years, David Sedaris has been carving out a unique literary space, virtually creating his own genre. A Sedaris story may seem confessional, but is also highly attuned to the world outside. It opens our eyes to what is at absurd and moving about our daily existence. And it is almost impossible to read without laughing.
Now, for the first time collected in one volume, the author brings us his funniest and most memorable work. In these stories, Sedaris shops for rare taxidermy, hitchhikes with a lady quadriplegic, and spits a lozenge into a fellow traveler’s lap. He drowns a mouse in a bucket, struggles to say ‘give it to me’ in five languages and hand-feeds a carnivorous bird.
But if all you expect to find in Sedaris’s work is the deft and sharply observed comedy for which he became renowned, you may be surprised to discover that his words bring more warmth than mockery, more fellow-feeling than derision. Nowhere is this clearer than in his writing about his loved ones. In these pages, Sedaris explores falling in love and staying together, recognizing his own aging not in the mirror but in the faces of his siblings, losing one parent and coming to terms – at long last – with the other.
Taken together, the stories in The Best of Me reveal the wonder and delight Sedaris takes in the surprises life brings him. No experience, he sees, is quite as he expected – it’s often harder, more fraught and certainly weirder – but sometimes it is also much richer and more wonderful.
The Best of Me spans a career spent watching and learning and laughing – quite often at himself – and invites readers deep into the world of one of the most brilliant and original writers of our time.