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Year of Yes: How to Dance It Out, Stand In the Sun and Be Your Own Person
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Year of Yes: How to Dance It Out, Stand In the Sun and Be Your Own Person

4.05  ·  Rating Details ·  22,189 Ratings  ·  2,871 Reviews
The mega-talented creator of Grey’s Anatomy and Scandal and executive producer of How to Get Away With Murder chronicles how saying YES for one year changed her life―and how it can change yours, too.

With three hit shows on television and three children at home, the uber-talented Shonda Rhimes had lots of good reasons to say NO when an unexpected invitation arrived. Hollywo
Paperback, 336 pages
Published November 10th 2015 by Simon & Schuster
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Dec 17, 2015 Shanley rated it did not like it
Ok so I know this review is more of a personal vendetta than an actual reflection of the book itself, but I had to stop reading 5 minutes in when she criticized the idea of being "a quiet librarian in Ohio." As an actual quiet librarian living in Ohio, all I have to say is: what's wrong with that?!
Darth J
Mar 23, 2016 Darth J rated it it was ok
300 pages of Shonda rambling

Oh, how I wanted to like this. To think the book from the woman who owns Thursday night prime time could be so trivial is more shocking than most of the characters she kills off. I wanted to root for her like Tyra, but kept feeling like she was just meandering and bragging about things while rarely reaching a cohesive point.

The thing is that the book isn't boring, and her writing style seems much like her personality: quite pleasant. She just has such a roundabout way
Rachel Watkins
Oct 25, 2015 Rachel Watkins rated it it was amazing
Who knew this was what I needed to hear? Shonda Rimes did. A gifted writer who has created some of America's beloved television characters, Rimes tells it like it is and reveals her flaws, insecurities, and weaknesses all while sharing the story of the greatest challenge she made for herself. YEAR OF YES gives hardcore helpful advice on how you can't do it all, it's okay to admit you need help, and saying YES to yourself comes in many forms. Highly recommend to all women!
Nov 14, 2015 Kerry rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: memoirs
I like the spirit behind this book and I like the author a lot, but I really disliked the tone of the writing. I just felt like: get to the point already.
May 10, 2016 Diane rated it really liked it
Recommended to Diane by: Eryn
This was a surprisingly good book about confronting your fears and being more open to new experiences. Shonda Rhimes is the writer and producer of several popular TV shows, including "Grey's Anatomy," "Scandal" and "How to Get Away With Murder." A self-described introvert, she realized she was always turning down opportunities to attend gatherings because she would rather stay home with her kids or just keep working.

So she challenged herself to spend a year saying yes to things that scared her,
Lucy Haynes
Nov 23, 2015 Lucy Haynes rated it it was ok
It was OK - it wasn't what I expected it to be.... an inspiring tale of someone taking on the world with one simple response to any question - "YES!". It was sadly more egotistical and focused around a handful of experiences within that year - no doubt profound to Shonda, but not thoroughly inspiring to the reader.

If you like Shonda Rhimes and want to learn more about her, then great, this book is for you.

For someone that doesn't like talking about herself, she does a really fabulous job of tal
Jenny Kim
Nov 29, 2015 Jenny Kim rated it really liked it
Dear Ms. Shonda Rhimes,

I want to be your friend. You don't know me but I want to be your friend. Since I'm requesting a friendship I should start by being honest first. I'm sorry but I've never watch any of your show. And I have to apology again since I will unlikely watch them in the future. It's not you, it's me.
But thank you for saying yes for a year, and writing your experiences in a funny, frank, honest book which felt like we had a long conversation over a delicious lunch as if we were f
Nov 10, 2015 Didi rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: People who love Shonda Rhimes but like reading humanistic memoirs
Recommended to Didi by: Simon & Schuster
I was happily surprised when I was approached by a representative from Simon & Schuster asking me if I was interested in reading Year of Yes by Shonda Rhimes in exchange for an honest review. I couldn’t refuse. I knew Rhimes’s book was due to be released soon and wasn’t sure if I’d be able to pick it up to give it a try.

Even though my work schedule has butchered my reading and blogging for the moment, I’m still managing to read a bit here and there. Year of Yes was my latest conquest and it
Gary Anderson
Jan 25, 2016 Gary Anderson rated it did not like it
I wasn't going to say anything about this book because I abandoned it. Then the publisher advertised it on my Facebook feed, inviting my comments. I left a negative comment based on what I read, which the publisher then deleted. So here goes.

