Title: When You Are Engulfed in Flames
Author: David Sedaris
Genre: Non-fiction, memoir, humor
Publisher: Little, Brown and Company
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
Source: Audiobook from the public library
Audiobook reader: David Sedaris
First line: My friend Patsy was telling me a story.
This is the perfect review for Audiobook Week, because there simply is no other way to experience David Sedaris’s work. Yes, I know a lot of people simply read his books, but those people are missing out on the utter brilliance that is Sedaris reading his own work. The man is hysterical, and his comic timing is so perfect because he knows his material like no one else can.
When You Are Engulfed in Flames is as irreverent, off-the-wall, at times slightly obscene, and quirky as you could want in a book of essays. From contemplating making coffee with the water in a vase of flowers to agreeing to unknown medical procedures because of his failure to learn rudimentary French to the dilemma of having spit a cough drop into the lap of a woman sleeping next to him on a plane – Sedaris takes the little things that happen to him and mines every drop of comic potential. Along the way, he makes the reader laugh at his or her humanity and the sheer absurdity of life.