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The Tao of Bill Murray: Real-Life Stories of Joy, Enlightenment, and Party Crashing
     

The Tao of Bill Murray: Real-Life Stories of Joy, Enlightenment, and Party Crashing

3.0 1
by Gavin Edwards
 

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“Reading The Tao of Bill Murray is like spending time with Bill, but probably safer.”—Danny Rubin, screenwriter of Groundhog Day

This collection of the most epic, hilarious, and strange Bill Murray stories, many of which have never before been reported, spotlights the star’s extraordinary ability to

Overview

“Reading The Tao of Bill Murray is like spending time with Bill, but probably safer.”—Danny Rubin, screenwriter of Groundhog Day

This collection of the most epic, hilarious, and strange Bill Murray stories, many of which have never before been reported, spotlights the star’s extraordinary ability to infuse the everyday with surprise, absurdity, and wonder.

No one will ever believe you.

New York Times bestselling author Gavin Edwards, like the rest of us, has always been fascinated with Bill Murray—in particular the beloved actor’s adventures off-screen, which rival his filmography for sheer entertainment value. Edwards traveled to the places where Murray has lived, worked, and partied, in search of the most outrageous and hilarious Bill Murray stories from the past four decades, many of which have never before been reported. Bill once paid a child five dollars to ride his bike into a swimming pool. The star convinced Harvard’s JV women’s basketball team to play with him in a private game of hoops. Many of these surreal encounters ended with Bill whispering, “No one will ever believe you” into a stranger’s ear. But The Tao of Bill Murray is more than just a collection of wacky anecdotes. This volume puts the actor’s public clowning into a larger context, as Edwards distills Murray’s unique way of being into a set of guiding principles. A sideways mix of comedy and philosophy, full of photo bombs, late-night party crashes, and movie-set antics, this is the perfect book for anyone who calls themselves a Bill Murray fan—which is to say, everyone.

Praise for The Tao of Bill Murray

“When confronted by life’s challenges and opportunities, we should all be asking ourselves, ‘What would Bill Murray do?’ This book actually has the answers.”—Jay Duplass, writer, director, actor, fan of Bill Murray

“[Gavin Edwards] captures Murray’s enigmatic, comic genius.”The Washington Post

“Rib-tickling.”Newsday

“If you are among the multitudes who have a Bill Murray story (viz: ‘I was in the airport bar, and who sat down next to me but Bill Murray?’), The Tao of Bill Murray will speak to you.”Elle

“Murray is an endless delight, and his knack for bons mots and non sequiturs will keep readers laughing before revealing an unexpectedly poignant vision for happiness. . . . A fun and revealing look behind the charm and mythos of Bill Murray that will only strengthen his legend.”Kirkus Reviews

“This book is bursting with anecdotes that underline Murray’s unconventional and fun-loving life. . . .  Murray’s fans are sure to savor [it] and walk away with a deeper appreciation of the actor and his work.”Publishers Weekly (starred review)

“I just can’t fathom how anyone could not like the man. He lives as much as possible by his own rules; this is a guy who doesn’t buy round-trip airline tickets because he prefers to make decisions on the fly. That old question of the three people you’d most like to have dinner with? I’d pick Bill Murray and leave the other two chairs empty just to see who he pulls over to join us. . . . You will love The Tao of Bill Murray. Period.”GeekDad

“A hilarious read—occasionally heartwarming, sometimes head-scratching. . . . Sure to please Murray fans.”Library Journal

