Review Mashup #2: Contemporaries Galore

Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns)
By: Mindy Kaling
222 pages

Mindy Kaling has lived many lives: the obedient child of immigrant professionals, a timid chubster afraid of her own bike, a Ben Affleck–impersonating Off-Broadway performer and playwright, and, finally, a comedy writer and actress prone to starting fights with her friends and coworkers with the sentence “Can I just say one last thing about this, and then I swear I’ll shut up about it?” Perhaps you want to know what Mindy thinks makes a great best friend (someone who will fill your prescription in the middle of the night), or what makes a great guy (one who is aware of all elderly people in any room at any time and acts accordingly), or what is the perfect amount of fame (so famous you can never get convicted of murder in a court of law), or how to maintain a trim figure (you will not find that information in these pages). If so, you’ve come to the right book, mostly! In Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me?, Mindy invites readers on a tour of her life and her unscientific observations on romance, friendship, and Hollywood, with several conveniently placed stopping points for you to run errands and make phone calls. Mindy Kaling really is just a Girl Next Door—not so much literally anywhere in the continental United States, but definitely if you live in India or Sri Lanka.

My Thoughts

I have never seen anything that Mindy has starred in, but I decided to pick this up on a whim anyway

I have never watched anything that Mindy has been in, but I decided to pick this up anyway because everyone says that it is so funny. I did find parts of this book funny and when I say funny, I mean rolling on the floor laughing. Throughout other parts, I was so bored that I just skipped some parts. I also did not understand some parts of it (okay, they were about The Office, and I don’t watch it), and I was utterly confused.

I did like the listy and random parts in this book, they made the book fly by and made the book much more enjoyable. However, I read this super slowly compared to how I thought I was going to read this. I also really liked how this was NONFICTION (so I can now brag to my family I have broadened my horizons), and I don’t understand how people can make nonfiction books that I actually like. I loved the stories from her childhood and I could totally relate to almost everything (except the Indian heritage and plant nerd parents) in her stories from her younger years.

In conclusion, I would recommend this book to comedy fans, Mindy Kaling fans, contemporary nonfiction (I just made it a thing) fans, and people who are in the mood to laugh.

First and Then
By: Emma Mills
Teen Book
367 pages

Devon Tennyson wouldn't change a thing. She's happy watching Friday night games from the bleachers, silently crushing on best friend Cas, and blissfully ignoring the future after high school. But the universe has other plans. It delivers Devon's cousin Foster, an unrepentant social outlier with a surprising talent for football, and the obnoxiously superior and maddeningly attractive star running back, Ezra, right where she doesn't want them first into her P.E. class and then into every other aspect of her life. Pride and Prejudice meets Friday Night Lights in this contemporary novel about falling in love with the unexpected boy, with a new brother, and with yourself.

My Thoughts

This story was fun to read, but had many flaws

I really liked Foster. He was the typical nerd, but then he was so different to what I expected. Foster was cute, caring, and charming. Foster was a character that was unique and had quite some unexpected character development. Ezra was again, what seemed pretty typical, but had some character development that made him into something unexpected in the story. Ezra was so cute, even if he was kind of annoying at some points. I did not like Devon. Devon was just average and typical in every single way. Devon was just so annoying because she wasn’t different and her narrative drove me crazy.

I did like how cute the story was, but I found it to lack and not have much of point. I really like the dialogue and found it to be both funny and heartwarming at just the right times. I could not see the retelling aspect that was supposedly in this book, but I have never read the book for the base. In conclusion, I would recommend this book to contemporary lovers, people in the mood for a light hearted, quick read, and people who are in a reading slump.


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