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Wit Lit: A Blogger's Favorite Comedic Reads

29 March 2012

Spring has sprung, this year with a vengence. I know this as last night I had my token Spring sinus headache. The usual evening accompaniments of TV and talk radio are not invited over. The only friends I want to hang out with is a hot shower and a good book. Not so much the darker, dystopian books I've been reading lately thanks to Suzanne Collins and her crazy kid-murdering trilogy, but more from my absolute favorite section of the book store: Comedy and Humor.

My two favorite kinds of comedy books are memoirs by comedians and comedic short story collections. Below are my personal picks from both groupings!

Funny Books by Famous Funnies

These comedians turned authors chose a career at making people laugh and lived to tell about it. I love reading their perspective on finding the funny in real life, the ups and downs of putting yourself out there to the world and how they managed to give up "normal life" for fame but still turned out as decent humans.

Bossypants, Tina Fey

Cannot recommend this book more to any woman who will eventually become a working mom or a manager to others in her industry. It's a book for funny women but it's also a funny book for all women, if that makes sense. Tina helps me own my inner neurotic geek and helps me imagine a world where it will even come to benefit me one day. I love the last part of the book where she has two big professional events at the exact time of a big personal life event and she has to make it all work. Story of my life at most times! I also love how she discusses the benefit of her improv training in multiple areas of her personal life. I took a lot of improv growing up and professional actress I am not, but I feel as though of all the activities I did growing up, improv has served me the best as a quasi-adult.



Born Standing Up, Steve Martin

The words "Steve Martin" make my heart glow. America's jolly Renaissance Man. I've read all of his fiction works, which I think are phenomenal, and was very excited for his personal memoir, which does not disappoint. One of the few during the height of Second City to make it really big through his stand up, and his hardwork is so endearing in this book. I love a man who loves making people laugh, playing the banjo and his mom. If you are in Dallas and adore Steve Martin as much as I do, I hope you will join Markus and I at the Bishop's Gala for Catholic Charities next January, where Steve will be performing. Mark your calendars!



Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Converns), Mindy Kailing

I love Mindy Kailing SO much for proving that young women can be modest, smart and career driven while also being allowed to be highly concerned with pop culture and maintaining best friend relationships and healthy weights. (Mindy suggests never being twice the weight of your best friend, for starter's. I concur.) I am never the person to tell people that they "have to" read a book, but I did pull the bestie card and made my best friend read this gem. Is it the Bible of the quirky twenty-something.


The Amorous Busboy of Decatur Avenue, Robert Klein

A great read about the Brooklyn that spawned all of the great Jewish comics such as  Larry David, Robert Klein, Richard Lewis and the Stiller family. Also some great insight into the early days of the Second City. One of my favorite nights of my young adult life was seeing Robert Klein at the Improv and having him sign my book, after he realized that he could not stop his leg, natch.


Markus and I with Robert Klein in 2009.

Quick Wit: My Favorite Comedic Short Story Writers

I love to keep a paperback of short stories in my pool bag that is strictly my poolside read during the summer. Short Stories are the perfect choice since you can put it down for a while and not feel guilty. These authors are my personal favorites!


I Was Told There'd Be Cake, Sloane Crosley

She hits on all the highs and lows of a modern 20-something (let's face it - mostly lows). Essays on insane jobs and bosses, obligatory bridesmaid careers, moving day horror stories. A travelling book between my girlfriends!


Me Talk Pretty One Day, David Sedaris

Duhhh. These are the best. Two things: if you are reading this in public prepare to have people stare at you while you laugh at your book. Also, if you are new to reading Mr. Sedaris, go for the earlier titles like above that talk more of his childhood and save more recent titles such as When You are Engulfed in Flames for once you've gotten to know him more, as they will be even more humorous and endearing. If you are in the Dallas area, Davis Sedaris visits the Dallas Musuem of Art about once a year for the Arts and Letters Live program!

Phew. So here's a lesson in not putting a nickel in my jukebox re: funny reads. If you are looking for more comedic book recommendations, I am linking up with the fellow bibliophile Sweet Green Tangerine where she has even more summer reading suggestions! Also, find me on GoodReads where we can share book recommendations! 

What is your favorite genre of books?

Do you have a author or book that can make you split your sides laughing?

4 comments:

  1. Loved the Mindy Kaling book. I'm reading Kristen Johnson's book Guts right now. Have you read it? Looks like it would fit right in with this list.

    (found your blog via Legally Fab)

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  2. I'm dying to read the Tina Fey book. Ive heard so many good things about it! Also Mindy Kaling. I love her and I think I need to read that too. The only comedian turned author book I've read (that I can think of??) is My Horizontal Life by Chelsea Handler. Her stories are fantastic whether they actually happened or not :P

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  3. SO glad you joined us this week! And with such a great post!! So many great recommendations here :) Thanks a ton for joining in!

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  4. Hey, I've tried to find you on Goodreads and couldn't! :( Find me: Megan C. Stroup. And I definitely agree that short stories are the way to go with humor!

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