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Al Franken, Giant of the Senate
Al Franken, Giant of the Senate | Al Franken
146 posts | 89 read | 80 to read
From the #1 bestselling author - the story of an award-winning comedian who decided to run for office and then discovered why award-winning comedians tend not to do that. AL FRANKEN, GIANT OF THE SENATE is a book about an unlikely campaign that had an even more improbable ending: the closest outcome in history and an unprecedented eight-month recount saga, which is pretty funny in retrospect. It's a book about what happens when the nation's foremost progressive satirist gets a chance to serve in the United States Senate and, defying the low expectations of the pundit class, actually turns out to be good at it. It's a book about our deeply polarized, frequently depressing, occasionally inspiring political culture, written from inside the belly of the beast. In this candid personal memoir, the honorable gentleman from Minnesota takes his army of loyal fans along with him from Saturday Night Live to the campaign trail, inside the halls of Congress, and behind the scenes of some of the most dramatic and/or hilarious moments of his new career in politics.
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Megabooks
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Was it a #NecessaryEvil that the Democratic leadership asked Al Franken to resign from the Senate? I think so, if they want to be consistent with what they‘re asking of the Republicans. Washington is totally f‘ed up, though!

This episode is one of my favorite season 2 stories. I like Odo as a detective. It‘s one of the better ones focusing on Bajoran politics. #StarTrekSummerJune

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KathyWheeler
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Al Franken is working with the librarian at the school in the picture on a project to provide books for the library. Read about the project here: https://alfranken.com/read/books-for-bug-o-nay-ge-shig-school-in-leech-lake-mn. Books can also be chosen from their Amazon wish list and sent directly to the school here: https://www.amazon.com/hz/wishlist/ls/1M002ZRMM0UBF

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Coleen
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Pickpick

Al Franken is not only a funny man, but a very smart one as well. It‘s so unfortunate that he is no longer in the Senate. He really seemed to have been there for the right reasons. He reads his own audiobook and his Rain Man imitation was spot-on perfection. I was literally laughing out loud for a full minute while driving down the road.

BarbaraTheBibliophage Having listened to this book made me so much sadder when he was accused. 😰 1y
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keithmalek
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Samplergal Gotta love him simply for that! 1y
Suet624 Loved this book. 1y
21 likes2 comments
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keithmalek
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On Ted Cruz.

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keithmalek
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keithmalek
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Samplergal 💔 1y
Riveted_Reader_Melissa I really liked this book. 1y
Suet624 I listened to this book so I couldn‘t quote it. Otherwise I would have been posting repeatedly. 1y
17 likes3 comments
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keithmalek
Pickpick

I really enjoyed this. I particularly enjoyed the chapter on why everyone in Washington D.C. hates Ted Cruz.

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keithmalek
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keithmalek
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Suet624
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Pickpick

This book makes me so sad. And mad. I know we shy away from politics on Litsy, but I wish everyone would read this book. You‘ll see that this is the book that did him in. He spares no one and he paid the price. You‘ll see very clearly how government works and how the Republican Party has operated for the last decade. They used Franken‘s comedy against him in his first campaign. It didn‘t work then. But they found a way to do him in in 2017. 👇🏻

Suet624 Just an FYI: people are now trying to find anyone who will say something about Bernie Sanders that they can go after him on. I worked for him. He‘s a good man. So is Franken. 2y
Izai.Amorim Bernie is the only hope America has to get on the right track again. I hope he lives long. 2y
Suet624 @Izai.Amorim 💕💕 2y
LauraBeth I always appreciate it when I hear from someone who actually knows the person - or at least has met them. 2y
72 likes4 comments
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RebL
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1. 46, 2. Big bro, 3. Two lonely onlies, 4. Just finished Giant of the Senate &, geez, I‘m conflicted, the end 5. Can‘t answer, 6. ❤️, 7. None in English, but I love saying “trabajabamos” in Spanish, 8. I‘m hilarious, 9. 🦖, 10. Yes, please, 11. Bad Girls of the Bible.

