Assume the Worst: The Graduation Speech You'll Never Hear (Hardcover)
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"This commencement address will never be given, because graduation speakers are supposed to offer encouragement and inspiration. That's not what you need. You need a warning."
So begins Carl Hiaasen's attempt to prepare young men and women for their future. And who better to warn them about their precarious paths forward than Carl Hiaasen? The answer, after reading Assume the Worst, is: Nobody.
And who better to illustrate--and with those illustrations, expand upon and cement Hiaasen's cynical point of view--than Roz Chast, best-selling author/illustrator and National Book Award winner? The answer again is easy: Nobody.
Following the format of Anna Quindlen's commencement address (Being Perfect) and George Saunders's commencement address (Congratulations, by the way), the collaboration of Hiaasen and Chast might look typical from the outside, but inside it is anything but.
This book is bound to be a classic, sold year after year come graduation time. Although it's also a good gift for anyone starting a job, getting married, or recently released from prison. Because it is not just funny. It is, in its own Hiaasen way, extremely wise and even hopeful. Well, it might not be full of hope, but there are certainly enough slivers of the stuff in there to more than keep us all going.
ROZ CHAST grew up in Brooklyn. Her cartoons began appearing in The New Yorker in 1978, where she has since published more than one thousand. She wrote and illustrated, most recently, Going Into Town; the #1 New York Times best seller Can't We Talk About Something More Pleasant?, a National Book Critics Circle Award and Kirkus Prize winner and a finalist for the National Book Award; What I Hate: From A to Z; and her cartoon collections The Party, After You Left and Theories of Everything.
"You will be tempted to carry it around forever in your back pocket as a quick reference guide for life. Think of this book as the pocket edition of the Dead Sea Scrolls.”
"A book that everyone who’s changing course must read."
—The Florida Times-Union
"Young people graduating from high school or college this year can count themselves lucky if someone gives them this book as a gift."
—Tampa Bay Times