I think Non-Fiction week is going to be my favorite week for March. I have so much I want to discuss, starting with this book review for Mindy Kaling's Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns).
I'm not generally a fan of "celebrity" memoirs, but a few years back I read Tiny Fey's Bossypants and enjoyed it. I give Fey more credit though, because in addition to be an actress and director, she is a writer. I also had the same thought that led me to this book. Mindy Kaling, as I first knew her, was a writer for The Office, one of my old favorite TV series. She wrote some of my favorite episodes, so I likewise thought this would be better than your average biography/autobiography on a celeb. Not only would it be written by a professional writer, but a comedian. Double score.
But enough with the intro, let's get into the review!
**ALL MY BOOK REVIEWS ARE SPOILER-FREE (though slightly irrelevant to this review)
Author: Mindy Kaling
Genre: Non-fiction > Memoir
Released: November 1, 2011
Links: Amazon | Goodreads
My rating: 3 out of 5 stars
SUMMARY (snippet courtesy of Goodreads):
"In Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me?, Mindy invites readers on a tour of her life and her unscientific observations on romance, friendship, and Hollywood, with several conveniently placed stopping points for you to run errands and make phone calls. Mindy Kaling really is just a Girl Next Door—not so much literally anywhere in the continental United States, but definitely if you live in India or Sri Lanka."
This book consists of 2 things: stories and embellished lists. Mindy includes stories from her childhood as well as those attempts to make it big in New York and Hollywood. I enjoyed the stories; however, I thought the book had too many lists (and that's coming from someone who loves lists)!! But let me get this straight- if I'm reading an article informing me of "the foods that will extend your lifetime by 20 years," yes, please give me a list so I don't have to read the whole article word for word. But with this memoir, I wanted less lists and more stories. The stories were the best parts. Some lists were entertaining, while others felt far too long.
If you've ever heard Mindy Kaling speak, then you'll have no problem hearing her voice while you're reading this memoir. Her personality translates on the page. In addition to this, Mindy writes with honesty. She doesn't care if you think she's vain; she practically tells you so. Everything about reading this book- from her family life, to her friends, to her social life- only made me like her more as a person. She's a strong woman who thinks highly of herself. And why shouldn't she?
Simply put: I liked it- nothing more, nothing less. I laughed here and there. I liked that I could read her personality straight off the page. I liked the no-hands honesty. I did not, however, enjoy the quantity and length of the lists that frankly took up far more of the book than I would've preferred. All in all, I still had fun, so I'd give it 3 out of 5 stars.