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Cosbyology: Essays and Observations from the Doctor of Comedy [Paperback]

Bill Cosby
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
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Book Description

Nov. 13 2002
Now in paperback, the national bestseller from the funniest man in America, who looks back at his life . . . bit by bit.

With more than 200,000 hardcover copies in print, Bill Cosby's Cosbyology has landed on bestseller lists nationwide, including the New York Times and USA Today.

In this wonderfully funny collection of stand-up material that touches on everything from childhood and marriage to school, sports, and work, Bill Cosby returns to his early days of comedy to give us a look at the funny side of life. Fusing his classic jazzy timing and edgy humor with the intelligence and perception that have made him a huge star, Cosby writes about his first experiences skiing, lying to his mother as a child, and fretting about ingrown hairs in midlife. Fans young and old will be eager to add this paperback edition to their collection, while new fans everywhere will delight in this sampling of great comic genius.

Bill Cosby is one of America's most beloved and well-known performers. He entered show business as a stand-up comedian in 1962 and has appeared in such television hits as I Spy, the animated Fat Albert, The Cosby Show, and Cosby. He has also starred in several movies and has written the bestselling books Childhood, Fatherhood, and Congratulations! Now What?, as well as the Little Bill children's series.

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Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

Cosby has entertained readers on subjects ranging from aging to marriage and parenthood. Some, however, will be disappointed in these 19 lightweight pieces composed of free association, fleeting memories and digressions: about how at age eight, for example, he went out to play, leaving his two-year-old brother alone, or about his refusal to do his geometry homework ("'cause home is for play"). Cosby's conversational humor involves repetition and minimalistic reduction of everything to brief sentences and simplistic language: "You don't want to have it checked because the doctor may say: Ooo! You've got it! That means you have it. If you don't go, it means you don't have it." Amid expositions on grandparents, plastic packaging, noisy boats and ingrown hairs, truly funny bits occasionally surface. On seating arrangements for the elderly, he says: "You cannot put someone who eats salt and regular food next to someone who can't have anything except a stainless steel fork and water because, if you do, they're not going to like each other." The best chapter recalls his move from Greenwich Village stand-up comedy to big-time clubs, particularly a big-time flop in Chicago. His honesty makes readers want a full-scale autobiography in place of these miscellaneous bits. Even the great George Booth falters here with offhand illustrations. (Nov. 7)Forecast: Hyperion plans an intense marketing campaign includes a radio and TV satellite tour, 12-copy counter displays and author appearances on Good Morning America, Rosie O'Donnell and numerous other national shows. This might have a big spike in sales at first, but word of mouth will slow it down.

Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From School Library Journal

Adult/High School-Comedy is funniest when it stays as faithful to the truth as Cosby keeps it in his latest collection of 19 autobiographical essays. His topics range from the unromantic changes in married love over time to the discomforts, dangers, and expense of learning to ski. Students will laugh hardest at his quirky jokes about the problems of growing up in the projects, being identified as an intellectually gifted child, and coping with threats to health and safety. The author reveals his most vulnerable moments as a young comedian who was too nervous to make his audience laugh. He describes how he walked off of the stage feeling totally humiliated. He also discusses his difficult adjustment to the military, and explains how that experience drove him to work hard in college. In stand-up comic style, Cosby shows readers different stages of his life, and he highlights all of the laughable moments in hilarious, hyperbolic detail throughout this short book. Such a highly successful person's willingness to share his stories of triumphing over adversity, and overcoming moments of failure, is sure to inspire many teens. Even reluctant readers will breeze through this book while laughing out loud along the way.
Joyce Fay Fletcher, Rippon Middle School, Prince William County, VA
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars I couldn't stop laughing! March 25 2004
By Meg
Format:Paperback
Bill Cosby is such a classic icon in America, you can guarantee anything that he writes will be hilarious! This is no exception. I must say this was my first book by Cosby given to me at Christmas time. I was dying of laughter, the way he puts things so frankly, is hilarious. A definite must have for any Cosby fan!
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3.0 out of 5 stars Good, but not great March 1 2004
Format:Paperback
Your money is better spent buying old Cosby albums. The first two "essays" in this collection are almost word-for-word transcriptions from the two bits on his "Oh Baby!" that lose a lot of their pop in written form.
Better yet, just buy the Himself VHS.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A Ph.D in "COSBYOLOGY". Oct. 6 2003
Format:Paperback
Ingrown hairs? Noisy boats? Routine Physicals? How do you get enough funny material out of these subjects? Just ask Bill Cosby. With this collection of short subjects, he pulls the most amusing moments and displays for all to read, and I will be the first to admit it, some of that stuff made me laugh out loud, especially when dealing with the subject of his wife and what makes their marriage work. Another subject worth a good chuckle is when he talks about his stint in the navy. His observations and responses to life in the armed forces was a real trip. Never having seen him in concert, I have a feeling that this book represents his stage act, and that alone is worth it's weight.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Uneven funny July 9 2003
Format:Paperback
If you like funny little stories you'll like this book. If you like Cosby's standup routines in a short version, you'll like this. Otherwise you may or may not like this book. This is basically a few of his short routines or anecdotes put together in a book. There's no real theme that ties all of them together nor or all of them on the same level of funny. Some will appeal more than others. I give it a C on the StuPage.
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