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Cautionary Tales (Kindle Single) (2011)

by Stephen Tobolowsky(Favorite Author)
3.78 of 5 Votes: 3
Amazon Digital Services
review 1: This book is okay. I would recommend it for fans of Tobolowsky's work (the podcast), to which it is rather similar. It is very quick, at about seven short chapters, and features a couple of particularly interesting encounters that I'd rather not spoil. I did not very much appreciate the Rolling Stones plot device, nor completely buy the idea of brain's divisions. I'm not entirely sure the author did, either, but used them as vehicles to tie together the theme. Overall, I found the experiences entertaining, but wish the author had found a better way of conveying them.
review 2: I like Amazon Singles because I like shorter pieces. In a related matter, I love anthologies. This seems to be not particularly the norm and I heard Stephen King say he thinks people are
... morelosing the ability to appreciate short stories. Technically, this is an autobiographical work, but I think the principle remains that people don't seem to know what to do with shorter pieces. For those of us who are fans and for writers, I think these Singles are nice.That said, this is of course a quick read. I enjoyed it and will talk about it a little, and found it to be very professional, with a lot of depth packed into a shorter work, but I know some Kindle owners who would undoubtedly consider it about a dollar too much. (It's a dollar ninety-nine as I write this.) As always, what someone is willing to pay is an individual decision.I selected this particular one because I associate the author as being entertaining, at least in the role of actor. Hey, it's more than we know about most writers when reading them for the first time. Anyhow, my instant reaction was interest -- "yeah, I want to read that!" -- and so I purchased. I think others will be drawn to it based on a podcast and some other autobiographical things that I have not seen.The anecdotes were arranged around the concept of the wild things we do, particularly concerning sex. Mr. Tobolowsky paints himself rather convincingly as a reasonable and even in some ways old-fashioned guy, who has still stumbled into some adventures -- at least two of them involving women who allegedly party for pay or are referred to by others with terms assigned to women in that profession. (Or three, my Google search found him telling an anecdote about ping pong balls.) None of those stories goes in the direction you might think.I found the stories poignant. There was a moment during the second one where he is asked to essentially have a real life adventure that is a favored coming-of-age movie plot, and he doesn't want it. He finds himself upset and in a quandary as to how to back out of it. The set-up sounds b-movie material, but his place in it is as a human being who is not comfortable in that role. Come to think of it, the third story also shows his ambivalence over engaging in something that doesn't feel right. Still, he isn't judgmental and is humorous and self-deprecating in the telling.Mr. Tobolowsky tells the stories with a little raunchiness and a lot of heart. Simply really good story telling. He points out that all the crazy things we do in our youth, the embarrassing and even shameful stuff, become what shapes us and where we find wisdom and growth -- and laughter. less
Reviews (see all)
One of our best storytellers. My first experience with a Kindle Single was very enjoyable.
I LOVE the Tobolowsky Files, so of course I was going to love this short.
Great wee read. Wish it was longer though.
Vulgar, and not in an entertaining way.
This was pretty weak
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