Cool, Calm, and Contentious

Markoe, Merrill
Villard 2011
ISBN 978-0-345-51891-0
271pp
Date finished: 2012-09-05

A new collection of essays by Markoe. Her previous collections have only had humourous essays: Markoe goes to a strange seminar or visits a terrible restaurant, or she discusses her quirky collections or describes relationship problems. She still has some of those, of course, but there are also more serious pieces. The most memorable is a longer one, "In Praise of Crazy Mommies", on how many comedians have narcissistic and unsupportive parents, especially mothers; she had such a mother herself and talks to a number of other comedians who tell anecdotes that are horrifying yet also funny. She goes on a women-only river-rafting vacation and despite her curmudgeonly attitude finds herself enjoying it by the end. It's said that unhappiness leads to good comedy, but Markoe seems to be much happier with her life in this book and yet is as good as ever, not losing any of her edge.

Tagged: essays

Permalink: http://books.amk.ca/2012/09/Cool_Calm_Contentious.html

%T Cool, Calm, and Contentious
%A Markoe, Merrill
%W http://merrillmarkoe.com/
%G ISBN 978-0-345-51891-0
%P 271pp
%I Villard
%D 2011
%C New York
%K essays
%@ 2012-09-05

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