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The Cynic's Dictionary: Disgruntled Definitions for Our Times Paperback – May 1997

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Product details

  • Paperback: 190 pages
  • Publisher: William Morrow; New edition edition (May 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0688151256
  • ISBN-13: 978-0688151256
  • Product Dimensions: 15.9 x 14 x 1.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,433,562 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Paul M on 30 May 2010
Format: Paperback
Truely excellent if a little short but we can't have everything, and as time goes on it seems to be more and more relevant and true.
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3 of 6 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 29 Nov. 1998
Format: Paperback
The author skates the fine line between the profoundly insightful and the sophomorically silly. He knows that the Russian judge has him ticketed for a 7.5 regardless.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 15 reviews
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
An equal-opportunity offender 30 Jun. 2004
By Ellen Goodman - Published on
Format: Hardcover
Rick Bayan leaves nothing and no one unscathed--he exposes the dark underside of everyone and everything for all to see in this book. Everything that bothers you about EVERYTHING we all deal with in life is the victim of Bayan's unyielding criticism. I loved this book though--sometimes I laughed out loud in public because the author cuts to the chase so well. Some of my favorite definitions: Exhaustion--Sufficient cause for the hospitalization of a celebrity; the normal state of existence of the rest of the working world. Hometown: The community that nurtures us during our formative years, so that we might attend a good school, succeed handsomely and spend the rest of our lives somewhere else. You get the idea. Bayan tells it like it is--says on paper what the rest of us are thinking but don't dare say out loud. Great fun!
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
fun bathroom book 10 Dec. 2002
By audrey - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a fun book to put in the bathroom, and I mean that in a good way. It is witty and a bit insightful, and you can read it in short or long bits and find something to make you laugh. Isn't that what one needs in the loo? A few samples:
Fashion -- Today's rage, tomorrow's chuckle.
Math Anxiety -- An intense lifelong fear of two trains approaching each other at speeds of 60 and 80 mph.
Science Fiction -- Fairy tales for nerds.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Funny 6 July 2006
By Matthew Gorman - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book was funny. I bought it because it was a discount to get it with Ambrose Bierce's "Devil's Dictionary." I thought this was just as good. A great modern equivalent.
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Not as Bitter as Bierce 1 May 2004
By George R Dekle - Published on
Format: Hardcover
Ambrose Bierce (aka Bitter Bierce) wrote "The Devil's Dictionary" at the turn of the 20th Century. That 100 year old work still amazes and amuses with definitions such as "Pray--To ask that the laws of the Universe be annulled on behalf of a single petitioner, confessedly unworthy."
This work seeks to mine the same sarcastic vein which Bierce worked to such good effect. The result is somewhat uneven, and Bayan doesn't have quite the command of the English language that Bierce did.
At its best, however, "The Cynic's Dictionary" gives us definitions every bit as funny, not quite as caustic, and much more timely than Bierce's work. E.g.: "Science Fiction--Fairy tales for nerds." As a science fiction fan of many years' standing, I can wholeheartedly endorse that definition.
7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
Finally, the Truth 24 Dec. 1999
By TCG - Published on
Format: Paperback
I recently reread portions of this book and just had to comment on it again. This book never fails to make me laugh. I would liken Bayan's command of the English language to Edgar Allan Poe - he's that great. The pen is truly mightier than the sword. The way that he leads you down a path with a definition and then clobbers you with the last few words is sheer brilliance. Bayan proves that most writers today are merely hacks, and it is a sheer joy to read this book. If you love laughing hysterically, and if you love intelligent writing, this book is a perfect read. I can only hope that a sequel sees the light of day. EXCELLENT.
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