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Thank You for Smoking

Thank You for Smoking

4.4 17
by Christopher Buckley, John Glover (Read by)

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Nick Naylor likes his job. In the neo-puritanical nineties, it's a challenge to defend the rights of smokers and a privilege to promote their liberty. Sure, it hurts a littIe when you're compared to Nazi war criminals, but Nick says he's just doing what it takes to pay the mortgage and put his son through Washington's elite private school St.


Nick Naylor likes his job. In the neo-puritanical nineties, it's a challenge to defend the rights of smokers and a privilege to promote their liberty. Sure, it hurts a littIe when you're compared to Nazi war criminals, but Nick says he's just doing what it takes to pay the mortgage and put his son through Washington's elite private school St. Euthanasius. He can handle the pressure from the antismoking zealots, but he is less certain about his new boss, BR, who questions whether Nick is worth $150,000 a year to fight a losing war. Under pressure to produce results, Nick goes on a PR offensive. But his heightened notoriety makes him a target for someone who wants to prove just how hazardous smoking can be. If Nick isn't careful, he's going to be stubbed out.

Author Biography:

Christopher Buckley is a novelist and editor of Forbes FYI magazine. His books include Thank You for Smoking, Wry Martins, andGod Is My Broker. He lives in Washington, D.C.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
``Nick Naylor had been called most things since becoming chief spokesman for the Academy of Tobacco Studies, but until now no one had actually compared him to Satan.'' So begins the adventures of this protagonist, a shamelessly slimy yuppie and PR flack par excellence for the tobacco industry. The story, such as it is, consists of Naylor's attempts to prop up his failing corporate star by expanding his defense of the evil weed. Working the airwaves, he engineers successful, hysterical appearances on Oprah and Larry King , after which he's kidnapped by anti-tobacco terrorists who attempt to murder him by plastering his body with nicotine patches. As usual, Buckley's humor is over the top, although he doesn't exactly choose tough targets (his previous novel, The White House Mess , tackled the decline and fall of the Reagan/Bush dynasty). But the blatant immorality of Big Tobacco inspires some wonderfully comic vehicles, such as the delightfully morbid M.O.D. (Merchants of Death) squad, a semi-secret weekly lunch club that consists of Naylor and fellow flacks for the NRA and the alcohol industry. The silly plot sometimes gets in the way of the funny stuff, and it's far more entertaining to watch Naylor try to maintain his fiefdom and satisfy his libido amid the madcap spin control. Buckley is a smoother, funnier and more refined heir apparent to Art Buchwald's throne, and this book cements his position as the best up-and-coming political satirist on the literary map. Author tour. (June)
Library Journal
Since the titles of so many books are mysterious or ironic, it is pleasant to come upon one that says exactly what it means. Nick Naylor is chief spokesperson for the Academy of Tobacco Studies and as such has the dubious honor of defending and promoting the rights of smokers at a time when they are accorded the same treatment lepers once were. Like most good romps, this one is sportive and whimsical on the surface, but it manages to let loose a roundhouse punch at the advertising industry and the vacuum at the heart of power. At one point, the joke wears a little thin and imminent tedium threatens, but thanks to the author's inventiveness, the novel's earlier zest is soon recovered, and the plot starts spinning merrily along once again. Buckley's prose is well behaved and his dialog brisk and lifelike. All in all, an amiable and worthwhile work from the author of the best-selling The Whitehouse Mess (Random, 1986) who is now an editor at Forbes FYI magazine.-- A.J. Anderson, GSLIS, Simmons Coll., Boston
From the Publisher
“A savagely funny satirical farce. . . . produces moments that make you laugh out loud at their inspired absurdity.”
–The New York Times

“Buckley’s caricatures of Washington politics, corporate power plays, media spin control, Hollywood pretensions and the human foibles of self-delusion and denial are appallingly right on the money.”
–San Francisco Chronicle

“Seriously funny . . . Forget apple pie. [Buckley’s] novel is as American as pork barrels and public relations.”
–The Atlanta Journal & Constitution

“The superior goofball plot, raffish cast and zany sex scenes make this the funniest of Buckley’s books.”

–The New York Times Book Review

Product Details

Random House Audio Publishing Group
Publication date:
Edition description:
2 Cassettes
Product dimensions:
4.35(w) x 7.12(h) x 0.77(d)

Meet the Author

Christopher Buckley is a novelist, essayist, humorist, critic, magazine editor, and memoirist. His books have been translated into sixteen foreign languages. He worked as a merchant seaman and White House speechwriter. He has written for many newspapers and magazines and has lectured in more than seventy cities around the world. He was awarded the Thurber Prize for American Humor and the Washington Irving Medal for Literary Excellence.

