When I reviewed Simon Rich’s previous book...I called it 'just the fictional antidote people need right now.' Little did I know that this statement could be even more aptly applied to his latest collection ... There are laugh-out-loud moments...but there are also moments of quietly witty introspection or reflection. Rich plays with genre and with expectations, and he mixes short sketch-like pieces...with longer, more developed narratives. The only question for readers is if you swallow this collection whole, or bite off bits and pieces to savor every time you need a little levity.
A triumph of sustained humor that works equally well as a parody of hard-boiled noir detective fiction and as a moving account of siblings banding together against a world that makes no sense, "The Big Nap” is the best thing in an uneven but mostly delightful book by the extravagantly talented Rich ... The benefit of a collection is that you get to focus on the stories you like best. Rich’s humor is enhanced by his generous, hopeful heart ... Analyzing why it’s so pleasurable to read Simon Rich is about as helpful as analyzing why it’s so fun to spend the night with an unexpectedly excellent blind date. It’s better to do it than to talk about it.
Many of these 11 stories from gifted humorist Rich explore the joys and trials of parenthood ... Rich presents parody, absurdity, observational wit, the sudden shift in a familiar premise, and a surprising touch of sweetness and charm throughout ... A fertile mind provides many smiles in this entertaining collection—and more than a few out-loud laughs.