'Between a bottle of Epsom salts or one of twenty-year-old cognac, which would you choose? Would you rather spend your vacation with an eighty-year old leper or with Demi Moore? Do you prefer being sprinkled with ferocious red ants or sharing a sleeping compartment with Claudia Schiffer?' From the celebrated author of The Name of the Rose, here ...
'Between a bottle of Epsom salts or one of twenty-year-old cognac, which would you choose? Would you rather spend your vacation with an eighty-year old leper or with Demi Moore? Do you prefer being sprinkled with ferocious red ants or sharing a sleeping compartment with Claudia Schiffer?' From the celebrated author of The Name of the Rose, here is a dazzling compendium of advice offering the correct answers to these and many other important questions. Tackling topics as diverse as the coffee pot from hell, eating on an aeroplane, how not to use a cellular phone and recognising porn movies, Umberto Eco guides us with all his customary wit and brilliance through the complexities of the modern world.
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Publishers Weekly, 1994-08-15 In this collection of parodies, satires and whimsical mini-essays written over the last 30 years, Italian novelist/critic Eco (The Name of the Rose) takes readers on a delightful romp through the absurdities of modern life. A curmudgeonly cosmospolite, he waxes irate at his pet peeves, which include American trains, taxi drivers in New York City and Paris, soccer fans and cellular phones. He mockingly deconstructs Western movies, art catalogues, library regulations and, with tongue in cheek, proffers advice on how to take intelligent vacations and how to become a Knight of Malta. Eco parodies science fiction in a tale of intergalactic sex and espionage, and spoofs detective fiction in an account of ``the perfect crime.'' Serious issues that emerge from the antics include how the mass media confuses reality and fiction, and how our ``consumer civilization'' turns adults into children whose endless needs require constant gratification. First serial to Esquire. (Oct.)
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