The self-indulgent twaddle in this book became nauseous early on. Rimes spends a surprising amount of time talking about whether or not certain situations will cause her to poop her pants. I pulled the plug when she speculated about the sex life and drug abu
Jessica Woodbury
Jan 17, 2016 Jessica Woodbury rated it really liked it
I do not like many memoirs. And I do not like many inspirational books. And yet here I am, really liking Shonda Rhimes' inspirational memoir. Initially I had my doubts. I'm a divorced single parent trying to make waves in a new career and scraping through to get food on the table. She's arguably the biggest thing in television, running her own production company, and while she's a single mom, she's got a nanny, a support system, and plenty of money. How does someone who has it all inspire you? H ...more
Karina E
Feb 06, 2016 Karina E rated it liked it
Shelves: read-in-2016
A fun and sometimes enlightening journey of personal growth. I enjoyed myself a lot on various occasions but it failed to truly hit the spot. It was funny, honest, and entertaining non the less. I'd still recommend it especially if you are a fan of her work. One of those quick/nice treats that come in book form.
Nov 19, 2015 Ziba rated it liked it
"I think a lot of people dream. They are busy dreaming, the happy people, the really successful people, interesting, powerful, engaging people? Are busy doing."
Just finished Year of Yes! YES! It was at times a bit down putting when Shonda described how she used to be and how she used to see herself as too big and too this and that but it picked up and became an empowering and inspirational read. Some quotes l'll carry with me forever.
Cristal {Slow Reader}
Nov 15, 2015 Cristal {Slow Reader} rated it it was amazing
Beautiful! A game changer. I'm going to try to take her words to heart because the knowledge she imparts is wise, true, and unapologetically real. Every woman should read this book.
May 28, 2016 madamereadsalot rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I listened to this audiobook the last two days and I really adored it. Going into this book, I didn't know that it was by the writer of shows like Greys Anatomy, Private Practice and How to get away with murder. Neither did I know who this Shonda Rhimes even was. But the title caught my attention: 'Year of Yes.'

Year of yes. Since I'm a person who struggles to say YES on a daily basis, that title made me want to read this book. I discovered that for autobiographical books, audiobooks work best f
Jeremy Klavens
Feb 24, 2016 Jeremy Klavens rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: book-club
Honestly, this book could've have been 150 pages. She repeats herself SOOOOOOO much. Did you know she's a writer? She is. She's a writer. She makes stuff up for a living, cuz guess what? She's a writer.

Although the focus of the book is purportedly about how Shonda Rhimes finds a way to love herself, I can't help but think she loves herself quite a lot. Part of me hates saying that because, well, good for her. She should be proud, happy, and fulfilled. I think that's great. Even though I don't c
Liz Logan
Nov 15, 2015 Liz Logan rated it did not like it
Shockingly, the problems of a zillionaire TV mogul and my problems have zero overlap. So: nope.
A combination of memoir and self-help book, The Year of Yes was a quick and easy read. It is written in a very conversational tone (unlike many books in the self-help genre) and that may put off some readers. So help me, I had absolutely no idea who Shonda Rhimes was and I must confess that I have never seen any of her TV shows. The writing in this book left me wondering about the writing for the shows—she must put on a different hat for writing those, for I can’t imagine this style producing aw ...more
Nov 13, 2015 Lauren rated it really liked it
I was slow to warm to this book - I loved the idea of the topic and enjoy Rhimes' work on television, but initially found her writing to be too casual and chatty to really hold my attention. After putting it down for a few days, I picked it up again and found that I read half the book in one sitting. Rhimes is confessional and funny, writing with a wit and rhythm that probably works best when read aloud (of course, she writes for TV!). Once I adjusted to that rhythm, I couldn't get enough - many ...more

Originally Posted at: Confessions of an Opinionated Book Geek

I like to start every year with a memoir/autobiography/Non-fiction book by someone who I respect and who inspires me. As an aspiring television writer who wants to turn at least one of my many pilot scripts into an actual TV show you can imagine that Mindy Kaling, Tina Fey and Amy Poehler are on my “read” shelf. I love those women and they inspire me in every way, but do you know who my be all and end all of TV inspiration is? You gues
I would say I'm a 4 or 5 out of 10 on the Shonda-Rhimes-Television-Show-Enjoyment-Index-That-I-Just-Made-Up-Right-Now. I watched maybe two seasons of Grey's Anatomy and then stopped. I watched two seasons of Scandal and then gave it up. I watched a few episodes of How to Get Away with Murder and then never watched any more. I think those shows are better than a lot of what's out there, but I just never found myself compelled to keep going. I felt exactly the same way about this audiobook. I like ...more
I love love love this book. It makes me want to really take care of myself and love myself more. If anyone needs an inspirational self-help kinda read, whatever your main struggle in life, this book will help make you feel so much better. Even if you're not looking for particular advice on a thing, like me, read it too. Because we can always do with more self-encouragement and love from others, and Shonda Rhimes gives that here! She is such a lovely role model and friend! Yeah I do feel like we' ...more
Julie Ehlers
At first glance, I'm not the obvious audience for this book: I've never seen even a single episode of one of Shonda Rhimes's shows. (I'm not bragging or anything—I'm just not a big TV watcher.) So I didn't pick up Year of Yes because I was a big fan. I picked it up because the description resonated with me: Shonda and I are both introverts who have to work to force ourselves out of our comfort zone. I've even done something similar to the Year of Yes already; a few years back, I chose a word of ...more
Jun 15, 2016 Lindsay rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Lindsay by: Book Riot Community
Holy cow, that was good in so many ways. I had initially just picked it up because I heard the audio (read by Rhimes) was great--I'm finding lately that I'm becoming increasingly inclined to check out an audiobook for its reader alone and not necessarily the story...weird. Anyway, it quickly turned into this mega personal moment, being so perfectly timed on the verge of graduating with this second <<>> Master's degree and maybe finally having all the free time that I never had during ...more
Kelly Hager
Nov 28, 2015 Kelly Hager rated it it was amazing
I was so excited when I received an email pitch for this book because I am a huge fan of Shonda Rhimes. (I love all her shows, including Private Practice!) And it turns out I didn't even know because now I want to marry her. (If either of us wanted to get married which, as it turns out, we don't.) Maybe we can be best friends or live across the hall or something.

