I Didn't Ask to Be Born (But I'm Glad I Was)

Bill Cosby, Author, George Booth, Illustrator
Bill Cosby, illus. by George Booth. Center Street, $21.99 (192p) ISBN 978-0-89296-920-3
Reviewed on: 06/20/2011
Release date: 11/01/2011
Open Ebook - 978-1-4555-0594-4
Hardcover - 254 pages - 978-1-4555-0735-1
Open Ebook - 99 pages - 978-1-4555-0595-1
Paperback - 195 pages - 978-0-89296-922-7
Open Ebook - 1 pages - 978-1-306-74702-8
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Dealing with a defiant teen who refused to clean her room, claiming, "I didn't ask to be born," the 73-year-old Cosby replied, "Neither did I." In his first humor book since Cosbyology (2002) and his dietary digressions in I Am What I Ate (2003), Cosby's observational humor goes into high gear with clever commentaries on everything from erectile dysfunction and social networking to the Bible and bird feeders. He introduces new characters, Peanut Armhouse and Old Mother Harold, and he describes "the strangest flying thing I had ever seen": a blue jay, irritated by a squirrel on a bird feeder, gave it "a giant goosing." and the two went "airborne, with the blue jay's head and shoulders inside the orifice of the squirrel." A lengthy comical centerpiece about the Bible's missing pages is the book's best: "If I went to any of the seven networks and handed them Genesis and said, ‘This guy has written a spec outline for a new show,' they'd want to know where the characters are going to be in episode 89 and then pass on the whole project." Along with such topics as Native Americans, Cabbage Patch Dolls, and his love for the Universal horror films of the 1930s, he recalls events from his childhood and teen years, including his first date at age 15. George Booth's funny cartoon illustrations make a fine fit with these amusing essays, all written with the amiable and accessible lightweight lilt Cosby's eager readers expect. (Nov.)
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