Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Review:: Hyperbole and a Half, by Allie Brosh

Title: Hyperbole and a Half
Author: Allie Brosh
Format: Paperback
Rating: ★★★★★

Allie Brosh has a remarkable ability to make me laugh out loud, whether she's covering light topics, like her dogs, or serious topics, like depression. And the best part is, even though it's humor, she never takes the easy crack and makes things seem less important or serious than they really are.

If you're not familiar with Hyperbole and a Half, I highly suggest you go check it out right now. This book is a compilation of some stories that were originally posted on her blog and some entirely new stories. The art had to be redone so it would be print quality, so it's not exactly like the website, but it should give you a feel for it.

I first came in contact with Hyperbole and a Half through the alot comic and I know there was alot of sadness that it wasn't included, but I feel like that was the best choice. It didn't quite thematically fit with the other tales. Which were mostly about her dogs and more serious things like depression and self-identity and motivation. And honestly? Those are the kind of stories that sold me on Hyperbole and a Half.

Allie Brosh manages to write some of the truest things I've ever heard about mental illness with Sneaky Hate Spiral, Adventures in Depression, and Depression Part Two. Her post about adulting, This is Why I'll Never be an Adult spawned a whole bunch of memes and really resonated with people who have trouble with day-to-day tasks and executive function.

Most of the critique of Allie Brosh I've seen stems from people saying she's too neurotic or she's too busy navel gazing. But all I hear is, "Wow, I don't have mental illness and life is pretty awesome. All those people with mental illness shouldn't talk about it because I don't want to hear about it." And I'm tired of that narrative. If you don't struggle, bully for you. But do recognize that you're probably one of the people who drive people with depression nuts.

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