Jenny Lawson is an inspiration on multiple levels. She and I have never met in person, but we have exchanged communications a few times over the years. I consider her a friend–perhaps because she is so raw and genuine in sharing her personal stories that I feel like we’re closer than we really are. Is that too stalkerish?
by: Jenny Lawson
Jenny Lawson is an amazing story teller and Furiously Happy is one of the funniest and most enlightening books I’ve ever read.
Lawson’s first book, Let’s Pretend This Never Happened, is one of the best and funniest books I have read in years. Furiously Happy is a worthy follow-up, filled once again with stories from Lawson’s life, retold with a unique wit and charm. When Jenny shares a story, it makes you feel like you were there and makes you laugh out loud at the same time. No, seriously. On more than one occasion I was unable to contain my laughter and literally laughed out loud while reading the book in public. I got a few awkward stares from people who seemed to think I should be more dignified in my reading.
Even before Jenny wrote her first book she had already achieved a degree of Internet stardom as TheBloggess. Her blog and her Twitter account are absolutely hilarious–even when the subject matter itself isn’t necessarily funny. Jenny talks about a lot of tough topics–not the least of which is sharing her own struggles with depression, severe anxiety, avoidant personality disorder, and more–but she does it in a way that is authentic, endearing, and most of the time really damn funny.
Jenny does not hide from her struggles. Her style often comes off as self-deprecating, but it’s really just a wryly satirical way of being both introspective and honest. The beauty of it is that by being so open and honest about her own life and the challenges she faces, she has become a hero to tens of thousands of fans who suffer similar experiences, but felt like they were alone.
Furiously Happy is an exceptional and entertaining read. It is also enlightening and educational. By writing a book like Furiously Happy and sharing her stories, Jenny liberates her audience to admit and embrace their own unique issues. Somehow, in one book she is able to simultaneously let those who feel depressed, alone, or “crazy” in some way know that they are not all that unique and that it’s all going to be OK, while also putting a mirror in front of readers who think they have it all together to show them they might have some idiosyncracies of their own if they were just honest with themselves.
I don’t want to put too much emphasis on the psychiatric, psychological, or therapeutic elements of the book. Whether or not you feel like any of that applies to you, or whether or not you have any interest in those things, the simple fact is that Furiously Happy is a well-written, entertaining book that anyone can enjoy.
I highly recommend it, and I highly recommend you start following Jenny on her blog and Twitter account as well. Trust me. Your life will be better for it.