Mr. Know-It-All
Mr. Know-It-All
The Tarnished Wisdom of a Filth Elder


The man in the pencil-thin mustache, auteur of the transgressive movie classics Pink Flamingos, Polyester, Hairspray, Cry-Baby, and A Dirty Shame, is one of the world's great sophisticates, and in Mr. Know-It-All he serves it up raw: how to fail upward in Hollywood; how to develop musical taste, from Nervous Norvus to Maria Callas; how to build a home so ugly and trendy that no one but you would dare live in it; more important, how to tell someone you love them without emotional risk; and yes, how to cheat death itself. Through it all, Waters swears by one undeniable truth: "Whatever you might have heard, there is absolutely no downside to being famous. None at all."

Studded with cameos, from Divine and Mink Stole to Johnny Depp, Kathleen Turner, Patricia Hearst, and Tracey Ullman, and illustrated with unseen photos from the author's personal collection, Mr. Know-It-All is Waters’ most hypnotically readable, upsetting, revelatory book—another instant Waters classic.

Praise for Mr. Know-It-All:

“That John Waters is a national treasure is a surety. Period. Thank you and good night . . . [Mr. Know-It-All] shows a vulnerability and an honesty and an almost frantic desire to impart to us, before he can no longer, his manic mantras, his obsessive treatises and his biting and blisteringly honest bons mots that are actually really enlightening life lessons.”—Alan Cumming, The New York Times Book Review

“[Waters is] an indefatigable coiner of droll one-liners . . . Whether he likes it or not, [Waters] is a Great American Institution. Or maybe he belongs in an institution. Either way, we wouldn’t want to be without him.”—Michael Upchurch, The Seattle Times

“In Mr. Know-It-All, the curtain is pulled back and Waters’ life, a multi-decade exercise in adaptability, perseverance and ceaseless hustle, is revealed. The essays are hyper-driven with the caloric burn of nervous energy . . . Full of insight and scrappy, hard-earned smarts.”—Henry Rollins, Los Angeles Times

Title Mr. Know-It-All
Subtitle The Tarnished Wisdom of a Filth Elder
Author John Waters
Publisher Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Title First Published 21 May 2019
Format Hardcover
Nb of pages
ISBN-10 0374214964
ISBN-13 9780374214968
Publication Date 21 May 2019
Weight 32 oz.