Editorial Reviews

The New York Times Book Review - Tom Shone
There have been greater, weightier testaments to the art of cinema published in 2016—Edwards's book is no more than a magazine article, really…but for sheer dopamine release, it's hard to beat.
Publishers Weekly
★ 08/22/2016
Fans of actor and comedian Bill Murray have likely heard of the star's habit of randomly showing up in the most unexpected places, only to vanish just as quickly. Rolling Stone contributing editor Edwards (Last Night at the Viper Room: River Phoenix and the Hollywood He Left Behind) investigates this and the star's other off-kilter antics and the philosophy behind them. Edwards does an admirable job of profiling Murray's unique approach to life, friendship, and work, via interviews with the actor himself as well as friends, collaborators, and those acquaintances. The book is bursting with anecdotes that underline Murray's unconventional and fun-loving life: he's commandeered a street cleaner, crashed an off-campus house party and started doing the dishes, and driven a cab while the cabby practiced playing saxophone in the back seat. Edwards provides a rough biographical sketch of Murray, but excels far more in his assessments of Murray's films, which comprise the final third of the book. Murray's fans are sure to savor this book and walk away with a deeper appreciation of the actor and his work. (Sept.)
Library Journal
08/01/2016
Bill Murray the actor takes a backseat to Murray the trickster figure in this collection of notable, implausible, even inexplicable offscreen appearances. Whether it's crashing a karaoke party, photobombing engagement pics, or covering a stranger's eyes and asking, "Guess who?" Murray comes across as a man set on adding a surreal moment to people's lives before saying, "no one will ever believe you," and walking away. Is there a method to Murray's madness? Edwards (Last Night at the Viper Room) posits ten principles comprising the tao of Murray such as "invite yourself to the party" and "your spirit will follow your body." Each tenet is backed by firsthand accounts and interviews, making for a hilarious read—occasionally heartwarming, sometimes head-scratching. It's easy to find Murray stories, but the author's attempt to make sense of them adds a new dimension. His access to celebrities (including an interview with Murray himself) strengthens this work, which concludes with a 100-page retrospective of the subject's movies with anecdotes from each one. VERDICT Sure to please Murray fans, this book would do well as a companion to Robert Schnakenberg's The Big Bad Book of Bill Murray.—Terry Bosky, Madison, WI
Kirkus Reviews
2016-07-19
A personal philosophy based on Bill Murray’s well-publicized high jinks, pranks, and exploits.There are countless urban legends about Murray, including stories of him crashing karaoke rooms, a kickball game, and a couple’s engagement photos. (All true.) There are also stories of Murray putting his hands over the eyes of unsuspecting strangers while saying “Guess who?” only for him to end the brief encounter with the rejoinder, “No one will ever believe you.” (Also true.) Based on innumerable tales like these and others, notwithstanding his career as one of the most beloved actors of his generation, Murray has carefully crafted a reputation for himself as our culturally appointed jester-in-chief. However, there is a somewhat serious philosophical foundation to Murray’s antics. As author and journalist Edwards (Last Night at the Viper Room: River Phoenix and the Hollywood He Left Behind, 2013, etc.) explains in his funny, affectionate portrait, Murray’s seemingly nonchalant attitude and inability to take anything seriously is rooted in his sincere desire to make the most of life. Through 10 principles outlined by the author, the underlying tenet to Murray’s “philosophy” reveals itself to be a kind of existentialist/Zen mashup that preaches a heightened awareness of the present. The key to Murray’s philosophy is that it is not self-serving. Though he has become known for his carefree antics almost as much as for his acting roles, he does them out of earnest playfulness. Murray is not always the genial clown, as many collaborators have witnessed his attitude turn abrasive and acerbic. Edwards skillfully weaves together many well-known and entirely new anecdotes from throughout Murray’s career that capture him at the height of his power. Murray is an endless delight, and his knack for bons mots and non sequiturs will keep readers laughing before revealing an unexpectedly poignant vision for happiness. The author also provides a rundown of Murray’s major films for reference. A fun and revealing look behind the charm and mythos of Bill Murray that will only strengthen his legend.
From the Publisher
“Reading The Tao of Bill Murray is like spending time with Bill, but probably safer.”—Danny Rubin, screenwriter of Groundhog Day

“When confronted by life’s challenges and opportunities, we should all be asking ourselves, ‘What would Bill Murray do?’ This book actually has the answers.”—Jay Duplass, writer, director, actor, fan of Bill Murray

“[Gavin Edwards] captures Murray’s enigmatic, comic genius.”The Washington Post

“Rib-tickling.”Newsday

“There have been greater, weightier testaments to the art of cinema published in 2016 . . . but for sheer dopamine release, [The Tao of Bill Murray is] hard to beat.”The New York Times Book Review

“I enjoyed the book so much. Edwards shows us how Murray uses his star power to bring surprise and delight into random people’s daily lives. Whether it’s showing up uninvited to a NYC kickball game or stopping in to a bachelor party to give unsolicited advice on love and marriage, it does seem Murray is trying to tell us something about joy and spontaneity. So, I think it’s high time we all listened.”—NPR

“A must for any fan of Bill Murray . . . Shoot, [Edwards] has sat through every Bill Murray movie, including Where The Buffalo Roam and Garfield: A Tale of Two Kitties, so he deserves credit for that endeavor alone. Credit is also due, though, for this paean to Bill Murray.”The Free Lance-Star

“If you are among the multitudes who have a Bill Murray story (viz: ‘I was in the airport bar, and who sat down next to me but Bill Murray?’), The Tao of Bill Murray will speak to you.”Elle

“Murray is an endless delight, and his knack for bons mots and non sequiturs will keep readers laughing before revealing an unexpectedly poignant vision for happiness. . . . A fun and revealing look behind the charm and mythos of Bill Murray that will only strengthen his legend.”Kirkus Reviews

“This book is bursting with anecdotes that underline Murray’s unconventional and fun-loving life. . . .  Murray’s fans are sure to savor [it] and walk away with a deeper appreciation of the actor and his work.”Publishers Weekly (starred review)

