Endangered Pleasures: In Defense of Naps, Bacon, Martinis, Profanity, and Other Indulgences

ISBN: 006095647X
ISBN 13: 9780060956479
By: Barbara Holland

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About this book

Here is a refreshing look at life as it ought to be. Bare feet, gardening, dawdling over the newspaper, oversleeping, and idle summer vacations are infinitely more satisfying than counting fat grams, eating only vegetables, and sitting behind that desk every day. So toss out the guilt and rebel. Don't just stop and smell the flowers--call in sick and lie among them, preferably with a good friend, a bottle of wine, and a handful of chocolates. Endangered Pleasures is a delightful reminder that rest and relaxation are more rewarding than a job performance review. After all, life's too short. Why not have some fun while you're supposed to be living it?

Reader's Thoughts


short essays extolling everyday pleasures often overlooked. good bathroom book! three and a half for entertainment value.


Amusing and insightful essays. This is the sort of book that inspires you to collar your innocent spouse and hold him captive while you read portions aloud.


Amusing with deep stabs of truth. Several of these little essays are good and true enough that I want to carry them around and make people read them, watching their faces as I do...

Vicki Hughes

This is a book I take off the shelf several times a year, for a nice leisurely thumbing. It's full of essays on the merits of going naked, the taking naps, and pretty mush all the stuff I love to do. I love the case she makes for the necessity of the occasional swear word. Barbara Holland and I could be friends, and you will probably think she'd make a great friend too, after reading this delightful book.


LOVED this book. Perfect for a little laugh during the day.


In an age when every bad habit is considered life threatening, or politically incorrect, Ms. holland had a refreshing attitude. I had read a few of her books, but I deliberately bought this one when it came out because I enjoy a realist...and she was.


This is a book of very interesting, but very short essays about different things that the American puritan society has dismissed as sinful. The topics range from simple breakfast coffee to going barefoot. Some of the things that she says are deemed unnecessary aren't in my life, but I guess it depends on your upbringing. An all right read.

Connie Harkness

I thought it would be funny. Instead, it endangered m pleasure by being dry and rote.


One of my favorites! This book just makes me feel good.


Read for book club - a little dated and a little silly.

Linda Chrisman

Great book - made me laugh out loud and also start thinking . There are some real truths in this charming and delightful book of essays.


Good book for OCD types or type A people. Good info on how to enjoy frivolous things such as bacon, mail,weekends, etc.


Most of these essays are a little hit-or-miss, as if she wrote about smoking and drinking and setting things on fire, then decided to write enough essays along the same lines to fill a book. However, the essay on smoking is one of the best things I've ever read. If you're a smoker, or you used to be, you really should read it, and then discover on your own how good the others are.

Joyce McCombs

Such a fun read - short essays on things we deny ourselves these days, like a good nap, bacon, bare feet, the morning paper and the second cup of coffee. An indulgence just to read!


4.5 stars. I adore this book, and it is totally the book I would write, if I could, you know, write books. I've always recognized in myself a deep hedonistic streak, not so much in the "snorting coke off strippers at an orgy" image that that that word conjures up, but as far as seeking and appreciating pleasure from small everyday things--a fresh peach, an afternoon spent laying on a hammock reading, the smell of fresh cut grass--sensual experiences, in the non-sexual meaning of that word--and seeing some intrinstic good in that pleasure. So yeah, philosophically, this book is right up my alley. And the writing is gorgeously sensual (there's that word again...I can't seem to write this review without making it sound all Cinemax After Dark). I didn't agree with all the supposed pleasures; I'm too much of a homebody at heart to get much pleasure from being someone's houseguest or being out in a crowd, and I see nothing appealing in gambling. And there is certainly a strain of a certain kind of political conservativism running throughout that was at times difficult to square with my personal politics. Here on goodreads, the first book listed as one that others who like this one have also liked is called Nanny State: How Food Fascists, Teetotaling Do-Gooders, Priggish Moralists, and other Boneheaded Bureaucrats are Turning America into a Nation of Children. Yeah, I won't likely be reading THAT one, but this one is a beautifully written treatise for those who share the philosophy that joy is good for you.

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