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People Are Unappealing: Even Me

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3.63  ·  Rating Details  ·  2,210 Ratings  ·  234 Reviews
Born the child of a homo and a hypochondriac (Okay, okay. Her dad’s not really a homosexual. He just acts like it. Her mom, however, really is a hypochondriac), Sara Barron never stood a chance of being normal. At age eleven, she starts writing porn (“He humped me wildly with his wiener”). At twelve, she gets mistaken for a trannie. The pre-op sort, no less. By seventeen, ...more
Paperback, 224 pages
Published March 10th 2009 by Three Rivers Press (first published March 10th 2008)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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karen
Sep 27, 2009 karen rated it really liked it
Shelves: for-laughter
now we are cooking with gas... this is what i thought that sloane crosley book would be like. and that's a fine book, i just felt that there was a tendency she had to hold back a little - to be cautious and careful and remain dignified. and no one wants to read that. don't pretend to splatter your embarrassing secrets in a humor-memoir and still try to look pretty. it ends up being like a wb version of david sedaris. this book however, is a very funny, unselfconscious book. i don't know that if ...more
Malbadeen
Sep 10, 2010 Malbadeen rated it liked it
Recommends it for: sarah - why not?
I enjoyed every essay in this book, laughed at many moments but kind of felt a little "oh brother-ish" when she was, once again, being self deprecating. I'm not sure why it got to me. Usually I'm all in favor of deprecation, possibly it was sour grapes (someone that can deprecate better than me?!) but I found it a bit tiresome. at points and I had to question her negative assertions of herself when she would in the next paragraph take on the suggestion that she should sleep with her friends frie ...more
Bridget
Jun 02, 2013 Bridget rated it it was ok
This was fine. I feel like in the 2008-2010 time frame, I read a bunch of these "memoirs" of 20-somethings living in NYC. They all kind of sound the same, overriding feelings of "My life is so messed up! I have a crappy job, no money, and I date losers!" Somewhere along the line (I blame Sex and the City) - it was decided that every single woman with those requirements listed above needed a memoir to tell variations of the same story. At 25, they were entertaining. At 30, much less so. I underst ...more
Jasmine
Jul 12, 2010 Jasmine rated it really liked it
Shelves: american
This book is not intelligent, it isn't horribly witty, and it doesn't make me rethink the social situation of the world.

It is base, in your face humor, and I like that in a book. I actually think I like it more in a self aware book about how the writer is basically a complete failure as a human being and isn't even particularly funny, at least not in a way that anyone who is horribly drunk at a bachelor party would recognize.

Sara Barron congratulations you have succeeded.
Does anyone else thin
...more
Susie
Jun 16, 2009 Susie rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: sarcastic folk who aren't easily offended
Shelves: i-commented
So this is the second really awesome book i've read written by someone i went to high school with, and i'm kind of stunned that any talent emerged from my wasteland of a hometown in the first place, but there you have it: Sara is hilarious AND a good writer!

my two favorite excerpts:

1. on girls who say they're "guy's girls" (ie not friends with any girls)

"This common rumination disgusts me everytime I hear it. Disguised as some pathetic attempt at an independent streak, what someone really ought
...more
Lilly
Apr 12, 2014 Lilly rated it it was amazing
Sara Barron is hilarious. Which makes me sorry that I didn't know her better when we grew up in the same town; she would have made it much more bearable.

I had to take off a half point for making me relive our junior high production of Guys and Dolls, and a half point for making me relive online dating.

The voice of this collection reminded me of two authors I really loved- Chelsea Handler (because she, too, doesn't edit her stories for the squeamish and tells it like it is) and Cintra Wilson (for
...more
Sherry
Dec 02, 2014 Sherry rated it really liked it
I started reading this book on a train full of people with huge luggage heading to JFK the day before Thanksgiving. I laughed maniacally during the second chapter, in which I learned the author had written a porn movie -- appropriately titled "The Porn" -- when she was twelve years old and shared it with her family when she was home for Thanksgiving years later. Fellow straphangers kept looking in my direction every time I guffawed, especially at young Sara misspelling "penis" as "pienus" and th ...more
Lauren
May 23, 2009 Lauren rated it really liked it
i am so honored that the author of this hilaaaaaaaarious book is my writing teacher, SARA BARRON. its so enjoyable, and you'll want to hang out with sara immediately when you read it. although, i must warn you: she is hotter and less retarded sounding than the self-deprecating narrator would lead you to believe. please buy the book, and if you spill something on it, buy another one because i have been told sara does not have health insurance so we gotta help a sister out.
Lindsay
Feb 01, 2014 Lindsay rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: memoirs-bios
I had higher expectations for this book based from the reviews I had read of it. I thought it would be more humorous and less about the author tearing everything around her to pieces. I understand that from a book titled "People are unappealing" the humor isn't going to be light, fluffy and happy. However, it seems to me that the stories Barron tells don't show people being half as unappealing as she believes them to be. If she can find something the least bit distasteful about something or some ...more
Karin
Jul 19, 2012 Karin rated it really liked it
Recommended to Karin by: karen
Thanks to 'karen' for reminding me I had this lingering on ye olde Kindle; 'tis WAY more entertaining/noteworthy when not stoned on one's own sorrow. Also, always good to be reminded of the source of that fantastic "Twat Waffle" anecdote (which was apparently the only chapter of this memoir to truly penetrate the haze; go figure).

