Publishers Weekly

(Originally published February 12 2011)

Your Wildest Dreams, Within Reason

Mike Sacks, illus. by Tae Won Yu and Julian Sancton, Tin House, $13.95 trade paper (272p) ISBN 978-1-935639-02-2
Sacks (coauthor of Sex: Our Bodies, Our Junk) offers 54 short humor pieces, including 25 written in collaboration with fellow humor writers Todd Levin, Scott Jacobson, Bob Powers, Jason Roeder, Scott Rothman, Will Tracy, Ted Travelstead, and Teddy Wayne. The essays, many of which were published in McSweeney’s and the New Yorker, is a selection of contemporary social satires, such as signs a college is not very prestigious (“Marching band uses only handclaps”) and a bridegroom on Twitter (“Attempting to fist-bump rabbi”). The essays include icebreakers to avoid (“This party reminds me of 9/11”); a director’s commentary on the DVD rerelease of a 1990 bar mitzvah video; and a rejection letter to Anne Frank: “Unfortunately, we receive so many unsolicited teenage diaries composed in European attics that it is impossible to publish each one.” Highlighting this often hilarious book are Yu’s many illustrations, such as the inclusion of Pynchon’s muted post horn, and Sancton’s 10 drawings depicting “Everyday Tantric Positions” as well as an eight-page pantomime comic strip from Esquire about frustrating Ikea assembly instructions. (Mar. 15)