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Self-Help Humor


How Not to Become a Crotchety Old Man

How Not to Become a Crotchety Old Man Lowest new price: $5.90
Lowest used price: $4.33
List price: $8.99
Author: Mary McHugh
Brand: McHugh, Mary

Good things come in small sizes. That is so true, especially for How Not to Become a Crotchety Old Man.

Big on fun and filled with hilarious insights about how not to let our inner crotchety old man out, this one makes the perfect Father's Day gift. Men will learn how to age gracefully so they never rattle off an inappropriate "dirty old man" joke. They'll learn that reading the obits first is a cardinal sin and that never reading the instructions is a close second.

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Hilo Book 4: Waking the Monsters

Hilo Book 4: Waking the Monsters Lowest new price: $8.49
Lowest used price: $9.25
List price: $13.99
Author: Judd Winick
Brand: Random House Books for Young Readers

Dog Man meets Big Nate in HILO-the hilarious, intergalactic, New York Times bestselling graphic novel series that kids (and robots!) love! "A Total BLAST," says the Miami Herald! Chock full of MORE MONSTERS! MORE ACTION! MORE LAUGHS! MORE FUN!

DJ and Gina are TOTALLY ordinary kids. But Hilo isn't! ALERT! ALERT! ALERT! Has our favorite space boy finally met his match? Not if D.J. and Gina can help it! Mega Robot Monsters are suddenly waking up all over and they're TOO BIG and TOO STRONG for Hilo to fight on his own! Luckily, he doesn't have to! He has GINA and some brand new SUPER POWERS on his side! Being heroes can be super fun-but it can also be SUPER dangerous! And the closer Hilo and Gina get to saving their world from the monsters--the closer Hilo gets to the dark secret of his past. Does he really want to know? Do WE?!

Here's what people (and robots!) are saying about Hilo!
* Nominated for multiple State Awards!

"More giant robotic ants and people going 'Aaaah!' than in the complete works of Jane Austen"--Neil Gaiman, author of Coraline

"Every kid would love a pal like Hilo!" --Lincoln Peirce, author of Big Nate series

"Silly, tender, and most importantly: funny."--Jeff Smith, author of the Bone series

"A story that can be enjoyed by the entire family."--New York Times

* "Universally appealing."--Kirkus Reviews, Starred Review

* "Diverse characters, good friends, and humorous dialogue...and plenty of action makes this a must-have."--SLJ, Starred Review

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Fight Club: A Novel

Fight Club: A Novel Lowest new price: $7.88
Lowest used price: $1.54
List price: $14.95
Author: Chuck Palahniuk
Brand: Chuck Palahniuk

The first rule about fight club is you don't talk about fight club.

In his debut novel, Chuck Palahniuk showed himself to be his generation's most visionary satirist. Fight Club's estranged narrator leaves his lackluster job when he comes under the thrall of Tyler Durden, an enigmatic young man who holds secret boxing matches in the basement of bars. There two men fight "as long as they have to." A gloriously original work that exposes what is at the core of our modern world.

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  • Fight Club

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Naked Lunch

Naked Lunch Lowest new price: $8.06
Lowest used price: $3.99
List price: $16.00
Author: William S. Burroughs
Brand: Burroughs, William S./ Grauerholz, James (EDT)/ Miles, Barry (EDT)

Since its original publication in Paris in 1959, Naked Lunch has become one of the most important novels of the twentieth century. Exerting its influence on the relationship of art and obscenity, it is one of the books that redefined not just literature but American culture. For the Burroughs enthusiast and the neophyte, this volume—that contains final-draft typescripts, numerous unpublished contemporaneous writings by Burroughs, his own later introductions to the book, and his essay on psychoactive drugs—is a valuable and fresh experience of a novel that has lost none of its relevance or satirical bite.

Features:

  • Grove Press

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The Myth of Sisyphus and Other Essays

The Myth of Sisyphus and Other Essays Lowest new price: $9.29
Lowest used price: $4.22
List price: $15.00
Author: Albert Camus
Brand: Vintage

One of the most influential works of this century, The Myth of Sisyphus and Other Essays is a crucial exposition of existentialist thought. Influenced by works such as Don Juan and the novels of Kafka, these essays begin with a meditation on suicide; the question of living or not living in a universe devoid of order or meaning. With lyric eloquence, Albert Camus brilliantly posits a way out of despair, reaffirming the value of personal existence, and the possibility of life lived with dignity and authenticity.

