Thursday, October 8, 2015

Why Not Me? or, Mindy Kaling's New Book

By Charlotte
Book Review: Why Not Me? By Mindy Kaling
Official FC Rating:

Oh, gosh. I am such a huge fan of Mindy Kaling. (As we know.) I loved her last book, but this one was even better. I'm more than ten years younger than Kaling, so this might sound stupid, but this book seemed more mature than the last one (less superficiality, although a little bit of that is great) and it was hilarious. I laughed out loud several times, I nodded along, and I uttered the word "preach" more times than I did when I watched Sister Act 2, so... This book gets five out of five stars from me.

Let's start off with the truly important aspects of the book: Its looks. The font is so pretty, which is something normal people might not notice, but yeah, that shipped sailed, I notice it. The cover is light and airy, I like the pops of gold, the back cover is hilarious, and the inside has the coolest design. I know the old adage, but I almost always judge books based on their covers, and this one is sublime. I know you're probably not reading this for a summary of the design, so I'm going to talk about the book itself... but first let me post a few pictures: 

You mean you don't take pics of books on old chairs with a denim jacket casually hanging in the background?

A diagram of her heart: Stephen Colbert, Light Personal Drama, Heavy Celebrity Drama, Rebels, Authority, among others.

There are cheeseburgers in this design. Made me hungry, but I've forgiven her. 
Alright, alright. On to the important stuff.

Mindy's book is a steady stream of funny. People can knock essays or humor, but they don't get it. Being consistently funny isn't the easiest thing to do when you're writing to an invisible audience. I try it when I write blog posts, and if you've ever read any of my blog posts, you know I usually fail. A sense of humor might come naturally - I think I'm funny in situations and conversations. But writing 220 pages without faltering in the humor department? That's talent. Straight up talent. If you're a funny person, love a funny person, or wish you were a funny person, I'd recommend this book.

If you're into autobiographies and you're in Mindy's target audience (women and gay men, I imagine she'd say), you might love this book. I love autobiographies, but there's something great about a collection of personal essays instead. I felt as though I were reading Her Life Story, but in reality we're reading just some of her life's stories. This is better because it means she can write twenty more books of life stories and we won't get bored. 

Kaling writes about her career, her romantic relationships, her friendships, and more. What I most admired while reading this book was that it's so chill and funny, but never once did I think that Mindy wasn't a serious or dedicated person. Her work ethic and love for her friends and family shine through, even though it's a funny book.

And my God, it's a funny book. And super easy to relate to! Some examples: 

When discussing how she sometimes gets overwhelmed by her work and cries, she says she just has to remember, "Mindy, you have literally the best life in the world besides that hot lawyer who married George Clooney." I feel that I can say, with completely certainty, that all of humankind agrees with Mindy; Amal Clooney is the most badass woman with a badass life and we envy her.

"People who say breakfast should be the biggest meal are insane. You can't have dessert at breakfast."

When she and her friend went to a White House State Dinner they were introduced thusly: "Miss Mindy Kaling and her best friend from Dartmouth College, Miss Jocelyn Leavitt." Excuse me for five minutes as I crack up. Okay, so maybe most of us can't relate to that (though I've shaken hands with the president...), but it's funny as hell.

After she tells us she is capable of completely detaching from someone emotionally: "That's why I'm always saying I would be a great serial murderer." 

There is so much more where these came from. You really must read her book! 

I'm kind of mad I even like Mindy Kaling. Usually I'm far behind - I'm just now watching Friends, by the time I started watching Gilmore Girls it was already airing as reruns on ABC Family - you get the idea. I've accepted that it's an indication that I'm a bit of a lame-o, but I sort of like it because I never have to wait with anticipation. Do you know what I mean? I was able to skip school and read the entire Hunger Games trilogy because it was so old, all the books were published. I don't have to wait a week to watch Parenthood, I just binge on Netflix. This is how I wish it were with Mindy Kaling's stuff. Assuming she writes another book - I don't want to wait! I just want to read it now! Because that's how fabulous her books are. I loved everything about Why Not Me? 

Also, also, Mindy mentions that since she's become more famous, a lot of women say they'd like to be her best friend. She lists a few pros of being her best friend, and two of them are that she can deal with ex-boyfriend situations and that she's always up for dessert. Yes, please, I'd like to be your friend! (The ex boyfriend thing isn't relevant because I can't even land a bf in the first place, but dessert is one of my favorite things. Ever.)

So yes. Read this book. It was wonderful, entertaining, and well-written. And it was laugh out loud funny - always a good thing. 


Disclaimer: I received a complimentary copy of this book from the Blogging For Books program in exchange for this review. All opinions are my own.

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