The Girl With The Lower Back Tattoo is not a memoir but a collection of essays, listicles and vignettes. Women’s writing is often described as “confessional” because of how long women’s voices have been suppressed. I’d call this honest. It’s honest writing, where someone is sharing personal experiences and stories, probably in order to entertain and help people out there know they are not alone. Life is hard and books like this help everyone put a little piece of humour in it.
When I saw that the opening chapter was called ‘An Open Letter to My Vagina’, I laughed, thinking this was going to be a giant women’s rampage about her body and sex life. However, this book has some serious, devastating chapters. Schumer writes about her father’s multiple sclerosis, which is both heart-warming and devastating. There’s a chapter entitled ‘How I Lost My Virginity’, an account of how Schumer lost her virginity to rape, which she has also discussed in television interviews, and a section is dedicated to two women who were shot and killed at a screening of her film, completely taking me by surprise.
This book has a great balance between the comedy to be found in life mixed with its hardships. Even if this book were not as comical as it is, it is unashamed and relatable. 35 chapters, one for each year of Schumer’s life, is not a bore or hard to read. Schumer’s passion and determination makes the reader feel as if they are ready to go get life by the balls/boobs and get ready to fail, and maybe succeed, but having fun along the way.
Five stars from me.
Image: Simon & Schuster