This Will Only Hurt a Little–Busy Philipps

I haven’t always loved Busy Philipps. Or rather, her characters. I’m looking at whoever she played on Dawson’s Creek. But I was also like early teens when I was watching that show, so really, I had no stake in the game. 

BUT. I did love her in Freaks and Geeks. And Cougar Town was hilarious.

Then Instagram came along and eventually her fame on there for being incredibly hilarious. 

Which inevitably gave her a book deal, which makes sense. Or does it? What world are we living in anymore? 

Anyway, I’m happy that she got a book deal.

I read this when I was still running my book club and this was one of the picks from my sisters. 

It was well written and funny in the bits that needed to be funny, sad in the parts that were incredibly upsetting, and overall, a beautiful book.

She covered a lot of stuff and I’m grateful she was brave enough to share her story in the way that she did. Busy talks about her first time having sex, her relationship with her husband, and her friendships. It’s an honest book and I really loved her being so candid with us.

Which is how she just lives her life, so that was impressive to see she wasn’t sugar-coating anything for the benefit of others.

She was incredibly real in this.

I loved it. And her. 

Constant vigilance! busy

Dumplin’ by Julie Murphy

My beautiful Dumplin’. This book was so wonderful I started a book club.

Now, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that I’m a chubby bunny. I mention it whenever I read a book by or about chubby girls.

So reading about this chubby teenager who is constantly crapped on for being fat broke my heart and then FULLY MENDED IT.

If you’ve watched the movie: STOP AND READ THE BOOK.

Because while the movie was adorable and fun, the book is actually 100 times better.

No joke.

There are so many more sweet moments between Dumplin’ and her mom. There are a handful of fights between them that didn’t make the movie.

And her Aunt Lucy isn’t the same as in the movie, where she’s pictured as a lovely larger than life woman who in spite of being fat lived her life to the fullest.

In the books, she was a recluse who was too scared to do anything because she was afraid of what she looked like and didn’t want anyone to see her. Which I think was really important to the narrative. It made Willowdean want to be braver. Made her want to grow, while also loving her aunt more than anyone 

Willowdean was so frickin’ great and touched on so many things that I worry about too. (Like when someone touches my back or chubby bits and how I would/do react.)

PLUS the movie left out the very loveable and friendly Mitch. How could they do that?! Especially when they left out so much of her relationship with Bo.

And the romance with Bo was GREAT in the book and they barely touched on it in the movies.

I realize that it was supposed to be all about Dumplin’ but really. There was a reason her life started to shift and she started to examine her life more.

And the reason was her Aunt Lucy’s death and what that meant to her.

You totally thought I was going to say Bo. Pfffffffft nah.

Read this book. Just frickin’ do it.dumplin

Something From the Nightside–Simon R. Green

My brother recommended this book. Which sometimes when my brother recommends things I’m like “What? You liked this?” And then he tells me it wasn’t his favourite but I would like it. And I’m like ‘Why would you recommend a book that WASN’T your favourite?’ and he’s all “I don’t know, it was a good book.” *shrug*

And then he declares war on my nation and we argue for a year until something nice happens and we reach a treaty.

Although I think this years war was declared because we are in a fight for a werewolf cat creature? I’m not entirely sure if that thing is even real. I just know it was cute as all hell. 

(*Editors Note: It IS real. It’s just a baby Maine Coon.)

Anyway, this book is about a detective who can go into another world called the Nightside. 

It was interesting and cool as far as detective novels go. I liked that the lead character had magical powers, it kind of reminded me of Nevermore by Neil Gaiman, and I will definitely be borrowing some more of these in the future from my brother once my book list is dwindled a bunch.

(It’s never going to be dwindled, who am I kidding? I literally have plans to go raid thrift stores next week with my bestie.)

(*Editors Note: This was written before quarantine. We did raid thrift stores, but this was written last year. That’s how far behind I am.)

Constant vigilance!

nightside

This is Me–Chrissy Metz

Classic. After I said I was going to write every day I immediately forgot and here we are four days later.

But here we go.

SPOILERS TO “THIS IS US” FIRST SEASON. 

Now, I knew I was going to like this book immediately because I really like Chrissy Metz as a human. (Not that I know her in real life. What an assumption I made based off of interviews and the like!)

I’ll admit that I don’t fully like her character in This Is Us and it’s because of one thing. 

After her father went back into their burning house and saved her dog because she was losing her mind crying because the dog was stuck and dying, she did something unforgivable. 

