Sure, I’ll Join Your Cult: A Memoir of Mental Illness and the Quest To Belong Anywhere

S. & S. Audio. Sept. 2023. 7:40 hrs. ISBN 9781797162065. $19.99. HUMOR
In her riotous debut memoir, comedian and actor Bamford discusses her propensity toward 12-step programs, self-help books, the “For Dummies” series, and illegal parking. In a tone that is shockingly frank yet earnest, Bamford recounts her lifelong desire to belong, no matter the cost. Throughout this audiobook, narrated by Bamford herself, it’s impossible not to marvel at her ability to share the most disturbing moments of her life with a frenetic and hilarious exuberance, all the while maintaining an undeniable gentleness. Unfiltered, frank discussions of suicide and eating disorders may make this a challenging title for some listeners. However, the memoir’s same tendency toward total honesty provides a refuge for those alienated by disapproving attitudes toward mental health treatment. Not only is Bamford a skilled voice actor, but audio cues (or “sonic iconography”) are peppered throughout to let listeners know when old comedic material is being recycled, a recipe is about to be shared, or a creepy passage lies ahead. Jaunty music ends each chapter, adding a note of ebullience.
VERDICT Not only a must for Bamford enthusiasts but an inspired pick for mental-health memoir fans.
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