I haven't found a book that I love in months. It has been a dark time and all I did was scour the library looking for a book I could love. I walked through life crossing my fingers hoping I would find the perfect book that I would read in a matter of days and want to read over and over again. I found this book. This book happens to be Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns) by Mindy Kaling. I do not have one bad thing to say about it.
My expectations for this book were unknown. I didn't know what to expect from Kaling, I knew she was funny and talented but that was where it ended. After I started reading I couldn't stop, I was actually laughing out loud. I brought the book to work with me, just in case I had some free time to read. I completely devoured it, making me add Kaling to the list of most hilarious people.
Kaling approaches this book in an essay format and gives the reader what they want. She talks about her childhood when she was the chubby girl, how she was the girl with the androgynous haircut and clothing, even talking about how she was the girl that played Ben Affleck. Kaling tells the reader everything, from her first writing gig to “The Office” and a guest writer spot on “Saturday Night Live.” Kaling is a self-admitted gossip and this book is the best people who will listen to her.
Kaling walks the line of self-deprecation and hilarity. When she talks about being the chubby girl who looked like a boy you feel like you're laughing along with her, not feeling sorry for her. (I mean, look at what this woman has done, no one should feel sorry for her.) Kaling is quite frank and honest about her experiences writing and producing for “The Office” dishing on who she argues with the most and what they argue about.
“Writer fights are always exciting and traumatic, and I get into them all the time. I am a confident writer, a hothead, and have a very thin skin for any criticism. This charming combination of personality traits makes me an argument machine on our staff. A halfway compliment my friend and “The Office” showrunner Paul Lieberstein once paid me was that ‘it’s a good thing you turn in good drafts, because you are impossible to rewrite.’ Thanks Paul! All I heard was ‘Mindy, you’re the best writer we've ever had. I cherish you. We all do.’
Kaling also makes fun of her over the top girlish ways, the way she loves to shop, that she has her credit card number memorized just in case of online shopping emergencies. My favorite aspects of the book are the college years of Mindy Kaling, when she talks about living in a cramped New York apartment with her two best friends. There she comes up with a play with her roommate and they star, write, and direct the entire thing because they can’t afford to pay anyone. The play is “Matt & Ben” which is about Ben Affleck and Matt Damon’s friendship, it is what lands Kaling her gig writing for “The Office.”
Kaling tells her story with such ease and humor that you’ll really believe that it wasn’t so hard for her to accomplish what she did. Plus, she tells her stories in such a way that you like her, you don’t hate her for bragging about how awesome and how lucky she has been, you cheer her on and want to call her for late night chats about celebrity couples. Kaling's book is hilarious and a delight to read. This book is going to join the likes of Tina Fey's Bossypants with honesty and hilarity.
Thank you Mindy, you saved me from my reading dry spell.