17 May 2016
Rating: 4 / 5 stars
I am furiously happy. It's not a cure for mental illness... it's a weapon, designed to counter it.
I'd never heard of Jenny Lawson until someone posted in a reading group about this book looking for a buddy read. It sounded hysterical, and it has a very happy looking raccoon on the cover, so of course I gave it a go. I thought Jenny Lawson had "mental illness" like I have "mental illness"... where some days I'm giddy and dancing and jittery just to be alive, and others where it's so stressful to get out of bed that only the duty call of work forces me too (most of the time).
But Lawson's struggle is real, and so much more than anything I have ever faced or will ever face. The fact that she's able to open up so blatantly about it, whether told through hysterical anecdotes or not, is commendable. Most people struggle with just dealing with the issues they face everyday, much less not only talking about it to loved ones but to total strangers all over the internet and all over the world. Lawson almost embraces her struggle and takes solace in the fact that she is not alone (and she isn't, at all).
While the non stop, snort aloud because you're laughing so hard humor begins to wear off around half way to three quarters of the way, the story is good to the end. The epilogue even brought tears to my eyes and I leaned toward the lamp on the nightstand to finish it long after my hubby had turned in for the night. Even if you don't struggle with mental illness, I think you can take a lot away from this novel just from the way Lawson approaches life. I'm not saying you need to go buy a kangaroo or koala outfit to go hang out in Australia, but maybe splashing through a fountain every once in a while wouldn't kill us.