Meg's Reviews > Bossypants

Bossypants by Tina Fey
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's review
Apr 17, 2012

really liked it
bookshelves: borrowed-from-library, listened-on-audio, read-in-2012, memoir, non-fiction
Read from April 17 to 25, 2012

It’s hard not to love Tina Fey, and Bossypants was exactly what I expected: an entertaining, mostly lighthearted look at Fey’s childhood, formative years and ascension to the superstar-level popularity she enjoys today. The title should have been a giveaway, I suppose, but I wasn’t expecting quite as much on how what it’s like to be a woman in power. The media peppers her with questions like, “Is it hard to be the boss?” — and Fey, with her trademark wit, speaks honestly. I liked her answers, but it was just . . . different.

Though I was completely immersed in the memoir, parts were more interesting to me than others. Not going to hate on my girl, but I didn’t find her details surrounding her stint on “Saturday Night Live” to be nearly as compelling as her tales of a fateful childhood with a bad-ass father and teacher mother. I might be alone in that, but I was hoping for more anecdotal over-shares from her youth. A “late in life” baby, Fey had a short-lived rebellious streak as a kid — and her teen years played out as an exercise in geekiness. I totally got that — as well as her uncanny ability to fall in love with unavailable (read: gay) young men. All right up my alley.

Part of me wishes we’d just stayed in childhood, though. I laughed the hardest as she described her dad’s charisma and cool factor, and as she detailed her nerdy exploits as a teen. That’s not to say I wasn’t still thick in the narrative as we got into adulthood, but for me? Much of Fey’s appeal is her bumbly championing of the Everywoman. She’s funny without really trying to be funny, and that’s my kind of humor. (And maybe yours, too.) Those stories shine best as she describes her awkward years, though I rooted for her as she entered the “SNL” fray and delivered her iconic Sarah Palin impression.

Bossypants will be especially intriguing to those who enjoy behind-the-scenes peeks at life in show business — and Fey delivers. Here’s the thing: if you like Fey, you’ve probably already read this book or have serious plans to obtain it. I listened to it on audio, a genius move on my part — because really. Tina Fey. Telling you hilarious stories while you drive to Target. Doesn’t get much better than that. And if you don’t like/care about Tina Fey, I’m probably not going to convince you Bossypants is up your alley . . . because it may not be. If you think Fey is hilarious, read it (it’s quick). If not, you may want to pass.
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