I first discovered Jenny Lawson, also known as The Bloggess, when her blog about buying a giant metal chicken, which she named Beyoncé, as revenge against her husband who did not want her to buy towels went viral. It was, quite possibly, the funniest thing I had ever read. I passed it along to everyone in my universe, read it out loud to my husband and had to wipe away tears from laughing so hard. Also, it made me want to buy a metal chicken and keep it in my yard so I could giggle like a little girl whenever I remembered the original story.
Hence, when I heard that Lawson had written a memoir that contained both posts from her blog, including the Beyoncé the Chicken story, and also new stories, I knew I had to read it. I was not disappointed.
Lawson tells the most hilarious, odd tales about growing up desperately poor in West Texas, with a family that provided lots of love and often wacky antics. About cow husbandry and how it reflects how awful high school can be. About randomly taxidermied animals in costume and how one begins of a collection of such things. It was everything I expected when it came to weird, wacky and utterly wonderful random things.
What I didn’t expect were chapters about her depression and anxiety disorder, as well as crippling arthritis and miscarriage, also told in Lawson’s sarcastic, utterly honest style. I cried and laughed during this book, often within the same chapter, and that is a very unusual thing.
Do I think everyone will LOVE this book? Probably not. I’m sure there are topics that might offend some readers, or chapters that will put off people who don’t really ‘get’ weird as a point of humor. If you don’t find passive aggressive post-it notes, dead squirrels dressed as cowboys who cheat at cards, being stabbed with chicken-flavored dog treats or free-roaming goats to be funny, I’d skip this one.
But if you like the funny and macabre, the unexpected and the unusual, this book is a fun, ultra-fast read that will have you snorting out laughter into your sleeve in public places, check it out.
Let’s Pretend this Never Happened (A Mostly True Memoir)
By: Jenny Lawson
Price: $8.99 paperback/$7.99 Kindle & Nook
Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ (out of 5)