Tag Archives: Comedy

Shockaholic by Carrie Fisher

Image Description: the book-cover Shockaholic by Carrie Fisher. In the background is a light-pattern that resembles the Aurora borealis, in the foreground is a plastic doll of Princess Leia with the palms of her hands covering her eyes.
Imsge Description: the book-cover Shockaholic by Carrie Fisher. In the background is a light-pattern that resembles the Aurora borealis, in the foreground is a plastic doll of Princess Leia with the palms of her hands covering her eyes.
Title: Shockaholic
Author: Carrie Fisher
Social Media: Twitter and Goodreads
Publisher: Simon & Schuster UK
Format and Price: Ebook at $11.99
Rating: 5 out of 5

About The Book:
Bad news… for anyone who thought Carrie Fisher had finally stopped talking about herself. This time, the electro-convulsive shock therapy she’s been undergoing is threatening to wipe out (what’s left of) her memory. But get ready for a shock of your own. Not only doesn’t she mind paying the second electric bill, she loves the high-voltage treatments. It’s been a roller coaster of a few years for Carrie since her Tony- and Emmy-nominated, one-woman Broadway show and New York Times bestselling book Wishful Drinking. She not only lost her beloved father, but also her once-upon-a-very-brief-time stepmother, Elizabeth Taylor, as well as over forty pounds of unwanted flesh, all the while staying sober and sane-ish. And she wants to tell you, dear reader, all about it. She wants you to someday be able to remind her how Elizabeth Taylor settles a score, how she and Michael Jackson became friends, or how she ended up sparring with Ted Kennedy on a dinner date. And she especially wants to preserve her memories of Eddie Fisher. Shockaholic is laugh-out-loud funny, acerbic, and witty as hell. But it also reveals a new side of Carrie Fisher that may even bring a pleasant shock your way: it is contemplative, vulnerable, and ultimately, quite tender.

General Observations:
~Diverse Books 2017: Alongside Wishful Drinking, I’m nominating this book for the “Main character with an Invisible Disability” category. In this memoir, Carrie Fisher talks about her struggles with addiction, which is connected to her adult-diagnosis of Bi-polar. It was comforting to read about Carrie Fisher’s struggles because, in a way, they were familiar and foreign at at the same time. We need more people like Carrie Fisher in the world, more people who are willing and able to talk about their struggles with mental health because the more we talk about our struggles, the more accessible they become, and gradually our collective stories will destroy the stigma of mental health.

~Expansion Pack: Wishful Drinking kind of gives a basic overview of things, Shockaholic goes into more details on some of the significant events in Carrie Fisher’s life, like waking up next to her white-republican-gay-friend and the sequential drug-addiction problems and, unfortunately, when it comes to addiction, sometimes you have to get to really bad place before you realise something needs to change. Fortunately Carrie Fisher was able to get the help she needed and it eventually lead her to pursue Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT) and hence the name of the title. Carrie Fisher also uses her book to dispel some of the myths surrounding Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT), acknowledging her own previous bias towards it, but she also talks about some of the side-effects as well, such as problems with short term memory.

~Right In The Feels: Her chapters that feature her friendship with Michael Jackson and her relationship with her previous step-mother Elizabeth Taylor were amusing, interesting and insightful, however, it was the chapters that focused on her relationship with her father Eddie Fisher (who she cared for in his later years until he died) was the one that had me tearing up. It was bitter-sweet that Carrie and Eddie were able to reconnect and have the relationship Carrie always wanted with her father later in life. There’s an especially touching moment in the book when Carrie starts talking about how she has a recording of her father singing preserved in her phone, that way she’ll always be able to remember.

In conclusion, just go read it, it’s highly entertaining and you’ll whizz straight through it (I certainly did).

Available for Purchase: Amazon | Audible | Book Depository | Kobo Books

Image Description: A pink and purple coloured button with the text ‘Read Diverse Books 2017’ in white text with the word ‘Diverse’ written in rainbow coloured text. there is also the white outline of a clip-art picture of a laid open book
Image Description: A pink and purple coloured button with the text ‘Read Diverse Books 2017’ in white text with the word ‘Diverse’ written in rainbow coloured text. there is also the white outline of a clip-art picture of a laid open book

You’re Never Weird On The Internet (Almost) by Felicia Day

You're Never Weird On The Internet (Almost)
Title: You’re Never Weird On The Internet (Almost)
Author: Felicia Day
Social Media: Facebook, Goodreads, Tumblr and Twitter
Publisher: Touchstone Books, Imprint of Simon & Schuster
Price and Format: eBook at $19.99
Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

About The Author:
Actress, New Media Geek, Gamer, Misanthrope. Voracious reader of Fantasy and Sci-Fi, especially with a romance twist. Has a book club on Goodreads called Vaginal Fantasy Book Club to celebrate the smuttier side of genre literature. Felicia is the creator of The Guild and producer of the web series network Geek and Sundry.

About The Book:
From online entertainment mogul, actress, and “queen of the geeks” Felicia Day, a funny, quirky, and inspiring memoir about her unusual upbringing, her rise to Internet-stardom, and embracing her individuality to find success in Hollywood. The Internet isn’t all cat videos. There’s also Felicia Day—violinist, filmmaker, Internet entrepreneur, compulsive gamer, hoagie specialist, and former lonely homeschooled girl who overcame her isolated childhood to become the ruler of a new world… or at least semi-influential in the world of Internet Geeks and Goodreads book clubs.

