Books

Theft by Finding

This book by David Sedaris is a collection of his diaries from 1977-2002.

David Sedaris

(Little, Brown and Company)

For 40 years, David Sedaris has kept a diary in which he records everything that captures his attention-overheard comments, salacious gossip, soap opera plot twists, secrets confided by total strangers. These observations are the source code for his finest work, and through them he has honed his cunning, surprising sentences.

Now, Sedaris shares his private writings with the world. Theft by Finding, the first of two volumes, is the story of how a drug-abusing dropout with a weakness for the International House of Pancakes and a chronic inability to hold down a real job became one of the funniest people on the planet.

Written with a sharp eye and ear for the bizarre, the beautiful, and the uncomfortable, and with a generosity of spirit that even a misanthropic sense of humour can't fully disguise, Theft By Finding proves that Sedaris is one of our great modern observers. It's a potent reminder that when you're as perceptive and curious as Sedaris, there's no such thing as a boring day. (From Little, Brown and Company)

From the book

Excerpt:

Not long after deciding to release a book of diary entries, I came upon a five-pound note. I'd been picking up trash alongside a country road in West Sussex, and there it was between a potato-chip bag and a half-full beer can that had drowned slugs in it. Given the exchange rate, the bill amounted to around $8.15, which, as my mother would have said, "Ain't nothing." A few days later I met with my friend Pam in London. The subject of windfalls came up, and when I mentioned the money she asked if I'd spent it.

"Well, of course," I said.

"In the U.K., if you discover something of value and keep it, that's theft by finding," she told me. "You're supposed to investigate whether it was lost or stolen, though in this case — five pounds — of course you're fine."


From Theft by Finding by David Sedaris ©2017 Published by Little, Brown and Company.

Author interviews