Thanks for including me, @saguarosally . #hallowhoareyou @Gyldholm

saguarosally 7. Trabajábamos donde? ? 2y
RebL @saguarosally Nunca lo contaremos. (Also, my coworkers tell me my Spanish is junk.) 2y
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MatchlessMarie
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Pickpick

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
I started this one several months ago before my hold expired and it went into library purgatory until recently. It‘s been bittersweet to finish now. Despite the allegations that have recently come out regarding his past actions (which I don‘t excuse or condone) this is a great piece on the ins and outs of senate life. I especially love his comments regarding “that dunderhead”, Ted Cruz who is unfortunately my senator.

jpmcwisemorgan The dunderhead is, unfortunately one of my Senators too. 2y
MatchlessMarie @jpmcwisemorgan Solidarity! ✊Everyday is a new facepalm with that guy. Oy. 😬 2y
Christy2318 I prefer John Boehner‘s names for our senator. 👺 “Lucifer in the flesh” & “miserable son of a bitch”. But “dunderhead” fits too. 2y
MatchlessMarie @Christy2318 😂💯 Voting that ass out is one of my 2018 resolutions. 👏 2y
69 likes4 comments
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goodbyefrancie
Pickpick

I just finished this book, and while I don't condone the behavior that has recently been brought to light, I believe he's an intelligent man, and effective senator, and it's unfortunate that we won't have his voice to speak up for those who need it. I would recommend his book to anyone who needs to be reminded of the kind of person he is, even with the accusations leveled against him. This seems like a case of 'when we know better, we do better".

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goodbyefrancie
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Listening on the road, and with mixed feelings.

DGRachel Yeah. I‘m kind of glad I listened to it before all the ugly accusations. 😔 2y
RebelReader @goodbyefrancie @DGRachel I have this one on my TBR pile. I heard him speak at our book festival in October and was anxious to read it,but now I'm just sad because his record in the Senate was great! Disappointed 😔 2y
BestDogDad I am also glad I listened to it before the accusations. So disappointing. 2y
JenReadsAlot Agreed. I finished it the day before the accusations hit the news.... 2y
42 likes4 comments
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dariazeoli
Pickpick

When the first accusation against Sen. Franken came out, I‘d just started listening to this audiobook. I considered bailing. But if Franken‘s accuser could accept his apology, surely I could keep listening.

“Scandal” aside, this was an interesting, entertaining, humorous look at the author‘s life pre- and post-Election. Bonus points for the chapter about Ted Cruz.

Potential readers will have to choose for themselves whether to read or not.

Hooked_on_books I listened to this book before the accusations and enjoyed it. While I have a problem with his behavior, I appreciate that he hasn‘t tried to deny it, unlike so many others. I‘m trying to remember not to judge by only one thing: none of us should be defined by our worst behavior. 2y
Godmotherx5 I bought the book a while ago & have yet to read it. In his defense, I am glad he is being honest & open instead of hiding in a million dollar spa. Being violated is not a laughing matter. 2y
lynneamch Agree. I'm almost finished with the audio. I recommend it highly. 2y
48 likes3 comments
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cdreincarnate
Pickpick

I'm rating this a "pick" despite the fact that I'm still pissed at Franken. Scandals aside, I loved this book. I listened to the audiobook, which Franken narrates himself. If you do decide to read this, I highly recommend the audiobook because Franken impersonates other politicians and his impersonations are spot on. He talks about fundraising and reaching across the aisle and the struggle to get things done that everyone can agree on.

lynneamch Have to concur with you and @BookishMarginalia on this. Sexist behavior is not excused. But, he has not excused it either and this book is definitely worth listening to. 2y
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cdreincarnate
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Dammit, Franken! I was really enjoying your audiobook 😠

BookishMarginalia True that. He has apologized and other people on the USO trip have clarified circumstances, so it appears like a bad joke in really poor taste, but not sexually predatory behavior. (There‘s an analysis of the metadata on the photo circulating on Twitter which is enlightening as well.) 2y
RaimeyGallant I have such feelings over this. I'm happy he apologized. I'm sad he did it. Always sad when a voice on the left loses their credibility. 2y
Lola I know..... 😩And even more disturbing than the photo is her allegation of him shoving his tongue in her mouth during a forced rehearsal for the show. (edited) 2y
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EchoLogical
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"We must always take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented." -Elie Weisel

In light of the recent allegations against Senator Al Franken, I'm gonna have remove this one from my #TBRstack... I really wanted to read this one, too but enough is enough.

