Sunday, 29 December 2013

Inferior Book Group #4:

Mindy Kaling is a very funny lady.  I have loved her for years now, first as the tenacious (and occasionally psychotic) Kelly Kapoor in The Office, and more recently as Mindy 'Lahiri' in her own TV comedy venture, The Mindy Project.  Reading her book, Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns), opened my eyes to the fact that, first and foremost, Kaling is an extremely talented comedy writer, not just an actor, and she worked hard to get where she is now.  But it's also a hilariously relatable read.

As Mindy freely admits in her introduction: 'This book will take you two days to read.  Did you even see the cover?  It's mostly pink.  If you're reading this book every night for months, something is not right.'  Sassy, isn't she?  The book is easy to read because it's written as though Mindy Kaling is chatting to you personally.  It's quite a nice feeling, really.  She invites you into her private life, as well as her professional one, introducing you to her friends (famous or not) and shares her own stupid mistakes alongside (mostly) sage advice.  The writing style is informal but intelligent, with just the right amount of self deprecation.  My favourite!

Source: here

The one thing that threw me off about Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? is its structure, or lack of it.  While some of the chapters are obviously written for the book, others seem to be short personal essays written out of sequence, possibly before the book was even in production.  I expected more of a straightforward autobiography/memoir style, and found some of the shorter sections to be a little out of place.

Nevertheless, I really enjoyed Mindy's book.  The real Mindy Kaling is not a Kelly Kapoor, or even a Mindy Lahiri.  I have now learned some of Kaling's most cringeworthy childhood stories and seen embarrassing baby photos to rival my own.  I know about her hardworking, inspiring parents and her penny pinching years in New York before she became successful.  Sure, she has good fashion taste and posts funny put downs on Twitter, but I now have a three dimensional human being to put to those superficial Instagram photos.  This book is by no means a sob story, but it will win you over.  Also, did I mention that Mindy Kaling is a very funny lady?

In January I'll be reading Dial M for Murdoch by Tom Watson and Martin Hickman.  On one hand, this is a much more serious read about corruption in journalism.  On the other, it's full of just as much gossip and embarrassment as Mindy's book - hooray!

No comments:

Post a Comment