Boomsday by Christopher Buckley

I am a big fan of Christopher Buckley’s fiction (I have not read any of his non-fiction yet.)  No one writes better political satire than Buckley.  So far I have read Supreme Courtship (about the nomination of a TV judge to the Supreme Court) and No Way To Treat a First Lady (about a former first lady on trial for killer her philanderer husband – my review).

Boomsday is about a 29 year old Washington DC blogger and K-Street PR person that starts advocating for Baby Boomers to legally take their own lives at 70 in order to take the strain off of Social Security and US government deficit.   The book pretty accurately shows how a blog can get picked up and an idea take on a life of its own.  But also shows how closely political campaigns and the PR world can manipulate public opinion.

This is satire and it is funny.  Buckley knows how to write something that is funny but has some really serious content.  The book eventually moves into political campaigning, the corruption in the political, business and even religious world, and how very hard it is to get people to do the right thing.

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Content note: I will say that if you are easily offended at language, you might want skip this book, especially the audio version.  I am a nanny for a 2 year old and I often have audiobooks running in the background as I am playing with my niece.  I do not listen to Christopher Buckley novels when little people are awake.  The language is pretty strong.

Programing note:  I picked this up on sale from Audible.com.   Janeane Garofalo is the narrator and she does a great job with the voices and just enough sarcasm to really get into the book.

Price note: The unabridged version at audible is $9.99.  The abridged version is four hours shorter and $10.49.  I don’t understand pricing.  I actually heard someone defending higher prices for abridged books because it takes so much effort to abridge them.

The Kindle version is $9.99 and the paperback version is only $5.60.  Clearly it is more expensive to create and deliver a digital version that does not involve printing and shipping it half way around the world.  So it is totally worth it to buy the digital version at almost twice the price.  If you like Dead Tree Books, maybe you would be more interested in the hardcover that you can buy brand new for $2.40 (plus $3.99 shipping).  I know that it is cheaper to make a hardcover than a paperback, and way cheaper to have a hardcover than a digital file version. (Large amounts of sarcasm here-again, I do not understand book pricing.)

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[…] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Adam Shields. Adam Shields said: Looking 4 political satire? Try Boomsday (Novel). It suggests voluntary suicide for 70+ to help Soc Sec http://bit.ly/c1XsWN […]

My Favorite Fiction Books of 2010 | Mr Shields: I'm a reader not a fighterJanuary 5, 2011 at 8:08 am

[…] Boomsday by Christopher Buckley – I think that Christopher Buckley is one of the funniest authors out there.  He is not a slapstick author.  But he knows how to write about real issues in a way that makes you laugh about them while thinking about them.  That is my kind of humor.  This one is about a young blogger that suggests that the patriotic thing to do would be for all Babyboomers to commit suicide to save the federal debt.  There is a lot of language in the book and most of his books have some sex (usually suggested, not expliciet) but they are all very good. […]

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