Free-Range Chickens

In his riotous debut collection, Ant Farm , Simon Rich found humor in some of life's most desperate situations. Now this former editor of The Harvard Lampoon and current writer for Saturday Night Liv e has returned to mine more comedy from our hopelessly terrifying world. In the nostalgic opening chapter, Rich recalls his fear of the Tooth Fairy (Is there a face fairy?) and his initial reaction to the Got-your-nose game (Please just kill me. Better to die than to live the rest of my life as a monster). He goes on to present Count Dracula's desperate Match.com profile (I am normal human looking for human woman to come to castle. I am normal, regular human). Later, he gets inside the heads of two firehouse Dalmatians who can't understand their masters' compulsion to drive off to horrible fires every day. And in the final chapter, he tackles some of life's biggest questions: Does God really have a plan for us? Yes, it turns out. Now if only He could remember what it was. . . . Praise for Simon Rich's Ant Farm Ant Farm has an imaginative power that can trigger snort-fests. . . . Ferociously creative, this book is for readers craving both smart humor and belly laughs. People (four stars) Savagely funny. The New York Times Hilarious. Open this book anywhere, begin reading, and you will laugh. Jon Stewart Ant Farm is what all humor books should be: full of brief, high-concept musings that you wish you'd thought of yourself. Time Out New York A satirical salmagundi that bites back . . . Imaginative premises abound. . . . As unpredictable as YouTube, as in your face as MySpace. Publishers Weekly From the Hardcover edition.

Reviews from Goodreads.com

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By Belinda (Jacksonville, AR) · ★★★★☆ · December 21, 2008
How some punk kid who was born THE YEAR I GRADUATED HIGH SCHOOL can make me crack up this much, I have no idea, but Dude is hilarious.

I'm not sure this very short collection of humor qualifies as a "book" (on my Kindle, it's exactly the same size as the free samples of books that Amazon offers),... ...more
By Amar (San Francisco, CA) · ★★★☆☆ · November 30, 2008
The author of this McSweeney's-esque humor book, Simon Rich, is a writer for Saturday Night Live. He's also New York Times columnist Frank Rich's son. That's two strikes right there. But the book is actually pretty funny. It's slim-- more of a poetry chapbook than an actual book-- so get it used... ...more
By Sarah (San Diego, CA) · ★★★★★ · January 10, 2009
I downloaded this onto my new e-book reader because it was included in a complementary offer, but I actually really enjoyed it. Some of the stories made me bust up laughing. Totally hilarious. And the ones that weren't hilarious were still pretty entertaining.
Each story was only a page or two lo... ...more
By R. (Richland, WA) · ★★★★★ · September 28, 2008
Lots of people scream "Nepotism!" at this kid and walk away, and that's unfortunate because his writing is delightfully absurd.

Like, the Match.com profile for Count Dracula:

"What are your pet peeves? Monsters. I think they are so terrible! Someone should destroy them all so that we, the humans,... ...more
By CheshRCat (Edmonton, AB, Canada) · ★★★★☆ · July 17, 2010
After reading and loving Elliot Allagash I decided I would try his other books. I was not disappointed by Free-Range Chickens. Not exactly deep or profound, of course--I finished it in twenty minutes--but a hilarious read, and good for reading aloud to pester your relatives. I'd definitely recomm... ...more
By Jennifer (Richmond Hill, NY) · ★★★★☆ · August 12, 2008
This series of extremely short comedy sketches penned by a former president of the Harvard Lampoon and current Saturday Night Live writer was a quick, witty read. It seemed familiar to me, and that's because I had read two of these pieces previously in the New Yorker. Give it a go if you dig Davi... ...more
By Robert (Sparta, NJ) · ★★★★☆ · June 23, 2010
Simon Rich is one of the rare authors that can get me to laugh out loud time and time again. His short stories are worth a read. I enjoyed the Dracula match.com probably best. Very easy and mindless read. ...more
By Abraham (The United States) · ★☆☆☆☆ · August 15, 2010
Oh look honey, another humor book with a title irrelevant to its contents... Books like these generally burn my biscuits but someone recommended it to me -- actually she put it directly into my hands; I didn't have to lift a single finger. I did have to open them, though, and what a mistake that... ...more
By Dustin Crazy little brown owl (Boulder, CO) · ★★★☆☆ · November 18, 2010
Author's Note: "This is a joke book that I wrote. Nothing in it is real. It's just some things that I made up."

This is a collection of random craziness on the following topics: Growing Up, Going to Work, Daily Life, Relationships, Animals and God.

I bought this book at a Borders Bargain Blow-Out.... ...more
By Jeffrey (The United States) · ★★★☆☆ · March 26, 2009
Free-Range Chickens reads like premises for comedy sketches. This makes sense as Simon Rich writes for Saturday Night Live. Among my favorites are Bar Mitzvah in which God inquires about Simon Rich who must now be a man as the Bar Mitzvah proves only to find out that he is still a silly child; Ac... ...more