BOOK REVIEW: Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? By Mindy Kaling
‘Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me?’ is a rip-roaring trip through Mindy Kaling’s many different life zones. From her earliest love of comedy as a self-described “chubster” on up through college, and figuring out her career as a comedian and writer, Kaling brings you into her world. From sidesplitting tales of her first script-writing jobs, to slightly-more-serious-but-still-really-funny lists of what she wants in a man, ‘Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me?’ is a witty glimpse into the inner musings of Mindy Kaling.
I’m a little bit late to the ballgame with this one, mostly because I don’t generally find ‘humor’ books to be very humorous. I grew up reading all of Erma Bombeck’s hilarity, and some of Bill Cosby’s books as well, and though I remember laughing until I cried with my mother over Bombeck’s classic humor, I’ve just never gotten back into the genre. Part of this is due to the fact that I think most comedians these days run completely opposite of the ‘vulgarity is no substitute for wit’ mantra (Thank you, Lady Crawley/Downton Abbey, for that little pearl of wisdom)
Anyways… I read Tina Fey’s book, and I read Amy Poehler’s book, and even though I think both of those ladies are really funny in their shows, I just didn’t enjoy the books as much as I might have.
I swear I have a point here. I’m getting to it.
Enter ‘Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me’. It didn’t quite have me rolling on the floor laughing Erma Bombeck style, but y’all, it was clean. And funny. When I started reading this, I liked Mindy Kaling. I had only really seen her on The Office (which is my all-time favorite TV show, by the way) but she seemed hilarious on that–it was enough of an impetus to get me to pick up the book. When I finished this book, I promptly looked her up and twitter and instagram and started following her, and I now have every intention of getting my hands on her tv show. I have never actually come to respect a comedian/actress MORE by reading their book until now.
Kaling was funny and irreverent at times, but she kept it classy. There weren’t any lengthy monologues about her sex life (something that I abhor in autobiography/comedy genres) or chapters glorifying drug and alcohol abuse. She was the kind of girl that you would want YOUR daughter to be, and guess what! She’s successful! Shocker, right? Who knew you could be successful without a sex tape being involved somewhere?! It’s okay if you need a minute… I know. It’s a little bit mind blowing.
I was just altogether impressed by her character, her humor, her intelligence, and her life story.
If you’ve been avoiding her book for any of the reasons I mentioned I generally avoid the humor genre, definitely put the prejudice aside and give this book a read.
I really, really liked it: 4 out of 5 stars.