Kill Two Birds and Get Stoned (Kinky Friedman Series #16)

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Overview

Walter Snow is doomed. Living on a string of Camel cigarettes, too many cups of coffee, and bouts of masturbation in his Greenwich Village basement apartment, the writer and recovering alcoholic has been blocked. He stares at the blank pages in his typewriter for longer than he cares to admit, hoping for the spark that will finally fulfill his ambition to write The Great Armenian Novel.

And then he meets Clyde Potts. She is beautiful, intelligent, charming, perhaps psychic and, ...

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2003 Hard cover First edition. New in new dust jacket. Sewn binding. Cloth over boards. 240 p. Audience: General/trade.

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2003 Hard cover First edition. New in new dust jacket. Small remainder mark on end pages. Sewn binding. Cloth over boards. 240 p. Audience: General/trade.

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New York 2003 Hardcover 1st Edition New in New jacket Book. Signed by Author(s) Hardcover. Book Condition: NEW and UNREAD. Dust Jacket Condition: NEW and Mylar Protected. 1st ... Edition/1st Printing. SIGNED by Kinky Friedman on the Full Title Page. Read more Show Less

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Kill Two Birds and Get Stoned (Kinky Friedman Series #16)

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Overview

Walter Snow is doomed. Living on a string of Camel cigarettes, too many cups of coffee, and bouts of masturbation in his Greenwich Village basement apartment, the writer and recovering alcoholic has been blocked. He stares at the blank pages in his typewriter for longer than he cares to admit, hoping for the spark that will finally fulfill his ambition to write The Great Armenian Novel.

And then he meets Clyde Potts. She is beautiful, intelligent, charming, perhaps psychic and, for better or worse, very possibly unbalanced. With Potts's joie de vivre and her certified insane partner in crime, Fox Harris, Snow is caught up in a series of pranks against corporate sprawl that they execute with a bit of booze, and some wacky tobaccy from Australia known as Malabimbi Madness.

But things quickly spin out of control as the trio's ultimate diuretically inspired prank leads to an unexpected, shocking conclusion, and Walter is left to wonder if the only things you ever keep in this life are the things you let slip through your fingers.

A tale of the nature of sanity, the cost of inspiration, and the art and business of creativity, Kill Two Birds & Get Stoned has the absurd and provocative hijinks that could have only come from the fertile, frenzied mind of veteran soul Kinky Friedman.

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
The Barnes & Noble Review
Kill Two Birds & Get Stoned is the first stand-alone novel by journalist, satirist, and New York Times–bestselling mystery writer Kinky Friedman. This wacky, wild suspense tale tells the story of recovering alcoholic Walter Snow, a published author who has been plagued for the past seven years with a seemingly unbreakable writer's block. What finally gets Walter out of his rut is a chance meeting with Clyde Potts, a lovely, free-spirited scam artist who soon lures the struggling artist far from his boring routines. Joining his enticing new acquaintance and her thoroughly unconventional friends in an ever-escalating series of pranks and cons does get Walter's long-stagnant creative juices flowing again. But when the jokes escalating into full-scale attacks against a corporate giant, the price of that inspiration becomes alarmingly high…and truth becomes much stranger than fiction. This is Kinky Friedman at his best, telling a story that's suspenseful, capricious, funny and poignant -- all at the same time. Sue Stone
The New York Times
I suppose Friedman's writing could best be described as Raymond Chandler on drugs, if Chandler had possessed a tremendous sense of humor. But Friedman's writing cannot and should not be compared to that of any other writer or of any other genre. He is his own genre. His prose can range from the purely poetic to the pornographic to the deeply philosophical, quite often in the same sentence. He is a wordsmith of the first order. — Fannie Flagg
Publishers Weekly
Friedman sends a slumping, unfulfilled novelist off on a wild criminal adventure with a couple of con artists in his latest, an engaging but erratic caper novel that begins when mid-career fiction writer Walter Snow meets the woman of his dreams, Clyde Potts, at a bank in Manhattan. Potts already has a companion, an oddball named Fox Harris who accompanies Clyde on her various criminal ventures, and the pair quickly take advantage of Snow's lust for Potts to convince him to play a role in a smalltime con at a New York bar. Their next escapade takes them to a mental hospital, where they liberate an African-American acquaintance who believes himself to be the king of an African country. The criminal stakes go up when Potts manages to steal Donald Trump's credit card number, and the trio throws a lavish party for the homeless at a New York shelter, but the plotting turns downright bizarre when Potts and Harris sabotage a major coffee cafe after the company that owns the chain evicts the owner of a dive bar called the Unicorn. Friedman's usual off-kilter charm prevails throughout, particularly in the characterization of Snow, a sincere but befuddled writer who uses his lust for Potts to overcome a continuing case of writer's block. Potts and Harris have their endearing moments, but the criminal subplots range from the solidly effective to the over-the-top wacky, particularly the coffee caper, which is designated "Operation Diarrhea" and involves the trio adding a mix of diabolical chemicals to the local brew. Friedman fans will enjoy the antics, but this falls short of top-shelf Kinky. (Apr.) Forecast: This is Friedman's first stand-alone novel, but it doesn't range far from his tried-and-true shtick. Expect it to appeal primarily to hardcore fans enthusiasts. Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
Library Journal
Friedman abandons his eponymous hero for this standalone story about a down-and-out writer whose new buddies introduce him to a life of crime. Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Since the mystery plots have always been the weakest parts of the Kinkster's hilariously antic mysteries (Meanwhile, Back at the Ranch, 2002, etc.), it's only natural that he'd try his hand at a shaggy-dog tale without a clue. Once upon a time, Walter Snow was the successful author of The Rise and Fall of Nothing at All, but he's been blocked for so long (seven years) that he has no idea what his second novel will be about. Luckily, the answer comes one day while he's at the bank and seductive Clyde Potts asks him to store a package containing her grandmother's heirloom silver in his safe-deposit box. Two weeks later, after the NYPD has informed Walter that the package actually contains something quite different, Clyde celebrates her birthday by introducing Walter to her partner-in-mayhem, Fox Harris. Maybe Clyde is a former heroin addict and Fox her rehab counselor. Maybe it's Fox who's the recovering addict. Whatever the case, alcoholic Walter is soon happily falling off his own wagon, joining the pair for some great booze, great smoke, and great ideas for naughty subversion that could have come right from Jack Kerouac's Merry Pranksters. Just for fun, they con a bartender out of a hundred-dollar bill, spring a delusional street preacher from a mental institution, throw a party for a thousand homeless New Yorkers on Donald Trump's dime, and avenge themselves on Starbucks, which is plotting to take over Walter's neighborhood bar, in fiendishly adolescent ways. It's not long before Walter's juices are flowing again and he's written his friends into a new book, The Great Armenian Novel (alternate title: The Cat Who Killed Christ), that his agent calls "racist, homophobic, politicallyincorrect, insensitive, and, well, frankly, unrealistic and ludicrous." If it's anything like this one, it's shaggy, clueless, winsome, sad, and funny too.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780066209791
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 3/13/2003
  • Series: Kinky Friedman Series , #16
  • Pages: 240
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.85 (d)