(Hello. Who WOULDN’T be LOSING THEIR SHIT AT THAT. I would’ve gone back in for my dog in a HEARTBEAT.) 

After Jack dies: SHE STARTS HATING ON HER DOG.

EXCUSE YOU!!! 

Your dog didn’t kill him. Don’t you dare pin that on a dog! It was just a horrible circumstance. 

If my dad died saving my dog I would be like YOU’RE A HERO JOE. AND GOD BLESS YOU FOR SAVING MY SWEET ANGEL DEXTER. AND I WOULD LOVE THAT DOG MORE BECAUSE MY DAD SAVED HER FOR ME AND I WOULD NEVER IN A MILLION YEARS BLAME A DOG FOR THE DEMISE OF MY FATHER.

Unless Dexter tripped him on the way out the door and somehow kicked it behind her and my dad got trapped and burned to death.

THEN I would probably be like “Damn it Goose you fluffy adorable murderer.” (We call Dexter ‘Goose’ because she gooses your bum when you come in the door like a perverted old man.)

Wait. I’m supposed to be talking about a book. Not why I don’t like Kate. Or at least, teenage Kate. 

THIS BOOK WAS LOVELY.

It gives you the feels. It makes you feel like you have a comrade in arms. It makes you feel like you aren’t alone in feeling like you are a fat piece of trash and then she lifts you right back up to show you how you are BEAUTIFUL and MAJESTIC and everything is just as it should be. No matter what size you are you are fucking amazing. You hear me?!

Chrissy’s writing was full of heart and kindness, and past self-deprecation and it was lovely.

Plus I love seeing women living their dreams on their terms and how they became that way.

She is a fucking star and amazing. 

But teenage Kate can get bent. Ya hear me?

Constant vigilance.

chrissy

I Like You Just the Way I Am–Jenny Mollen

Oh hi there! Just wanted to check in. Say hey.

If you’re on instagram you’ve likely seen this smash hit of a human being. 

She’s insane. And loveable. And insane. 

But like, in a fun way that makes you want to sit near her while she tells you stories in all her twirling chaotic glory. 

Jenny just seems like a person who you can be best friends with in a way that requires very little of you because she is THE SHOW.

Which is great for an introvert in a sense, but would also be hell on earth because she would need you to DO THE THINGS. But MAN would you laugh while doing it.

I really enjoyed this book, she’s got a refreshing personality and wit. 

Definitely worth a read, I can’t wait to read her next and newest book. 

jenny

Let’s Pretend This Never Happened–Jenny Lawson

My friend who normally suggests incredibly upsetting (cough cough World War 2) books to me suggested this. 

Now, this has taxidermy on the front so you can imagine my dismay and skepticism at what I was about to walk into. 

But blindly walk into it I did and I was surprised as fuck and happily proven wrong.

This book was HYSTERICAL. I read it so friggin fast and loved every minute of it. 

This lady knows how to get you to wet yourself laughing! 

I enjoyed her tales of taxidermy collecting, how she terrorizes her husband Victor, and the way she talks about mental health and well being.

She’s lovely, fantastic, and a great writer.

Constant vigilance! jenny

But Enough About Me–Burt Reynolds

I think I’m psychic sometimes. 

Or I’m an evil witch who accidentally marks a person for death upon reading their autobiography. 

Poor sweet dirty bird Burt Reynolds. 

This book was so fun to read and incredibly interesting! 

I love a good autobiography these days and I really enjoyed how this sounds how he talked. His stories were cool, his life was amazing, and his heart was big as all get out. 

And man did he love Sally Field. 

And hate that photo shoot on the rug. He even wrote in the book how when he dies he hopes that no one remembers him JUST for that. 

Go figure on social media that’s the picture EVERYONE and their mother was putting up to commemorate him.

Rest in peace you hairy bastard. 

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Body Positive Power–Megan Jayne Crabbe

I took my sweet time reading this book. I’d say about six months just because I wanted those lessons she was teaching in her book to really sink in. 

Now, I can’t remember word for word what she said, but the feeling of this book really resonates with me even still and I find it has changed my line of thinking.

When I start to talk to myself in a way that I wouldn’t have originally thought of as self deprecating or harmful I catch myself now. 

Why am I bullying myself? You can’t hate yourself into a body you love. 

Which was a big point in her book. 

You can’t be cruel and think you’ll end up happy. You can’t bash yourself and think that’s a form of self love because it’ll get you to a place where you love the end result of all your “hard work”.

