Comedian and writer Dave Hill, a favorite of New York audiences known for his Upright Citizens Brigade show Dave Hill Explosion, wrote a book called Tasteful Nudes, and he did a really great job writing it. But, let's say you heard the provocative title, but are not sure whether the book is a book you'd enjoy reading. It probably is, but why take my word for it?
If you belong to any of the following groups, you probably will enjoy this book.
- Totally badass rockers. Hill is mostly known as a writer and comedian, but back in the '90s, he was in the post-grudge band Sons of Elvis. They had a decent hit in the song "Formaldehyde." He devotes a chapter of the book to his rock and roll adventures, which includes a rise to moderate fame, meeting Slash backstage at a festival, and eventually seeing it all dry up -- which is driven home by glimpsing his band's sticker on a teenager's radio as he paints her room to get some cash. And it sounds like he'd do it all over again. and it's a must-read for any wannabe rock stars.
- Fans of 'This American Life.' The dude is a frequent contributor on that show. Ergo, you love this book.
- Anyone who's battled with mental illness. Many comedians struggle with depression at some point in their life, and Hill is no exception. In the book, he discusses moving home after graduating from college, and not understanding why he was disinclined to do anything but lay in bed all day. He speaks with humor and candor about seeing a therapist, and the effect it had on his life. He speaks not as a poster boy or even a survivor of mental illness, but simply as a dude who understands the reality of how depression keeps wonderful people from being their best version of themselves.
- Hockey fans. You probably didn't know this, but Dave Hill is really into hockey -- or at least was when he was a kid. (He probably still is, I guess.)
- Memoir enthusiasts. Dave Hill has enjoyed a unique, rich and interesting life. Or at least, that's what you walk away from the book believing. Like the best authors, Hill writes with a playful yet confident voice to walk readers through his journey in rock, comedy, journalism, and pedicab driving. The events Dave tells his readers may not be revolutionary, but his skill as an effortlessly charming and fascinating storyteller make the book hard to put down.
- Fans of Santa humor. I didn't really know how to put this one. The point is that there's a great story about Dave insisting that he be allowed to to dress up as Santa Claus for a Christmas party, and then getting drunk and threatening to kick a guy's ass after he hit on Dave's girlfriend.
- Nude people. Despite the title, there actually is no nudity in Tasteful Nudes. However, nudists will surely appreciate Hill getting the word out about the unbeclothed among us by referencing the practice right there in the title of his book.