SOCIAL SCIENCES

Shrill: Notes from a Loud Woman

Hachette. May 2016. 272p. notes. ISBN 9780316348409. $26; ebk. ISBN 9780316348454. MEMOIR
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GQ culture writer West's essay collection addresses topics such as fantasy literature, fat acceptance, rape jokes, and being a woman on the Internet with sometimes bittersweet, frequently hilarious results—step five of "How To Stop Being Shy in Eighteen Steps" involves joining a choir with "uniforms that look like menopausal genie costumes." In one of the most powerful pieces, the author describes being targeted by an online troll who had adopted the persona of her late, beloved father (his Twitter bio read "Location: Dirt hole in Seattle"). After writing about the situation for Jezebel.com, West was contacted by the troll, who apologized and agreed to join her on an episode of NPR's "This American Life" to discuss why he'd done such a cruel thing to a complete stranger. West's prose is conversational and friendly in tone, hacking away at the patriarchy with a smile.
VERDICT This is a natural fit for fans of Roxane Gay's Bad Feminist, Felicia Day's You're Never Weird on the Internet (Almost), and Jenny Lawson's Furiously Happy.

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