Features:

  • Vintage

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Are You a Cow? (Boynton on Board)

Are You a Cow? (Boynton on Board) Lowest new price: $2.74
Lowest used price: $1.02
List price: $5.99
Author: Sandra Boynton
Brand: Simon & Schuster

Embrace identity with this brand-new board book from the beloved and bestselling Sandra Boynton!

Are you a COW?
Are you a DOG?
Are you a DUCK?
Are you a FROG?
     A clever chicken narrates a playful inquiry in this charming and hilarious story perfect for Boynton fans new and old. As readers answer the chicken’s questions, they’ll gain animal recognition skills as well as an important understanding: No matter who we are, it’s great to just be ourselves.
     From the author and illustrator of such bestselling classics as Moo, Baa, La La La! and A to Z, this cheerful, witty board book is sure to delight children and parents alike with Sandra Boynton’s trademark sense of humor.

Features:

  • Title: Simon & Schuster Are You a Cow By Sandra Boynton
  • Model number: 9781442417335
  • Dimensions: 7 inches high x .5 inches wide x 7 inches long

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You Know You're Fifty When

You Know You're Fifty When Lowest new price: $3.89
Lowest used price: $0.10
List price: $9.95
Author: Richard Smith
Brand: Broadway Books

Richard Smith's wildly popular books have made America laugh about everything from wedding-night jitters to weight loss. Now he turns his comic talent to a subject he's about to experience himself: climbing the half-century hill.

Over the next 15 years, 52 million Gen Xers will celebrate their 50th birthdays. With Smith as their guide, the Gen Xers will know exactly what lies ahead. Not only does turning 50 mean you survived your 40s, but you get to join the AARP, answer your front door in bedroom slippers, and spend your kid's inheritance on liposuction. You also know you're 50 when...

Your main form of aerobic exercise is getting up to change the channel; An obscene phone call makes you chuckle; You think a mosh pit is something found at the center of an exotic fruit; You wonder who'll die first--you or your money; You wish the "ol' ticker" had a quartz movement"Performance anxiety" refers to your golf game.

With 200 of these cleverly illustrated clues and quips as well as comparison charts, entertaining graphs, and hilarious lists, You Know You're 50 When... will be the must-have, must-give birthday present for every soon-to-be-50 American.

Features:

  • Broadway Books

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You Are a Badass® Talking Button: Five Nuggets of In-Your-Face Inspiration (Miniature Editions)

You Are a Badass® Talking Button: Five Nuggets of In-Your-Face Inspiration (Miniature Editions) Lowest new price: $5.53
Lowest used price: $5.80
List price: $9.95
Author: Jen Sincero
Brand: Sincero Jen

In her refreshingly blunt #1 New York Times Bestseller You Are a Badass, Jen Sincero served up hilariously inspiring stories, sage advice, and the occasional swear word, all with the goal of helping readers reverse self-sabotaging behaviors and create a life they love. You will love this badass kit, which includes an 88-page mini abridgement of Sincero's irreverent guide and a Badass Button for your desk, kitchen, or bedroom that spouts inspiring messages in Sincero's own voice. It's the perfect anytime reminder that "You are a badass!"

Features:

  • You Are a Badass Talking Button Five Nuggets of In Your Face Inspiration

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Modern Romance

Modern Romance Lowest new price: $7.79
Lowest used price: $1.49
List price: $17.00
Author: Aziz Ansari
Brand: Ansari Aziz

The #1 New York Times Bestseller

A hilarious, thoughtful, and in-depth exploration of the pleasures and perils of modern romance from Aziz Ansari, the star of Master of None and one of this generation’s sharpest comedic voices


At some point, every one of us embarks on a journey to find love. We meet people, date, get into and out of relationships, all with the hope of finding someone with whom we share a deep connection. This seems standard now, but it’s wildly different from what people did even just decades ago. Single people today have more romantic options than at any point in human history. With technology, our abilities to connect with and sort through these options are staggering. So why are so many people frustrated?

