Pepper Wellington & The Case Of The Missing Sausage is one of the most fun books I’ve read (listened to) in a long time, and in this post, I’ll talk about Tanya Eby’s writing style, audiobooks, and fun reading.
Nice title. It is a nice title. This book is funny, sexual, filled with constant ridiculous double-entendre, and smart. I think the title of this book seems to sum up Tanya Eby‘s writing. Her style is sharp, funny, talented, and yet, approachable.
I know, for me, I often get my nose stuck in books that are “intellectual” or “academic” or, frankly, outright difficult. I rarely read for fun, so when I won a contest where I was able to get an audiobook version of Pepper Wellington & The Case Of The Missing Sausage, I was at first skeptical, but I found it to be a great experience.
You don’t read for fun? Well, often, no, not at first. A lot of what I read is meant to be challenging, not pleasurable. I like the challenge, so I feel satisfied by the end. I’d compare it to lifting weights or running for a few miles. Many of the books I read don’t start off fun, but it feels good to have gotten through them, and I feel like a better person in the end for it.
Eby’s book was a departure for me, in that, it feels like the goal of the book was fun. It’s often easy (especially for us potential academic-types) to dismiss “fun” reading, and yet, I find Ms. Eby’s prose to be sharp and clever, and her characters are real, even in ridiculous situations. I think humor is often hard to appreciate in writing. I don’t write humor well. I can’t do it. It’s the thing I see the least often in writing, and among serious writing folks, it’s one of the things I’ve grown to value the most.
OK, we get it. So what about the book? Well, it’s funny. I’d call it a cross between a Shakespearean comedy, with star-crossed lovers, and an Agatha Christie mystery. The humor goes from witty and sharp, to situational, to (my parents’ favorite word) crass. I love that her humor can occupy all of these forms. I’m reminded of one of my favorite authors, Vonnegut, who never minded when his humor got silly or sexual.
Do you know what a twerp is? When I was in Shortridge High School in Indianapolis 65 years ago, a twerp was a guy who stuck a set of false teeth up his butt and bit the buttons off the back seats of taxi cabs.
So, I guess coming in, I wasn’t sure what to think of the book, but I thoroughly enjoyed it. It’s funny, it’s sexy, and there’s murder and intrigue. One thing I would suggest, though, is this: listen to the audiobook. It turns out that Ms. Eby is a professional narrator as well as a novelist, and she narrated this book. You can find an audiobook version of it at Audible, Amazon, or iTunes. Or you can find all of her works as well as follow a funny and thoughtful blog at her website, TanyaEby.com.
I’ve never been familiar with audiobooks, but I have to say, it was a lot of fun to experience a book that way, and it was especially fun hearing it read by the author. Ms. Eby is a talented and exciting narrator, and I’d recommend buying this book in the audiobook form and hearing it read by the author.
Also, follow Tanya Eby on Twitter. You won’t regret it. She’s very funny.