#protest #QuotsyNov17 @TK-421

OrangeMooseReads I am with you 2y
AmyG What a disappointment. 😪 2y
DGRachel I‘m devastated. 2y
See All 16 Comments
EchoLogical @OrangeMooseReads @amyg @DGRachel He's not my senator but I'm somewhat familiar with his stances on the issues I care about and was really looking forward to reading his work. I read online that photographer of the photo involved has spoken out and said that the alleged victim was awake and onboard with the picture being taken. Not sure how true it is but either way this is really terrible news. 2y
JamieArc I listened to this recently and loved it, and was devastated to read the news. I was surprised and yet I wasn't. He talks about his wife so lovingly, yet he talks about a skit he did for SNL about rape and didn't explain it all that well... 2y
[DELETED] 3803335244 Just my opinion but it might be good if you still read. First they are allegations not convictions. Yes allegations are still not good but I love that our country is innocent until proven guilty. I say read it if you want... that way you know a little of him and not just what people are saying. Just my thoughts... I personally have a hard time with political books. Unless they are history books 📚 2y
Notafraidofwords Nope. Nope. Nope. Not reading. 2y
EchoLogical @ForeverNerdy Good point, they are allegations at this point. He's called for an ethics investigation seems like a good sign. 2y
[DELETED] 3803335244 @EchoLogical even if he ends up being convicted, it‘s nice to get a perspective of his personality. There are so many accusations coming out right now about lots of people and the media will convict you before you even can blink. I just like to get both perspectives or at least an informative opinion. Your right that is a good sign. Everyone deserves a trial before the verdict. 2y
Mimi28 All these allegations suck. I would name a few men left in the world I hope are decent woman respecting human beings, but I don‘t want to jinx it. 🙄🤞🏽🤞🏽 2y
EchoLogical @Mimi28 Right?! People are being accused left and right. It's crazy. 2y
Gezemice @EchoLogical I am getting sick of it. On one hand, it is good this is coming out so we put a stop to it, On the other hand, this kind of behavior has been so common and tolerated, so you can probably find such behavior just about anyone in power. I am just getting tired of it and not sure where the line should be. This behavior is not acceptable but when does it become something criminal or a fireable offense? I don't know. (edited) 2y
EchoLogical @Gezemice Yeah, I guess that's the good thing about all these accusations coming to light: we as a society have to address the behavior and the culture surrounding it and determine what the fallout will be, if any. 2y
dariazeoli I just started listening to the book this week. When I heard the news, I debated whether to DNF it. I‘m so disappointed that so many men seem to be party to this behavior! 2y
EchoLogical @dariazeoli It really is disheartening. 😟 2y
OrangeMooseReads @EchoLogical he isn‘t my senator either, but like you know of how he stands on particular issues and I loved some of his stuff on SNL ... I haven‘t seen the statement from the photographer yet. 2y
51 likes16 comments
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JenReadsAlot
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Pickpick

I liked this book! I didn't know Franken from his SNL days. I laughed quite a bit and actually leaned about the Senate. Enjoyable #audio read by Franken.

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razmanda
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Pickpick

Interesting insider/outsider perspective and ends on a positive and encouraging note. And of course, having Franken read to me was delightful.

Riveted_Reader_Melissa Yes! I enjoyed this one on audiobook too! 2y
Kaye Really good , especially in audio 2y
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Expandingbookshelf
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“I like Ted Cruz more than my colleagues like Ted Cruz. And I hate Ted Cruz...he‘s the guy in your office who snitches to corporate about your March Madness pool and microwaves fish in the office kitchen. He‘s the Dwight Schrute of the Senate.” 🤣🍾🤣

UPDATE: GOD DAMMIT AL, WHY CANT WE HAVE NICE THINGS

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BestDogDad
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Pickpick

I listened to this book written by my senator mostly on dog walks in one of the coldest early Minnesota Novembers I can remember; it was such a fun listen and I laughed so often that I forgot all about my frozen face. I'm generally not interested in politics but Franken is an exceptional politician in that he is hilarious, has an interesting background, and knows how to tell a story. Highly recommended, even for Republicans!

goodbyefrancie I have this on hold on #overdrive. I can't wait! 2y
BestDogDad Great! I hope you like it! 2y
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BestDogDad
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Vote!

