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How Paul Robeson Saved My Life: And Other Mostly Happy Stories [Audio Cassette]

Carl Reiner

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Book Description

October 1999
Multiple Emmy and Grammy Award-winning comedian Carl Reiner has been making people like Jerry Seinfeld, Alan Alda, Neil Simon, and Steve Allen laugh for years. Filled with multi-dimensional tales, this short story collection is at once poignant, nostalgic and laugh-out-loud funny.
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Product Details

  • Audio Cassette
  • Publisher: Dove Entertainment Inc; Unabridged edition (October 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0787122610
  • ISBN-13: 978-0787122614
  • Product Dimensions: 17.8 x 10.7 x 1.8 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 91 g

Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

Film comedy director Reiner (The Jerk, etc.) reveals his vaudevillian side in this collection of short humor pieces. Each plays like a skit, the characters established quickly through dialogue-driven vignettes. The stories often build to punch line climaxes, or they are left fractured, standing alone as parabolic slices of life. For Reiner, the human drama is mostly played out between the sexes. Men are smitten by women and will do anything to capture them, as in the tale where a philanthropist falls for a high-priced escort girl. In another, a man brings home a Miss America candidate to meet his scrutinizing family. Characters from history are called in freely as well, Casanova, naturally enough, for one. Even God makes an appearance, as a supreme jokester, in an absurd version of the creation. Reiner, who has worked as a comic actor (on TV's The Dick Van Dyke Show and elsewhere), is a wry and evocative reader. His terse writing style adapts well to audio form, effectively drawing the listener into each story as a mini-fantasy. He is funny, but not too funny; the tape has a relaxed, unforced air. Best, Reiner seems to get a genuine kick out of his own material. Based on the 1999 Cliff Street hardcover. (Dec.)
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From AudioFile

For the kind of honest, pure humor that truly defines the art of comedy, listeners can always rely on Carl Reiner. Decades of practice and experience have resulted in a sort of effortless stream of tales that touch us on a very real level while allowing us to laugh at the quirks of human nature. His new collection of short stories is a great culmination of this life focus. Reiner creates very real characters we can identify with, and his versatile voice brings them to life with the true spirit of playfulness only a master possesses. R.A.P. 2000 Audie Award for Humor © AudioFile 2000, Portland, Maine-- Copyright © AudioFile, Portland, Maine

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Amazon.com: 3.0 out of 5 stars  1 review
1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The Mostly Happy Mr. Reiner Sept. 9 2000
By Sally Drell - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio Cassette
This collection of many short stories by Carl Reiner is a treat for anyone who is a fan of his, and will bring new fans into his circle. As he says in the title of his book, they are "mostly happy" stories, but one of the three best ones that stand out in my mind is about a homeless woman named Sally that is poignant, polished and emotionally wrenching. It is far from the hilarity we've come to expect from the creator of the Dick Van Dyke Show or the co-performer of the 2,000 Year-Old Man sketches with Mel Brooks. Of course, there are laughing-out-loud short short stories, involving unlikely figures such as Albert Einstein, who Reiner embroils in an illicit love affair. All you can do is laugh at the imagination and wit of such a premise. Of course, in my judgment, the best short story comes from the title of the book, HOW PAUL ROBESON SAVED MY LIFE. Read it and tell me if you think it's true. I can't tell. I hope it is, because it should have happened to Mr. Reiner when he was in the Army. One criticism of the book is that some of the endings seem oddly flat. One great compliment to the author is that he makes you feel that you can sit down, too, and start writing a story, and you'll be surprised at the ease and fluency of your work. It's a book worth reading, even with its highs and lows, and I look forward to his next effort.

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