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Theories of Everything: Selected, Collected, and Health-Inspected Cartoons, 1978-2006
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Theories of Everything: Selected, Collected, and Health-Inspected Cartoons, 1978-2006

4.34  ·  Rating Details  ·  392 Ratings  ·  52 Reviews
At last, the comprehensive book of cartoons from beloved New Yorker cartoonist Roz Chast.
Hardcover, 400 pages
Published October 31st 2006 by Bloomsbury USA
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(showing 1-30 of 748)
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Yair Ben-Zvi
Mar 09, 2016 Yair Ben-Zvi rated it it was amazing
This one took me a while, and in a few ways, some even ironic. Firstly, it's a long edition (mine ran into 400 pages) and all honesty, I think this is a collection meant to be taken gradually or, as Amos Oz might say, in 'little sips'. And I'm glad I read this collection as I did because I truly believe that I've come away with something special, even singular.

Roz Chast, to paraphrase one of the blurbs on the book, truly is a master of a nearly lost art form (the single or close t
Apr 12, 2016 Negin rated it it was ok
Shelves: graphic
Roz Chast wrote "Can't We Talk About Something More Pleasant?" - a wonderful cartoon memoir of her aging parents, an absolute must-read in my opinion, hence why I chose this book. I probably read it all wrong and should have spent more time on it, reading it slowly while reading other books. I don’t think that this collection of cartoons (400 pages) is meant to be read all at once. However, even if I had taken my time with this, I can’t imagine giving it more than 3 stars. Some of the cartoons w ...more
Po Po
Dec 17, 2014 Po Po rated it really liked it
Theories of Everything pokes fun at... well... everything.

RC's simple illustrations and snappy captions uniquely showcase modern-day absurdities and expose human frailties in a compassionate and fresh yet strangely familiar way that resonates with the heart and mind.

Many of the comics are small, only a quarter to a half-page whereas others are much longer at four full pages.

A few of these are literally laugh-out-loud funny, but there were groaners thrown in. And then there were others which lef
Elizabeth A
Oct 21, 2014 Elizabeth A rated it liked it
Shelves: graphix, 2014
This is a collection of the author's cartoons and covers her work from 1978 to 2006. That is a huge span of time, and while this is a good introduction to her body of work for someone like me who had not read her standalone cartoons, it suffers for the same reason that most collected works do. There are sublime pieces, really funny ones, and ones that were simply meh. Some of the things that go on in her head made me laugh out loud, but overall I did not love this collection. Still, 3 stars mean ...more
Nov 10, 2009 Julianne rated it really liked it
Shelves: cartoons
This book is relentless. Everyone in it is a bourgeois New Yorker, and it frequently disregards the fact that a “Great Outdoors” even exists. (Guaranteed to make outdoorsy types cry: “Nature Girl and the Four Elements.”) But some of it was funny. Some of it was very funny. Sometimes it was just absurd (I especially liked “Rogue Salad Bar” and “Parallel Universes”), and sometimes, beneath the absurdity and acerbity, it actually reveals something potentially profound about our culture or how we se ...more
April Brown
Nov 20, 2011 April Brown rated it it was ok
Shelves: humor
Comic Strip Series.

What ages would I recommend it too? – Adults.

Length? – Pages unnumbered. Each comic is one page or less.

Characters? – Multiple.

Setting? – Everywhere, including imagination.

Written approximately? – 1978 - 2006.

Does the story leave questions in the readers mind? – Yes. Many of these comics I do not understand. Most are not funny. They seem to be commentary, rather than funny.

Any issues the author (or a more recent publisher) should cover? Are these comics supposed to be funny, o
Apr 30, 2008 cheeseblab rated it it was amazing
Did I ever mention meeting Roz Chast? Oh, I did? Well, never mind then.

The only thing that keeps this from being the Best Bathroom Reading of the Year is that it weighs about 8 pounds and is really bulky and sometimes hard to keep balanced when you have other things on your mind. But good lord, this woman is funny--funnier now that I live in Connecticut than she was when I lived in Illinois. Funny, that.
Jun 03, 2007 Trin rated it it was amazing
Shelves: comics, american-lit
Roz Chast is one of my favorite cartoonists; her work is just the perfect blend of neurotic anxiety, literary humor, and utter wackiness. This is a really great collection, too: 400 pages spanning her entire career, including many of my personal favorites. (Pollyanna in Hell! Yay!) Highly, highly recommended.
Oct 16, 2014 Elsa rated it it was amazing
I actually didn't enjoy this so much, because I didn't realize it was a compilation of her other books, so I had recently read them all and I wanted something I hadn't read before. BUT, because it is Roz Chast, and I love her humor, I can't give it anything less than five stars, because this is all five star material.
Feb 16, 2014 Elizabeth rated it really liked it
I first heard of Roz Chast at a Writers Festival event in Melbourne with a New York theme. She spoke for 20 minutes after which I knew I wanted to see her work. Her quirky, gentle at times ironic look at life's events, small and large is engaging. I enjoyed this book and very happily return to it from time to time.
Patrice Sartor
For hardcore fans of Roz Chast, I imagine this book is a godsend. My only prior experience with Chast is Can't We Talk About Something More Pleasant?, and since I liked that one so much, I assumed I would also like this one. That was not the case, for the most part.

