"David Sedaris's ability to transform the mortification of everyday life into wildly entertaining art," (The Christian Science Monitor) is elevated to wilder and more entertaining heights than ever in this remarkable new book.
Trying to make coffee when the water is shut off, David considers using the water in a vase of flowers and his chain of associations takes him from the French countryside to a hilariously uncomfortable memory of buying drugs in a mobile home in rural North Carolina. In essay after essay, Sedaris proceeds from bizarre conundrums of daily life-having a lozenge fall from your mouth into the lap of a fellow passenger on a plane or armoring the windows with LP covers to protect the house from neurotic songbirds-to the most deeply resonant human truths. Culminating in a brilliant account of his venture to Tokyo in order to quit smoking, David Sedaris's sixth essay collection is a new masterpiece of comic writing from "a writer worth treasuring" (Seattle Times).
Praise for When You Are Engulfed in Flames:
"Older, wiser, smarter and meaner, Sedaris...defies the odds once again by delivering an intelligent take on the banalities of an absurd life." Kirkus Reviews
This latest collection proves that not only does Sedaris still have it, but he's also getting better....Sedaris's best stuff will stillafter all this timemove, surprise, and entertain." Booklist
Table of Contents:
It's Catching Keeping Up The Understudy This Old House Buddy, Can You Spare a Tie?
Road Trips What I Learned That's Amore The Monster Mash In the Waiting Room Solutions to Saturday's Puzzle Adult Figures Charging Toward a Concrete Toadstool Memento Mori All the Beauty You Will Ever Need Town and Country Aerial The Man in the Hut Of Mice and Men April in Paris
The Smoking Section
[Sedaris] tallies up the last 25 years, the prime of his life, and isn't impressed by the sum: "How had 9,125 relatively uneventful days passed so quickly," he writes, "and how can I keep it from happening again?" As usual, Sedaris has lots of answers to the first question but not many to the second in this delightful compilation of essays circling the theme of death and dying, with nods to the French countryside, art collecting and feces.