Hyperbole and a Half: Unfortunate Situations, Flawed Coping Mechanisms, Mayhem, and Other Things That Happened: Allie Brosh: 9781451666175: Amazon.com: Books:
"I yearned for attention and approval, and I couldn't exactly afford to be picky about how I earned it." Brosh is brutally comic and straightforward. The raw nature of the stories offset by the cave-like sketches strikes a balance. The material runs dark. I read some reviews that call this needed - the author finding creation through pain. "Sweet, semidigested success." I think I stand closer to a reviewer that neatly coined "circular self-flagellation". Brosh just can't get enough of telling you - hammering home - just how sh*tty and awful she really, really is. I don't ding her for being honest or self-aware, there were many places in the book that resonated with me. "Dogs' Guide" really brings this point home for me: Brosh is her dogs / her dogs are her. We are animals: it's just our element of self-awareness, the worry of social perception (shame) that keeps veneers in place and creates society. Brosh is reaching out in this book - if awkwardly - "interacting with you." The glimmers of hope, no matter how pounded down, are the best. "Lost is the Woods" does a sharp job of seeing Brosh through her mother: "her natural sense of direction was no match for the sheer amount of directions there are." I loved "The Parrot" - and aunt Laurie who "had a soft spot for chaos." The best aspects of this book expose the painfulness of connection and open a conversation about how real and raw our feelings can be and trying to come to terms with the monsters hitching a ride. "There's nothing love and hope can't fix." And that alone is an "unexpectedly exceptional thing."