This was such a great book! I can see why it won on Goodreads last year. I wish I had heard of West before cause her writing speaks to me.
Told in a semi-chronological way, West's "Shrill" goes into her childhood through her adult years taking a hard look at herself and those around her for seeing her as less than cause she was "fat". I use that word cause West does in this memoir. She makes no apologies for her size which I loved.
West touches upon her professional career writing for publications like Jezebel as well as internet trolls as well.
I honestly don't get why anyone in the world has no problem just being nasty to someone cause their fat. But shit, we got people who don't think POC should be treated the same way as whites. That's to say in my own way, y'all are broken and I'm tired of the world making excuses for you and ignoring those you hate and ridicule.
West also touches about Hillary Clinton and Trump at the beginning of this book (she wrote the introduction two weeks after the 2016 US Presidential Election) and mentions how Hillary's voice was mocked and how "shrill" is often thrown at women who dare to reach above their station.
Well West loops this back into internet trolling and what do we do when we elect an internet troll as President.
My favorite passages dealt with West's no nonsense mom. Her dismay at periods. And her sadness at watching her father die.
I also had no idea West was part of the stand up comic circle through MCing some shows. She mentions Patton Oswalt and others. Can I say how grossed out and dismayed I was at West recounting the horrible crap said to and about her when she came out against those defending Daniel Tosh for his rape jokes. West also goes into debating Jim Norton on Totally Biased about rape jokes in comedy.
Can I ask something here? What the hell is so funny about rape jokes? Cause I don't get those. I have been at comedy shows before and have laughed zero times. Doesn't matter if the comic is male or female and or telling a story about how they "raped" someone wink wink nudge nudge.
The internet trolling sections had me upset. The amount of crap sent West's way was disgusting. Recounting a story of how an internet troll, found out about her, her recently dead father, and used his account to screw with her was awful. She forgave. She's better than me, my family motto is "God forgives, we don't forget".
I also at times want to quit Twitter. I did for a while the other day but popped back in since I have so many authors and friends I met on online communities there. But I can see why West finally quit. The harassment against women is awful. See Gamergate, Leslie Jones, any woman anywhere having an opinion a man doesn't like, etc. Gamergate was eye opening to me. People we're doxxing, swatting, and threatening to murder and rape women and people would shrug and go free speech and grow a thicker skin. West's passages clue you in why this is wrong and just messed up to expect a victim to just get over it.
I thought the writing was very good and flow smooth. I cracked up a few times out loud and had to explain while I was at the hair dresser what was I reading that was so funny. I read some passages out loud.
Dear Lindy West, a bunch of black women in Alexandria, VA totally concur with your opinions about periods.
The setting jumps around in this from her growing up in Seattle to LA and I think back to Seattle. West doesn't really give descriptions of places much, but the things she says resonates.
A very good memoir that doesn't hold back on punching you in the gut and also making you cry. I'm so seeking out her posts at Jezebel and elsewhere.