There's no social distancing with Patrick Madden's hilarious Disparates. While reading these essays, you'll feel like he's in the room with you.
My first COVID-19-era "telehealth" video call had me looking up my doctor's nose. Who could blame him for turning his camera off?
TV star/writer/podcast host -- just don't call him a standup comic -- John Hodgman tackles class aspiration and other inconveniences in his memoir, Medallion Status.
Terry Eagleton's Humor wisely makes no argument beyond a survey of all the ways one can debunk some portion of all preceding theories of humor.
The DIY strategies and indie allegiances of recent alternative comedians reveal the spirit of punk to be alive and kicking beyond the music world.
Calypso uses a wandering style of storytelling to conjure a sense of Sedaris traveling through his own thoughts, getting lost on particular charming tangents before coming back to what he ultimately wants you to take away.
In Catherynne M. Valente's Space Opera, the Meaning of Life has a beat and, depending on your alien physiology, you might be able to dance to it.
If Alexei Sayle and Rik Mayall represented the Pistols/Clash in-your-face assault and battery side of British punk comedy, Ben Elton was its Elvis Costello, complete with geeky wide-rimmed glasses.
Intimacy with animals, babysitting plastic dolls, and running into your dad at a furry cuddle party are just a few of the details in this off-the-chain collection of stories, Unruly Creatures.
In light of movements like Black Lives Matter and Me Too, Dave Chappelle's 2000 film, Killin' Them Softly may be even more relevant today. But how's his humor holding up?
The college comedy deficit means that we are neither taught how to take a joke nor how to interpret one.
The father and son relationship, the wonky, beating heart of The Château, feels so well-worn and lived-in that its volatile pushes-and-pulls contain some genuinely touching moments.
Bill McKibben's novel asks readers to value resistance movements that embrace humor, creativity, and civility while inspiring activism as part of our everyday lives.
There's a ghostly suggestion of Philip Roth's writing voice in Portnoy's Complaint in this novel; a relatively calm voice, this time in the third person, documenting the madness.
WARNING: This review may disturb, nay, trigger recollections for Gen X'ers that grew up watching TV with adults in the '80s.
Mary Poppins, Mrs. Gamp, Egyptian deities, a Japanese umbrella spirit, and a supporting cast of hundreds of brollies fill Marion Rankine's lively history.
Hodgman makes no secret that the relatively inconsequential, real-life stories of an artistically and financially successful white middle-aged man are hardly what the world needs right now. But his humor sure helps in these times.
Peter Mattei's 2013 novel echoes Chuck Palahniuk's Fight Club, AMC's Mad Men, Ayn Rand's characters, and Bret Easton Ellis' American Psycho, albeit without the violence.
The Unquotable Trump is a devious, dark, disturbing, brilliant delight that will prove the standard bearer for texts from the resistance.
That the political class now finds itself relegated to accidental Alan Partridge territory along the with rest of the twits and twats that comprise English popular culture is meaningful, to say the least.
Dan Brown's The Da Vinci Code feels like a Johnny-the-Baptist-come-lately of preexisting Seinfeld scripture.