How the Hell Did This Happen?P. J. O'Rourke
1 March 2018
Published by Grove Press
9 March 2017
Published by Grove Press
No comedian could have written the joke this election cycle has been. The punch line is too ridiculous (whoever the punch line is going to be). Celebrated political satirist, journalist, and diehard Republican P.J. O’Rourke brings his critical eye and inimitable voice to some serious risky business.
How The Hell Did This Happen? covers the whole election process from the pig pile of presidential candidates circa June 2015, the dreadful key primaries and candidate debates through his come-to-Satan moment with Hillary – ‘She’s the second worst thing that could happen to our nation. I endorse her.’ – to the Beginning of End Times in November.
How The Hell Did This Happen? answers the key question of the 2016 presidential election: Should we laugh or should we cry or should we hurl? (They are not mutually exclusive.)
O'Rourke has a nice, world-weary way with the US's present political follies... He hasn't lost his gift for the brutally effective one-liner.
scabrously witty, inventive and rich in historical detail... O'Rourke is never less than pleasurable company. There were chapters in this book I read twice just for the fun of it... I am already looking forward to the companion volume What The Hell Happens Next?
O'Rourke has a real eye for the vagaries of American politics and, on occasion, piercing insight.
O'Rourke has been for decades the wittiest guide to America, and the usual ingredients are packed into this volume. How the Hell Did This Happen? is scabrously witty, inventive and rich in historical detail.
Whether you agree with him or not, P.J. writes a helluva piece.Richard Nixon
Who better than one of America's most-respected humourists to make sense of an election in which real life frequently appeared to approach satire?
P.J. O'Rourke is like S.J. Perelman on acid.Chris Buckley
P.J. O'Rourke was really the first to inject non-liberal hilarity into political discourse . . . But more important, he was able to yank conservatives out of the hands of the humorless and shrill, and make such writing accessible . . . He changed my life.Greg Gutfeld
[O'Rourke] occupies a rare place among the laughing class: He has somehow avoided the orifice obsession that captivates many of its members; he identifies as Republican; and he is no mere thumb-sucker, having visited more than 40 countries to report on wars, regime changes, economic revolutions and the experience of drinking cocktails garnished with the poison sacs of cobras.
Wall Street Journal
Outspoken conservatives have long been a minority in comedy, particularly in the mainstream media, which provided an opportunity for P.J. O'Rourke, who for decades cornered the market for prominent right-wing humorists . . . If his wry essays have a mission statement . . . it's this: Starchy Republicanism is really, really fun.
New York Times Book Review
As a cultural analyst, O'Rourke's ability and willingness to simultaneously lampoon and celebrate himself and his generation are unequaled.