The Emmy Award-winning comedian, actress, writer, and star of Inside Amy Schumer and the acclaimed film Trainwreck has taken the entertainment world by storm with her winning blend of smart, satirical humor. Now, Amy Shumer has written a refreshingly candid and uproariously funny collection of (extremely) personal and observational essays.
In The Girl with the Lower Back Tattoo, Amy mines her past for stories about her teenage years, her family, relationships, and sex, and shares the experiences that have shaped who she is – a woman with the courage to bare her soul and stand up for what she believes in, all while making us laugh.
Ranging from the raucous to the romantic, the heartfelt to the harrowing, this highly entertaining and universally appealing collection is the literary equivalent of a night out with your best friend – an unforgettable and fun adventure you wish could last forever. Whether she’s experiencing lust at first sight while in the airport security line, sharing her own views on love and marriage, admitting to being an introvert, or discovering her boot camp instructor’s secret bad habit, Amy Schumer proves to be a bighearted, brave, and thoughtful storyteller who will leave you nodding your head in recognition, laughing out loud, and sobbing uncontrollably – but only because it’s over.
My Review – 4 Stars
This book was entertaining and a much needed read after my last two books involving serious and dark topics. I give The Girl with the Lower Back Tattoo 4 stars for Amy’s amazing courage and candidness along with her rawness, humor AND seriousness.
What do I mean by seriousness? I assumed this book would be 100% funny since she’s a comedian. However, there were two topics she talked about with great solemnity:
1) Her Father’s battle with Multiple Sclerosis. You can feel the love she has for her father. She’s open about his alcoholism and MS and how the MS has crippled him over the past several years. I like her determination to push her father (even though he doesn’t have it left in him) to see the only doctor in the US who is FDA approved to treat MS patients with stem cells.
2) The theater shooting that occurred in Louisiana during her movie Trainwreck in 2015. She talks about how heartbroken she was over this and dedicates a chapter to the two women who were killed during the shooting, Mayci and Jillian. Amy has since become an advocate for sensible ways to stop gun violence. She’s involved in an organization called Everytown for Gun Safety and even lists the members of Congress who have taken money from and been influenced by the gun lobby (about 65 names).
My favorite quotes:
“Do they think models size 6 and above can’t make it to the end of the runway without stopping midway for a burrito? Enough, enough with these waifish elves walking your impossible clothing down an ugly runway with ugly lighting and noisy music. Life doesn’t look like that runway.”
“On the evolution chart, this guy and I were at opposite ends. I was dragging my knuckles, sniffing around for bananas, throwing my own feces at tourists, and he was a Disney prince but with more sex appeal.”
“First, I’d like to thank all the people who pointed out that I was a woman… You made sure I didn’t lose sight of my ovaries. Thank you. Without your constant reminders, I may have just forgotten my uterus on a crosstown bus, but you guys made me perpetually aware that I bleed once a month and I can tell a joke!”
“Women are always expected to be the gracious hostess, quick with an anecdote and a sprinkling of laughter at other stories. We are basically unpaid geishas. But when we do not fulfill these expectations, people assume we must be either depressed or a c**t. Maybe I’m a c**t anyway, but it’s not because I don’t want to blink and smile at someone as they tell me they ran cross-country in middle school.”
“My favorite people in the world still give me shit and treat me like the Long Island trash receptacle that I am.”
“I have been skydiving but I didn’t like it because you have to JUMP OUT OF A FUCKING AIRPLANE.”
There are so many things I loved about this book:
I laughed out loud a lot such as when she shared her diary excerpts from when she was a teenager. They were entertaining especially since Amy added footnotes in 2016 in response to her teenage self.
I loved her courage to share the stories of her childhood even if they didn’t put her or the members of her family in the best light. I especially enjoyed hearing about her relationship with her sister, who she is still very close with.
Above all, I loved that she was able to show a more serious side and how she has such a big heart. The Girl with the Lower Back Tattoo has made me an even bigger Amy Schumer fan.