I’m a fan of great books at great prices, and if you’ve been in a B&M (“Brick & Mortar,” or physical store as-opposed to online store) Barnes & Noble lately, you’ve probably seen a stack of America (The Book) by The Daily Show with Jon Stewart for under $10 a copy – a real steal.
I’m not going to go into the brilliant satire in this book, nor the way the writers of The Daily Show create a streamlined effort to link all of the information they present. The reason I love this book is its presentation.
If you’ve attended public schools in the last thirty years, chances are you will recognize America (The Book) as an amazing parody of a school textbook. The binding, the glossy cover, the library stamp in the front page, the page layout. Over and over, this book goes the extra mile in terms of creating a new level of parody and satire. Yes, they satirize American sensibilities, politics, and history, but to do it in a textbook format, to imply that the way American children learn and are being taught is what really brings this book’s message home.
What’s that? You’ve already read America (The Book)? Then look for America (The Book) Teacher’s Edition. This version has “hand-written” notes all over the place, both correcting the inaccuracies of the original – by inaccuracies, I mean the true parts that were changed so they would be funny – and a snarky running commentary on how the last book was presented. It’s a fun supplemental to the original, and you can likely find this on a close-out table for under $10 as well. Considering these hardcover books were both pushing $20 when they first came out, the price is surely right to those who’ve been waiting to pick up a copy.
(this post was added retro-actively to assist continuity.)