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Rcoco
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Pickpick

Entertaining, funny stories from the senate floor. Enjoyed the second half. First half was so-so, although I‘m always impressed by people@with humble beginnings who make it to Harvard. The last chapter was very uplifting as well. Overall recommended.

Rcoco Oh Al Franken. Very disappointed in what‘s coming out about him now :( 2y
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StephBengtson
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Not really feeling political reads right now, but this is due tomorrow, and this part killed me. 😂

Natasha.C.Barnes Wow, what a blow to Dwight. 2y
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BestDogDad
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Megabooks Loved this book! 2y
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BestDogDad
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The chapter about Wellstone is really good, and a wonderful tribute. He was not your typical politician.

Christine He was the best. I had many friends who volunteered for him back during our college days in MN. 2y
BestDogDad @Christine That‘s neat. I wish I would‘ve met him. 2y
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BestDogDad
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This is excellent so far. It maybe resonates more with Minnesotans, but still there aren‘t many books out there written by senators who also happen to be a writer and comedian.

Libby1 @JeffKoeppen - that is truly excellent. 2y
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JamieArc
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Pickpick

This was wonderful. Every time I got in my car and listened, it was like sitting next to the fire drinking scotch, listening to Uncle Al tell his story and talk politics with a pipe hanging from his mouth. Narrated himself, a great look into what it means to be a senator, with many laughs along the way.

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BestDogDad
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One of my senators, Al Franken, wrote a book and he narrates the audio version. I just used my new Audible credit on it. Next up!

vivastory I lived in Minnesota for four years. While living there, Franken had dinner with and met the individuals our company assisted. 2y
BestDogDad @vivastory That‘s neat! I‘ve heard he‘s affable in person. 2y
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LaurenReads
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Pickpick

I really really loved this #audiobook Franken is funny and smart (and a smartass) which made this book informative and hilarious.

Riveted_Reader_Melissa Yes! So great on audiobook! 😂 2y
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Hooked_on_books
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Pickpick

I was initially a bit skeptical of Al Franken as a senator, but he‘s definitely proven me wrong. He has demonstrated that he knows his stuff and does so again here with humor and a heartfelt tone. I loved this on audio—he has such a great delivery. He definitely has my vote!

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StephBengtson
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So far, I‘m loving this Al Franken book. AND he has a whole chapter dedicated to Paul Wellstone (RIP)😢

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Books_Wine_Repeat
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Pickpick

I loved the audiobook narrated by Al Franken. He‘s funny and honest. The Ted Cruz chapter was the best! Al Franken 2020! 🇺🇸

LauraJ Ted Cruz must be an awful person. Franken is so diplomatic about everyone else. 2y
Books_Wine_Repeat @LauraJ AF was pretty diplomatic about his hate for Cruz. 🙃 2y
seebiscan That Ted Cruz chapter 😂 2y
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StephBengtson
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I forgot that I placed a library hold on this like 5 months ago. Surprise! #litsyloveslibraries

drokka I learned more about how American politics are supposed to work from this book than from years of watching U.S. elections and conversations with politically minded Americans. 2y
StephBengtson @drokka Awesome! I feel that he is really for the people. So proud he represents my home state and I‘m excited to read this book. 2y
drokka Without ruining the book, his two main foci seem to be Minnesota and the Judiciary. And he's still funny 😁 2y
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TheJOMOreader
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Pickpick

"Ted Cruz is the Dwight Schrute of the Senate."

Direct quote from this book. If this doesn't make you pick this up (or listen - the audio book is ?) I can't help you.

ReadingSusan 🤣🤣 2y
LauraBrook 😂😂😂 2y
JenP 😂😂 2y
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kite81
Pickpick

I enjoyed the audio book of this so much! Al reading it is just such a fantastic treat. There's wit, sincerity, sarcasm, satire, and more in this true tale of life on the campaign trail and in the United States Senate. Highly recommend!