But I don’t want my hard work to be a result of me bashing myself or constantly pulling at my body angry that it can’t be different just because I’m willing it to be so.

This is MY body. No one else has this body, so it’s important that I treat her with respect. 

And fuck am I ever happier about that. 

When my brain goes “Ugh. New stretch marks. Way to go fat ass.” I stop that in its tracks and think “So what?”. 

“So what?” is my new key phrase to body positivity. 

So what if I’ve gained weight to the point of new stretch marks. I learned to love the last ones, these new ones can be loved just the same. 

So what if I’ve gained weight at all? That just shows I appreciate food and relaxation. I know I’m not actually a lazy person, I do things ALL the time. I work hard, so I deserve the relaxation and comfort that comes from eating and laying down. 

So what if I eat a bag of chips in one sitting? I was fucking hungry to the point of inhaling it. I obviously NEEDED food.

I’m learning to listen to my body more. Not intuitive eat as a way of dieting. I will no longer diet. I’m done with that. (Hell yeah!) I will listen to my body on what foods it agrees with and which foods it craves. (And sometimes that craving is a goddamn apple! Who knew!!!) 

I want to get back to a place where I move my body for the joy of moving my body. Like when you’re a kid and you run because you love that feeling of being free and the wind whipping through your hair. 

And so what if I get winded halfway down the driveway. I can be breathless for the joy of it! 

I don’t want to punish my body into a body worth having. I want to enjoy the body I have because it was worth having all along. 

All the shapes and sizes I have been get a colossal “So what?”. 

So what, that was Past Alli. Present Alli isn’t too concerned about what size of pant she is wearing.

So what, that was Past Alli. Present Alli doesn’t want to give anymore energy or wasteful thought tangents on where her body SHOULD be. Instead living in the body I have now and being grateful that I am who I am and no one else is like me. 

So what if someone else bashes their body? Not only will I not internalize it to the point of thinking “Does that person think I’m fat and hideous because they think THEY are fat and hideous?” I will stop THEM in their tracks and tell them to stop talking to my friend like that. 

This book is so fucking important for all communities. It’s not only about body positivity and how Megan got to where she is, it’s about facts and figures and LGBTQ etc things, it’s about able bodied people (which is everyone. We all have bodies that are able to do stuff.) and it’s about how we value self worth. 

It’s so important. 

And so what if I don’t look like the girls in the magazines? 

We’ve risen up so much the girls in the magazines have come out to say “Me either.” 

Fuck I love this book. 

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The Girl With the Lower Back Tattoo–Amy Schumer

Two for two on surprise book back to back. First Kris Jenner, and now Amy Schumer. 

So I originally intended to read this book and get it off my shelf because I kept seeing the cover and being like ‘UGH. Amy Schumer! Stop fucking staring at me.” 

But what I ended up with was a well written book about her life and I came to actually respect and life her as a person.

Who knew? 

I’ve never really liked her stage show, I don’t know why. I think sometimes I think it’s enough with the vagina jokes. (Guess I have to be in the mood for that.) 

I’m not a prude when it comes to hilarious and gross and out there jokes, sometimes she gets a really good laugh from me.

But I was thinking that I was about to read a book that read like her comedy sketches go: Over the top and trying too hard.

What I got was slap in the face with the reality of who she is. 

Which is that she’s not just her onstage persona. Whaaaat?! That happens?! She can be quiet and reserved? Who knew. (Sarcasm guys. I know that people aren’t always what they seem or portray to people on stage.) 

This book has ended with me feeling for Amy Schumer and hoping that she has a great life and career and can actually DO something about gun control.

She’s great. And I wasn’t expecting to like this book, but she got me.

She really got me. 

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Happy 8 Year Anniversary!

Holy crap.

I just got a notification from WordPress congratulating me on 8 years of writing on this blog.

8 years I’ve spent writing about books I’ve loved or hated, personal stories of triumph or failure, love and loss, book hunting, Keep Moving Forwards, True Story Tuesdays, or To Say a Little Words.

8 years of my life.

An inconsistent 8 years of writing on here, but still! That’s bananas.

So thank you all who have stuck with me, who have appreciated the posts, who have reached out to tell me how hilarious I am. I have a small fanbase, but I still appreciate it and am so grateful.

Here’s to you all! For putting up with my nonsense, my wisdom, my lies about when I’ll be posting, my long stretches of going MIA, and the grappling I do with books on a daily basis.

Here’s to books! Without them I would’ve beheaded someone a long time ago.

Constant vigilance!