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Whiter Shades of Pale: The Stuff White People Like, Coast to Coast, from Seattle's Sweaters to Maine's Microbrews
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Whiter Shades of Pale: The Stuff White People Like, Coast to Coast, from Seattle's Sweaters to Maine's Microbrews

3.68 of 5 stars 3.68  ·  rating details  ·  831 ratings  ·  115 reviews
HOW WHITE YOU ARE!

If you thought you had white people pegged as Oscar-party-throwing, Prius-driving, Sunday New York Times–reading, self-satisfied latte lovers—you were right. But if you thought diversity was just for other races, then hang on to your eco-friendly tote bags. Author and veteran white person Christian Lander is back with fascinating new information and adv...more
Kindle Edition
Published (first published January 1st 2010)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 1,464)
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Todd Nemet
Multiple choice:

1. After dinner conversation topics for upper-middle-class strivers once the help is safely out of earshot.

2. Bullshit masquerading as self-awareness because it's so much easier to face than the real underlying social anxiety about race and class that has been building for a couple of decades now.

3. The emperor's new irony.

Would it violate the rules of this mental game of hipster doofus dodgeball to start with the implied obverse that Non-white people don't like X and riff on tha...more
notgettingenough
These books are hilarious and really, the most hilarious thing about them is that white people think they are hilarious. Why is that?

I mean, it's all true. But why doesn't that mean that white people DON'T find it funny?????!

Read this morning:



To fully understand why white poeple love [Adult Swim] so much you have to understand the world of 'under-ground animation,' which is something that has been beloved by white people since Fritz the Cat. The more hard-core white people (single white men) wi
...more
Mike Noyes
First, I got this through the goodreads First Reads giveaway. thanks!

Second, I've never been to the SWPL website, or read the first book, so all my thoughts are based solely on this book.

To start, this is a pretty damn funny book. It takes a lot to make me laugh out loud while reading and I did so several times throughout. Also, there were several times when I felt the need to read sections aloud to friends which a very rarely do. Over all this is a silly fun book and also a very quick read.

The...more
EZRead eBookstore
“Whiter Shades of Pale” continues the internet legacy of featuring all of the kooky and nutty things “white” Americans (and Canadians) enjoy. The blog writers select something trending or vaguely alt for city dwellers, like Trader Joe’s, and then writes a 500-word paragraph describing it. Unfortunately, they are really just describing it. Like, they’ll say, “Trader Joe’s is a grocery store that sells inexpensive wine to environmentally-conscious shoppers who bring their own bags.” HA HA HA HA HA...more
Greg
Stuff White People Like was one of the first big blog-to-book phenomenons, and two years later, Whiter Shades of Pale is no less hilarious. This time the focus is more on the geography of whiteness, mainly with 24 dead-on line drawings that depict the prototypical white person from each city/region with callouts of the accessories and icons that make them so...Caucasian (Seattle guy drinking coffee: "NOT Starbucks. This is some next generation coffee that you can’t even begin to understand right...more
Will
At some point, "Stuff White People Like" is stuff white people like. The fact that the joke is meta and clearly indicates a superior kind of white person isn't sufficient to outweigh the problem that the book really isn't all that funny.

Pointing out Trader Joe and IKEA as things that white people like, for example. This has been done. By everyone. For all time. It's so old you couldn't give it away.

Hummus. White people like hummus. And whole wheat bread. There's nothing you couldn't say white pe...more
Adam Bricker
Disclaimer: I read this book as part of the Goodreads first reads program.

This is one of those funny because it's true things. I recognized all but five of the attributes in myself or my friends. Be prepared to laugh at yourself...if you have no sense of humor about yourself or the ability to be self-deprecating then you might want to skip this read.

It's a pretty quick read in general, but if you just want a quick overview check out the drawings/descriptions because they are hilarious and spot o...more
Kurt
There is, at its core, only one real joke here: overeducated, organic, NPR-listening, insecure white people are worthy of mockery. That joke, though, never stops being funny as Lander pokes at it from dozens of angles over the course of the book. Some of the articles hint at honest concerns for potentially self-destructive behavior (Raw Milk and Not Vaccinating Your Children, among others), but most of the articles are light and silly (Girls With Bangs, Sea Salt, and Ugly Sweater Parties are amo...more
Nikki
It's funny 'cause it's true.

