I Was Told There'd Be Cake

I Was Told There'd Be Cake


Book - 2008
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Hailed by David Sedaris as "perfectly, relentlessly funny" and by Colson Whitehead as "sardonic without being cruel, tender without being sentimental," from the author of the new collection Look Alive Out There .

Wry, hilarious, and profoundly genuine, this debut collection of literary essays is a celebration of fallibility and haplessness in all their glory.

From despoiling an exhibit at the Natural History Museum to provoking the ire of her first boss to siccing the cops on her mysterious neighbor, Crosley can do no right despite the best of intentions -- or perhaps because of them. Together, these essays create a startlingly funny and revealing portrait of a complex and utterly recognizable character who aims for the stars but hits the ceiling, and the inimitable city that has helped shape who she is. I Was Told There'd Be Cake introduces a strikingly original voice, chronicling the struggles and unexpected beauty of modern urban life.
Publisher: New York : Riverhead Books, [2008]
Edition: First edition
Copyright Date: ©2008
ISBN: 9781594483066
Branch Call Number: 814.6 C8839i 2008
Characteristics: 230 pages ; 21 cm


From the critics

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Nov 14, 2018

Being about the same age as the author myself, I found much of the book to be a nostalgic journey back to my formative years. Highly relatable in that respect.

Jul 07, 2017

I really loved two of these stories - very very funny and original! An easy quick read.

Sep 10, 2016

This book amused me. With the exception of one rambly essay that lost its own point long before the end, each essay has a high dose of humor, mainly self-deprecating and earnest. One was stuffed so full of puns it went from funny to annoying. But there were both the standard "my family is so wacky" ones and the "here's something real and poignant and wise, wrapped in a brocade of funny".

Overall, it's a quick read that I think most people in their 30s can relate to (I'm guessing especially if you live in NYC). Sloane Crosley comes across as the kind of gal you'd be friends with, out of mutual understand that friendship at this age means an email once a year, if nothing else.

Actually, her observations about life at this age (while not overtly about life at this age) were painfully honest and very relatable. So although I wasn't entertained enough to give it a full A rating, it's a good book to gift your girlfriends.

Aug 01, 2016

Sedaris comparisons that just don't quite hold true.

Jul 25, 2016

I'm not sure why bitterness is a bad quality in writing. I found it bracing, rather than off putting. As others have said, Sloane Crosley's debut collection of essays has echoes of Sedaris and Vowell and the whole NPR/This American Life school of personal essays. Her piece on attending a high school friend's wedding, "You on a Stick," is the highlight. And, yes, she does address the inevitable "Ferris Bueller" question. Followed by "How Did You Get This Number."

Apr 06, 2016

I, too, found tone bitter and full of sarcasm to the point where it begins to wear on you. As far as one night stands are concerned, has she never read Fear of Flying by Erica Jung? I ended up not finishing the book in that it was more of the same I felt: snide comments, carping tone - why bother though one wonders why someone so young is so bitter. What is she not telling us in, other words, about why she arrived at the attitude she did about sex especially.

Grafreak Feb 12, 2016

My rating is just based on personal taste. This book just wasn't my cup of tea. I personally found it too tinged with bitterness and a negative vibe. But her style is very engaging and I found the book overall well-written.

JCLAshleyF Apr 30, 2013

A funny collection of humorous essays and a fast, breezy read. I found some of Crosley's recollections and experiences to be dead on and hilarious, while others fell short. Overall I enjoyed this book.

Dec 07, 2012

This was the best non-fiction book I have ever read, hilarious!

Jun 27, 2012

This is my favorite book of all time. Hilariously funny!

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