This was a very fast read for me. It was a bit predictable, but a fun book. You won't learn any life lessons here, folks, but you are sure to have a laugh or two. A little bit of a look into the "bottom rung" of being famous. Okay, I admit it, Peggy Jean cracked me up. She probably deserved what she got - yeah, I said it. There.
Sellevision by Augusten Burroughs is a behind the scenes look into the lives of the quirky hosts at Sellevision, the premier home shopping network. Readers are introduced to Peggy Jean, the conservative Christian being stalked by a viewer; Max, fired for accidentally exposing himself on air; BeBe, the shining jewel in the network's crown, Trish, a rising star on the network; and Leigh, a young host sleeping with the boss. If only QVC was more like this book.
Sellevision is a fun book, though near the end the plot seems to have run out of steam. Much like the thrill one might get from buying a cheap bauble peddled on TV, the initial thrill of this book fades soon after reading.
Rating: 3.5 Dazzling Diamonelle necklaces out of 5.
I loved this book when I read it. I love to listen to books in the car on my way to work or on road trips. My only problem with this audiobook was the person narrating...it wasn't the author and to me it felt like she was overacting the parts. The story was still just as funny as when I read it but I had to concentrate on not getting annoyed by the narrator.
I really liked this book! It was gravely funny! All of the characters were flawed. I felt so sorry for poor Peggy Jean! The affair between Nikki and John Smythe was totally disgusting. Also, I'm convinced Bebe and Eliot were in fact related, nasty! I'm glad Trish got what she deserved in the end. Great book! Great characters!
Burroughs is **hysterical**. This book is so over the top and I laughed my way through it. If you like his memoirs, you'll love this fictional version of shop TV that he creates. Each character is more unbelievable than the next, yet you believe they're out there. It's a soap opera in text. Brilliant.
At first I was excited to read this since I love all of Augusten Burroughs' nonfiction books. However, I was soon disappointed. Although the novel introduces circumstances that could have potential for literary interest and hilarity (an accidental penis exposure on a home shopping network type show, resulting in the host's firing), it fails to deliver. I was not interested in the characters' lives or the outcome of the story. The only reason I finished it was because it required little thought and it was a good thing to read before falling asleep. The characters are one-dimensional and the plot falls flat. In this case, truth really is stranger (and more interesting, and much better written!) than fiction.
As a side note, I really do think Burroughs is a good writer. Just stick to his nonfiction. I recently read "Dry" and was blown away by his raw honesty and humor about a serious subject.
Funny and silly with one of the best first lines of all times. Not great literature, but a quick and fun read with the author's typically acerbic bite. This was Burroughs' first book, written (by his own account)while still an active substance abuser.
I very much enjoyed this book - the author really developed the (flawed) characters and many times, I laughed out loud when reading. Humor is definitely on the adult side, but nothing too over the top.
I didn't like "Running with Scissors," but wanted to give the author another chance. I really enjoyed this book! It was quirky, sarcastic, and completely over the top. The characters at "Sellevision" are a motley mix of characters one might see at any large corporation, and their rise or fall is dependent on the tides. Great, fun read! I couldn't sleep last night, so I read it from about 11pm to 2am.
Darkly funny and gleefully mean-spirited, "Sellevision" explores greed, obsession and third tier celebrity, in the world of a fictional home shopping network.
Welcome to the troubled world of Sellevision, America's premier retail broadcasting network. When Max Andrews, the much-loved and handsome (lonely and gay) host of "Slumber Sunday Sundown" accidentally exposes himself in front of twenty million kids and their parents during a "Toys for Tots" segment, Sellevision faces its first big scandal. As Max fails to find a job in television, another host, the popular and perky Peggy Jean Smythe is receiving sinister emails about her appearance from a stalker. Popping pills and drinking heavily, she fails to notice that her husband is spending a lot of time with the very young babysitter who lives next door. Then there's Leigh, whose affair with Sellevision boss Howard Toast is going nowhere, until she exposes him on air; and Bebe, Sellevision's star host, who finds Mr. Right through the Internet if she can just stop her shopping addiction from taking over.
"An absolute howl, about on-camera personalities who sell things on those home-shopper channels. This one has its characters fall apart very publicly: One is axed after he accidentally exposes himself on air. Another is the target of a surprising stalker.
And so on."
-- New York Daily News
"This kaleidoscope of gleefully salacious intrigue aims to titillate and amuse in a purposefully over-the-top way."
-- Publishers Weekly
"First-time novelist Burroughs writes fluidly and shows a flair for fun, campy material....As a bubbly soap opera, 'Sellevision'
is good company for the beach or the plane. Its literary value may be low, but the material sparkles, just like the Diamonelle earrings on the shopping channels."
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Augusten Burroughs is the author of "Running with Scissors" and "Sellevision." He lives in New York City.
"Sellevision" is a spoof of the home shopping networks and the characters who inhabit that world. Max Andrews is the host of Sellevision. That is, until he accidentally exposes himself on a childrens' segment and is subsequently fired. Because of that incident, Max can't get a job and children scream whenever they spot him outside his apartment for errands or a job hunt. Another host, Peggy Jean Smythe is receiving scary emails from a stalker about her appearance. She becomes obsessed about her appearance and starts drinking heavily and popping pills in order to cope. Sellevision's star host, Bebe, has met her true love through the internet but can't stop her shopping addiction long enough to keep the relationship moving. These are just some of the funny characters that populate this book. Though not as darkly humorous as "Running With Scissors", Burroughs' perceptive wit shines through nonetheless. Some readers may find this a very funny book while some will just enjoy this book as a light read with some chuckles here and there.
This was a little slow starting and I have to admit, I thought to myself,"Stick to your real life its much funnier that fiction." I changed my mind as I read along it got better...funnier...and you just have to read it for yourself.
This story is very funny. I had to turn on QVC and some of the other home shopping shows and watch for old time's sake and a laugh. The reader is excellent, and a comedian herself! What a great way to start my drive to work...laughing!
Definitely a "dark comedy", and I couldn't stop reading. It was interesting to see how these character's lives unfolded and quickly your life can change (for the better or worse). Overall, I thought it was a pretty amusing book.
The first fictional tale in Augusten Burrough's repertoire (and his first book), "Sellevision" is a tongue-in-cheek look behind the scenes at a home shopping network. Rife with quirky characters and on-and-off-camera hijinks, "Sellevision" is a quick read, and a fun retreat from reality. I will never watch home shopping networks the same! Light and clearly written, this is an enjoyable audio book, but one you probably won't mind leaving on the beach after you've finished it.
Augusten Burroughs debut novel Sellevision offers up an entertaining look into the lives of presenters at a fictional home shopping channel. His skills as an advertising copywriter are effectively displayed by the descriptions of the on-air time, but the story really pops due to his great comedic timing as the various hosts muddle through with their respective (mostly first-world) problems. Its a quick, savvy critique of the dark side of a consumerist culture.
The premise of this book is an expose on the home shopping network lifestyle of the hosts. I found the book average with dated references, crude sex scenes for shock value and the story lines were uneven and contrived. I enjoy this author's personal stories much more.
About a third of the way through I put this one down. If you like Agusten Burroughs you'll probablly like this book. If you're like me and you are desprately trying to like him after enjoying "Dry" then give up, it isn't going to happen.