Last week I took an unexpected trip to visit a few relatives in Kentucky. It was a long car ride, but visiting my family was overdue. During the 12 hour drive, George and I listened to David Sedaris’Squirrel Seeks Chipmunk: A Modest Bestiary. Or rather, I listened to it and George endured it. Audiobooks aren’t really his thing.
Anyway, if you are a David Sedaris fan, like I am, don’t start this book (or audiobook) with expectations of side-splitting personal memoirs. This book is a real departure from the David Sedaris I know and love. No stories of childhood angst lie within these pages. Instead, this book told modern fables of wood land and barn yard creatures.
Often the short story format works far better than the novel format for audiobooks and this recording was no exception. The book was read by four different folks: Sedaris, Elaine Stritch, Dylan Baker and Siân Phillips. By far, Elaine Stritch was my favorite of the voice actors. She is brilliant as Jack Donaghy’s vile mother on 30 Rock and it was so refreshing to hear someone with a non-voice actor voice read. Does that make sense?
Overall, I didn’t love this collection as much as some of Sedaris’ previous work. I did enjoy the tales of the creatures withdownright human qualities. The animals were prejudice, mean, dull, and of course, entertaining. I would definitely recommend the audio format to anyone interested in the book.
It just wasn’t my favorite David Sedaris piece. If you’ve never read his work, I’d recommend reading Dress your Family in Corduroy and Denim or Me Talk Pretty One Day first.
Have you read Squirrel Seeks Chipmunk yet? What did you think?