By Paul Laudiero
Chronicle Books, $12.95, 135 pages
Sh*t Rough Drafts: Pop Culture’s Favorite Books, Movies, and TV Shows as They Might Have Been, written by comedian Paul Laudiero is a collection of imagined versions of drafts for The Bible, novels by classic and contemporary authors, TV shows and movies.
The cover example is The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald with imagined alternate titles substituting the adjective. As Fitzgerald himself spent months agonizing over different titles for his novel, Laudiero could have used history as a launching pad to make something more interesting and clever. Most of the drafts are cheap jokes, which show no understanding of the text that could not be consumed from the cover of a book, online synopsis, or, in some cases there’s no evidence that he read past the title.
This work is for those who read their assigned books in high school English class but still laughed along with the back row’s snarks, and as adults secretly miss the mediocre, offensive and juvenile humor.
Reviewed by Sarah Hutchins