Sarah's Reviews > She Got Up Off the Couch: And Other Heroic Acts from Mooreland, Indiana

She Got Up Off the Couch by Haven Kimmel
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Apr 15, 10

Read in April, 2010

** spoiler alert ** I would actually give this book 4.5 stars because it wasn't quite as good as A Girl Named Zippy, but it was ,nonetheless, delightful and amazing.

Once again, the book was laugh out loud, spit your food or drink right out of your mouth and across the room. Her chapter about her first black friends ever was probably one of the funniest things I've read...ever. The stories of her mom going to school - of the advertising VW bug and the bike wreck on the way to see the President of Ball State - are priceless. Perhaps one reason I didn't love this book as much was because it was more realistic, more tender, than Zippy was. She was clearly & absolutely in love with her older brother who seemed to leave Mooreland and the family, never look back, and never feel any regret about that departure (I cried basically through the entire chapter devoted to his existence). It was also a coming to terms with the father she so loved and adored who became more imperfect and flawed the older she got and the clearer her perspective became.

Perhaps most interesting about Kimmel is what I found online when I finished the book - she was pregnant at 18 (she has had 2 children since, I think), barely graduated from the juvenile delinquent school in town, married a man she knew was gay (got divorced), married one of her mother's professors (he was 26 years older than she and they also got divorced), she married somebody else (who I think she's still married to presently - or there may have been another husband in there somewhere), her parents got divorced, dad did eventually marry the New Friend (and they both spent time im federal prison for embezzling), and when her father refused to attend her niece's wedding because she was marrying a black man, Kimmel never saw him again until his funeral. So either she wrote her current self into her child-perspective, or her child-perspective was so dead on that it was easy to see how she became that particular adult. Either way, it was no surprise to hear one of her best friends is Augusten Burroughs. She's basically a Quaker, female version of David Sedaris and I love them both!
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Judy Excellent review, Maggie. I felt the same way about the book. You really have to read them in the order written to get the full flavor of the books. I saw Haven Kimmel at an author appearance and she gave some of these details about her life. Made me only love her more.


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