Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Naked by David Sedaris

Overview from Barnes and Noble:

In Naked, David Sedaris's message alternately rendered in Fakespeare, Italian, Spanish, and pidgin Greek is the same: pay attention to me.
Whether he's taking to the road with a thieving quadriplegic, sorting out the fancy from the extra-fancy in a bleak fruit-packing factory, or celebrating Christmas in the company of a recently paroled prostitute, this collection of memoirs creates a wickedly incisive portrait of an all-too-familiar world. It takes Sedaris from his humiliating bout with obsessive behavior in A Plague of Tics to the title story, where he is finally forced to face his naked self in the mirrored sunglasses of a lunatic. At this soulful and moving moment, he picks potato chip crumbs from his pubic hair and wonders what it all means.
This remarkable journey into his own life follows a path of self-effacement and a lifelong search for identity, leaving him both under suspicion and overdressed.

My thoughts:
I enjoyed this one much more than Sedaris's earlier two books.  It was a lot more like Me Talk Pretty One Day than Barrel Fever.  My audio book all ran together, since as soon as one book ended the next one started, so I kind of lost track of which segments went with which book.  I did find the part about going to a nudist colony for a brief time funny and entertaining.  A man goes to the restroom and comes back with a ring on his butt and white paper left behind.  A woman is able to sit in the sauna naked but has a hard time using the correct anatomic terms for private body parts and he finds people tend to stay around the colony to avoid having to get dressed to go somewhere else.  Having Sedaris and his sister Amy doing the reading lent it an edge it might not have had with a different narrator.  I had somewhat sworn him off after my first reading, seven years ago, of Me Talk Pretty One Day.  I felt it was an uneven book, with the the second half being markedly better than the first, but now I am interested in seeing what some of his more recent books are like.

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780316777735
  • Publisher: Little, Brown & Company
  • Publication date: 6/1/1998
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 224

1 comment:

  1. I haven't read any of his books (other than sampling one enough to know if wasn't for me - a Christmas one I think). The bit about the man after using the bathroom sounds enlightening - I never would have thought about that aspect of living in a nudist colony.