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Thank You for Smoking 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 18 reviews.
sonia-lilani More than 1 year ago
Nick Naylor, the protagonist in Thank You for Smoking, is the kind of character you love and hate; you don't like what he does, but you sympathize with him and want him to be happy. I always think the sign of a good writer is someone who can make an unlikeable character a likeable character at the same time. I would say this book is for a reader who is looking for an interesting, somewhat informative novel that focuses on the cigarette and tobacco industry, some of the lies they tell, and sales and marketing in general.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Melissa Chennells More than 1 year ago
this book had me laughing every step of the way. it follows a tobbaco lobbyist doing the tasks given to him like lying to millons on larry king show or bribing a man dying of lung cancer from tobacco. it keeps you interested every step of the way
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Guest More than 1 year ago
Not as awesomely mind-blowing as I expected it to be but very good. There was a typical 80s conspiracy novel/Disclosure style to it with the good-guy-and-his-woman-friend-he ¿gets-close-to-and/or-hooks-up-with-vs.-the-evil-boss-and-his-squeeze- who-tries-to- seduce-good-guy archetypes. His vocabulary was just right as far as mood and context. I really loved his word play and the sarcasm was awesome. The scene where tobacco lobbyist Nick Naylor finishes telling people, with a flourish, that tobacco is in no way harmful, then picks up his son for a movie marathon and lights up in the living room only to have his son admonish ¿Daaaaad¿¿ and he, defeated, goes on the terrace to smoke instead? Awesome. Totally caught the hypocrisy of the tobacco situation perfectly. Mind you I did think Nick was a bit of a dumb slut for reasons that will be clear if you read the book. My response was ¿Seriously, dude?¿ That was another aspect that reminded me of Disclosure a bit. I loved the way Nick kept referring to himself as a Nazi. I thought it was well-used and made Nick just sympathetic enough to be interesting. As much as reviewers said this ¿laughed at the sanctimony of their do-gooding opponents¿, I didn¿t really see it. I thought the novel more pointed toward extremity and established that everyone knows what the right answer really is with ¿sensitive issues¿ politics on the issues are a matter of fashion and neither side really has the right answer. I also loved the emphasis on selective ignorance the tobacco corporate heads bemoaning the fact that ¿now everyone wants to be so d**n healthy¿ and his insistence that they can continue to lie about tobacco products not being dangerous ¿it¿s just marketing!¿ and the risky likelihood of getting to the point where everyone¿s differing agenda makes them oblivious to the difference between the truth and lies.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is truly amazing. The writing style and smart, political humor is amazingly written! Nick Naylor is my idol, he truly represents everything that i ever want to become. He is such a perfect little backstabber! It Is a must read!!!!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I'm a big fan of satire and sarcasm so Christopher Buckley was right up my alley. I'm also big on media studies so I really enjoyed reading about Nick Naylor and the blantant lies he tells regarding smoking. It's really embarassing that our society believes everything it's told... but hey, it made for a very entertaining novel. I liked the details about modern society (of couse meaning like 1995 when the book was published). I haven't seen the movie but I kind of feel like it couldn't top the book. Great book!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I have yet to see the movie, but this book is wonderfully entertaining. I loved every bit of it. It was funny, sassy, and just plain wonderful. I actually wanted Nick to come out on top.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I read Thank You For Smoking and I found it to be an entertaining novel with good amounts of black humor. The novel follows a lobbyist who's talent is talking and uses it to it's full potentional whenever possible. Buckley uses a mesh of black humor while at the same time writes a interesting story of backstabbing.
Guest More than 1 year ago
A romping, satirical and well-deserved indictment of the tobacco industry and its media spinsters, featuring a few real-life celebs in selected scenes to give it a nice touch of authencity. A must-read in any no-smoking lounge.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I certainly did laugh out loud quite a bit. In actuality, it was probaby too short and time could have been spent building on Nick's relationship with the MOD squad. The deft ability of the protagonist to make lemonade out of lemons coupled with irreverance make this a very good, quick read.
Guest More than 1 year ago
The story of this book is excellent, but in many sections of the book it becomes very slow(I even skipped pages sometimes!) Definitely worth buying!
Guest More than 1 year ago
the more you read the more you begin to think about how funny America is and how it really works.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Buckley does an excellent job using real-life dialogue. The characters are so hilariously stereo-typical that you'll probably bump into one of them today. The book is a laugh-out-loud read and makes you think twice about what you would do to pay the mortgage.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Every page contains a five minute fit of laughter.