Also, I think if I truly had my druthers, I'd give it 3.5 stars. Starts much stronger than it finishes, also is pretty bawdy (and no, I am not a hankie-clutching old la
...more
Bookish Jen
Mar 30, 2016 Bookish Jen rated it really liked it
New York writer and comedian, Sara Barron, grew with a hypochondriac mother and gay acting straight dad (he sings Broadway showtunes). So it’s only fitting Barron would grow up to write the very funny People are Unappealing-Even Me: True Stories of Our Collective Capacity to Irritate and Annoy.

People are Unappealing covers the first thirty years of young Barron’s life in self-deprecating, mortifying, embarrassing and somewhat crude essays. Barron talks about her youth in suburban Chicago where s
...more
Kayla Perry
Apr 03, 2014 Kayla Perry rated it it was ok
Shelves: humor
There's something about Sara Barron I just don't like (or at least how she portrays herself here). I read the book fairly quickly but I never really felt engaged with her and at some points I felt totally put off. For example, an essay I thought I'd love was the food service one but I actually felt annoyed with her by the end of it for being so self-righteous about the job. Of course most people don't want to be stuck in some dead-end job being treated like shit, but her triumphant moment tellin ...more
Regan
May 11, 2015 Regan rated it it was amazing
I picked this book up on a whim when my sister coerced us into going to Barnes & Noble with her (it's the ONLY place that carries travel yoga mats!) before we headed to the spa.

TOTALLY worthwhile random pick up, gotta say. Barron is funny and the essays are really odd, which works for me. I see why she's compared to David Sedaris - although for me the comparison ends after "funny people who write really odd essays that often include family members and/or loved ones."

Anyway, I often laughed o
...more
Jenn
Feb 05, 2016 Jenn rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction, humor
Whenever I go to visit my folks I always come home with a pile of books after having raided my mom’s stash of books she’s already read. I picked this one up and declared “Oh! I just KNOW I’ll like this book.” I vaguely remember her saying something quietly along the lines of, “Yea, um, … that book is um… not really what you think it might be, I’m not sure…” But, I dismissed her. What?? How could a book with the perfect title NOT be great?!

OK, mom, you were right. This book is weird and definitel
...more
Oriana
Dec 10, 2010 Oriana marked it as to-read
Recommended to Oriana by: karen
karen says this is hilarious, and karen hasn't let me down yet.
Andrea
This book sounds completely demented, so I had to add it.
Kate
Oct 08, 2011 Kate rated it really liked it
this bitch makes my life seem simple.
Corielle
Nov 06, 2015 Corielle rated it liked it
I thought I had read Sara Barron before, but I guess I'm mixing her up with someone. Possibly Sloane Crosley. Or Sara Benincasa. I've read a lot of humorous memoirs written by funny women this year, courtesy of my sister's bookshelf and Barnes & Noble addiction, and I think this was one of the better ones written by someone I've never heard of before.
Sara Barron's memoir runs a pretty familiar comedy route: weird parents, awkward upbringing, a move to New York full of bad decisions and stupi
...more
Dylan Justice
Sep 10, 2011 Dylan Justice rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Fans of David Sedaris
I found this book in a thrift store and after reading lines on the back cover like, "Born the child of a homo and a hypochondriac . . ." and "At age eleven, she starts writing porn . . ." I knew this did not belong next to children's coloring books that were already colored in and romance novels that featured Fabio on the front.

People Are Unappealing: Even Me is a book by Sara Barron which is 222 pages long. The book shows a price of $13.95 though I got it for $0.50. (Sorry, Sara!) It's a non-fi
...more
Jennifer
Dec 01, 2009 Jennifer rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Leah, Jill
Recommended to Jennifer by: found it in the humor section
I needed a pick-me-up book and I found it in this. Barron has a great style, although the self-deprecating becomes obviously exaggerated. I wouldn't call it a memoir, but a collection of situations in her life that are just too damn weird to have been invented.

She is pretty high and mighty in parts, but I agree with most of what she says. And it was laugh out loud funny. HIghlights were her trip to a Jerry Springer taping, anything about her family, and her college experience.

