Narrator: Nick Offerman
Length: 11 Hours 42 Minutes
Published by Penguin on May 26th 2015
Genres: Humor, Topic, Political, History, United States, General
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The star of Parks and Recreation and author of the New York Times bestseller Paddle Your Own Canoe returns with a second book that humorously highlights twenty-one figures from our nation’s history, from her inception to present day—Nick’s personal pantheon of “great Americans.”
To millions of people, Nick Offerman is America. Both Nick and his character, Ron Swanson, are known for their humor and patriotism in equal measure.
After the great success of his autobiography, Paddle Your Own Canoe, Offerman now focuses on the lives of those who inspired him. From George Washington to Willie Nelson, he describes twenty-one heroic figures and why they inspire in him such great meaning. He combines both serious history with light-hearted humor—comparing, say, Benjamin Franklin’s abstinence from daytime drinking to his own sage refusal to join his construction crew in getting plastered on the way to work. The subject matter also allows Offerman to expound upon his favorite topics, which readers love to hear—areas such as religion, politics, woodworking and handcrafting, agriculture, creativity, philosophy, fashion, and, of course, meat.
From the Hardcover edition.
Why Did I Listen To Gumption: Relighting the Torch of Freedom with America’s Gutsiest Troublemakers by Nick Offerman?
Gumption: Relighting The Torch Of Freedom With America’s Gutsiest Troublemakers by Nick Offerman contains two things I love – Nick Offerman and history. Of course, when I saw this up for purchase in the Audible store, I HAD TO SNAP IT UP. I began listening to this audiobook on the return trip back from visiting one of my best friends downstate and attending New York Comic Con with Josh. That’s right we started listening to an audiobook together because that’s what love is — listening to audiobooks with your partner. We landed on this one out of ALL my audiobooks in ALL my library (it’s a big one — I’ve been with Audible since 12/29/2010) due to our mutual love of American history and Nick Offerman’s dulcet tones.
What’s Gumption: Relighting the Torch of Freedom with America’s Gutsiest Troublemakers by Nick Offerman About?
Gumption is about these twenty one American heroes who have inspired Nick Offerman. His heroes range the gamut from Eleanor Roosevelt to Yoko Ono to Willie Nelson to Jeff Tweedy (Wilco) to George Washington and my bae Teddy Roosevelt among many others. Nick Offerman’s book is about how these people have challenged society and stuck to their values and how they have guts. There’s some characteristic humor in there – but also a whole lot of interviews and well, none of this is fiction. This book is some seriously fun non-fiction. Also, there’s a whole lot of love in it for Offerman’s wife, Megan Mullally, even though she’s not one of the heroes.
What Did I Learn From Gumption?
I learned that Yoko Ono is actually really cool and a trailblazer in her own right, as an artist. I’ve always heard that she was a bad person because she broke up the Beatles, which I guess is misogyny at play. So, my assumption of her was challenged and I appreciated that. I also really enjoyed learning about Wendell Berry — this writer who is not about computers, but has this great sort of ethos that I want to read. I just really want to read his work now. Another thing I didn’t quite learn but LOVED about Gumption was that Offerman gave voice to my feeling about the current political rhetoric during this election cycle. He calls for a return to decency and an elevation of the rhetoric. I actually really loved how much of this book was about decency and I feel as though lately in this world, it truly does take gumption to be a decent person.
Who Would I Recommend Gumption To?
- Fans of Offerman’s character on Parks & Recreation – Ron Swanson
- People who enjoy history that is not dry – but with a bit of humor
- Readers who like learning about modern day heroes and icons
How’s The Narration?
As I stated in my opening paragraph, Nick Offerman’s dulcet tones in his narration of Gumption makes it so that this audiobook is now among my favorites. He does a superb job narrating and I just wanted to listen to this even during non-audiobook times. I really felt that this audiobook and its message resonated with me. I think that if you are a reluctant listener, but you enjoy Parks & Recreation, you should give this audiobook a shot. It might just change your feelings about audiobooks.
Sum It Up With A GIF:
I could not find a more perfect GIF for this book.
Other Reviews of Gumption: Relighting the Torch of Freedom with America’s Gutsiest Troublemakers by Nick Offerman:
We Be Reading – “I broadened my horizons and had a fun time to boot with Nick Offerman.”