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I am a Pole (And So Can You!)
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I am a Pole (And So Can You!)

3.9 of 5 stars 3.90  ·  rating details  ·  3,553 ratings  ·  390 reviews
"The sad thing is, I like it" - Maurice Sendak

"The perfect gift to give a child or grandchild for their high school or college graduation.
Also Father's Day.
Also, other times."

- Stephen Colbert
Hardcover, 32 pages
Published May 8th 2012 by Grand Central Publishing
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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I read this book in a bookstore yesterday, never intending to read it, but my son's girlfriend picked it up and started reading it out loud. Before I knew it, we were both reading it out loud and laughing. In fact, we laughed at every page, at the witty wording, at the concept of the pole searching for its purpose, at the just plain fun silliness, and at the well done illustrations. It was in short, and it is a very short book, a delightful surprise shared with one of my favorite people in one o ...more
Take a look at the cover.
There is a silver "Caldecott Eligible Book" medallion featuring soaring eagles and Colbert riding a flying pig, a quote by Maurice Sendak, and a drawing of what appears to be a happy tapeworm. If any of this makes you smile, you should probably enjoy the rest of the book.

Open the cover and you'll find a sweet story about a pole's journey of self discovery. This pole is no lazy layabout; he is looking for a job, and most of the book is taken up with his attempts at variou
I am so disappointed, friends.


I'd been looking forward to I am a Pole since Colbert's Epic Beyond All Epic interview with the (deceased as of today noooo my childhood) Maurice Sendak.

Which was absolutely amazing.

But, um. I didn't... I didn't laugh at all.

I mean, I laughed at the idea of it. But that was before the physical copy was in my hand. Then there was no laughing. There was some eye rolling. And a little bit of desperate page flipping. And a stripper, which was fun. But no laughin
May 09, 2012 John rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Stephen Colbert fans, humorists
Recommended to John by: Stephen Colbert
Stephen Colbert's gem is a tribute to Maurice Sendak...

Simply put, Stephen Colbert's I Am A Pole (And So Can You!) is the funniest under 10-minute read that I've thumbed through and then read this year... and maybe last year as well!

Like the best of Colbert's work, this one offers a preposterous concept in a very straight-faced tongue-in-cheek way that artfully lampoons children's books, politics and pop culture even as it embraces it. Page after page (OK, there are only 32 pages here), Colbert'
Kitsch at its best.

Ok, this book is really really short. Not even twenty pages. There are maybe eighty words total. "I am a Pole (And So Can You!)" is a mock children's book. It has the familiar two or three rhymed sentences per page juxtaposed with a colorful image drawn sans two and three point perspective.

This is the story of a pole looking for his place in the world. He tries out all kinds of different positions, from working as a lamp post, to a stripper pole but nothing is for him. Then
Not for children, but darn hilarious! You really have to see it to really understand.

Here is a link to an interview between Colbert and Maurice Sendak.
Part 1

Part 2

Go!!! Watch these and then go find the book.

Melissa E
My boys and I noticed this book in the new arrivals section at the library. I figured it was not kid friendly because Colbert wrote it, but after flipping through the book it looked like a funny book about a pole who doesn't know who he is and later discovers he is a flag pole-- the best kind of pole.

What I WASN'T prepared for was a picture of a nearly naked g-string clad STRIPPER on a stripper pole halfway through the book. Seriously. 1 star might seem harsh, but any book that makes me have a
I think a lot of the one star reviews for this book are missing the point. If you're not a hardcore fan of the show, you will not "get it." Also, it's not supposed to be a children's book. So get over that quickly.

I thought it was a very well done spoof, but I'm only giving it four out of five stars because I didn't actually laugh out loud. I have higher hopes for Colbert's book coming out in October, America Again: Re-becoming the Greatness We Never Weren't.
Ok, the illustrations were terrible, but it was still hilarious. Please note that this book should be shelved along with "Go the F*** to Sleep" as a picture book for adults. I'm sure a bunch of bookstores are tossing this one in the kiddie section without thought--so be sure to listen closely for little voices asking, "Mommy, what's a stripper pole?"
Paul  Hankins
Funny. Poignant with the Sendak inserts to include a blurb on the front cover and an illustration in the back of the book. Stephen Colbert does what good satirists do--poke fun without being necessarily cruel. The overall message seems to be to present a celebrity book that aims to take itself a little too seriously.
Lisa Vegan
Jul 05, 2012 Lisa Vegan rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommended to Lisa by: Kathy
I guess this could be a good book for 4th of July, for adults, or maybe teens too. And I read it the day after 4th of July/the holiday weekend.