"Under no circumstances, should you imply that white people purchased their sunglasses because of celebrities that are not dead or because they saw them on other white people they think are cool. This will make them very upset as white people need to believe that they cannot be persuaded to buy anything. Saying something like “man, it’s pretty amazing how 65 people at this outdoor concert all decided to get their sunglasses at exactly the same time,” should only be di...more
Brittany
Mar 20, 2012 Brittany rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: White people. Ironically.
How I Came To Read This Book: The boyfriend owned the original [BOOK: Stuff White People Like] and finally got around to reading it, which inspired me to pick up the second one from the library.

The Plot: Technically speaking, this book is the same concept as the first one - short, non-fiction humorous essays on 'white culture' and how you, presumably as a non-white reader, can befriend a white person or identify with 'white' interests / hobbies / preferences, etc. Think of it as a tongue-in-chee...more
Jonathan
As with any good sendup, this book and author harbor a not-so-secret affinity for the subject of its spite/barbs.

I laughed a couple times, probably; I chuckled a few times; and I smiled a lot. I was never offended (well, duh).

A good format in starting chapters with drawings of (white) people from various cities in the U.S. and Canada, spotlighting key attire and possessions that those folks prefer. Right on in a lot of cases. What to say? People are predictable. A lot of stereotypes are flat-out...more
Kevin Summers
Some people don't find this book to be funny because it supposedly points out the obvious, but parts of the book do seem to have a seriously critical tone that goes beyond just a good laugh. Other parts are just plain funny.

Sample quote: "When it comes to hiring a nanny, there are a lot of rules. White nannies are generally seen as problematic. ... [W]ith white nannies comes the fear that they will abandon the children if they find something better to do. This last fear is especially pronounced...more
Spoonbridge
More of the same, this time with the added bonus of stereotypically drawn vignettes of various "white" cities in the US and Canada; looking at it through the lens of Colin Woodard's book American Nations, is interesting, though. Using his concept of the eleven rival regions of North America paints Lander's ideas in a new light; more than half (12) of the 21 specific North American cities profiled are found in just three "nations," Yankeedom (i.e., Boston, Minneapolis), New Amsterdam (Brooklyn),...more
Justin
Those familiar with the first book might think that Christian Lander simply hammered out some new entries, updated a few old ones, and added some illustrations to his blog-turned-book "Stuff White People Like," so he could get a second payday. Well...you'd be right. But the good news is, the material is just as biting and hilarious. Anyone reading this book is likely to cringe and identify with one or 57 entries. The true question is whether we "white people," i.e., yuppies are able to laugh at...more
Tracy
This book is funny and similar to the website, but there is not enough new information to justify more than picking it up from the library for a skim. It talks about all of the White People Places and intersperses them with reruns from the website. It does not hide that it is doing this and most of the old material directly relates to the place (i.e. a place where fixed gear bikes are a must includes the fixed gear bike post from the website). White people places include everywhere in the US you...more
Gail
I really enjoyed reading this book. In fact, I breezed through it in a few days. I liked the way the chapters were arranged according to locale and covered most of the regional "Caucasian population". The author was concise and clear in his hilarious descriptions of "white people". Anybody reading this book will recognize themselves or somebody they know. It was entertaining and funny and it made me laugh. The author managed to make fun of "white people" all across the US and more in a very amus...more
Elizabeth
I laughed aloud quite a bit while reading this book -- which is something that I'm quite fond of. I definitely agreed and appreciated most of what was written in here, while there were quite a few things that either mildly offended me or I just didn't agree with at all (which, in retrospect, is pretty white of me to say).

I also really loved the pictures and descriptions of people according to city. Although, the one for "Boston" was completely inaccurate, and was a better fit for Boston tourist...more
Tom Goulter
Where the first book had an anthropologist's detached bemusement, this one chides its subjects for not making enough money or "contributing to society," which is pretty dominant hegemonic power-paradigm of it, something white people love both to do and to accuse others of doing. The result is a somewhat meaner, cattier work that's closer in tone both to its many short-lived, inferior imitators, and to what horrified Wrong Kind Of White People have always imagined SWPL must be like. But then I'm...more
Theresa Milstein
It's rare for a humorous book to really be that funny and make me laugh out loud. This one did. It's also rare for a sequel to be just as good as the first one. This one didn't disappoint.

