Sunday, February 14, 2016

Furiously Happy: A Funny Book About Horrible Things by Jenny Lawson

In LET'S PRETEND THIS NEVER HAPPENED, Jenny Lawson baffled readers with stories about growing up the daughter of a taxidermist. In her new book, FURIOUSLY HAPPY, Jenny explores her lifelong battle with mental illness. A hysterical, ridiculous book about crippling depression and anxiety? That sounds like a terrible idea. And terrible ideas are what Jenny does best.

According to Jenny: "Some people might think that being 'furiously happy' is just an excuse to be stupid and irresponsible and invite a herd of kangaroos over to your house without telling your husband first because you suspect he would say no since he's never particularly liked kangaroos. And that would be ridiculous because no one would invite a herd of kangaroos into their house. Two is the limit. I speak from personal experience. My husband says that none is the new limit. I say he should have been clearer about that before I rented all those kangaroos."

"Most of my favorite people are dangerously fucked-up but you'd never guess because we've learned to bare it so honestly that it becomes the new normal. Like John Hughes wrote in The Breakfast Club, 'We're all pretty bizarre. Some of us are just better at hiding it.' Except go back and cross out the word 'hiding.'"

Jenny's first book, LET'S PRETEND THIS NEVER HAPPENED, was ostensibly about family, but deep down it was about celebrating your own weirdness. FURIOUSLY HAPPY is a book about mental illness, but under the surface it's about embracing joy in fantastic and outrageous ways-and who doesn't need a bit more of that?

Rating: 4/5 Stars

I can tell you that “Just cheer up” is almost universally looked at as the most unhelpful depression cure ever. It’s pretty much the equivalent of telling someone who just had their legs amputated to “just walk it off.”

Well shit, this was one hell of a ride!

I had heard about Furiously Happy for quite some time but wasn’t sure about reading it because books in essays format are not really my thing. I’m glad I did though, because each essay was like mine gold.

In Furiously Happy, Jenny Lawson details her life and afflictions with incredible humor and honesty, while at the same time sending a message of acceptance to all its readers. I loved all the advices she gave, even though they might sound silly to some I’m never sharing another book with you, mom it is important to listen to them every once in a while; things get better, there is nothing wrong with getting help, and ignore that voice in your head that tells you you are worthless.

If well Furiously Happy deals with serious subjects such as depression, self-harm, anxiety and such, it is mostly a fun and witty book about trying to see the good in life.

Reading this was interesting to me because I’ve read books about these subjects before and yet stories such as “All The Bright Places” have never been able to move me, whilst I found myself crying more than once at some of the chapters even though they weren’t exactly what I would call “sentimental”. It was amazing how, with just a few words Jenny Lawson could describe things that happened to me, but that I couldn’t exactly explain.

But above all, it was just really, really funny. Some of my favorite chapters were:

Because I think we’ve all been there.

Because the title is self-explanatory.

Koalas Are Full Of Clamidia.
Because KOALAS.

Some of my favorite quotes:

"Someone else told me that capitulating to my depression made me seem ungrateful because Jesus died so that I wouldn’t have to suffer, but frankly Jesus seemed to have more than his fair share of bullshit in his life too. That guy got nailed to death. I bet people walking past Jesus were like, Wow! That guy should have more God in his life.”"

"I’d recently been to a spa that offered wrinkle removals but I’d just read  that some places use dead people’s donated skin to fill in wrinkles, which is insulting because it’s like saying “You look so awful that we think injecting dead people into your face might be an improvement.”"

"The worst thing is when the person outside waits and rings again. Someone who rings once is just doing his job, but someone who rings twice is a mad man."

In conclusion, if well sometimes I did feel like the book was too much well, it’s called “Furiously Happy” for a reason, right? I recommend it to everybody who wants to have a fun time!

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