Some of our problems are unique to our time. “Why did this guy just text me an emoji of a pizza?” “Should I go out with this girl even though she listed Combos as one of her favorite snack foods? Combos?!” “My girlfriend just got a message from some dude named Nathan. Who’s Nathan? Did he just send her a photo of his penis? Should I check just to be sure?” 

But the transformation of our romantic lives can’t be explained by technology alone. In a short period of time, the whole culture of finding love has changed dramatically. A few decades ago, people would find a decent person who lived in their neighborhood. Their families would meet and, after deciding neither party seemed like a murderer, they would get married and soon have a kid, all by the time they were twenty-four. Today, people marry later than ever and spend years of their lives on a quest to find the perfect person, a soul mate.

For years, Aziz Ansari has been aiming his comic insight at modern romance, but for Modern Romance, the book, he decided he needed to take things to another level. He teamed up with NYU sociologist Eric Klinenberg and designed a massive research project, including hundreds of interviews and focus groups conducted everywhere from Tokyo to Buenos Aires to Wichita. They analyzed behavioral data and surveys and created their own online research forum on Reddit, which drew thousands of messages. They enlisted the world’s leading social scientists, including Andrew Cherlin, Eli Finkel, Helen Fisher, Sheena Iyengar, Barry Schwartz, Sherry Turkle, and Robb Willer. The result is unlike any social science or humor book we’ve seen before.

In Modern Romance, Ansari combines his irreverent humor with cutting-edge social science to give us an unforgettable tour of our new romantic world.

Features:

  • Modern Romance

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Norwegian Wood

Norwegian Wood Lowest new price: $8.00
Lowest used price: $3.00
List price: $15.00
Author: Haruki Murakami
Brand: Haruki Murakami

Coming this October: Killing Commendatore, the much-anticipated new novel from Haruki Murakami

Stunning and elegiac, Norwegian Wood first propelled Haruki Murakami into the forefront of the literary scene.

Toru, a serious young college student in Tokyo, is devoted to Naoko, a beautiful and introspective young woman, but their mutual passion is marked by the tragic death of their best friend years before. As Naoko retreats further into her own world, Toru finds himself drawn to a fiercely independent and sexually liberated young woman.

A magnificent coming-of-age story steeped in nostalgia, Norwegian Wood blends the music, the mood, and the ethos that were the sixties with a young man’s hopeless and heroic first love.

In 1987, when Norwegian Wood was first published in Japan, it promptly sold more than 4 million copies and transformed Haruki Murakami into a pop-culture icon. The horrified author fled his native land for Europe and the United States, returning only in 1995, by which time the celebrity spotlight had found some fresher targets. And now he's finally authorized a translation for the English-speaking audience, turning to the estimable Jay Rubin, who did a fine job with his big-canvas production The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle. Readers of Murakami's later work will discover an affecting if atypical novel, and while the author himself has denied the book's autobiographical import--"If I had simply written the literal truth of my own life, the novel would have been no more than fifteen pages long"--it's hard not to read as at least a partial portrait of the artist as a young man.

Norwegian Wood is a simple coming-of-age tale, primarily set in 1969-70, when the author was attending university. The political upheavals and student strikes of the period form the novel's backdrop. But the focus here is the young Watanabe's love affairs, and the pain and pleasure and attendant losses of growing up. The collapse of a romance (and this is one among many!) leaves him in a metaphysical shambles:

I read Naoko's letter again and again, and each time I read it I would be filled with the same unbearable sadness I used to feel whenever Naoko stared into my eyes. I had no way to deal with it, no place I could take it to or hide it away. Like the wind passing over my body, it had neither shape nor weight, nor could I wrap myself in it.
This account of a young man's sentimental education sometimes reads like a cross between Sylvia Plath's The Bell Jar and Stephen Vizinczey's In Praise of Older Women. It is less complex and perhaps ultimately less satisfying than Murakami's other, more allegorical work. Still, Norwegian Wood captures the huge expectation of youth--and of this particular time in history--for the future and for the place of love in it. It is also a work saturated with sadness, an emotion that can sometimes cripple a novel but which here merely underscores its youthful poignancy. --Mark Thwaite

Features:

  • Norwegian Wood

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