Some of my favorite
...more
Melissa
Apr 19, 2012 Melissa rated it liked it
People may be unappealing but this book was anything but. These short chapters are funny and so close to my experiences. Sara Barron is hilarious, honest and someone I would like to know. Her mother is a hypochondriac therapist with her own copy of Merck's Manual, her father is a man who loves musicals. Sara describes them as Bea Arthur (mom) and Estelle Getty (dad) of the Golden Girls. Sara grows up with a love of the theater (actually, it is the attention she craves). She goes to a downtown Ma ...more
Kristen
Jan 22, 2012 Kristen rated it liked it
Stumbled across this book on Amazon. It was recommended to me because I read Mindy Kaling's book. Sometimes I found it overly self-deprecating and painfully awkward, but overall the book was very funny. Sara Barron is an extremely entertaining writer, although I have to wonder if any of her stories or characterizations are a bit exaggerated. I also thought the ending of the book was a little off - I wasn't expecting it to end on such a down note. It felt unfinished to me. Sara doesn't paint a ve ...more
Corinna Scott
May 29, 2014 Corinna Scott rated it really liked it
It might sound like an insult - but this is the perfect mindless, funny, fast read. Sara's anecdotes are quippy and relatable while offering you an escape from the everyday. I would have loved to have seen some of the stories go a little bit deeper and at time's so eludes to points in the present that aren't addressed in the book. Lead in to another book? Possibly, but also a little frustrating for the reader. That being said, this was just the right book at just the right time.
Christina
Mar 17, 2013 Christina rated it liked it
Shelves: 2013
A fast read is a very good thing for my life right now, and this was definitely that. It was engaging enough to keep me going, though I wouldn't say it had any laugh out loud moments.

With that said, I can't stop thinking about the last story in the book--it chronicles the author's stint as a waitress in a "famous celebrity chef's" restaurant and an episode in which a famous musician came in and acted like a complete and utter... well, there's nothing but a bad word that fits here. A quick google
...more
Angela Mccourt
Sep 14, 2014 Angela Mccourt rated it it was amazing
Hooked in by the misanthropic title, surprised by how much I laughed out loud on public transport while reading this. Possibly the funniest book I've ever had the pleasure of reading, and I read a lot of comedy. I've already bought another few copies for friends who share my sense of humour and it takes pride of place on my growing bookshelf dedicated to funny women. Please buy this, her other books and follow her on Twitter, she is amazing.
Trisha
Sep 26, 2015 Trisha rated it it was ok
OK plane reading, which was it's purpose. I can't remember much about it. No laugh out loud moments. But, I kept reading it through the whole flight and time passed quickly. So, entertaining but not memorable. The "Twat Waffle"/Michael Stipe story was the only one that left any impression. Mainly because I absolutely had to Google Afterwards to find out who Twat Waffle was.
Emily
Jul 27, 2015 Emily rated it liked it
Shelves: 2015
I don't know, it was okay. I'm still pissed off about the comment she made about male/female friends. I don't dig a chick who instantly says that all girls that hang out with mostly guys are instantly slutty. She mentioned something about not wanting sexual tension in a friendship and all that, it was such a blanket statement. We live in 2015, feminism is making a huge headway (or at least equal rights), and it doesn't sit well with me that someone would make such an archaic statement.
Nicole
Aug 16, 2014 Nicole rated it really liked it
This book was given to me *years ago* as a gift and I just now read it. Overall, it was fairly entertaining; some parts felt a little been-done, as memoirs about normal people do from time to time. But there were enough crazy stories about ex-boyfriends and ridiculous childhood events to keep it interesting. Overall, would recommend; it is fluffy, but entertaining.
Jc Standish
Sep 27, 2015 Jc Standish rated it did not like it
If you enjoy gender stereotypes and poor writing, then this book is for you. If you believe like the author that gay men lisp and have limp wrists, maybe you'll get a laugh at the jabs she throws her (straight) father's way. It's unfortunate, I heard the author on the Moth Radio hour and was impressed.
Sharon
May 23, 2014 Sharon rated it liked it
This is a good book to have on hand so you can read it in down moments (waiting at the dentist office or when you are stuck in traffic). Parts of it are laugh-out-loud-funny and the rest of it will at least have you nodding your head in recognition.
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Sara Barron’s work has appeared in Vanity Fair; on Showtime’s This American Life, NPR’s Weekend Edition, and Today; and at the HBO Comedy Festival. She is a frequent host of The Moth: True Stories Told Live events. For more, visit www.sarabarron.com. Facebook: fb.me/sarabarron1000000. Twitter: twitter.com/sarabarron
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“Namely, when asked to pee on a person, shouldn't you make absolutely sure you've heard correctly?” 2 likes
“I was convinced that all couples enjoyed a postcoital champagne toast. As far as I knew, where there's sex, there would be bubbly. “That was very nice,” Jenny tells Mark in scene 8. “Now I'm going to go get the champagne.” It's not the mix of sex and alcohol that I find odd, it's the champagne-specific focus. Several awkward stints as a bridesmaid notwithstanding, champagne has been notably absent from my amour-making, personally. Beer, the occasional Zima in my younger days, these are my more frequent costars.” 0 likes
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