Video Review: Biographies!

In which I come back after two years (TWO YEARS) and review The Short and Tragic Life of Robert Peace: A Brilliant Young Man Who Left Newark for the Ivy League by Jeff Hobbs and give it 4 stars because it was an “insightful and intimate portrait” of one man’s life and an all-around great read.

And then I review Choose Your Own Autobiography by Neil Patrick Harris and give it 3 stars because it was “interesting and clever” but not for everyone.

Check out my other videos at YouTube.

Rachel Reviews: Non-Fiction


I’ve been accidentally reading quite a bit of non-fiction in the past couple of months, so here are some thoughts on four newish real-life releases (and one not-so-new at all).

Bright LightsBright Lights, Big Ass: A Self-Indulgent, Surly, Ex-Sorority Girl’s Guide to Why It Often Sucks in the City, or, Who Are These Idiots and Why Do They All Live Next Door to Me? by Jen Lancaster

Jen Lancaster’s self-effacing wit and sardonic outlook on life might not be for everyone – but she’s pretty much my perfect kind of narrator. Lancaster’s written seven memoirs (with an eighth on the way), so start with Bitter Is the New Black: Confessions of a Condescending, Egomaniacal, Self-Centered Smartass, Or, Why You Should Never Carry a Prada Bag to the Unemployment Office before embarking on your reading binge. Either you’ll thank me for your new literary friend or hope I never give you a…

View original post 692 more words

Five Favorite: Laugh-Out-Loud Funny Books

“Five Favorite” is a feature on thewasofshall where I lay out my five favorite “x”. Sometimes they’re relevant to a season or holiday, mostly they’re not. It’s an all-around fun excuse to give my 100% amazingly awesome opinion. To see previous (and future) topics, click here. To participate, scroll all the way down.

What makes something “funny” is a seriously suggestive and specific cocktail of sense of humor, timing, and vocabulary – something which print does not necessarily get across; punctuation just can’t always carry the weight of cadence or facial expression the way auditory and visual mediums do. Nevertheless, there are some books on my tbr list that purport to be funny enough that I at least crack a smile (if not actually laugh). Here are my five favorite.


Dad Is Fat by Jim Gaffigan

IsEveryoneHangingOutWithoutMeIs Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns) by Mindy Kaling

NakedNaked by David Sedaris

Neil Patrick Harris: Choose Your Own Autobiography by Neil Patrick Harris

YesPleaseYes Please by Amy Poehler

Have your own five favorite LOL funny books? Share them! Post them to your blog, link back to this post, and then comment letting me know!