Get to Your Bookstore, There’s a NEW Nick Hornby Book On Sale Today.

IMG_8824The title of this post must have intrigued you. It should intrigue you. It’s Nick Hornby. I think many of you would be hard pressed not to have encountered some form of work written by Nick Hornby in your day. I’ll just name a few to make my point;

  • Fever Pitch
  • About a Boy
  • A Long Way Down
  • High Fidelity
  • The screenplay for Wild

See what I mean. This man is responsible for some of our favourite books and films, so I hope you take my advice and get to your local bookstore stat, especially after having read the rave review I’m about to share with you below.

Funny Girl is the story of Barbara/ er, um Sophie. Wait, let me explain. Barbara Parker is a beautiful young woman who’s destined for more than the crown she receives in the Miss Blackpool beauty competition. It’s 1964 and Barbara is an admirer of Lucille Balle, she loves that Lucy has the ability to make people laugh until they cry. She’s convinced that if given the right opportunity, she could make people laugh too. So, with nothing to lose, she packs it all up and moves to London.

She’s convinced herself that with a name like Barbara, she’ll have a hard time finding any work, so she changes her name to Sophie Straw. She then has a chance encounter with an agent and goes for an audition for a new BBC comedy series. It’s a miracle that when she walks in the room she gets to meet Bill and Tony, the two writers of the show they’re trying to develop. Her wit, charm and hilarious personality wins them all over and voila, she’s the star of their new show. Knowing that show will rely heavily on Sophie Straw’s hilarious personality, they need the TV character to have a simple name, something plain and unambitious. Imagine Sophie’s surprise when the name Barbara is chosen and the main character will be from Blackpool – hilarious. It just goes to show you that can run, but you can’t always hide.

Instead of just focusing on Sophie’s story, it also focuses on other key characters in this story. Tony and June, a couple that have only had sex a number of times based on the fact that Tony is gay. Bill who is gay, but hiding in the closet, because it’s the 1960’s. Clive, the ever loveable man that plays the role of Jim, Barbara’s husband, who just can’t figure it out no matter how hard he tries. In true Hornby style, this loveable bunch appear to have it figured out… but not really. The book makes reference to the ride of fame being like a ferris wheel. When you’re on it, it’s the best and you’re sitting at the top looking down at everyone. But you (and everyone else on the ride) knows that eventually you will come down. It’s what you do when you start your decline that really matters.

The 1960’s setting, behind the scenes of the entertainment industry and fun pictures of Mick Jagger and Lucille Ball throughout, this book has a little something for everyone. Oh and did I mention, it’s comedy genius. You’ll find yourself laughing at the ironic situations each character finds themselves in on every page of Funny Girl. To help make my point, I encourage you to check out this excerpt.

Now, go. Run if you have to. Just get yourself to the bookstore and pick up this charming and hilarious book.

You can connect with Nick Hornby on Twitter by following @nickhornby or liking him on Facebook by clicking,

Review: Chelsea Chelsea Bang Bang – Chelsea Handler

This is a book that has been on my to be read pile for the last two years and I’m just getting around to reading it now, but better late than never, right? Right.

Chelsea Handler is one of the funniest comedians on television today, she’s able to hold her own among some other veterans in late night television, because she’s all about keeping it real and she always says exactly what’s on her mind, which makes it all that much funnier. I was first introduced to Chelsea Handler about 5 years ago when I first read the ever popular, “Are you there Vodka, it’s me Chelsea“. Now with 4 successful books under her belt, including the book I just finished titled, “Chelsea Chelsea Bang Bang” it’s as if everything she touches turns to gold.

As I mentioned earlier, this book may have taken me a long time to read, but I’m so glad I took the time to spend my Sunday afternoon with it rather than cleaning (as originally planned). There is nowhere that Chelsea won’t go, she shares private and embarrassing stories with such confidence that your shock factor begins to diminish very quickly.

Chelsea Chelsea Bang Bang” remains in the same format as her other work, a collection of essays that share the day to day life of this hilarious comedian. As a reader, you’ll hear the terms she laid out for her parents  in an effort to get the “right” cabbage patch doll. You’ll hear of hilarious vacations with friends and staff that result in rolling an intoxicated woman around on a chaise lounge. There’s even a story that involves a combination of vicodin, lean pockets and Abigail Breslin.

