My Rating: 10 out of 5 stars
First, I would just like to say one thing: JENNY LAWSON IS AN ABSOLUTE FUCKING DELIGHT. I love her. I don’t know her in real life, but I wish I did so I could hug her for writing this book.
Furiously Happy is a book about being just that. Living your life being furiously happy, despite the bane of mental illness following you everywhere you go. Lawson brilliantly illustrates this concept with brilliant anecdotes about overly excited, taxidermied raccoons that are so hilarious they had me laughing out loud in public places. (If you don’t fall in love with her immediately upon reading this story, you should probably just put the book down at that point.)
The book is broken down into individual stories, rather than long chapters, which makes it very accessible. The stories detail some of the outrageous situations Lawson has been in and how her mental health has come into play. She doesn’t sugar coat any of the struggle that comes with depression and anxiety, but finds a way to present it in a more humorous, light-hearted manner instead. There wasn’t a single thing in this book that I haven’t been able to relate to at some point or another. The ups, the downs, the fear, the panic, the irrationality, the horrible shit your brain tells you late at night…it’s all there, but it’s nicely wrapped up in a fuzzy koala suit.
The dialogue between Jenny and her husband, Victor, were absurdly endearing. (This would also be an excellent read for anyone in a relationship with somebody who struggles with mental illness.) Her sense of humor is so out there at times that you can’t help but chuckle.
In addition to humor, there is amazing advice in this book, some of which comes from the author herself and some of which had been handed down to her. I found myself flagging several passages in the book that I already know I will be re-reading again and again.
People have claimed that this book has saved their lives and I can totally see why. While I’ve struggled a good deal this past year, I am not currently standing out on a ledge. As someone who has visited that ledge frequently, however, I know that this book too will also help keep me grounded and will help me during future dark periods.
Whether you struggle with mental health issues or not, read this book. Buy it for everyone you know. Scream it’s praises from the rooftops. And most of all, be furiously fucking happy.