Anyway. You know how sometimes you read a book at the exact perfect time and it just becomes this huge source of inspiration? That's Ye
Mar 16, 2016 Susie rated it liked it
Shelves: 2016-reads
This was a book I so desperately needed in my life a few years ago. It still had some wonderful words of wisdom, though! I'm super excited to watch a Shondaland show after this book. I want to give this book to so many of my lady friends. <3
Apr 06, 2016 Gail rated it it was amazing
Maybe it’s because this was an audio read for me, and Shonda was SO DARN DELIGHTFUL speaking its words in my ear, but this was a definite five-star read for me. I’ve been a fan of this woman’s shows for quite some time (though admittedly I don’t watch Grey’s or Scandal at present) and I admire the way she OWNS.HER.LIFE. Without apology. Without the “Who me? I don’t deserve this” lack of confidence so many women can fall for as a trapping of their own success.

On the surface this book may seem an
Mar 07, 2016 Heatherblakely rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I went into this already loving Shonda Rhimes. She's created some of my favorite television characters of all time: Cristina Yang. Addison Montgomery. Charlotte King. Olivia Pope. Mellie Grant. Strong women who are flawed and aren't always likable, who laugh and cry and dance and fuck up. She took over Thursday nights, the block of time that used to be dominated by NBC's Must See TV comedy block. She proved that a woman, a black woman, can have just as much power as a white man. She proved that ...more
Heather Fineisen
I don't watch Shonda Rhimes' shows. I used to watch Grey's Anatomy and liked it very much. My point is, you don't have to watch Rhimes' shows to enjoy her audio book, which she narrates. I suspect if you do, you'll enjoy it that much more. Listening to the audio version of this book will make you want to say Yes to the things you avoid. Rhimes is real, like a girlfriend you want to hang out with who has a bit of attitude. Yes, that friend. Who tells you that dress is ugly. We need friends like t ...more
Jan 10, 2016 Daphne rated it it was amazing
Shelves: owned, read-2016
I literally laughed out loud while reading this book and had tears in my eyes several times. So many things are underlined, things I want to be, things I am, things I want to change. I feel like Shonda is my new best friend. She's my new person.
Tracy Womack
Dec 31, 2015 Tracy Womack rated it did not like it
The writing style was annoying... Very self centered and stream of thought based. I love her shows but didn't enjoy her book.
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In this poignant, hilarious, and deeply intimate call to arms, Hollywood’s most powerful woman, the mega-talented creator of Grey’s Anatomy and Scandal and executive producer of How to Get Away with Murder reveals how saying YES changed her life—and how it can change yours too.

She’s the creator and producer of some of the most groundbreaking and audacious shows on television today: Grey’s Anatomy,
More about Shonda Rhimes...

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“I am not lucky. You know what I am? I am smart, I am talented, I take advantage of the opportunities that come my way and I work really, really hard. Don’t call me lucky. Call me a badass.” 95 likes
“There is no list of rules. There is one rule. The rule is: there are no rules. Happiness comes from living as you need to, as you want to. As your inner voice tells you to. Happiness comes from being who you actually are instead of who you think you are supposed to be. Being traditional is not traditional anymore. It’s funny that we still think of it that way. Normalize your lives, people. You don’t want a baby? Don’t have one. I don’t want to get married? I won’t. You want to live alone? Enjoy it. You want to love someone? Love someone. Don’t apologize. Don’t explain. Don’t ever feel less than. When you feel the need to apologize or explain who you are, it means the voice in your head is telling you the wrong story. Wipe the slate clean. And rewrite it. No fairy tales. Be your own narrator. And go for a happy ending. One foot in front of the other. You will make it.” 71 likes
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