(c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Irby (cohost, The Sunday Night Sex Show; www.bitchesgottaeat.com) offers up this debut collection of essays-selected as a Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers pick-continuing upon her successes in cohosting live literature and essay shows and her blog writing, which includes a comedy advice blog she pens with her partner, Ian Belknap, called irbyandian.com. Readers familiar with Irby's work will recognize some of the pieces that have appeared, albeit in shorter form, in her online posts. However, most of what is here is new and continues with subjects that the author is famous for obsessing over: food, weight gain and loss, relationships, coping with Crohn's disease, diarrhea, hygiene, and sex. The author is not afraid to confront any topic, and she does so baldly and with a self-deprecating humor that is at once blunt and coarse, but readers will quickly begin to appreciate her openness. It is Irby's ability to find humor in awkward circumstances, such as in discussing her boyfriend's poor choice of toilet paper, that makes her so accessible. This collection is not without gravitas, though, and her essays that confront somber and tender issues reveal her as a writer with universal appeal. Verdict Readers with an interest in memoirs and short essays, especially those that find humor in everyday life, will enjoy Irby's writing.-Mark Manivong, Lib. of Congress, Washington, DC (c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.