If you’ve ever watched Chelsea Lately and laughed out loud (which I do all the time) then you will love this hilarious collection of antics that is Chelsea Handler’s life. She’s funny, quirky and out there (to say the least). You can also pick up her newest book, “Lies that Chelsea Handler Told Me

Review: Bossypants – Tina Fey

I have yet to meet a person that doesn’t think Tina Fey is super cool. She’s laugh out loud funny on 30 Rock every week and her skits on SNL (especially as Sarah Palin) are outstanding. On top of all that, she was the first head writer at Saturday Night Live, she writes and is an executive producer for 30 Rock and she’s married with one daughter (and pregnant with a second child). If that isn’t enough, she has recently written the hilarious memoir, “Bossypants“.

I find most memoirs take you back to before the author was born, how their parents met, what it was like growing up as a child. Fey sticks to some traditional aspects of a memoirs, but has chosen to share the funny moments that have helped to shape the person she’s is today. It’s easy to depict that she regards her parents with the utmost respect, especially her Father, Don Fey, who managed to intimidate both Alec Baldwin and Lorne Michaels when meeting them for the first time. She got her start in showbiz when she took place in a summer theatre production in her home town called “Summer Showtime”. It was there where Fey developed her craft and got turned down by many a boy because they were either gay or interested in someone else. She shares a story where a boy that she has a crush on asks her to climb a mountain with her at night and like any young girl in lust, she agrees. When they finally reach the top of the mountain, the boy, HRH, reveals that he is interested in a girl named Gretchen who was so charming because she could only consume half a stick of Trident gum because it was too big for her. Poor Tina.

This is just one of the funny stories that you’ll read in “Bossypants”, she shares stories about her experiences at NBC’s Saturday Night Live as head writer and actress, she discuss her experience in obtaining Alec Baldwin to play Jack Donaghy and lets the reader in on her one on one time with Sarah Palin. Every story, really, every word is written with a humorous element and it’s clear to see why she’s done so well in show business.

One of the nicest elements of the book is the fact that it has a little something for everyone. As a 27 year old, I was inspired by her can-do and hard working attitude. However, she can also be viewed as a Mom and a Wife that’s able to juggle it all. *Please note that this is the one question she hates to be asked: “How do you juggle it all?” However, what she may fail to realize is that as an outsider it’s quite impressive to watch one woman have such an extensive resume and still have a successful marriage and be present to read books to her child at bedtime.

Her love for her family is evident in the pages when she describes both her husband and daughter in great detail. To describe her feelings for her first born, she explains, “I have one top notch baby with whom I am in love. It’s a head-over-heels “first love” kind of thing, because I pay for everything and all we do is hold hands”.

I’m a little bias, because I believe that everything Tina Fey touches turns into gold, this book being no exception. It’s getting great reviews for very obvious reasons and if you haven’t already picked it up or aren’t on a library hold for it, I have three words for you… what the what!?

Review: Call me Russell – Russell Peters

I was just recently introduced to Russell Peters through my brother and sister-in-law who find him absolutely hilarious! It didn’t take me long to get hooked on his comedy routines either and when I found out he was writing a book, I knew it would be a fun read.

With the help of his brother/manager, Russell Peter’s wrote the novel, “Call me Russell” and it discusses a little bit of everything, how he got his start, his career and what’s to come in the future.

Peters was born and raised in Ontario to two immigrant Indian parents. Much of his comedy routine involves his upbringing. However, as he explains in his novel, his Father spoke with a British accent and his Mother seemed to look more Italian than Indian and he found it hard to identify with her at times. The bond he shared with his Father is one that is described in great deal. He explains that his Father was his hero and even though he died a couple of years back, he still thinks of him on a daily basis, following the guidance and advice he received from his Father as a child and a teenager.

Russell Peters grew up in Brampton, Ontario. He experienced a lot of bullying at a young age, but with the help of his Brother he was able to set things straight. However, the things he experienced and the close friends that were lost at the hands of violence are many and finding comedy and using that to vent helped him to grow as a person.

After realizing that comedy is something he’s good at and wants to pursue, Peters throws himself at many an open mic and people start to learn his name. He became an internet phenom when one of his acts was put all over youtube. Even though this may have been a huge help to his career, he gets a little sidetracked in his book to explain his annoyance with youtube. He describes how if his act is recorded one night and put on the web, it steals the enjoyment for other individuals that have paid good money to see the show.

The novel was funny at times, but definitely more along the serious line of things. It was a great introduction to who Russell Peter is and who’s going to become over the next couple of years – in my opinion, he’s going to be huge. I’m linking to a youtube video that has been up for ages and hopefully won’t upset Russell too much! LOL