Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Tremain's Book Corner: "Furiously Happy" by Jenny Lawson

Furiously Happy: A Funny Book About Horrible Things
Author: Jenny Lawson
Reviewed By: Tremain Jackson, South Branch Manager
Personal Rating: 4 Stars

Book Summary: According to Jenny: "Some people might think that being 'furiously happy' is just an excuse to be stupid and irresponsible and invite a herd of kangaroos over to your house without telling your husband first because you suspect he would say no since he's never particularly like kangaroos.  And that would be ridiculous because no one would invite a herd of kangaroos into their house.  Two is the limit.  I speak from personal experience.  My husband says that none is the new limit.  I say he should have been clearer about that before I rented all those kangaroos."

"Most of my favorite people are dangerously f**ked up, but you'd never guess because we've learned to bare it so honestly that it becomes the new normal.  Like John Hughes in The Breakfast Club, 'we're all pretty bizarre.  Some of us are just better at hiding it.'  Except go back and cross out the word 'hiding.'"

Jenny's first book, Let's Pretend This Never Happened, was ostensibly about family, but deep down it was about celebrating your own weirdness.  This book is about mental illness, but under the surface it's about embracing joy in fantastic and outrageous ways, and who doesn't need a bit more of that?

Personal Review: Oh yes, after reading her first book, I was EXCITED to know she wrote another as this is a woman I would want to be friends with and sit down with at the end of the day and just listen to her go.  This is my kind of lady because she's a bit over-the-top, doesn't apologize for her colorful nature, and just says it like it is while embracing that "new normal."

The book was simply HILARIOUS, while being heartfelt all at the same time, and brought readers, once again, into a genuine look into Lawson's life with her never lacking sardonic wit (which I love).  But what helps to really make the book great, in my opinion, is that she uses this wit, as well as her many stories, to touch upon serious issues such as mental health, and do so in an intimate way.  It not only causes the reader to think, but it also leaves you with not having to feel...pity...for the author because she certainly doesn't pity herself.

It's very easy to see why she has such a loyal following because you never know what she might do next.  You'll get those intimate moments of self-disclosure and mental nakedness and she'll just shoot you into some bizarre hijinks that you don't see coming in the least.

I couldn't help but laugh while devouring this read...even laughing so hard that it led to snorting (which is certainly a great sign of a funny read).  Lawson is just fearless, awkward, hilarious, honest, and not afraid to write about the sad things in her life, but doing so in a way that makes everyone able to relate to it.

That being said, although I could see some readers being thrown off by the sentence structure, cohesiveness of the messages, and her colorful language, I felt it was perfectly warranted for the way she writes and speaks.  If that's going to bother you, you may want to move right past her latest book; however, if you're looking for a great roller coaster of a ride, you'll certainly want to check out this bestseller from your Abilene Public Library.

I just hope there's going to be a third book in the future because it's not getting old.  Although you don't have to read them in order, just know that not only should you look out for the book covered in this review, you should also read Let's Pretend This Never Happened: A Mostly True Memoir.


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