Thursday, May 3, 2012
Let's Pretend This Never Happened by Jenny Lawson
If you like: TheBloggess.com * Memoirs * Taxidermy
Let’s Pretend This Never Happened is the “mostly true” memoir of Jenny Lawson, The Bloggess. Lawson tells anecdotes from throughout her life – in short chapters so you can feel good about what a productive reader you are. Fans of her site, TheBloggess.com, will recognize several of the stories from the blog, but the presentation is entirely different in her book. For Lawson no topic is off-limits: childhood trauma, work stories, her husband, or even anxiety and depression. Many people feel like they had an outrageous or singular childhood, but Lawson stands out from the crowd.
If you aren’t already familiar with The Bloggess, this is a great opportunity to introduce yourself. Let’s Pretend This Never Happened provides an eclectic history of lawson’s life, and readers could seamlessly join in on her blog posts after reading it. Current fans will love the book. Reading a full chapter about an event provides the storytelling that isn’t appropriate in a blog entry. Lawson covers a range of emotions on every page. Readers will find themselves laughing out loud an inappropriate number of times, but also tearing up. Lawson’s unique point of view makes every story a surprise.
I have been a fan of her blog for several years. (Thanks to Mike and Paula Clancey for telling me her site is a must read.) Although I love her humor, and find her off-the-wall shenanigans to be a nice mental vacation, those are not the main draw for me. Lawson has bouts of sever depression as well as generalized anxiety disorder. Unlike many others, she is candid with her readers about how difficult it is to function in normal situations with these conditions. If you have the same experience, I strongly encourage you to read both her book and her site. Those disorders are not something to be ashamed of or hide from. If you are open about what you are feeling it makes it much easier to deal with, because you will find that your loved ones will support you through it. Embracing your eccentricities and discovering their beauty is at the core of what Lawson encourages. Throughout the book Lawson describes her personal evolution, from a child who wished to grow up under normal circumstances, to an adult who has realized that strange and unusual experiences mold us into diverse and happy adults.
If you hear the name Beyoncé and think of a giant metal chicken, read Let’s Pretend This Never Happened.
Lawson, Jenny. Let’s Pretend This Never Happened. New York: Penguin Group, 2012.