Hah! This book is hysterical.
For those of you not familiar with the premise of S*** My Dad Says, let me give it to you in a nutshell. After some less-than-ideal life situations, Justin Halpern (the author) moved back in with his parents when he was in his late 20s. His dad (Sam) is quite a character -- never afraid to speak his mind, full of vulgarity, not particularly sympathetic, but (as far as I'm concerned) a great father. Justin heard so many off-the-wall comments that he decided to start documenting them via the social networking site Twitter. His Twitter was initially just followed by a handful of his friends, then it grew and grew and grew until he had hundreds of thousands of readers. Cue book deal, and here we are. The book has gotten insanely popular, and there's even a sitcom based on the Halperns now.
I have actually been following Justin's Twitter for close to a year. It's hilarious in and of itself, but I hadn't really planned to read the book. I guess I expected it to just be a book of quotations that I'd already read on Twitter, so I didn't really give it much thought. After a recommendation from my sister-in-law (and her lending me the book -- that definitely helped), I decided to give it a go. I'm so glad I did.
First of all, Justin Halpern is a writer, (I believe he went to school for screenwriting), so he clearly has the chops to pull off a book like this. It's not just a collection of quotes. Each chapter of the book is about an incident in which Justin's dad displays his colorful personality. Then there will be a couple pages of Sam's one-liners, and then another chapter. The chapters are in chronological order, so you get to read about Sam's parenting from childhood through adulthood.
I laughed out loud more times than I can count while I was reading this. I can't even explain the beautiful dysfunction of this family, but it's so awesome. Yes, Sam Halpern is vulgar and blunt and often inappropriate, but he clearly cares very much about his family. Everything he does is with the intention to better his son, even if it means being brutally honest. So, while this book is hilarious, it's touching in its own way.
Can't recommend this enough. It's an easy, fun read, and you'll definitely be reading an extra chapter every night just because you don't want to stop.
Read from December 5, 2010 to December 6, 2010