The best books about I Love Lucy

2 authors have picked their favorite books about I Love Lucy and why they recommend each book.

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Technicolored

By Ann duCille,

Book cover of Technicolored: Reflections on Race in the Time of TV

I am recommending this book because I fell in love with the way duCille weaves cultural critique and personal experience in one of her earlier books, Skin Trade. The invention of streaming services has made televisual representation more accessible, which can be both good and bad. I love how this book demonstrates the way in which culture informs the lived experience and the way in which lived experiences can shape culture. And duCille is an excellent storyteller.

Technicolored

By Ann duCille,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Technicolored as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

From early sitcoms such as I Love Lucy to contemporary prime-time dramas like Scandal and How to Get Away with Murder, African Americans on television have too often been asked to portray tired stereotypes of blacks as villains, vixens, victims, and disposable minorities. In Technicolored black feminist critic Ann duCille combines cultural critique with personal reflections on growing up with the new medium of TV to examine how televisual representations of African Americans have changed over the last sixty years. Whether explaining how watching Shirley Temple led her to question her own self-worth or how televisual representation functions as a…


Who am I?

I am a scholar of African Diaspora cultural studies, which means I spend a lot of time analyzing texts in various forms: books, art, film, music, and even laws and legal documents. The cultural texts I study were produced by people. I am passionate about Black popular culture, because it dismantles some of the enduring divisions between academic institutions and the people who live beyond their walls. It is a field of study that is always in flux, especially now with twenty-first-century advances that position popular culture as almost always at our fingertips.


I edited...

Are You Entertained?: Black Popular Culture in the Twenty-First Century

By Simone C. Drake (editor), Dwan K. Henderson (editor),

Book cover of Are You Entertained?: Black Popular Culture in the Twenty-First Century

What is my book about?

The advent of the internet and the availability of social media and digital downloads have expanded the creation, distribution, and consumption of Black cultural production as never before. At the same time, a new generation of Black public intellectuals who speak to the relationship between race, politics, and popular culture has come into national prominence. The contributors to Are You Entertained? address these trends to consider what culture and blackness mean in the twenty-first century's digital consumer economy.

In this collection of essays, interviews, visual art, and an artist statement the contributors examine a range of topics and issues, from music, white consumerism, cartoons, and the rise of Black Twitter to the NBA's dress code, dance, and Moonlight. Analyzing the myriad ways in which people perform, avow, politicize, own, and love blackness, this volume charts the shifting debates in Black popular culture scholarship over the past quarter-century while offering new avenues for future scholarship.

Sitcoms

By Ken Bloom, Frank Vlastnik,

Book cover of Sitcoms: The 101 Greatest TV Comedies of All Time

For those who love television comedy and/or are curious about major players in this genre of entertainment, Sitcoms: The 101 Greatest TV Comedies of All Time will delight. Paging through this colorful book (complete with plenty of accompanying photos), one gets a taste of such shows as I Love Lucy, Gilligan’s Island, The Facts of Life, Cheers, Designing Women, Roseanne, Seinfeld, and The Nanny among them.

Sitcoms

By Ken Bloom, Frank Vlastnik,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Sitcoms as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The most beloved, most groundbreaking, and most entertaining TV comedies of all time are celebrated in words and pictures-many of them rare-by the award-winning authors of Broadway Musicals. In 101 lively chapters and lots of special features, the authors of Broadway Musicals explore our favorite form of popular entertainment-the TV situation comedy. Of the many hundreds of shows that have debuted over TV's 60-year history, the authors have carefully selected the most influential, popular, and enduring ones, from Gilligan's Island to Seinfeld, I Love Lucy to Will and Grace, creating a history of the medium that goes beyond stats and…


Who am I?

A theatre, film, and television historian, I've spent the last fifteen years researching and writing about all three areas of entertainment. I'm also a travel and tourism writer for a variety of e-commerce platforms. Television history is an area that I have researched extensively over the last twenty years, resulting in my booksThe Encyclopedia of Television Theme Songs and Sitcommentary: Television ComediesThat Change America.


I wrote...

Sitcommentary: Television Comedies That Changed America

By Mark A. Robinson,

Book cover of Sitcommentary: Television Comedies That Changed America

What is my book about?

As a society, we underestimate how television has influenced how we greet the world. The genre of situation comedy is given particularly short-shrift in this arena, people dismissing the shows we laugh at as lighthearted diversions. However, the TV programs that have had the greatest impact on shaping how we think as a society are the sitcoms tackling difficult issues through humor and making them more palatable and relatable.

Sitcommentary: Television Comedies That Changed America looks at 42 situation comedies, among them All in the Family, M*A*S*H, The Mary Tyler Moore Show, Good Times, Maude, The Golden Girls, Will & Grace, and Black-Ish, and explores how they evolved our views on controversial topics such as race, gender, sexuality, politics, war, and aging.

