As this book s title suggests, Norm Macdonald tells the story of his life more or less from his origins on a farm in the-back-of-beyond Canada and an epically disastrous appearance on Star Search to his account of auditioning for Lorne Michaels and his memorable run as the anchor ofWeekend Update on Saturday Night Live until he was fired because a corporate executive didn t think he was funny.But Based on a True Story is much more than a memoir; it s the hilarious, inspired epic of Norm s life. Read more...
As this book s title suggests, Norm Macdonald tells the story of his life more or less from his origins on a farm in the-back-of-beyond Canada and an epically disastrous appearance on Star Searchto his account of auditioning for Lorne Michaels and his memorable run as the anchor ofWeekend Update on Saturday Night Live until he was fired because a corporate executive didn t think he was funny.But Based on a True Story is much more than a memoir; it s the hilarious, inspired epic of Norm s life.
In dispatches from a road trip to Las Vegas (part of a plan hatched to regain the fortune he d lost to sports betting and other vices) with his sidekick and enabler, Adam Eget, Norm recounts the milestone moments, the regrets, the love affairs, the times fortune smiled on his life, and the times it refused to smile. As the clock ticks down, Norm s debt reaches record heights, and he must find a way to evade the hefty price that s been placed on his head by one of the most dangerous loan sharks in the country.
As a comedy legend should, Norm peppers these pages with classic jokes and fondly mythologized Hollywood stories. This wildly adventurous, totally original, and absurdly funny saga turns the conventional comic s memoir on its head and gives the reader an exclusive pass into the mad, glorious mind of Norm Macdonald.
Praise for Based on a True Story
A glut of booksby comedians has hit bookshelves in recent years. . . . Norm Macdonald has a leg up on all of them. . . . Based on a True Story is] the best new book I ve read this year or last. Wall Street Journal
Hilarious and filled with turns of phrase and hidden beauty like only a collection of Norm Macdonald stories could be. Esquire
It s disorienting, funny, sometimes stupid, and often wildly beautiful. . . . There has never been a less straightforward book. It s playful and spry and just unbelievably cagey. But it broke me, and I ll tell you why: Macdonald is a pretty extraordinary wordsmith, capable of working in an impressive range of styles and genres. The Week
A driving, wild and hilarious ramble of a book, what might have happened had Hunter S. Thompson embedded himself in a network studio. Washington Post
Part personal history and part meta riff on celebrity memoirs, the book, it quickly becomes clear, is also just partly true (and all hilarious). Vulture
Norm is brilliant and thoughtful and there is sensitivity and creative insight in his observations and stories. A lot of comics over the years have been compared to Mark Twain, but I think Norm is the only one who actually matches the guy in terms of his voice and ability. I seriously f**king love Norm Macdonald. Please buy his book. He probably needs the cash. He s really bad with money. Louis C.K., from the foreword
Norm is one of my all-time favorites, and this book was such a great read I forgot how lonely I was for a while. Amy Schumer
I always thought Normie s stand-up was the funniest thing there was. But this book gives it a run for its money. Adam Sandler"
Publishers Weekly® Reviews
- Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
- Review Date: 2016-08-15
- Reviewer: Staff
In the spare moments of a Las Vegas gambling adventure—replete with murderous loan sharks, drug and alcohol binges, and sexual misadventures—comedian and Saturday Night Live alum MacDonald recounts predominantly fictitious tales from his life and career to his companion (and podcast cohost), Adam Eget, who's portrayed as a dunce. Some MacDonald fans will enjoy the comedian's signature mix of dark absurdity and sophomoric antics (many of the gags in the book are recycled from the comedian's prior work), but general readers will find little to appreciate in this uninventive and meandering adventure narrative. Many of the details and sentiments that MacDonald shares about his childhood, his 1990s tenure at SNL as host of the Weekend Update segment, and his current experience as a working comic past his prime are surely true. For the most part, however, MacDonald steers clear of introspection and disclosure, choosing instead to make up stories and tell jokes. MacDonald does deliver some hilarious material—for instance, recounting a supposed confidential conversation with Rodney Dangerfield in which the late comedian admitted that despite his wealth and fame, he secretly felt disrespected. On the whole, however, MacDonald's faux memoir is not nearly funny enough to justify the reader's time. (Sept.)