Monday, February 10, 2014

Hyperbole and a Half (Book Review)

Monday, February 10, 2014 11:17 AM with 8 comments


Hyperbole and a Half

Author: Allie Brosh
Publisher: Touchstone
Number of Pages: 371
Release Date: October 29, 2013

Synopsis from Goodreads:

This is a book I wrote. Because I wrote it, I had to figure out what to put on the back cover to explain what it is. I tried to write a long, third-person summary that would imply how great the book is and also sound vaguely authoritative--like maybe someone who isn’t me wrote it--but I soon discovered that I’m not sneaky enough to pull it off convincingly. So I decided to just make a list of things that are in the book:

Stories about things that happened to me
Stories about things that happened to other people because of me
Eight billion dollars*
Stories about dogs
The secret to eternal happiness*

*These are lies. Perhaps I have underestimated my sneakiness!



Hyperbole and a Half is a collection of graphic stories as drawn and told by blogger Allie Brosh ( As I wasn't familiar and never read her blog before picking up this book, I don't know how much of it is original material and how much had previously appeared on her blog. Regardless, I absolutely loved this book and would definitely recommend it to those who like graphic work and humor, as well as those who have, or who know somebody who has, suffered from depression.

Ms. Brosh's fairly substantial collection looks at all different aspects of her life. She talks about her childhood--like the time when she became fixated on her grandfather's birthday cake and did everything in her power to eat it all, or the time her mom decided to take her and her sister for a walk in the woods and the three got lost. She talks about her struggles with depression and her lack of motivation. She talks about her two crazy dogs. The drawings are pretty crude, but it is obviously her style. I loved that this book wasn't just one thing. Parts of it are hilarious while other parts are quite thought-provoking. 

Overall, I highly recommend this collection--or, at the very least, checking out her awesome blog. I'm definitely a fan.

Favorite quotes: 

  • Most people can motivate themselves to do things simply by knowing that those things need to be done. But not me. For me, motivation is this horrible, scary game where I try to make myself do something while actively avoid doing it. If I win, I have to do thing I don't want to do. If I lose, I'm one step closer to ruining my entire life. And I never know whether I'm going to win or lose until the last second. 

  • (On misconceptions her dogs have) Misconception #4: I should eat bees. I didn't think this would need to be explained. EAting bees is sort of its own consequence. But you keep doing it. Haven't you noticed that every time you try to eat bees, you get stung on the face? No matter how many times you eat bees, the outcome is always going to be the same. The outcome will never be different. It really won't be different ever. The only proper way to react to bees is to leave them alone. In case the distinction isn't clear, leaving bees alone does not include eating them. 
  • I like to believe that I would behave heroically in a disaster situation. I like to think this because it makes me feel good about myself. Conveniently, it is very unlikely that I will ever actually have to do anything to prove it. As long as I never encounter a disaster situation, I can keep believing I'm a hero indefinitely.

Don't you love her writing style? I found her so funny and familiar. For real, the motivation thing is my life. 



  1. haha those quotes had me laughing like an idiot at my computer screen! I'm definitely going to take a look at her blog :)

    - Kritika @ Snowflakes & Spider Silk

    1. You should! It's awesome--so funny. Thanks for stopping by!

  2. I've seen some of her blog posts before, but I totally didn't realize that she had a book out now! Those quotes are great, and if they're anything like the rest of the book, then this is definitely one I want to pick up at some point.

    1. It's definitely worth picking up. It's a quick read, despite its heft, and totally worth a look. Thanks for stopping by!

  3. I have been meaning to pick this book up forever! Looks so cute and funny :)
    Missie @ A Flurry of Ponderings

    1. It's has a bit of weight, but there are some seriously funny parts. I really enjoyed it. Thanks for stopping by!

  4. This sounds really funny! I haven't heard of it before and the synopsis kind of made me go, "Whaaat?" But I think that's the point, eh? I'm so checking out her blog right now!

    1. I hope you enjoy it. I've been making a point to follow her blog a bit more closely after picking up this book. The synopsis made me giggle. Thanks for stopping by!


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