• Carsick

  • John Waters Hitchhikes Across America
  • By: John Waters
  • Narrated by: John Waters
  • Length: 8 hrs and 8 mins
  • 4.2 out of 5 stars (907 ratings)

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Carsick  By  cover art

Carsick

By: John Waters
Narrated by: John Waters
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Publisher's Summary

A cross-country hitchhiking journey with America’s most beloved weirdo.

John Waters is putting his life on the line. Armed with wit, a pencil-thin mustache, and a cardboard sign that reads "I’m Not Psycho", he hitchhikes across America from Baltimore to San Francisco, braving lonely roads and treacherous drivers. But who should we be more worried about, the delicate film director with genteel manners or the unsuspecting travelers transporting the Pope of Trash?

Before he leaves for this bizarre adventure, Waters fantasizes about the best and worst possible scenarios: A friendly drug dealer hands over piles of cash to finance films with no questions asked, a demolition-derby driver makes a filthy sexual request in the middle of a race, a gun-toting drunk terrorizes and holds him hostage, and a Kansas vice squad entraps and throws him in jail. So what really happens when this cult legend sticks out his thumb and faces the open road? His real-life rides include a gentle 81-year-old farmer who is convinced Waters is a hobo, an indie band on tour, and the perverse filmmaker’s unexpected hero: A young, sandy-haired Republican in a Corvette.

Laced with subversive humor and warm intelligence, Carsick is an unforgettable vacation with a wickedly funny companion - and a celebration of America’s weird, astonishing, and generous citizenry.

©2014 John Waters (P)2014 Macmillan Audio

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What listeners say about Carsick

Average Customer Ratings
Overall
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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    486
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    120
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  • 2 Stars
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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

another great piece of filth from john waters!

Would you consider the audio edition of Carsick to be better than the print version?

have not read the print version, but john waters DOES narrate!

What other book might you compare Carsick to and why?

role models. it is also read by john waters.

Which character – as performed by John Waters – was your favorite?

john waters as himself

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

the book, of course, made me laugh out loud several times, and like john waters other books, really lifts my spirit

Any additional comments?

loved it! this is a must for any dreamland fan!! i felt like i was on the road with right next to john the whole time! i hope mr. waters is working on his next idea for his next book! can't wait!

11 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

Wish it was all non-fiction

What could John Waters have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

Stick to writing about the actual trip (only last third is non-fiction).

Any additional comments?

As others have said, book would have been great if he had stuck to writing about actual trip. Way too many stories about imagined good and bad rides. I ended up skipping most of the middle 1/3 of book to get to the real rides. Could have easily skipped first 2/3 of book. Very disappointing because I was anticipating a great read after hearing him talk about it on NPR Fresh Air.

9 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Hilarious

If you could sum up Carsick in three words, what would they be?

Funny, gross and depraved.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Carsick?

John Water's unlikely friendship with a young man who drives him across country.

What about John Waters’s performance did you like?

Everything. The man is a master storyteller and just the cadence of his voice is hysterical.

If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

It'll make you puke with excitement.

Any additional comments?

The funniest book I have listened to all year!

8 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

New and vintage - a romp with John Waters

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Absolutely. More especially if the friend is as familiar with John Waters as I am . I do not think you have to be a John Waters fan to enjoy this book, but it does add to the narrative if you are familiar with the references.

What did you like best about this story?

The juxtaposition of real, good and bad trips. It goes without saying that the dark humor was stellar.

What does John Waters bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Having heard Mr. Waters before, it was almost cozy-felling to have him read his own tale. He is a good reader.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

At one point, I was lying in bed while listening to this book and began to laugh out loud. Loudly. It cracked me up as well as making me sad for the sorry state of this country.

Any additional comments?

I don't like the notion of a book being a summer or beach read, but if pressed -- then this one would fit that bill. Hilarious.

7 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Another great ride with John Waters

Would you listen to Carsick again? Why?

Of course! I love the way his mind works!

Who was your favorite character and why?

The fictional animal rescuer. To say this woman is dedicated, is an understatement.

Which scene was your favorite?

When John goes to Walmart.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

I am always captivated by the masterful storytelling of Mr. John Waters and this book was no different. It made me want to start traveling the country like a gypsy.

Any additional comments?

I appreciate the narration by the author.

5 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

I Missed The "Fiction" Label on This Book

What disappointed you about Carsick?

I, foolishly, thought the book would be about the adventures of an older man hitch-hicking across America. This is obviously a complete work of fiction and no real adventures happen. Oh, there are several adventures, but they are quite obviously fantasy. I think this book should be clearly noted as fiction. I deleted it after "Good Ride #12."

What could John Waters have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

Make sure people purchasing it realize it's totally tounge-in-cheek fiction. I was looking for a non-fiction adventure.

Have you listened to any of John Waters’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

No.

What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

A touch of anger at being mislead by the publishers regarding the genre.

Any additional comments?

I would have given it a zero overall rating had that been available.

5 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

Read reviews before purchasing! NOT non-fiction!

What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

If the whole book had been an actual non-fiction account of a celebrity hitchhiking across the country, rather than the first 2/3rds of the book being rediculous fictitious fantasies about what COULD happen on his trip.

Would you ever listen to anything by John Waters again?

Unlikely.

If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Carsick?

The whole first 2/3rds of the book which were entirely fictitious.

Any additional comments?

I'm really disappointed that this book was categorized as non-fiction. I enjoy fiction and I'm not offended by John Waters and his over-the-top brand of trashy comedy but that's not what I was looking for in this book. I wanted an actual humorous travelogue from someone who hitchhiked across America and discovered all kinds of interesting people. I had no interest in reading fantastical day dreams which had nothing at all to do with his trip. If there had only been a handful of these in the beginning (like one or two good and bad scenarios each), that would have been fine. But for those stories to make up the vast majority of the book is rediculous. I was so irritated by the time I got to the real trip that I couldn't really enjoy it. I bought this shortly after it was released, before there were a lot of reviews. I will wait next time!

4 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

Very Disappointing!

What did you like best about Carsick? What did you like least?

Can't really think of anything I liked, and the nonsensical stories were what I liked least

What was most disappointing about John Waters’s story?

I had seen him interviewed about the book and his hitch hiking across the US. He gave me the impression that this was a real trip and true stories about the journey. I laughed out loud during the interview, but not while reading the book. The stories about his rides were so unreal and impossible that you immediately know it is all made up. The characters are so outrageous they are impossible to believe.

Did John Waters do a good job differentiating all the characters? How?

No, they are all absurd

Did Carsick inspire you to do anything?

Wait for more reviews before making purchases

Any additional comments?

Don't waste your money

4 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

A sweet, yet raunchy, delight

I could listen to John Waters tell stories all day. Makes me wish I’d been one of his drivers.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

What a delight

Any additional comments?

Not only did nothing bad happen to John on his trip, but it restores the reader's faith in the common decency of random Americans. He said it himself, he never wants to hear his coastal friends refer to middle-Americans as flyover people again. Waters' performance, of course, was great as he read his own story and took us along for a really fun bunch of rides.

2 people found this helpful