Review: ‘Yes Please’

yesplease

Yes Please
By Amy Poehler

  • Date finished: April 17, 2015 (?)
  • Genre: Memoir
  • Year: 2014
  • Project: n/a
  • Reading List: Spring 2015
  • Grade: A+
  • Thoughts upon reading:

It makes me mad that it’s taken me a week to finally write this review, but now that life is beginning to settle down (perhaps for a good long while?), I hope that lags between reviews aren’t this long. I also hope that it doesn’t take me so long to read books; nowadays, it seems like 2+ weeks is the norm for me, which is upsetting on many levels. Not only do I feel like I’m losing my game (I am a champion reader), but I feel like I’m falling behind. I don’t mean compared to other book bloggers (many of whom read at an exhausting – and a little suspicious – pace), but compared to where I want to be. There are so many fabulous books just waiting to be read, and what am I doing? Feeling so “meh” and exhausted, that the most I can do is drag myself to the couch for an evening of HGTV or the crazy antics of the Duggar spawn. It’s disheartening.

Reading slump aside, I’m so glad I had this book thrown in there to kick up some life in my reading routine. This. Book. Was. Awesome. I knew it was going to be, which is why I waited for it for more than 2 weeks on a library waiting list. The book was super highly anticipated, mainly because Amy Poehler is an amazing lady dude who is hilarious, and beautiful, and smart, and real. She’s got the dirtiest mouth and the craziest sense of humor, and I want to hug her and then get drunk with her, if only so we could have intense talks about life, and she could give me advice that would make me cry and laugh at the same time.

I’m sure Ms. Poehler has taken out a restraining order after that bit, but still, that’s really what this book is all about. On one hand, it’s an account of Amy Poehler’s life as an acclaimed comedienne, actress, and television producer, known for her work on SNL and what is probably my favorite life action comedy in recent years, Parks and Recreation. Amy is also an unbelievably gracious writer, spending her time not just talking about herself, but shining a light on those who surround her – from her best friend, Tina Fey (who also wrote a super awesome book that I recently gushed over), to her parents.

But there’s so much more there, as well. What I love most about Amy Poeher – and I think I found this more in Yes Please than in Fey’s Bossypants – was Poehler’s reflections on being a woman. I love Poehler’s snarky, give-no-shits brand of feminism, and you find that philosophy echoed in Poehler’s stories about long nights at SNL, about being a mother to two boys, and about finding her place as one of the few woman actresses and writers in an industry dominated by men. Like Tina Fey, you feel that Amy Poehler is speaking as a very real person in this book, even if she does mask that honesty with fart jokes and silliness. At the heart of this book, you feel that Poehler is able to speak to the uncomfortable, awkward, weird place inside all of us that is constantly worrying whether they’re a good enough mom, or whether they’ve done enough with their career, or whether everyone at the grocery store can tell that they forgot to put on deodorant this morning (yes, yes, and probably not).

Oh, all the things I could say about this book. Like: the stories about being high and broke, the sex advice, the honesty about her terrible sleeping habits, learning what it’s like to work with Will Ferrell (he sounds like an awesome, hilarious human being), and the random words of advice sprinkled throughout (“You don’t have to laugh if it’s not funny”). I just loved it all. I buzzed through this book, but I tried to slow down and enjoy it as best I could, though Lord knows all I wanted to do was sit around and read. Oh, it’s also awesome when a book literally makes you laugh out loud, but when you proceed to walk around for the next three days trying to explain how this random sentence was so funny, and don’t you think it was funny, and omg, I can’t stop laughing, why are you looking at me like that… then, you know you’re having fun with a book.

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