Michael Graber's Reviews > Born Standing Up: A Comic's Life

Born Standing Up by Steve Martin
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's review
Sep 26, 2011

I read this book and an autobiography by a more serious writer, Jonathan Frazen's "The Disquiet Zone" at the same time. Born Standing Up is a quiet American Masterpiece, in the tradition of Franklin's autobiography. The prose is terse. The writer reveals enough, but not too much, he shares his lessons of life and his profession, and his frustrations and insights while keeping a sense of humility. Unlike so many memoirs, this one works well because it does not get maudlin or self-indulgent (like Frazen). Because of his training in film and stand up, Martin never loses sight of his audience--a fact that makes him a much sharper writer than most full time writers.
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