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Staff blog

Friday Reads: Funny Girl

Recent releases by funny women abound. Ladies and gentlemen alike should delve into these books and CDs by some of today's most important comic presences.

The Girl With the Lower Back Tattoo by Amy Schumer

Schumer's first book comes at a perfect time: she is famous and has proven her acting and comedic writing chops. While someone who is as willing to "go there" as Schumer is could incite vehement criticism (and has), her intelligence prevails and she continuously shows she is bigger than the media mayhem that pursues any famous person. In a similar vein to Lena Dunham's memoir Not That Kind of Girl, Schumer's book of essays examines her past and expounds on what it is like to be first a girl, and then a woman, in today's society. Yes, it is hilarious. But it is also deep and deeply meaningful.

Boyish Girl Interrupted by Tig Notaro

Stand-up comedian Tig Notaro fairly burst onto the comedy scene when she famously announced she just found out she had breast cancer (oh, and her mom just died and she also had a major breakup and a mystery disease earlier in the same year) during a stand-up routine. Notaro's revelation has become a kind of turning point in comedy, as she showed the power of storytelling and laughter to illuminate the great tragedies humans can face. Notaro's new CD, the recording of her televised HBO special of the same name, returns to this vein of comedy but is also goofier than her usual style and shows her growth from what she has struggled through. Filled with big laughs and memorable storytelling, this is not to be missed.

You'll Grow Out of It by Jessi Klein

Released just weeks before Schumer's book, this is a similar book of memoiristic essays from the Emmy-winning lead writer and producer of Inside Amy Schumer. Klein is a different woman, though, with a different history and different career path, so the stories and perspective she shares are unique. Klein's essays on girlhood (tom-boy-hood in her case), college, breakups, marriage, pregnancy and career, while funny, all end with a note of gravity, and remain relatable for the average woman.

Just Putting it Out There by Aparna Nancherla

This is the first recording released by Nancherla, a name people are getting to know albeit slowly. Nancherla, like the other women represented in this blog post, talks a lot about being a woman but her jokes deserve the ears of men just as much as women (who already mostly agree with/know about what she's saying), as she delves into subjects ranging from depression to aging to racism and cultural misunderstandings. Explore this on your drive.



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