[REVIEW] Why Not Me?

Amanda Watkins
October 22, 2015
This article was published more than 2 years ago.
Est. Reading Time: 2 minutes

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There are few people in the world who can liken their 12-year-old selves to “a middle school Hare Krishna,” and make you go, “yeah, sure, I could see that.”

Mindy Kaling is one of these people. On the first page of her sophomore novel, Why Not Me?, Kaling begins to tell the story of her early life by describing her childhood attempts to please everyone around her (“I brought a family-size bag of Skittles to homeroom”) — a trait that has followed her into her adult career. The book of essays by the actress, writer and your dream best friend, is a fun, informative and hilarious tell-all about her personal life, the world of celebrity and Kaling’s early adventures manoeuvring through Hollywood.

Although styled similar to her first novel, Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me (And Other Concerns), the book is still a unique treasure trove of stories told with her iconic blunt and self-deprecating humour.

The book jumps into her stories head-on with details about her relationships (both high and low-profile), lists chronicling double standards in Hollywood, and even includes a detailed collection of imagined emails that would exist if she didn’t go into television and instead became a high school Latin teacher.

With Kaling’s removal of the self-censorship that causes many celebrities to hold back details in their autobiographies, the novel is full of relatable anecdotes and honest experiences that address the question so many of us ask ourselves in terms of careers and relationships, “Why not me?”

After The Mindy Project was cancelled by FOX and received some mixed feedback from fans, I thought Why Not Me? May have been Kaling’s comedic swansong. Lucky for us, the show got picked up by Hulu (with hilarious new cast members and uncut Internet humour) and the book is far from the last we’ll be hearing from this talented actress. Kaling has already signed a $7.5 million deal for a third book that she will be writing alongside former The Office co-star and ex-boyfriend, B.J. Novak. The book will detail their failed romantic relationship, once again asking “Why not me” in the most lucrative way possible.

Overall the book is an entertaining read that can get most readers laughing. Kaling’s trials and tribulations make for good feminist fun and capture real-life emotions and challenges with a light-heartedness that she pulls off perfectly.

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