I Love Lucy

By Ben Nussbaum,

Book cover of I Love Lucy: Discovering America’s Best-Loved Sitcom

For many, I Love Lucy, starring comic genius Lucille Ball, epitomizes what the great American classic television comedy is. Ben Nussbaum’s I Love Lucy: Discovering America’s Best-Loved Sitcom takes a closer look at this side-splitting comedy and gives us a glimpse into why 70-years later, people still love the antics of the title character.

I Love Lucy

By Ben Nussbaum,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked I Love Lucy as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Running from 1951 to 1957 and in syndication for more than fifty years, I Love Lucy has a permanent place in the hearts of American television-watchers and has reached multiple generations of viewers. Based on the humorous antics of a New York City housewife, her Cuban bandleader husband, and their landlord best friends, I Love Lucy was not only wildly popular but also groundbreaking for its filming techniques, for its use of a live audience, and for being the first television show to air reruns. INSIDE I LOVE LUCY: *The beginnings of the show as well as what made it…


Who am I?

A theatre, film, and television historian, I've spent the last fifteen years researching and writing about all three areas of entertainment. I'm also a travel and tourism writer for a variety of e-commerce platforms. Television history is an area that I have researched extensively over the last twenty years, resulting in my booksThe Encyclopedia of Television Theme Songs and Sitcommentary: Television ComediesThat Change America.


I wrote...

Sitcommentary: Television Comedies That Changed America

By Mark A. Robinson,

Book cover of Sitcommentary: Television Comedies That Changed America

What is my book about?

As a society, we underestimate how television has influenced how we greet the world. The genre of situation comedy is given particularly short-shrift in this arena, people dismissing the shows we laugh at as lighthearted diversions. However, the TV programs that have had the greatest impact on shaping how we think as a society are the sitcoms tackling difficult issues through humor and making them more palatable and relatable.

Sitcommentary: Television Comedies That Changed America looks at 42 situation comedies, among them All in the Family, M*A*S*H, The Mary Tyler Moore Show, Good Times, Maude, The Golden Girls, Will & Grace, and Black-Ish, and explores how they evolved our views on controversial topics such as race, gender, sexuality, politics, war, and aging.

The Audacity

By Carmen Loup,

Book cover of The Audacity

Carmen Loup's The Audacity is the successor to The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy that I've been looking for for a long time. Loup takes strands of Hitchhiker's Guide DNA lovingly engineers it into its own unique tale filled with bright, colorful, and snarky characters and a fun, insightful (and, indeed, inciteful) voice that rings incredibly true to an Americanized Douglas Adams (that is, lacking in British poise and restraint). The Audacity is simply an amazing sci-fi comedy from start to finish and feels like a love letter to The Hitchhiker's Guide and, indeed, to all its fans. Plus, the entire first trilogy is available now (with more to come!).

The Audacity

By Carmen Loup,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Audacity as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Rocket racing can be deadly, but working in food service is worse. 

May’s humdrum life is flung into hyperdrive when she’s abducted, but not all aliens are out to probe her.  She’s inadvertently rescued by Xan, an “I Love Lucy” obsessed alien with the orangest rocket ship in the universe. 

But you still have to eat in space, and rocket racing is a quick, if life-threatening, way to make a living. 

Finally, May has a career she loves and a friend to share her winnings with. Until a Chaos goddess possessing Xan’s ex decides to start a cult on Earth…


Who am I?

Growing up, I’d always been fascinated by science fiction narratives, having been suckered in by Star Wars at a very young age. But it wasn’t until I stumbled upon The Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy that I realized stories didn’t have to take everything so seriously. This pivoted to an obsession with comedy, leading me to write skits for the stage and screen in my late 20s as a fun side-gig along with my own comedic sci-fi novel series. I’ve always appreciated stories that lean into the lighter side of things. Reality is grim and dark enough as it is, our escapism doesn’t need to double down on that.


I wrote...

Duckett & Dyer: Dicks For Hire

By G.M. Nair,

Book cover of Duckett & Dyer: Dicks For Hire

What is my book about?

Michael Duckett is fed up with his life. His job is a drag, and his best friend, Stephanie Dyer, only makes him more anxious with her lazy irresponsibility. Things get worse when they get evicted from their 5th-floor walk-up and find ads for their Detective Agency plastered all over the city. The only problem is: Michael and Stephanie don’t have one of those.

Despite their incompetence, Stephanie pursues this crazy scheme and they stumble upon a web of missing people linked by a sexually audacious theoretical physicist and his experiments with space-time. And unless Michael and Stephanie can put their personal issues aside and fix the hole they tore in the multi-verse, the concept of existence itself may, ironically, cease to exist.

