"What are my qualifications to write this book? None really. So why should you read it? Here's why: I'm a little fat. If a thin guy were to write about a love of food and eating I'd highly recommend that you do not read his book."
Bacon. McDonalds. Cinnabon. Hot Pockets. Kale. Stand-up comedian and author Jim Gaffigan has made his career rhapsodizing over the most treasured dishes of the American diet ("choking on bacon is like getting murdered by your lover") and decrying the worst offenders ("kale is the early morning of foods"). Fans flocked to his New York Times best-selling book Dad Is Fat to hear him riff on fatherhood, but now, in his second book, he will give them what they really crave - his thoughts on all things culinary(ish). Insights such as: why he believes coconut water was invented to get people to stop drinking coconut water, why pretzel bread is number three on his most important inventions of humankind (behind the wheel and the computer), and the answer to the age-old question "which animal is more delicious: the pig, the cow, or the bacon cheeseburger?"
©2014 Jim Gaffigan (P)2014 Random House Audio
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"Funny, but read more like a series of jokes"
I am not sure who introduced me to Jim Gaffigan, but I thank whoever it was. I have a tendency to be a bit overly serious and so I have to be intentional about adding humor into my world. Jim Gaffigan is my favorite stand up comic right now.
I read his Dad is Fat right after it came out last year, and bought the audiobook of Food: A Love Story on Tuesday, the day it came out.
If you are going to read a comic’s book, you should get the audiobook if they are narrating. Comics understand delivery, even if they are not professional narrators. There were a few places were it was clear that Gaffigan was reading, but most of the time the delivery was good and more similar to a stand up show than a narrated book.
That is also part of why I did not enjoy the book (and Dad is Fat) as much as I thought I would. Yes, there were lots of funny moments. And I still definately recommend it if you are a Gaffigan fan.
The problem is that Gaffigan is a comic, not a writer. As a comic he is focused on one liners and short funny stories. So the book really wasn’t structured as a whole. It all loosely connected around the theme of food. (And Gaffigan is good talking about food.) But it lacked cohesion.
There were glimmers of what a better book could be. He could not have a book on food without talking about Hot Pockets. But anyone that has a slightest knowledge of Gaffigan has heard his Hot Pockets stuff. So he talked a bit about how the Hot Pocket jokes evolved. And that was good, but then it went back to more jokes.
The laziest part of the book was the lists. Lists of fast food resturants, lists of ethnic resturants, lists of types of Barbeeque.
I am not disappointed I read the book, I am disappointed in the book because I expected more. Also if you have seen many of Gaffigan’s shows (all videos for me) then about 25% of the book will be familiar.
"Less than Gaffigan"
Jim Gaffigan is funny and likeable, but this book is everything but. He just discusses food then makes cliched remarks about it. I found it impossible to finish - it was just too annoying. Like the know-it-all colleague who has been everywhere, tried everything, and wants to yak about the way he feels about it.
"Haven't We Heard All of This Before?"
I'm a big Jim Gaffigan fan. I've watched an absolute ton of his stand-up and even read his first book, Dad is Fat. What I liked about Dad is Fat was that it was a nice blend of his stand-up routines and his life in New York as a Dad. It felt genuine but still made me laugh quite a bit.
Food: A Love Story is a rehash of much of Jim Gaffigan's stand-up routine. From the infamous Hot Pocket bit to his Cinnabon is like a bean bag chair that you can eat. If you've watched his stand-up a lot of his stuff is going to feel familiar almost too familiar. Some of the jokes were exact replicas of jokes from his stand-up. It felt like to me we got a copy and paste of many of his great jokes with some extra side commentary sprinkled in for good measure. I love his stand-up but I didn't need to purchase it in audiobook form as well.
It ended up feeling like a cheap cash-in. I hope it wasn't purposely put out that way but regardless its a hard book to recommend. Unless you've never watched any of his stand-up this is one I'd say your better off logging into Netflix and watching his stand-up over reading this book.
"A Long Stand-Up Routine"
I picked up this book after seeing a funny segment on The Tonight Show where Jim Gaffigan was plugging it. I got a few giggles watching him and Jimmy Fallon joke around, and thought his book might be enjoyable.
It was, however it’s like 7 hours of stand-up on the same topic; funny but a little too long. I didn’t laugh out loud, but I smiled and chuckled a lot - it was entertaining but I can’t really say I’d recommend it.
This book is FUNNY. I loved it. Jim talks about his family and his feeling about food and it couldn't be better.
"more of the same hilarious stuff from the man"
Lightweight observations surrounding most anything related to what you put in your mouth. Very enjoyable!
Not sure... 1st forth of the book was awesome! funny and clever. But the rest was reused jokes from filmed stand ups, (example) Mr Universe and Beyond Pale.
The new stuff was awesome, BMI joke laughed out loud!
Reused jokes? not interested.
"I would never eat something that looks like it came from under my fridge"
No, there is only so much you can write about it.
Still love this awesome comedian!
Mr. Gaffigan's incredibly witty and comical insights into the hows, whats, whens, wheres and whys of food had me laughing my way to the refrigerator, pantry, phone, restaurants...... He is a gifted narrator and storyteller. I will savor this audiobook for years to come, even though it is not edible as the author originally intended.
I listened to this while walking and trying to lose weight.That alone is funny.
It's all about food.
About 1/5 was repeat material, but it was still hilarious. His narration and delivery are on point. Highly recommend!
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