I saw the first book Stuff White People Like in a gift store. After laughing as I flipped the pages, I bought it. When I saw this book had come out, I bought it without high expectations. But it was definitely worth reading.

If the book isn't reminding me of me, making me laugh at myself, it's pointing out peop...more
Laura
I did not read the first one but my brother who rarely reads thought it was hilarious and pretty much forced me to read through this one. Some points it made me smile thinking how fondly I fit the stereotypical white person, some things I didn't even know about like the really old tomatoes and some sections I just skipped over because they were boring. It's like a guidebook. It reminded me a lot of the Hipster Handbook. Except the illustrations were really poorly done. It even mentioned hipster,...more
Stephanie
Meaner-spirited and less funny than the original.
Joni
A quick funny read.
Amber Gerber
Christian Lander's second book continues to poke fun at white culture, this time using geographic locations of whiteness including Seattle, New York and even Madison. Some of the entries make you cringe because you recognize these as things that others do and may annoy you. Other times, you find yourself acknowledging that yes, you too are a member of the white culture.
I had the opportunity to meet Christian at a reading in Madison where he pointed out all of the whiteness of the city with meta...more
Talyn
I LOVED the breakdown and basic "human anatomy" pages every so often that broke down a typical American in a certain region of our country. Stuff like their clothes, the stuff they own, hobbies and their personal beliefs reflected by what they wear or their accent or whatever. I loved this.. an equally funny companion to Stuff White People Like
Allison Herman
Laugh-out-loud hilarious. I'm somewhat familiar with the website, but I don't check it regularly. After reading this book, I think I will!

It was so sad how many people I could put into the different categories. The descriptions of the different types of people were dead-on. The hipster culture is obviously one of Lander's pet peeves and after reading this, I realize it's one of mine, too. Agreeing with the stereotypes in this book may make me white, but thank goodness I'm not a hipster.
Drake
Christian Lander knocks it out of the park again! ‘Whiter Shades of Pale’ is his follow up to the hilarious ‘Stuff White People Like.’ Basically, it’s just an expansion of his always insightful and side-splitting blog documenting the habits of modern liberal yuppies. Every time he hits their quirks right on the head, spinning it into a terrific satire. Received this for my birthday and spent the entire night reading passages to my wife. Absolute fun.
Eric
Three Stars =
(1 Star) for adding to the already deep cultural rot through self-aware, cynical, and ironic posturing that derives its purpose through the making fun of others in a snotty, snarky way.
+
(5 Stars) for contributing to the aforementioned cultural rot in such a hilarious and bullseye satirical way, that even though every entry in this book was pretty much making fun of me, personally, I was laughing my ass off in head-nodding agreement.
Darcy McLaughlin
Really the book/blog should be called "People Who Try Too Hard". Still, there's a lot of great humour in here, especially when he hits on some stereotypes that are almost undeniable. It's never done in a truly cruel way. Though it's technically racial humour it's aimed at the group the suffers the least, white people! I guarantee that reading through this you'll stop at least once or twice and think "I TOTALLY know that guy/girl".
Meredith
So I am finding myself pre-disposed to like every book I win from the Goodreads promotions.

What I will say about this--- if you are looking for really intelligent race/racial justice analysis, this is not the book for you.

If you want to chuckle to yourself a few times with a book that very loosely explores race in America, as well as class and urban/rural dynamics, then you'll enjoy it.
Hannah
This book was fairly humorous, for the most part. The diagrams and brief explanations of regional white people were by far the highlights of the book. The actual list of things white people are supposed to like tended to get a little tedious towards the end, and I think Lander could have done better to make it more regional based, rather than another generic list.
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Christian Lander is the creator of the website Stuff White People Like. He is a Ph.D. dropout who was the 2006 public speaking instructor of the year at Indiana University. He has lived in Toronto, Montreal, Copenhagen, Tucson, Indiana, and now Los Angeles, where he lives with his wife, Jess, a photographer who contributed many of the photos in the book.

More about Christian Lander...
Stuff White People Like: A Definitive Guide to the Unique Taste of Millions

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“If you look into the footnotes of the business model for Apple Computer you'll see that they actually give the computers away for free; they just charge for the inflated sense of self-worth.” 6 likes
“For white people, nothing makes them appreciate the gift of life more than voluntarily trying to end it.” 3 likes
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