“I just can’t fathom how anyone could not like the man. He lives as much as possible by his own rules; this is a guy who doesn’t buy round-trip airline tickets because he prefers to make decisions on the fly. That old question of the three people you’d most like to have dinner with? I’d pick Bill Murray and leave the other two chairs empty just to see who he pulls over to join us. . . . You will love The Tao of Bill Murray. Period.”GeekDad

“A hilarious read—occasionally heartwarming, sometimes head-scratching. . . . Sure to please Murray fans.”Library Journal

“Everybody has a Bill Murray story. Okay, not everybody, but author Gavin Edwards found enough people with quirky tales of the infamously impulsive actor to fill a book. . . . An enchanting and insightful collection of everyday moments turned magical thanks to Murray’s sly pranks, beneficent deeds, and delightful intrusions on the hoi polloi.”Crave
 
“Hilarious and profound.”Shelf Awareness

“As much as I love Gavin Edwards’s wonderful The Tao of Bill Murray, I can’t help but feel sad that Bill Murray has never covered my eyes on a street corner.”—Moby

And other Tao writers welcome Gavid Edwards to the brotherhood:

“Bill Murray seems to have shambled, stumbled, joked, surprised, party-crashed and acted his way to the Tao. However he got there, we’re all better off for him having demonstrated his unique way.”—Gary Dudney, author of The Tao of Running
 
“Capturing the spirit of a man who actively defies logic is like chasing a mustang through the desert in your skivvies. Luckily Edwards had some help: In this rowdy little book, he collects potent tales from people who experienced something strange and intangible: the zany antics of a trickster whose improvisation skills on stage and screen are nothing compared to his sometimes gallant, sometimes ridiculous, always dauntless improvisations with life.”—Linda Kohanov, author of The Tao of Equus
 
“Mercurial, paradoxical, spontaneous, contrarian, whimsical, benevolent, lighthearted yet deadly earnest: these terms aptly describe both the precepts of the Tao Te Ching and the man known as Bill Murray. Moreover, Murray embodies all of these qualities without even knowing it, easily qualifying him for Taoist of the Month. This collection of bizarre, heartwarming, and hilarious stories will give his fans greater appreciation of his unorthodox approach to life.”—Ali Binazir, M.D., M.Phil., author of The Tao of Dating
 
“This book defies description, like Bill Murray himself. That’s oddly appropriate, since the Tao is beyond words. Murray has certainly blazed a unique and unusual path through his life. May this book inspire you to do the same through yours!”—Derek Lin, author of The Tao of Daily Life
 
“The practice of a Taoist is to make his Way on earth groove in balance and harmony with the Great Way of Heaven. The Way of Bill Murray is to find heavenly humor in the most mundane affairs of life on earth.”—Daniel Reid, author of The Tao of Health, Sex, and Longevity
 
“#intoxicating #strangerthanfiction #murrayforpresident”—Mark W. Schaefer, author of The Tao of Twitter

“I thought I knew the true path to enlightenment—until I read The Tao of Bill Murray.”—Mary Buffett, co-author of The Tao of Warren Buffett

“The principles of Tao make sense in relation to recovery—who thought it was a good idea to discuss some comedian in those terms?”—Jim McGregor, author of The Tao of Recovery

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780812998702
Publisher:
Random House Publishing Group
Publication date:
09/20/2016
Pages:
368
Sales rank:
17,320
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 8.10(h) x 1.20(d)

Meet the Author

Gavin Edwards is the New York Times bestselling author of eight books, including Last Night at the Viper Room, Can I Say (written with Travis Barker), VJ (written with the original MTV VJs), and ’Scuse Me While I Kiss This Guy. As a longtime contributing editor for Rolling Stone, he has written a dozen cover stories for the magazine, traveled the world from Bahrain to New Zealand, and taken a city bus to the Grammys. He lives in Charlotte, North Carolina, with his wife and their two sons.

From the Hardcover edition.

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The Tao of Bill Murray: Real-Life Stories of Joy, Enlightenment, and Party Crashing 3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
KJ14 More than 1 year ago
Whether you’re a fan of Bill Murray or not, what you will find in the pages of this book are the many kindnesses Bill shows, the awkward situations he puts himself and others in and the joy and laughter he brings to so many. There are parts of the book that made me laugh, parts that brought back good memories (I loved Saturday Night Live back in those days!) and parts that I wanted to skip through. At one point the author goes through every movie Bill made along with the places, the directors, other actors and things about the movie; honestly, is was boring. I can say that looking over the long list of Bill’s movies did do one thing; it made me want to watch my favorites all over again. I would like to thank Netgalley and Random House Publishing Group for the opportunity to read this book in exchange for an honest review.