Review by Publisher's Weekly Review
In this sarcastic and sidesplitting memoir, blogger and journalist Jenny Lawson-famous for her persona, the Bloggess-describes her childhood in Wall, Tex., her experiences with marriage and motherhood, and how she became a mature adult (sort of). Lawson fans will love listening to the author recounting her life in her own voice, from getting her arm stuck up a cow's vagina to her first acid trip and misinterpretation of her husband's marriage proposal as a murder attempt. Listeners unfamiliar with Lawson's style may grow tired of her profanity and, at times, over-the-top attempts at derisive humor, but even her biggest critics will find themselves giggling when her taxidermist father throws a bobcat into her future husband's lap. From the start (and the title), Lawson admits to embellishing details of her life, but her West Texas accent adds a sweet authenticity to her tall tales. She also touches on serious topics, such as her series of miscarriages and severe anxiety disorder, softening her delivery to fit the material. And Lawson knows her material so well that her performance seems more like a standup than traditional narration, making this audiobook both entertaining and engaging. A Putnam/Amy Einhorn hardcover. (Apr.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Review by Kirkus Book Review
A mostly funny, irreverent memoir on the foibles of growing up weird. In blogger Lawson's debut book, "The Bloggess" (thebloggess.com) relies entirely on her life stories to drive an unconventional narrative. While marketed as nonfiction, it's a genre distinction the author employs loosely (a point made clear in the book's subtitle). On the opening page she defends the subtitle, explaining, "The reason this memoir is only mostly true instead of totally true is that I relish not getting sued." Yet Lawson also relishes exaggerative storytelling, spinning yarns of her childhood and early adulthood that seem so unbelievable they could hardly be made up. Nearly every line is an opportunity for a punch line--"Call me Ishmael. I won't answer to it, because it's not my name, but it's much more agreeable that most of the things I've been called"; "And that's how I ended up shoulder-deep in a cow's vagina"; "there's nothing more romantic than a proposal that ends with you needing a tetanus shot"--and while the jokes eventually wear thin, by that point readers will be invested in Lawson herself, not just her ability to tell a joke. The author's use of disclaimers, editorial notes and strike-thrus leaves the book feeling oddly unfinished, though it's a calculated risk that serves well as an inside joke shared between writer and reader at the expense of the literary elite. While Lawson fails to strike the perfect balance between pathos and punch line, she creates a comic character that readers will engage with in shocked dismay as they gratefully turn the pages.]] Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.
Copyright (c) Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.
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