Community & Current Events

Mindy Kaling delivers biting comedy in Why Not Me?

Author: Canadian Living

Community & Current Events

Mindy Kaling delivers biting comedy in Why Not Me?

Mindy Kaling, as a public persona, is easy to like. She’s hilarious, hardworking and talented (she created and stars in her own TV series, The Mindy Project) and, unlike the average celebrity, her style skews toward attainable instead of intimidating. In fact, she’s created a whole career based on these traits.

After her first book of comedic personal essays, Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns), the average nerdy woman hopped on the Mindy train with pep in her step and confidence in her ability to achieve her dreams. The same readers are probably leaping over each other at the bookstore to get their hands on a copy of Why Not Me? for more of the same feel-good reading.

So what can you expect this time around? Similar to her first book, Why Not Me? features laugh-out-loud anecdotes from Kaling’s personal life. Topics include beauty regimens, “minor” fame, crushes, weddings and sororities. She also writes about creating the job that she felt she was always meant to have. Kaling’s words are honest and bitingly observant; you’ll wish you had her killer wit and you’ll relate to the jokes she tells about herself, because Kaling totally gets you.

But let’s be clear. Mindy Kaling isn’t just anyone and she didn’t simply fall upon the good fortune she has today. It becomes evident throughout the book, and especially in the final essay, that she’s more than just a mouthpiece for a funny one-liner: She’s worked hard for her success. Despite all the hilarity, Kaling’s message is clear: “Work hard, know your sh*t, show your sh*t.” It’s the only way to make it.

This book offers only a glimpse of what Kaling is capable of. Instead of an overarching theme or through-line, each essay bounces to a different topic, as though Kaling picked her chapter ideas out of a hat. Nothing seems to knit the essays together except for the fact that they’re all written by the same person. Hopefully her next book will move beyond disconnected essays and toward a more cohesive narrative. We’ll be there the second that book hits shelves.

Why Not Me? by Mindy Kaling, $32, indigo.ca.

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Q&A with author Margaret Atwood
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Mindy Kaling delivers biting comedy in Why Not Me?

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