Available on Amazon $14.95 Hardcover / $12.99 E-Book
Office writer Mindy Kaling released her first book this week called “Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns). Amazon describes the book as “a collection of essays, personal anecdotes and impassioned pleas” but the description doesn’t seem all-together accurate. The book reads like a good friend talking your ear off. Kaling writes about boys, her best friends, being unpopular as a child, and her job writing for NBC’s show The Office. There’s very little structure guiding you through these stories, but that’s part of the charm. The book is, like Mindy, adorable and (I’m making an assumption about Mindy here based mostly on her Office character Kelly Kapoor) fun to be around, if not all that deep.
Comparisons to Bossypants, the memoir penned by fellow NBC sitcom writer Tina Fey are inevitable, and not undeserved. Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? feels like the little sister to Bossypants. It has the same spirit and spunk, but it’s not as refined. The jokes aren’t as tight, there’s no clear structure or flow, and Kaling simply hasn’t had the experiences that Tina Fey has. Bossypants felt like a more mature book, while Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? feels hurried and like a couple more passes from an editor could have really helped. There’s a section towards the end describing revenge fantasies Mindy has while working out that really felt like it was written two weeks before the book headed to the presses to add a few more pages of length.
Her rules for best friendship are the strongest section of the book; Kaling has a handle on the female experience and how to describe it;
Overall, Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? is a pretty fun (and fast) read. It reads almost exactly like Mindy’s shopping blog so if you’re into that, you’ll love this book.