“I had tasted cake and there was no going back. My tiny body had morphed into a writhing mass of pure tenacity encased in a layer of desperation. I would eat all of the cake or I would evaporate from the sheer power of my desire to eat it.”
This is a book I wrote. Because I wrote it, I had to figure out what to put on the back cover to explain what it is. I tried to write a long, third-person summary that would imply how great the book is and also sound vaguely authoritative–like maybe someone who isn’t me wrote it–but I soon discovered that I’m not sneaky enough to pull it off convincingly.
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5 / 5
There are eighteen stories and they range between childhood recollections, stories about her dogs, introspective essays, and a difficult but important look at her depression. In terms of sheer humour, the dog ones (featuring simple dog and helper dog) were my favourites; they’re instantly relatable for anyone who has a misbehaving dog and have really cute drawings. I also finally saw the origin of the meme “ALL THE THINGS”. What a dive into internet history. Cultural exploration, it’s here kids.
Her two essays at the very end of the back, called “Identity, parts one and two”, are a personal insight into the author and they are so honest and genuine it made me a touch tearful. I imagine most people have done “good” things not because they are a good person, but because they want to seem like one. It takes a lot of guts to admit something like that, let alone write a humorous pictorial essay about it and publish it online/in a book. Likewise, the ones about depression are so incredibly personal yet so important.
This is a surprisingly hefty book, clocking in at about 370 pages. The pages are vibrant and the paper is decent quality; I don’t really have a bad word about this book, other than be aware that there is a reasonable amount of swearing and it deals with some serious topics, if you plan on giving this to a child.
I will conclude with a picture of my favourite two panels in the book and a hearty endorsement of Hyperbole and a Half: if you see it somewhere, buy it. It’s a gem.