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More Info: Nick Offerman
Actor, woodworker, and moustache icon Nick Offerman’s first book, Paddle Your Own Canoe, called on readers to put down their smart phones, study sycamore leaves, and embrace good old-fashioned elbow grease. An instant New York Times bestseller, Paddle was adored by fans and critics alike—Entertainment Weekly called it “hilarious” and praised Offerman’s “tongue-in- cheek lessons on manliness”, Parade proclaimed the book “perfect reading around the campfire” and Vulture cautioned, “Just try to resist [its] myriad manly charms.”
In his highly-anticipated second book, Offerman now focuses his trademark wit and unique literary voice on the lives of those who inspire him. Gumption: Relighting the Torch of Freedom with America’s Gutsiest Troublemakers (Dutton; on-sale May 26, 2015), highlights twenty-one notable personages, past and present—Offerman’s personal pantheon of “Great Americans”—whose contributions have helped make America the great country it is today.
So who is on Offerman’s list of Great Americans? After deciding that George Washington should be first for obvious reasons, he based the other selections upon achievements he considered to be great in scope, from leaders of men and women, to activists, artists, musicians, muckrakers, and some who are in categories of their own. Subjects range from George Washington, Benjamin Franklin, Frederick Douglas, and Teddy Roosevelt, to Michael Pollan, Yoko Ono, and Jeff Tweedy. Through equally hilarious and inspiring interviews (both real and imagined) with these Americans, Offerman reveals the talented writer behind the mustache.
In addition to enlightening the masses about these heroic figures whose contributions helped shape our common history, Gumption also considers some examples of the ways in which we Americans have used the powers of freedom bestowed upon us to become more decent as a people—and of course, some instances in which we have not. As Kirkus Reviews aptly summarizes, “Offerman smartly infuses history with humor, the result of which is an entertaining, educational reading experience.”
In the words of Offerman himself: “Please enjoy my mixtape of twenty-one great Americans, which I sincerely hope will affect you in a way that makes you recognize your own God-given gumption and react accordingly, so that we may all end up with a little more decency and several more chuckles.”
Not to be missed, Gumption’s elucidating, amusing, and celebratory portraits of Americans will delight fans and new readers alike.