Theft by Finding: Diaries: Volume One
David Sedaris tells all in a book that is, literally, a lifetime in the making.
For forty years, David Sedaris has kept a diary in which he records everything that captures his attention-overheard comments, salacious gossip, soap opera plot twists, secrets confided by total strangers. These observations are the source code for his finest work, and through them he has honed his cunning, surprising sentences.
Now, Sedaris shares his private writings with the world. Theft by Finding, the first of two volumes, is the story of how a drug-abusing dropout with a weakness for the International House of Pancakes and a chronic inability to hold down a real job became one of the funniest people on the planet.
Written with a sharp eye and ear for the bizarre, the beautiful, and the uncomfortable, and with a generosity of spirit that even a misanthropic sense of humor can't fully disguise, Theft By Finding proves that Sedaris is one of our great modern observers. It's a potent reminder that when you're as perceptive and curious as Sedaris, there's no such thing as a boring day.
It is the ultimate Sedaris source book. Observant, diligent, funny - proof, yet again, that life is a lot stranger than fiction -- Helen Davies * Sunday Times * A master of incisive and comic cultural criticism . . . Theft by Finding reveals intimate details of this literary luminary's life and mind-all told with his singular sense of humor * Harper's Bazaar * It's an astounding feat to stay funny-wildly, wickedly, ingeniously so-for more than 20 years. Yet David Sedaris has somehow pulled it off . . . with eviscerating wit and radiant humanity . . . Fans will no doubt delight in the entries that will turn into Sedaris's most beloved essays * O, The Oprah Magazine * Hilarious . . . with Sedaris a now-established bestselling author and world traveler, the prickly Southern wit is still intact and sparkling -- Patton Oswalt * New York Times Book Review * It's a pretty perfect encapsulation of all that is great and hilarious about him as a writer * Esquire * The perfect book to dip in and out of in between dipping in and out of the pool * Red * Sedaris's gift is to make you stop and think one moment and laugh out loud the next * Daily Mail * David Sedaris will make you properly laugh - his new diaries are pure joy * Stylist * Theft By Finding is an eye-opening journey through crazy jobs, geographic transitions, family dynamics and homophobic prejudice * Sunday Herald * There are some passages in the diaries that remind me that his perspective on life and family, being gay and being an artist were there from the start. That savage, biting commentary, as well as deep reserves of compassion, are all there. I can pick up any collection of David Sedaris's essays and be very happy. He keeps surprising me with how much, after all these years, he still really makes me laugh * Guardian * A typically hilarious first volume of diaries from the brilliant American humourist * Spectator, Summer Reading pick * Just as in his essays and stories, the young Sedaris is both scandalising and scandalised, surprisingly profound, and very, very funny . . . Sedaris fans will not be surprised to know that he can do darkness and profundity as well as humour. Theft by Finding is full of all three, but what makes it so good is Sedaris's gift for sidling up them all from the least expected angle * Daily Telegraph * Cool, very funnv, sardonic, yet open . . . there is an echo of Truman Capote or Tennessee Williams - with extra quirk. Or even Lewis Carroll . . . one of the biggest comedy writers of his generation -- Peter Bradshaw * Spectator * It's like gossiping with an old friend - if that friend were a rather sexy American Alan Bennett with lots of good drug stories -- Melissa Katsoulis * The Times * A deadpan, darkly comical portrait of the American underbelly . . . Sedaris shares something of [Alan] Bennett's detached curiosity, and they both have a thirst for amusement -- Craig Brown * Mail on Sunday * He makes me laugh so much. In an era when US satire is outpacing our own he's a sharp, humane and hilarious voice that never fails to make you smile - and sometimes weep. Apparently effortless humour is difficult, and precious. He's the real thing -- James Naughtie * Radio Times * He is the American Alan Bennett - or would be, if Bennett had a history of serious substance abuse and a higher tolerance for sick humour * Times Literary Supplement * So often Sedaris's phrasing is beautiful in its piquancy and minimalism...His life is extraordinary in so many ways - the drug addiction, the eccentric family, the crazy jobs, the fame, the globetrotting - but one of the more unlikely achievements here is in making it all seem quite ordinary. Ultimately, his masterstroke is in acting as a bystander in his own story * Book of the Day, Guardian * This first of two volumes of his copious diaries takes us from 1977 to 2002, and sees him grow from a despondent21-year-old in menial jobs into the man recognised as possibly the best humorist of the 2000s * Daily Telegraph, Best Books Under the Sun, Summer 2017 * Could there be a more delightful American import than the memoirist David Sedaris? Not since the peanut butter and jelly sandwich have we inherited something so sweet and comforting yet so wickedly naughty * The Times * The writing here is funnier, (even) sharper . . . There isn't a dull word among these pages -- India Knight * Sunday Times *