First Chapter

Kill Two Birds & Get Stoned

Chapter One

There are two good things about living in a basement apartment. The first is that you can't kill yourself by jumping out the window. The second, and this is an important one, is that whatever you do and wherever you go, you know you're always going to be on the way up. The bad thing, I suppose, is a matter of your point of view. All you ever see are people's feet walking by in the rain. Unless, of course, the sun is shining. You can't always tell, however, when you live in a basement apartment.

I suppose I ought to introduce myself. My name is Walter Snow and you probably never heard of me, which is not an especially good thing because I like to think of myself as a novelist. In fact, for the past few years I've been working on a project I half-tragically refer to as The Great Armenian Novel. I am not Armenian, though I once had an Armenian girlfriend, which at least qualifies me to write about what I know. Unfortunately, for years I hadn't written one word of the book. I suffered from writer's block. Or spiritual constipation. Or whatever you want to call it. And there is nothing worse in this or any other world than staring down at a blank piece of paper and realizing that it's as empty as your life.

All this, of course, was before I met Clyde Potts at the bank, and before she introduced me to Fox Harris. Even after all that has happened, I still think of both of them with a smile. I'm looking at that smile right now in the bathroom mirror. It looks a bit ragged, maybe a bit confused, but it's there all right. It lacks the innocence of a small boy at Christmas, and is probably a little closer to the sick, sweet, evil smile of the serial killer, redolent of charm and danger. But it is a fucking smile -- and they say if you smile when you think of people who are gone, you loved them.

But let me redirect the conversation back to myself for a moment. I am a published novelist. Seven years ago I wrote a mildly successful, quirky little book about a man coming of age in a New Jersey nursing home. It was entitled The Rise and Fall of Nothing at All and its publication killed just enough trees to keep me in Camel filters and a basement apartment for seven years, which is saying something in today's market. But now I've moved from looking in the mirror to looking at the blank page again and I don't know which is worse. Both seem to somehow relate to those soulless attenuated feet that keep sliding silently by my window in the rain.

