A couple months ago, I posted my summer reading list. As I predicted, I’ve already ditched a few, and I’ve also bingewatched Parks & Recreation in an embarrassingly short amount of time. This of course accounts for the lack of book blogging, but now that I’ve finished Parks and don’t have Leslie’s antics to distract me, I’ve decided to catch up on reviews.
Yes Please by Amy Poehler
While it isn’t the best book I’ve ever read, Yes Please is certainly one of the funniest. Whether she’s going behind the scenes on SNL or writing acrostic poems with the letters in Tina Fey’s name, Amy Poehler knows how to keep the laughter coming. Her cast of characters can get overwhelming at times, but she balances the name-dropping with grade-A snark and packs a few punches on behalf of feminism along the way, so of course I was in heaven. If you haven’t watched Parks, though, you might want to skip the chapter titled “Let’s Build a Park.” Otherwise, you’ll find yourself reading a bunch of spoilers. 3.5/5 stars
Little Girls in Pretty Boxes by Joan Ryan
I started watching old gymnastics meets on Youtube the fall of junior year during a particularly nasty bout with insomnia. Though the insomnia left, my interest in gymnastics didn’t, and it didn’t take long for the addiction to kick in. Pretty soon I was watching every meet I could find, ranging from Nadia Comaneci’s perfect 10 in 1976 to the Magnificent Seven’s gold-medal win in 1996. In an attempt to supplement my knowledge, I started reading gymnastics biographies, and that’s how I found Joan Ryan’s 1995 exposé. Vowing to explore “the making and breaking of elite gymnasts and figure skaters,” she investigates everything from abusive coaches to eating disorders and reveals the ugly underbelly to America’s most beloved sports. Though the book is dated, making it hard to gauge its relevancy for today, its insights into the world of 1980s and 90s gymnastics are riveting. 5/5 stars