The cartoons are mostly commentary and brief opinion pieces, which I didn't find humorous. Maybe they were funny (funnier?) when originally published, I don't know. I did like them more as the (very large, quite heavy) book progresse
Jan 21, 2009 Nick rated it really liked it
Sort of depends whether you like Roz Chast, but some of this stuff is absolutely hilarious, and several of the cartoons have already become catchphrases in my house, the kind of humor shorthand that seems to just get funnier because of how true-to-life it is (e.g. "face goes all crazy!"). Recommended
Nov 26, 2011 Amanda rated it really liked it
Shelves: graphic-novels
I like Chast's regular cartoons much more, and found myself giggling through some of these over breakfast and forcing Chad to look at the ones that represented me. After seeing Chast, they became even funnier moments. I think that she might be one of the funniest women alive.
May 29, 2012 Anne rated it it was amazing
OMG, I fell over in the bookstore when I saw this mighty tome of all things Chast. There's something about her deceptively amateurish-looking toons that always tickles and enlightens me, and I seem to know her people. Um, maybe I even AM one of her people. Erk.
Oct 21, 2007 Jeff rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: cartoon lovers everywhere, unless they're Garfield fans
The best living New Yorker cartoonist finally has a book big enough to convince anyone that you either get her work, or else you're a giant worthless stick in the mud. Or whatever. But I know where I go when I need a good laugh from a book..
Mar 03, 2008 Mily rated it it was amazing
Shelves: humor
LOVE Roz Chast.

Any New Yorker reader will enjoy this all RC all the time!
400 pages.
It's huge and it's hilarious.

The more neurotic you are the more you'll love it.
And I really loved it.

That is all.
Emilia P
Sep 27, 2010 Emilia P rated it really liked it
Shelves: comic-books
YAY. She's great. This book is great. The world is a mess and ridiculous and people are silly and they get mad and frustrated all the time about silly things. This book would be worth owning. New York-y in the best way.
Includes Passive-Aggressive Birthday Gifts (Li'l Smelter! Floozy Factory!), Extremely Practical Jokes (Trick Vitamin Gum! Dental X-Ray Specs!), and _Schadenfreude Monthly_ magazine.
Oct 14, 2014 Unigami rated it it was ok
Shelves: humor
I didn't really care for these very much...a few were interesting, a few were kinda funny, but most of them just left me completely unmoved and wondering what the point was.
Dec 25, 2008 Sue rated it it was amazing
Oh, my gosh. She has one cartoon about funny-named towns in Arkansas. I'm going to do one about funny-named towns in Georgia, to emulate her. She is so funny!
Peter Herrmann
Feb 03, 2015 Peter Herrmann rated it it was amazing
With so many of these cartoons she has captured the aspects of life and surroundings that I've been dimly or fleetingly aware of - just beneath the surface thoughts, that I never stopped to consciously dwell on. And with many others, she sees things in people & life & surroundings, that I was never aware of at all. Either way, she is brilliant. And funny. Some reviewers here said they didn't understand most of the cartoons. Or find them funny (I guess if you didn't understand them, you w ...more
Feb 08, 2009 Alison rated it did not like it
More of a scan than a reading. It's like the author was trying to be like Addams but not getting there. Just not my humor, I guess.
Jan 17, 2008 Jessica rated it it was amazing
This is the greatest book ever written. I'm not kidding. What could possibly be better than a giant book full of Roz Chast cartoons?
Melanie Linn
Jun 17, 2014 Melanie Linn rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2014
Hilarious. I was laughing out loud (and scaring my poor family). Roz Chast makes living with anxiety funny.
Thought provoking, mind boggling and outright goofy -- I loved reading this book!
Jun 21, 2015 Anne rated it really liked it
Shelves: reviewed, 2015
Roz Chast is a gem. Makes neurosis fun!
Jun 11, 2009 Emily rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: people with mothers or children
Shelves: 5-star-read
I encountered cartoons by Roz Chast back in the 1980's in Seventeen magazine. They made fun of things while capturing teen anguish to a T. For example, I remember the two teenage protagonists needing jobs and aspiring to something glamorous, but ending up at a mall-food-court hot dog stand, wearing ridiculously unattractive uniforms. Years later, I have caught up with Roz Chast again, via this collection of her cartoons for the New Yorker magazine. I spent a great deal of time laughing.

Roz Chas
Aug 12, 2015 Susan rated it really liked it
Shelves: cartoons
The only thing wrong with this monumental collection of Roz Chast's marvelous, witty cartoons is the size--after reading for a while, your wrists will ache. But it's a small price to pay...
Nov 09, 2015 BowbytheBay rated it really liked it
Hilarious! I left it open on the back of the couch and would read a page or two as I walked by.
Jan 17, 2015 Linda rated it really liked it
Shelves: humor
Funny. Some laugh out loud funny.
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Rosalind "Roz" Chast is an American cartoonist and a staff cartoonist[1] for The New Yorker. She grew up in the Flatbush section of Brooklyn, the only child of awn assistant principal and a high school teacher. Her earliest cartoons were published in Christopher Street and The Village Voice. In 1978 The New Yorker accepted one of her cartoons and has since published more than 800. She also publish ...more
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