It's a dark and stormy day today and if you don't live in New York you might call it gloomy but if you do, you get used to it and a few other things. The only spot of color is provided by Fox's tropical fish, of which, I suppose, I am now the guardian. I don't know much about tropical fish except that bad things always seem to happen to their original owners. They're not too good for spiritually constipated novelists to have around either. They keep diverting your attention when you're busy staring at a blank page. But they're crazy and colorful, just like Fox: you never know what they're thinking, or if they're thinking. Also, they kind of hypnotize you if you look at them long enough. The bubbling sound takes a little while to get used to, but once you do, it blends right in with the sirens and the car alarms and the occasional junkie on the sidewalk shouting scripture. I haven't bonded with these fish, of course, and I don't think I'm likely to. But I intend to take good care of them. Sometimes late at night when I watch them swimming around in their aquarium I forget I'm in a basement apartment in New York City. At those times I think of the fish as little pieces of Fox's soul and the world seems like a bigger and brighter place. It almost feels good to be alive.

When I stop to reflect upon it, it was probably Fox and Clyde who deserve the credit, for better or worse, for knocking me off the wagon forever. Before that morning, when I first met Clyde at the bank, I'd had almost six and a half years of sobriety. I attended a secular rosary chain of AA meetings where I declared to the brainwashed and the unwashed of the world that my name was Walter and that I was an Alcoholic. My life had become an endless series of tableaus in which I would hold a Styrofoam cup of bad coffee -- I never found out if the cup was half full or half empty -- smoke an endless caravan of Camel filters and provide an ever-changing army of supportive strangers with my standard three minutes of superficial charm. If I had to talk to the same individual for much longer than three minutes, I could actually see the lines of ennui forming on his or her face and the undeniable presence of pity in his or her eyes. Speaking of his or her, I discovered that, as an alcoholic nondrinking nonwriting writer, I could extract more natural empathy from men than from women.

That, of course, was before I met Clyde at the bank.

I remember that morning surprisingly well, considering everything that's happened since. It was only about nine months ago but already it feels like two lifetimes interwoven like the careless arms of doomed lovers: the sweet, grievous lifetime of the saint mingling with the pregnant, existential lifetime of the sinner ...

Kill Two Birds & Get Stoned. Copyright © by Kinky Friedman. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3.5
( 8 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 8 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 4, 2005

    A Masterful Dark Comedy

    This is the first book I have ever read by Kinky Friedman. Kinky's writes this book in a very loose, almost stream of consciousness, manner. This, along with the solitary and soul searching narrator, gave rise to an enthralling spectrum of emotions ranging from light hearted joy to unfathomable sadness. 'Kill Two Birds & Get Stoned' is a great read that I thoroughly enjoyed, as have all of my friends.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 2, 2013

    Hidy

    Hey;)

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 8, 2007

    Stepping Off the Kinky Track

    A departure from the usual Kinky-as-dick 'pun intended' adventures, this book always made me reluctant to put it down and happy to return to it. A few lessons are tucked into it, tongue in cheek, along with bathroom humor and insights into the writing life. Being a writer, I leave it to others to decide which is more upsetting. All in all, this book is great fun, off the usual Kinky track.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 1, 2006

    Laughs

    I spent a lot of time laughing my butt off at the antics in this book. I can see where some people could be offended by parts, however those people should do themselves a favor and not read any of Kinky's books. If you enjoy wackiness, you will love this.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 22, 2003

    Kinky, what were you thinky?

    After you've invested valuable time reading a book, do you sometimes wish you could take it back and get a refund, based solely on the fact that although it has a spine and cover and pages it shouldn't have ever been classified as a 'book'. Too harsh? Sorry.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 8, 2003

    Go Back To Doing What You Do Best, Kinkster!!

    My God!! This is AWFUL!!! I am a huge fan of his series that features himself as an amateur private detective. They are warm, funny, insightful, and witty little gems that have loveable misfits pursueing lovely little adventures. This attempt at a real novel lacks any trace of humor or likeable characters. It reads more like a poorly written draft than a finished work. Nothing at all rings true nor does one give a damn about any of the characters. My fervant wish for them was total carnage eliminating both them and the story 25 pages into it. Kinster please don't try to be something that you are not. Be satisfied that you have a core of fans that dearly love the Kinkster, Ratso, Rambam, et al!!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 30, 2003

    High Anticipation Leads to Big Disappointment

    I have always found Kinky Friedman's books irresistible even though many times his characters' dialogue was too crude to be enjoyable. I was really looking forward to a different cast of characters in a story by Kinky and I started reading as soon as I got this one home. My thoughts after the first twenty pages were 'No way Kinky Freidman wrote this!' and 'Kinky is not this boring!' I had to stop in middle of the book and read another book because I could not take the boredom. I forced myself to resume reading the book but every time I picked it up it was a chore. I kept thinking that if Kinky Freidman's name was on the book, there must be something worthwile to read there. I finally got to the end and the ending was horrible!! I think this book is a huge waste of paper. I don't know how many female readers Kinky has. Is this book something that only men will get? I'll stick to the regular mystery series if Kinky continues it; otherwise Kinky may have lost a faithful reader.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 8, 2008

    No text was provided for this review.

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