Andy Rooney: 60 Years of Wisdom and Wit

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Overview


Chairs. Neat people. Ugliness. War. Over six decades of intrepid reporting and elegant essays, Andy Rooney has proven a shrewd cultural analyst—unafraid to question the sometimes ridiculous, often surprising facts of our lives. Rooney’s great gift is telling it straight, without a hint of sugar coating, but with more than a grain of truth and humor. His take on America? “It’s just amazing how long this country has been going to hell without ever having got there.” On food? ...
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Andy Rooney: 60 Years of Wisdom and Wit

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Overview


Chairs. Neat people. Ugliness. War. Over six decades of intrepid reporting and elegant essays, Andy Rooney has proven a shrewd cultural analyst—unafraid to question the sometimes ridiculous, often surprising facts of our lives. Rooney’s great gift is telling it straight, without a hint of sugar coating, but with more than a grain of truth and humor. His take on America? “It’s just amazing how long this country has been going to hell without ever having got there.” On food? “There’s more dependable mediocrity than there used to be.”

Andy Rooney: 60 Years of Wisdom and Wit brings together the best of more than a half-century of work (including long-out-of-print pieces from his early years) in an unforgettable celebration of one of America’s funniest men. Like Mark Twain, Finley Peter Dunne (Mister Dooley) and Will Rogers, Andy Rooney is a classic chronicler of America, a writer for the ages.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Fans of longtime 60 Minutes staple Rooney will find much to enjoy in his latest collection, including excerpts from his two 1940s collaborations with fellow Stars and Stripes correspondent Bud Hutton, as well as selections from more recent works such as My War (1995), Common Nonsense (2002), Years of Minutes (2003), and Out of My Mind (2006). The problem with the book, however, is that there's little here most fans haven't seen before. Apart from the three extended pieces from the long-out-of-print Air Gunner (1944) and The Story of the Stars and Stripes (1946), this is mainly a collection of short essays that have been published previously. Also included are a sort of "greatest hits" of Rooney's musings on mundane matters ranging from ice cream to wastebaskets to trips to the dump, occasionally broken up by more serious pieces, such as his moving tributes to Harry Reasoner, E.B. White, and his own mother. VERDICT Ardent fans will need to consider whether the inclusion of the rarer material from the 1940s justifies the effort; for those less familiar with Rooney's oeuvre, this solid introduction is well worth a look.—William D. Walsh, Georgia State Univ., Atlanta
Kirkus Reviews
"If I reach into my pocket to pay for something and pull out a handful of change that turns out to be mostly pennies, I get discouraged about life."Thus Andy Rooney, who has made more than a few pennies over the years as a TV commentator, most famously for his sometimes curmudgeonly, sometimes cloyingly cute monologues on 60 Minutes. The nonagenarian is a veritable byword for folksiness. As this gathering of his work over the years shows, his homespun pronouncements can veer from cracker barrel to downright eccentric, sometimes in the same sentence ("It sounds funny in the house without the television set on"; "Doctors ought to think of some name for their outer office other than ‘waiting room' "). Rooney has solid credentials as an old-fashioned liberal of an almost extinct type, one who dislikes hubbub and loudmouths but dislikes injustice even more. He is also keenly aware of the contradictions of life in society, noting, "If I were black, I would be a militant, angry black man, railing against the injustices that have been done me. Being white, I think blacks should forget it and go to work." Most of the views gathered here are less provocative, however. Readers who think of Rooney as a lightweight may be surprised to find that he has meaty credentials as a journalist and writer, going back to his days with Stars and Stripes in World War II, when he wrote a book about the work of bomber crews that Edmund Wilson was moved to single out for praise in the New Yorker. Still, the present collection is mostly made up of offhand remarks about how much things have changed between then and now ("You don't have to go to Mexico to get a taco")-all vintage Rooney, of course, but with fewsurprises. Rooney's admirers won't mind, though those unfamiliar with the commentator will wonder at the oddness of it all.
From the Publisher

Kirkus Reviews
“Rooney has solid credentials as an old-fashioned liberal of an almost extinct type, one who dislikes hubbub and loudmouths but dislikes injustice even more.”
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781586489038
  • Publisher: PublicAffairs
  • Publication date: 10/26/2010
  • Pages: 320
  • Sales rank: 598,059
  • Product dimensions: 5.70 (w) x 8.80 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

Known to millions for his regular commentary on the television newsmagazine 60 Minutes, Andy Rooney is also the author of numerous bestselling books. His column appears in newspapers around the country. He lives in New York.
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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 5 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 15, 2010

    Wit and Whimsey

    Great book and true Andy Rooney - anyone who likes Andy and 60 minutes will enjoy this book! Great for picking up and putting down. Funny. All around great book.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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