After growing up in the south where she was “homeschooled for hippie reasons”, Felicia moved to Hollywood to pursue her dream of becoming an actress and was immediately typecast as a crazy cat-lady secretary. But Felicia’s misadventures in Hollywood led her to produce her own web series, own her own production company, and become an Internet star. Felicia’s short-ish life and her rags-to-riches rise to Internet fame launched her career as one of the most influential creators in new media. Now, Felicia’s strange world is filled with thoughts on creativity, video games, and a dash of mild feminist activism—just like her memoir.

Hilarious and inspirational, You’re Never Weird on the Internet (Almost) is proof that everyone should embrace what makes them different and be brave enough to share it with the world, because anything is possible now—even for a digital misfit

General Observations:
~Representation Matters: I have a lot of feels about this book. At first I thought, Felicia Day and I would have very little in common. I was never into World of Warcraft and I wasn’t really a big gamer (though I did have friends who were into it and I did know people who suffered from WoW addiction, it’s more common than people think). I wasn’t super involved in Star Trek when I was younger (though I am a big fan of Star Trek Voyager). But I love Books, I love anime and manga and I too have my own terrible collection of fan fiction. And it turns out, I do actually enjoy Role Playing Games like Dungeons and Dragons and Magic: The Gathering, all I needed was someone to explain it to me and people to play with. This is the kind of book I needed as a teenager dealing with depression, anxiety, self-harm and suicide idealisations because Felicia Day is a person who is unapologetically geeky and successful and those two things should be combined more often.

~Dysfunctional Family: I do enjoy the occasional reminder that my family isn’t the only one with problems, however I found the dysfunction of Felicia Day’s family to be surprisingly encouraging and inspirational, she repeatedly calls herself “that weird home-schooled kid” but I don’t find anything weird about her. While The Day family are all supportive of Felicia, her mother was very supportive and encouraging of her to try different and new things (the aforementioned geisha lessons), while encouraging her to enjoy the things Felicia did like (like acting, music and the internet), Felicia’s mother also taught her to stand up for what she felt was right and I think that those are all good things.

~Social Anxiety: As for the social anxiety that is mentioned so often but also triumphed over, those chapters were so painfully familiar, however (unlike myself) at least Felicia Day an excuse to fall back on. But the most remarkable thing is that Felicia Day doesn’t fall back on it, she struggles (of that there is no doubt), but not only does she persevere despite the obstacles, Felicia Day is also successful (sorry, lots of feels). Felicia Day had no experience of direction and no idea about making her own show but The Guild was made and so was Geek and Sundry. Felicia Day is a massive inspiration not just to Women or Gamers but to Creative Types in general.

Overall, You’re Never Weird On The Internet (Almost) is a great book, it made me laugh, it made me cry but most of all it made me feel better about myself and maybe, just maybe, if I want something bad enough, it will happen, I just have to buckle down and turn off my inner critic :).

Yes Please by Amy Poehler

Yes Please
Title: Yes Please
Author: Amy Poehler
Social Media: Facebook, Goodreads and Twitter
Publisher: Dey Street Books, Imprint of HarperCollins
Format and Price: eBook at $11.99
Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

About The Author:
Amy Meredith Poehler is an American actress, comedian, voice artist, producer and writer. Raised in Burlington, Massachusetts, she graduated from Boston College in 1993 and moved to Chicago, Illinois, to study improv at The Second City and ImprovOlympic. In 1996, she moved to New York City after becoming part of the improvisational comedy troupe Upright Citizens Brigade, which later developed into an eponymous television show that aired on Comedy Central for three seasons. Poehler was also one of the founding members of the Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre in 1999.

Poehler was a cast member on the NBC television show Saturday Night Live from 2001 to 2008. In 2004, she became the co-anchor of the Weekend Update sketch along with her friend and colleague Tina Fey. Poehler’s work on SNL earned her two Primetime Emmy Award nominations for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series. She is known for voicing Bessie Higgenbottom in the 2008–2011 Nickelodeon series, The Mighty B! and Eleanor Miller in the Alvin and the Chipmunks CGI films. Since 2009, she has starred as Leslie Knope in the sitcom Parks and Recreation, and received the 2014 Golden Globe Award for Best Actress in a Television Musical or Comedy Series. She is also an eight-time Emmy Award nominee. Poehler is currently starring in the new Swedish-American sitcom Welcome to Sweden along with her brother Greg Poehler.

About The Book:
In Amy Poehler’s highly anticipated first book, Yes Please, she offers up a big juicy stew of personal stories, funny bits on sex and love and friendship and parenthood and real life advice (some useful, some not so much), like when to be funny and when to be serious. Powered by Amy’s charming and hilarious, biting yet wise voice, Yes Please is a book full of words to live by.

General Observations:
~Artistic Advice: I loved how Amy Poehler was honest about how people get jobs in the Artistic Industry, no one wants to hear about how artists (regardless of whether they are actors or writers) worked a day job (or two), that it took years for them to establish themselves, even longer to set up connections. People want it the easy way and they want it now and I get that. I sometimes feel that way myself. I loved her chapter on “Treat your Career like a Bad Boyfriend”

~Good Ethos: One of the main themes in Yes Please was how Amy Poehler went to the extra effort to help bring women up (regardless of their various roles in her life), I especially loved her chapter dedicated to Tina Fey (it’s my favourite chapter).

~Contributions: I liked how different people contributed to the novel. I also like the photos of various people involved in Amy Poehler’s life such as the one that compares Amy Poehler’s mother holding a new-born Amy, side by side with a picture of Amy holding her new-born son Archer. The chapter about how Amy Poehler went to Haiti to aid with a charity group was heart-breaking sad and sweet at the same time.

Overall, a great read from an inspiring woman, who manages to make the ordinary hilarious and the painful moments bearable, all the while remembering it could be so much worse.

RMFAO 2015 Genre Challenge

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