Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Awkward America

America, You Sexy Bitch by Michael Ian Black and Meghan McCain

* Read thanks to Mandy at and her Mandy’s Blogger Book Club

4 out of 5 patriotic gnomes

I don’t tend to read a lot of non-fiction but politics + humor + a road trip = a book well worth checking out.  I personally am not very political and am registered as Nonpartisan because I don’t really agree with either the Republican or Democrats ideas a hundred percent.  Saying that though I do find politics interesting and did get my Minor in Political Science in college.  I love finding the humor in politics because there is plenty of material to choose from.

It’s great that this whole idea/craziness initially happened via Twitter.  I really loved the pace of this book and how every chapter is devoted to a stop on their trip.  The amount of funny in this book will keep you speeding through and laughing out loud at times.  Also was pleasantly surprised that I like reading two points of view in non-fiction just as much as I do in fiction.  I was feeling a bit dense when I finally noticed about 36 pages in that the book, without its dust jacket, is actually red, white, and blue (so even the book looks patriotic.)

Meghan and Michael are definitely two very different personalities.  Nice to see the nerves between the two about this whole idea and that everything wasn’t peachy keen between them right away.  Indeed they’ve already had their first fight by page 31 of the book.  

At times it felt like I was reading about some kind of crazy field trip but then the writing style/voice of these characters just pulled me into the story and I went along with it.  There were some not so surprising results at a couple of places, especially when they went to Vegas.  That whole stop though funny also felt a bit cliché with the whole we saw strippers and drank a ton mentality.  Their finding on how strippers see the world and make a living wasn’t exactly mind blowing I think most of their findings were common knowledge aka some people like strippers and some strippers see dancing as empowering.  They were both at times crazier than I know I would have been particularly in Las Vegas and Louisiana (but it was fun to read about.)  

Seeming these unique places through a lens of humor does make for an easier discussion from both perspectives.   There is a lot of skimming over the issues but seeing both opinions and the varied places they go lets you contemplate what your own opinions are.  I could really see this being an awesome reality show or documentary if it was filmed.

They were a great odd couple and their exploring of places and concepts was quite an intriguing read.  I think I would have liked the book even more if there was a chapter or two that included “Nermal’s” or Cousin John’s perspective because then you’d be more likely to see all sides of the story and people involved.

I would definitely recommend this book even if you’re not a fan of politics. This is a well done mix of politics, humor, and a road trip all blended into a really fun and quotably quotable book.

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