Welcome to Imprint Friday and today's featured imprint: Ecco books. Stop by each week to be introduced to a must-read title from one of my favorite imprints. I know you'll be adding many of these books to your wish list.
If you've ever watched American television then you know Larry Doyle. You may not recognize his name, but you certainly know one of the shows he wrote for: The Simpsons. Doyle's latest book--Deliriously Happy and Other Bad Thoughts--is a collection of his short humorous pieces. Some have appeared in magazines (such as The New Yorker), and others are new.
Here is the publisher's summary:
Do you like dogs? Babies? Baby dogs? Have you ever eaten ice cream or had love troubles? Wish there were dirty parts in The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn?Although I've never been a regular watcher of The Simpsons, Doyle's connection with the show was a draw for me. I also liked the fact that Deliriously Happy is a collection of essays, which means I can pick it up and read a piece as the mood strikes, thus drawing out my enjoyment.
If you answered yes to any of these questions, then this is the book for you.
It’s all here: This impressively consecutive collection of funny writing by Larry Doyle, the winner of the 2008 Thurber Prize for American Humor, a former writer for The Simpsons, and the author of I Love You, Beth Cooper, brings together an astonishing range of subjects under the umbrella of hilarious—an umbrella that is your free gift if you order right now. . . .
The topics Doyle covers include love and dating, family life, work life, popular culture, and restaurants and food. Nothing is sacred, and humor can be found in almost everything. I haven't read every essay yet, but what I've seen is fun. I like that Doyle has presented the pieces in a variety of formats, such as outlines, quizzes, lists, and Twitter entries. These design decisions are an added bonus.
The essay "My Heart: My Rules" is written in outline form:
2. As the result of years of painstaking trial and error, the television, stereo, thermostat, refrigerator, toaster, and furniture in this apartment are all set at their optimal levels in every regard. Any attempt to adjust any appliance or object in my apartment will only"Local Wag" is written in the style of a gossip column:
- result in them having to be reset, and
- introduce passive-aggressiveness into the relationship, which, as any book on the subject will tell you, is bad.
Waggings: Ben Finestein, Manhattan's own Jew, denies rumors that his deli, or Jewish-style restaurant, serves moth balls. He says they're called matzoh balls (pronounced "Mott's-O," like the applesauce) and are harmless boiled balls of dough. Jews consider them a delicacy, Ben says. . . . And that wasn't Erma Bombeck spotted signing books at Kym's Kards and Gyfts, Etc. last Saturday. She's dead. It was Michael Moore. Kym apologizes for any misunderstanding.Any one who likes The Simpsons and appreciates an irreverent look at life will like Doyle. I'm looking forward to reading his version of Huckleberry Finn, his take on actors' strikes, and more.
The promotional materials for the book include the following quotations. I share them here because the full reviews capture the heart of Deliriously Happy better than I could (click the links to read more):
- Kirkus Reviews concludes: "An unpredictable, unfailingly intelligent demonstration of a unique wit given free reign."
- Publisher Weekly says: "No matter the subject, Doyle can be trenchant, funny, esoteric, and unpredictable."
Beth Fish Reads is proud to showcase Ecco books as a featured imprint on this blog. For more information about Ecco, please read the introductory note from Vice President / Associate Publisher Rachel Bressler, posted here on July 15, 2011. Find your next great read by clicking on Ecco in the scroll-down topics/labels list in my sidebar and by visiting Ecco books on Facebook and following them on Twitter.