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A Reading Vocation

"I Must Read, Read, and Read. It is my Vocation." - Thomas Merton

This is where I chronicle my reading life.  I also blog about writing at Lacey's Late-night Editing.


Book 36/100: Yes Please by Amy Poehler

Yes Please - Amy Poehler

First off, I think anyone who wants to read a comedian/famous person's book should always opt for the audio. I don't know if I would have gotten Poehler's "voice" and found humor in the right moments if I didn't get to hear her own delivery.

I like that, because Amy Poehler is ALSO a writer, she actually wrote this book rather than having a ghostwriter do it for her. With that said, book-writing, as she discloses in her opening, is not her strongest suit. Many of these essays, individually, are great -- but taken together they never create a truly cohesive whole. It feels excruciatingly clear that this is not a book written because Amy Poehler had a book inside her dying to burst out, but because she was offered a book deal and she took it. So a lot of it reads like, "Hm, I guess people will probably want me to say something about [fill in the blank.]"

With that said, Poehler's smart, warm, and down-to-earth personality shines through in her writing, and I like her as much as I ever have after reading this. Where the book really shines are in the moments when she doles out advice, which is even-handed, funny, wise, and not at all preachy. In particular, I loved the chapter about "treating your career like a bad boyfriend."

This is a worthwhile read for any Poehler fan hoping to learn more about her personality, upbringing, and philosophy, and hoping to get a "behind-the-scenes" peek at her work on Saturday Night Live and Parks & Recreation (which I have even MORE love/respect for after listening to this, if that was even possible.) But for non-fans, it may not have much to offer (although the "career as bad boyfriend" could probably help anyone.)