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HippieChickHomeschool
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Pickpick

I received the audio as a gift. I wouldn't have picked it for myself, but if you like political books it's a good one. I preferred it to his Lying Liars, book (I bailed on it), but I listened to that one back when I had a newborn so I can't trust my own judgment on that. 😉

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LauraJ
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Pickpick

This book made me want to move to Minnesota! Audiobook is the way to go with Giant if the Senate. Love Franken as a narrator and as a senator. If I didn't already have such great reps, I would move to MN so Al could have my back in DC. It's comforting to know someone in Washington is as frustrated as I am with our current political situation. And he really dislikes Ted Cruz.

Beckys_Books I went to high school with the gut that ran Ted Cruz's 2016 presidential campaign. He's a douche, just like TC. 2y
Bette I write to Al knowing he has our backs, and feel lucky we have Al and Amy. Watching the news I would like to cheer on all the folks who try to reach their congressional representatives and have a much tougher time. 2y
moranadatter He‘s not wrong about Minnesota especially the last part about how people treat their neighbors. It made me want to move back. 2y
LauraJ @moranadatter @bette I've had it with this California weather. I miss seasons. But I'm not sure about being a Vikings fan. 2y
Bette I hear you abt the Vikings...😂😂😂 2y
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Jas16
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Pickpick

I have to admit that I may have rolled my eyes when I heard that Al Franken was running for the Senate the first time. I was wrong and listening to this audiobook just reinforced that. Yes he is funny- I did a lot of chuckling. He is also a hardworking Senator who is fully aware of his responsibility to his home state of Minnesota. I am a much bigger fan of his political career than I am of his time on SNL. #melandprireadathon

Riveted_Reader_Melissa I felt the same way! Great book! 2y
Tamra Ok, I did too as a Minnesotan, but I tell you he is great! Woot! 👍🏾👍🏾 2y
ToniFGMAMTC Wonderful book you can tell he's a genuinely good guy 2y
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Kaye
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Current listen. I wasn't sure quite what to expect with this one. I've heard really good things about it. Quite an interesting guy who is very open, honest and down to earth. So far, so good. 🙂

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Georgette73
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"You don't see Bill O'Reilly going on USO tours".
"That's not fair, honey", I said. "He has no talent".

ptkpepe98 I "read" this as an audiobook. I can't tell you how many times I giggled, laughed, and cursed listening to it, as I drove to and from work. I'm sure people in other cars...never mind. We all look crazy in our cars nowadays.? 2y
Georgette73 @ptkpepe98 I could hear his voice in my head when I was reading it! I laughed my ass off. 1y
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MatchlessMarie
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After a rough day of frustration and time wasted dealing with 🚗 problems, I'm just so glad to see this baby is finally on deck. #overdrive

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PedanticPastorMartha
Pickpick

Readable & on target. Franken provides a good primer re: how things happen in the Senate (for those whose civics classes weren't funded) & his journey into politics. My favorite quote: "But if you can say something that is provably false, and no one cares, then you can't have a real debate about anything." This is his (and my) central frustration w/public discourse now-palpable lies that are allowed to stand & then affect events.

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PedanticPastorMartha
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When other people go on vacation, they bring back seashells, tans, miniature Eiffel towers, keychains, and fudge. I bring back books. My haul from one vacation bookstore visit--they had a used section, including CDs (Best of Bowie for $9!!). And Sen. Franken's new book at 25% off! Plus a GG Kay I have not been able to find here (also in used section). *Sigh* My bank account may not be happy, but I am.

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Georgette73
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"The number one career match for Alan Franken was "jazz musician". Number two was "camp counselor". Coming in dead last? "Scientist".

KathyWheeler This is one of my favorite books of 2017. 2y
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Georgette73
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"Today, not one Democratic U.S. senator cones from the Deep South".

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Anton
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Mehso-so

This one was just okay. Not nearly as funny as I expected, except in the chapter devoted to Ted Cruz (pictured here in a sketch by Franken that appears at the end of the book) and anything about Donald Trump. Presumably Franken started the book before the 2016 election was decided, so I can only imagine how dull it would have been if Hillary had been victorious (although life in general would be a lot better). Not a bad book, but ⭐️⭐️⭐️ at most.

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Lea
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Pickpick

This is great, it's hilarious and real. I love a book narrated by the author and this doesn't disappoint. It's inspiring and sobering.