PADDLE YOUR OWN CANOE by Nick Offerman

PADDLE YOUR OWN CANOE

One Man's Fundamentals for Delicious Living

KIRKUS REVIEW

An actor’s comedic memoir and how-to guide for enjoyable living in the modern era.

In his debut book, actor Offerman—best known for his role as the carnivorous, hypermasculine Ron Swanson on NBC’s Parks and Recreation—summons his inner Swanson when writing of his principles for “Delicious Living.” For the author, living deliciously means dedicating more than a few pages to the wonder of meat (“If there is a God, no part of the Bible or Christian doctrine will convince me of his existence half as much as the flavor of a barbecued pork rib”), though he tackles more serious subjects as well: religion, love, friendship and the value of hard work. In a particularly prickly chapter entitled “Assholes” (in which he tackles everything from slavery to lobbyists), Offerman becomes acutely aware of his balancing act between comic and curmudgeon. “But wait, I thought this book was a lighthearted look at living one’s life deliciously?” he writes. “That’s all well and good, fat boy, but you cannot just blithely drift through life in your canoe whilst turning a blind eye to the bullshit going on around you.” Though he deems himself the “average meat, potatoes, and corn-fed human male,” his Go-West-young-man story is anything but average. From his humble roots as a pig poop–shoveling youth to his rise as a beloved actor, Offerman’s story embodies the tenets of the American dream, complete with a few more moustache jokes. Wavering between finger-shaking admonishments toward society’s ills and songs of praise for self-reliance, Offerman offers plenty of laughs, though a few head scratches as well.

Fans of Parks and Recreation and Offerman’s brand of deadpan humor are sure to gorge themselves on the healthy portion he provides.

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 2013
ISBN: 978-0-525-95421-7
Page count: 320pp
Publisher: Dutton
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1st, 2013




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