Sitcom

By Saul Austerlitz,

Book cover of Sitcom: A History in 24 Episodes from I Love Lucy to Community

To quote New York Times critic Sam Anderson, “the sitcom is arguably the defining commercial art form of the American 20th century,” and this book gives that hypothesis weight. Over 24 chapters (starting in 1951 with I Love Lucy, the Rosetta Stone of the genre, and ending in 2014 with Dan Harmon’s cult hit Community), Austerlitz uses the television comedy format to discuss joke structure, technological advancements in the arts, and the evolution of American social and political consciousness over the previous half-century. Sitcoms are by their nature the tension between two opposing forces, centering on characters who strive to change their lot in life only to have everything reset by episode’s end, just in time to do it all again next week. There’s something both beautiful and menacing about that.

Sitcom

By Saul Austerlitz,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Sitcom as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The form is so elemental, so basic, that we have difficulty imagining a time before it existed: a single set, fixed cameras, canned laughter, zany sidekicks, quirky family antics. Obsessively watched and critically ignored, sitcoms were a distraction, a gentle lullaby of a kinder, gentler America—until suddenly the artificial boundary between the world and television entertainment collapsed.

            In this book we can watch the growth of the sitcom, following the path that leads from Lucy to The Phil Silvers Show; from The Dick Van Dyke Show to The Mary Tyler Moore Show; from M*A*S*H to Taxi; from Cheers to Roseanne;…


Who am I?

Pop culture is my life, and I like my characters to be well-versed in it. There's no reason to pretend otherwise, as what we consume informs who we are as people. Plus, there’s something beautiful in something everybody collectively knows. I’ve worked hard to make pop culture not just an interest but a career path. I currently program films for the Seattle International Film Festival, work as a playwright and performer, cover film, theatre, and burlesque for The Ticket at the Seattle Times, am a frequent guest on podcasts such as Film at Fifty, and assist at various arts organizations all over the greater Seattle area.


I wrote...

Triceratops

By Marcus Gorman,

Book cover of Triceratops

What is my book about?

A story of musicians, writers, painters, and alcoholics. Set in New York City, Henry, and Charlotte—two twentysomethings who never thought they’d see each other again—reunite for three short weeks filled with liquor, strange acquaintances, and good music, causing them to rethink their relationships, their pasts, and their futures. Told from both Henry and Charlotte’s perspectives, Triceratops is a darkly comic adventure about being lost in a world of nostalgia, sitcoms, and antidepressants.

The Quiche of Death

By M. C. Beaton,

Book cover of The Quiche of Death

It takes guts to write a protagonist who’s hard to like. Agatha Raisin, a tough businesswoman who retires to the tiny village of Carsley, is so beautifully flawed she’s impossible to ignore. She’s somewhat of a bully, prone to conniving, and deeply competitive, which is why she buys her quiche at a shop and enters it as her own creation. Of course, someone drops dead after eating it. This crusty woman of a certain age just bulldozes her way through the investigation and her flaws are so funny and refreshing that you wind up rooting for her. She’s a breath of fresh air in the cozy mystery world.

The Quiche of Death

By M. C. Beaton,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked The Quiche of Death as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

'Every new Agatha Raisin escapade is a total joy' ASHLEY JENSEN

'No wonder she's been crowned Queen of Cosy Crime' MAIL ON SUNDAY

'A Beaton novel is like The Archers on speed' DAILY MAIL

The first Agatha Raisin mystery from bestselling author M. C. Beaton

__________________________

Revenge is a dish best served warm...

High-flying public relations supremo Agatha Raisin has decided to take early retirement. She's off to make a new life in a picture-perfect Cotswold village. To make friends, she enters the local quiche-making competition - and to make quite sure of first prize she secretly pays a visit…


Who am I?

Maybe it’s due to my Cuban heritage, but I was raised to appreciate a delicious meal. Beans and rice, roasted pork, plantains, my mouth waters at the thought. When I launched into the writing business twenty five years and fifty books ago, I managed to sprinkle my novels with plenty of tasty treats. Diving into the culinary mystery world allowed me to combine my fancy for food and fiction into one glorious place. The best kind of mystery novels are the ones that tickle your taste buds while they tweak your little grey cells, don’t you think?


I wrote...

Pint of No Return

By Dana Mentink,

Book cover of Pint of No Return

What is my book about?

After her divorce from her thrice-married embezzler husband, Trinidad Jones is ready for a fresh start. So when she's left one of her ex's businesses in Upper Sprocket, Oregon, she decides to pack up her dog, cash in her settlement, and open her dream business: the Shimmy and Shake Shop, introducing the world to her monster milkshakes. And even with a couple of sticky situations underway, namely that the other two ex-wives also call Sprocket home, Trinidad's life is churning along smoothly…until she discovers her neighbor, the Popcorn King, head down in his giant popcorn kettle. When one of Trinidad's fellow ex-wives is accused of the murder and Upper Sprocket descends into mayhem, it's going to take a supersized scoop of courage to flush out the killer.

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