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TV Book Club: 'How To Archer'

Brittany Frederick Brittany Frederick
January 19th, 2012 11:00am EST

How To ArcherWe should all learn How To Archer.

Not because it would actually be constructive - the hero of FX's hit comedy series Archer is about the last person that I'd take as a role model - but because it is so entertaining that I actually pulled a muscle laughing.

This is not the first time we've seen a book penned by a fictional character (anyone else remember Bart Simpson's Guide To Life? Or more recently, the Richard Castle novels?) but it is undoubtedly the best one I've read.

In this how-to guide on everything he cares about (it's all there in the subtitle: The Ultimate Guide to Espionage and Style and Women and Also Cocktails Ever Written), you can really hear ISIS superspy Sterling Archer's voice on every page.

For example, a running thread throughout the book's 192 pages is Archer's petulance over not being allowed to write a chapter on cobras.

And you'll read along as he tries to pad the book's word count with filler.

And because this is Archer, you'll find plenty of gleefully inappropriate jokes about sex, foreign countries, and abusing his loyal valet Woodhouse.

Plus, there's even a contribution from Archer's mother and tyrannical boss, Malory.

Archer fans will find plenty to love in this book, and catch all the episodic references, plus some stuff that we haven't yet heard of (and some of which borders on TMI, but that's Archer for you).

If you're still not convinced, here's a quote from the back cover:

...If you want to learn more about how to be more—or at all—like Sterling Archer, the world’s greatest secret agent, quit smearing your greasy fingerprints all over this book and buy it. For one thing, I really need the royalties. For another thing, the last time I checked, this wasn’t a damn library.

What truly endears me to How To Archer, though, is that not only is it faithful to the show, but it is legitimately a great book. There have been plenty of TV tie-ins that just don't translate into print well. They're faithful to the property but they're not good books. This is not one of them.

It stands on its own even if you're not familiar with the series. I showed excerpts from it to my mother, who is not only not an Archer fan but whose sense of humor could be called prudish, and even she was laughing. It doesn't matter if you've never heard of the show. If you want an excellent humor book, this is also one that needs to be on your shelf.

Really, the only way this book would get any better is if H. Jon Benjamin read the audio version. (Please? I'm willing to bribe.)

How To Archer is a great read that will make a perfect companion for those Archer season two Blu-Rays on your coffee table.

You can order your copy here and don't miss Archer's third-season premiere tonight at 10 PM ET/PT on FX!

(c)2012 Brittany Frederick/Digital Airwaves. Appears at Starpulse with permission. All rights reserved. No reproduction permitted.

Photo Credits: HarperCollins