Disclaimer: This is going to be a weird review.
Let's start with the typical stuff. This is a collection of Allie Brosh's postings to her Web comic/blog site, Hyperbole and a Half
, along with some new material.
She is, by turns, hilarious, deep, silly, satirical, and entirely accurate about how life works. Her crude Paintbrush drawings are wonderful, and almost the entire cast of characters is here: Allie herself, Simple Dog, Helpful Dog, Murphy (her childhood dog), her mother, her sister, and her SO Duncan (the Alot is missing--bummer). Her internal monologues are priceless.
I wish there was a special award I could give her for her two depression strips. These two strips do the best job I've seen at showing the downward journey toward rock bottom, and starting to come out of it. They are truly a public service. Brosh has won general awards like the Bloggies and Funniest Site by PC World, but I wish the professional psych communities would pay attention.
So, 4 stars for the material, with 5 stars for the depression entries.
I want to see Brosh continue to do well and prosper, I do. But I come smack up against my inner cheapskate when considering this book, which lists for $17.99. The best stuff is available for free on her site, so why would someone spend money on a book? I got it as a gift, so I can see that as a role for the book, and maybe to have it in libraries. (Assuming they don't go away, too, like bookstores. I DON'T LIKE CHANGE. Ahem.) Not sure where I'm going with this, but if I'm honest, I have to admit I wouldn't have bought it for myself. I love her stuff, but I'd just go to the free source for it.
Thus we conclude this episode of Pat's Inner Conflicts and return you to your regularly scheduled book reviews.
EDIT: I've seen in other reviews that at least half of the book is new material, so there we go--that's why you'd buy it.