What is a typical guy moment, anyhow? Daniel Pinkwater remembers the disappointment of meeting his Lone Star Ranger hero up close and personal. Gordon Korman relishes the goofy ultra violence of the old Looney Tunes cartoons. Stephen King realizes that having your two hundred-pound babysitter fart on your five-year-old head prepares you for any literary criticism. And that’s just a sampling from Guys Write for Guys Read, a fast-paced, high energy collection of short works: stories, essays, columns, cartoons, anecdotes, and artwork by today’s most popular writers and illustrators. Guys Write will feature work from Brian Jacques, Jerry Spinelli, Chris Crutcher, Mo Willems, Chris Van Allsburg, Matt Groening, Neil Gaiman, the editors and columnists from Sports Illustrated,The Onion and Esquire magazines, and more. Selected by voters at the Guys Read Web site and compiled by Jon Scieszka, this wide-ranging collection of authors and illustrators shows that guys do read . . . and will read more if given things they enjoy reading.
Actually, I hate it when it says that only one or two people (the editor(s)) are the authors of a book. Because that’s not true for books like this one. There’s a whole bunch of different authors that contributed stories to this book. The only thing is, there is too many authors to be able to put them all on the front. See, I tried to do it–but it kind of failed.
It was simply too long.
Anyways, I just want to mention that this book was actually how I met a lot of the different authors on this list and got introduced to their books. The most notable, the ones whose books I loved and cherished, were Avi, Matt Groening, Jack Gantos, Tony DiTerlizzi and of course, Jon Scieszka. This is not to say I didn’t enjoy the other authors on this list, it’s just that I either found them in different ways or I just never got the chance to read their work yet.
To this book, I will always be grateful for the chance to meet all these amazing authors through this great book. Without it, I would never have been able to read Matt Groening’s LIFE IN HELL, Tony DiTerlizzi’s THE SEARCH FOR WONDLA and many more fantastic books.
As for this book, I loved these stories and so did my older brother. This book is so funny, and it’s just a lot of fun to read. The first time, I kind of skipped around the different stories and read the ones whose titles piqued my interest. The second time around, I just decided to read the whole thing and was so grateful that I did. I had missed stories that, the second time around, made me laugh out loud and I just had a lot of fun with.
More importantly, this book reaches out to all kinds of readers. It has snippets of drawings, cartoons, lots of comedy, biographies and much more, all in the form of short stories. And, I said before, the format is really great. I love books like this, with a bunch of different authors and a ton of short stories. They aren’t the most satisfying sometimes, but those books are kind of like introductions to those different authors. And, if you’re like me, or if you like the author just that much, you track down the author on the internet and find out about their other books.
All in all, a great book, a great gift to a younger guy, and a humorous collection of stories that I love to flip through from time to time. 4 stars. Here are some passages from the book:
“A walk with a two-year-old is very Zen; it is not about the end but the journey. He needs to pet the dog someone is walking; to roll down the slight incline to the church basement, and then roll again, and again, and again; to remind me of the place where the wasps (he calls them bees) live, then zoom past it.”
“That Mesozoic mama’s boy wouldn’t have lasted five seconds in the Cretaceous period.”
pg count for the paperback: 272