Somehow, this one just didn’t charm me as much as I’d expected. The most fun part of this book, for me, was the very, very, very short author’s bio on the inside back cover. That is funny, as are the other bios on the same spot. I also enjoyed the fun he poked at himself. Parts of the rhyme were funny. I didn’t particularly enjoy the illustrative style, b
Nick James
Another funny book by the always hilarious Stephen Colbert, this time with a parody of childrens book.
Inspired by his interview with author Maurice Sendak, Colbert writes about a pole who is still looking for his true destiny of being an important pole. From an Olympic pole to a to a strippers pole, it seems hopeless until he finally, in the end, becomes a flag pole.
Haha, it's a very funny book, but I questioned if it was really a childrens book or just a parody of one. It has to be a parody bec
Philip Cherny
This faux-childrens' book is packed with hilarity that extends to even the front and back covers. My only contention is the illustration seems sub-par by most illustrated book standards. I find that the most effective satire accurately mocks every little aspect of the subject it attempts to subvert (Onion News Network are the undisputed masters, in my humble opinion.) As a big fan of both the Colbert Report and of well-illustrated childrens' books, I was hoping the Colbert-brand satire I enjoy w ...more
Isabelle Omelczuk
Mar 26, 2015 Isabelle Omelczuk rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: older folk
Recommended to Isabelle by: sister
Hilarious, and sort of moving. It is silly and has an easy plot line. I would not recommend this for children though due to some age inappropriate ideas.
Great break reading. I'm glad the pole found his calling. I wish I could.

How is this written by Stephen Colbert?!

It's not for children. So, it has to be funny, right?

But... it's not!

Yes it takes three minutes to read, so it's not like I invested a lot in it, but it's disappointing and I'm surprised that Stephen Colbert actually published it. It seems like the type of thing you might joke about but not actually go through with.

Sadly, the funniest part is the list of "other books about Pole." The idea of this book is funnier than the actual follow-through.
C.R. Richards
This took me about 5 minutes to read and is totally worth the $9 bucks I spent. Hysterical! I'm still laughing. If you aren't familiar with Stephen his show "The Colbert Report". In this spoof of a children's picture book, he gives a funny account of the Pole's search for the perfect job. Make sure to read the book cover to cover. If you don't, you may miss a joke.
harlequin {Stephanie}
sorry, buddy, this is so very far from funny.

I thought maybe it was meant to be a children's story... that was before the bit about the stripper pole. it's just some company attempting to make money off a popular name & doing a terrible job at. what a waste.
It really is a children's book. Complete with rhymed verses and everything. Yeah I don't really like that sort of books. I thought it was going to be different since it's Colbert's but guess not.
Jordan Lahn
Always hilarious from Stephen Colbert. it isn't a classic, but it's good for a quick read.

EDIT: Also enjoyed the audiobook. Maybe even more than the regular!

One of my wife's ex-students laughingly demanded that she read to our daughter more often. I read one small Winnie the Pooh book to my girl and now this.

Wife is a big Stephen Colbert fan. I'm a fan of him in small doses. I mean really small doses. Like twenty page is just about perfect.

My wife and I laughed a lot because it's incredibly stupid. Yes, there is a picture of a stripper. But don't worry about my daughter's innocence and call child protection services. My daughter not even born yet. S
ღ Carol jinx~☆~
It isn't a perfect gift for a kid because he threw in a pole-dancing stripper...What was he thinking?
Not really a children's book since at one point the pole is a strip pole. But it was funny, clever and cute.
the golden witch.
I think the stripper pole was my favorite part. Along with Maurice Sendak's blurb, bless.
Sarah Johnson
If it wern't for the stripper, I would totally read this at storytime.
Jill Kaplan
God, this is freaking hilarious. Read this at LeakyCon.
Ok, what did I just read? I AM CONFUSED!
A silly but fun 5-minute diversion.
The late Maurice Sendak said of this book, "Terribly, supremely ordinary...The sad thing is, I like it." Who am I to disagree, I liked it as well. I liked almost everything about this book, almost everything...I actually found the computer generated illustrations to be only mediocre. But I especially liked the part with the Stripper. (Yes, not appropriate for youngsters.) Which is a shame because it is a genuinely delightful book with a patriotic message. One page will be enough to keep this boo ...more
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Stephen Tyrone Colbert is an American comedian, satirist, actor, and writer known for his ironic style, particularly in his portrayal of uninformed opinion leaders and deadpan comedic delivery.
Colbert originally studied to be an actor, but became interested in improvisational theater when he met famed Second City director Del Close while attending Northwestern University. He first performed profes
More about Stephen Colbert...
I Am America (And So Can You!) America Again: Re-becoming the Greatness We Never Weren't Stephen Colbert's Tek Jansen #2 Totally MAD: 60 Years of Humor, Satire, Stupidity and Stupidity Stephen Colbert's Tek Jansen: Invasion of the Optiklons

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