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Dave Barry Slept Here: A Sort of History of the United States Mass Market Paperback – 1 Dec 1997

4.8 out of 5 stars 10 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Ballantine Books; Reprint edition (Dec. 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0345416600
  • ISBN-13: 978-0345416605
  • Product Dimensions: 10.6 x 1.8 x 17.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 328,655 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

"I fear that Mr. Barry's dream of making millions of dollars through mass sales of his book to a captive audience of innocent schoolchildren will not be realized, and he will have to be content with making readers laugh a lot, as this one did".

-- The New York Times Book Review

From the Inside Flap

If you love to laugh, if you love your country, if you are unaware that "the Sixth Amendment states that if you are accused of a crime, you have the right to a trial before a jury of people too stupid to get out of jury duty," Dave Barry Slept Here is the book for you. Every single momentous event and crucial movement is covered, including:
The Birthing Contractions of a Nation
Kicking Some British Butt
The Forging of a Large, Wasteful Bureaucracy
The Civil War: A Nation Pokes Itself in the Eyeball
The Fifties: Peace, Prosperity, Brain Death
The Reagan-Bush Years: Napping Toward Glory
And much more!

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Customer Reviews

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Format: Paperback
I've been told that sometimes the best way to find out if something is truly funny is to read it a second time. I have put this theory to the test repeatedly with Dave's amazing Sort-Of History, and have come out laughing, nearly to tears, every single time (once on a red-eye flight back from the UK-- who said people in coach class never laugh?). I read it as often as I can, usually over the summer. However, I think a parental unit or good friend, can't remember which, "borrowed" it, so I have to buy a NEW one! And believe it or not, this is the God's honest truth, it sort of actually prepared me for AP U.S. History (not the exam, obviously, but as a refresher before the class). Of course, my teacher wasn't too thrilled when I said an oligarchy was "rule by the Oligs". Anyway, long story short, this is the best book in the Wide World of Humor: short, concise, gut-splittingly funny, and cheap! Besides, you'll help Dave buy that new motor yacht he's been wanting! =)
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Format: Paperback
This is a dead-on satire of a history text, minus the "really dull parts" (treaties, dates, actual facts, etc) but including such gems as "Elizabeth, who was called the Virgin Queen because it was not considered a smart move to call her the Really Ugly Queen..." And so on, and on, and on...there's too much fun here to quote in detail, but I especially like the Founding Fathers' letter from Visa ("if you do not pay...we will regretfully have to return you to British rule"), the South's attempt to recruit help, pre-slavery ("Are you that special kind of guy or gal who's willing to work long hours for no pay...plus we get to keep your children?") and of course the Carter years ("A Relieved Nation Learns It Does Not Actually NEED a President"). This book -- like all Barry's work -- should be mandatory reading for anyone in imminent danger of taking life too seriously.
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By A Customer on 16 July 1998
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I own just about all of his books, but this one just seems to be his best. In fact, this was the first Dave Barry book that I ever read! I certainly can't thank my friend enough for turning me on to Dave's writing several years back.
What makes it even better is if you know the history and can pick up on the more subtle references that he makes. I've read this book probably six times, and each time I pick up on something new -- and hilarious.
A must-read.
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By A Customer on 24 April 1999
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Only other book close was Groucho Marx's Memoirs of a Mangy Lover. This book brought tears to my eyes I laffed so hard.
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Format: Paperback
Beavis and Butthead might "do" America, but Dave Barry definitely knows how to "do" American history... and you trust all three of them at about the same level! Never before could president's like Pierce or Polk (who?) or even incident's like the Civil War be exposed for their comedic value in such an honest and sincere and dedicated and (excuse me while I hurl my nachos) accurate way. Guaranteed to help any child receive an "A" in United States History (that is, if your child's school insanely chooses to use Dave's heinous assault on our proud heritage as a textbook... which, come to think of it, would probably be an improvement in our public school system), this book also guarantees the reader of any age a intensely pleasurable read. And as President Lincoln said on that famous October 8th night at the theatre (you'll understand if you read the book), "I'm not afraid... John Wilkes Booth couldn't hit the broadside of a-"
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