Dear reader, life is too short for crap books.

Saturday, January 06, 2007

I'll Take Game Show Memoirs for $200, Alex.

Prisoner of Trebekistan: A Decade in Jeopardy by Bob Harris

While doing some Christmas shopping at the local bookstore, Brady went all "Ooooh, Navy SEALs!!!" on a number of titles of which I was skeptical. But when he picked up a book written by a five-time Jeopardy champion, and said, "I'd like to read that," I feared my sweetie had lost his damn mind. Nevertheless, I shrugged and forwarded this request to my sister, who dutifully purchased it for him.

A few weeks later, I found myself completely head over heels in love with this book, which I assure you, is about far more than a simple game show. It is a memoir about discovering that you have not panned out as a very good adult. It is also about falling in love, getting your ducks in a row, and learning to become a good friend/son/daughter/person. And it is also about Jeopardy, which as game shows go, is a '57 Mustang in a parking lot of Escalades.

Harris's writing is funny, ingenius, and, at times, incredibly moving. Not only are you in for a good memoir, you'll also learn about how memory works -- why certain tidbits stick and others get lost in the gray matter. And you'll probably be a little bit smarter when you finish it, too. Maybe even smart enough to get on Jeopardy.

I feel icky about inserting this detail, but it's easily obtained elsewhere and it's also the thing that made me pick up the book in the first place. Harris is Jane Espenson's* sweetie, and I figured that anyone she lurved was probably good people.

If you like...: Jeopardy, Buffy, or would totally clean up on the Daily Double in Midwestern Culture & Norms, this book is for you.
* Writer for Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel, The O.C., and Firefly, to name a few.

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