Sunday, August 14, 2022

Book Review: Rookie Mistakes

I love this cover so much, and I just have to put that out there. I love it.  I also have to comment that I noticed I haven't read as much nonfiction as I usually do by this point in the year, and I'm not sure if that good or not. I do have more coming up, but it was just a random observation. 

Rookie Mistakes - Kelly Bandas

In her highly anticipated nonfiction debut, comedian Kelly Bandas uses her trademark humor to recount stories of growing up and becoming a semifunctional adult in a dysfunctional world.

Raised in a devoutly Catholic home, Kelly Bandas spent her entire childhood trying hard not to tick off “the man” or the Lord. And for the most part, she crushed it. But as she got older and began to navigate what it looked like to truly live in a world where gender roles, race, and politics weren’t always so black and white, Kelly realized that her former worldview was beginning to feel like that pair of Forever 21 jeans that used to glide effortlessly over her hips but now required a lot of stretching and acrobatic maneuvering to shimmy into place. And she’s not alone. 

In Rookie Mistakes, Kelly shares stories of growing up in a church-centered, male-dominated society and how those experiences shaped and primed her for a new chapter of life. In this debut collection of essays, Kelly shares:

Funny, fast-paced, and uplifting stories 
Encouragement for women who are tired of feeling like they will never measure up—and kind of don’t want to anyway
Inspiration to find your voice, your power, and your people

Kelly shares everything from laugh-out-loud accounts of Oregon Trail-themed first kisses to heartfelt insights gleaned from navigating life as a Christian feminist doing her best not to screw up being a parent of a child with a disability, in a trans-racial family.

Rookie Mistakes is the call-to-action millennial women everywhere have been waiting for. 
Full disclosure, this does have a little bit of religious tones sprinkled about but as someone who wouldn't consider myself as religious, but I didn't think it was overwhelming in this, so go in knowing that. Also, if you love Jenny Lawson, you might really like this. They don't have the same writing style, but the comedy sprinkled into situations that probably don't warrant laughing, makes me think having a dinner date with both of them would be a good time. 

The book is comprised of several essays that span her childhood, growing up, getting married, being a mom, and then being a mom/everything during the height of the pandemic, and I don't care who you are, we can all relate to so many of these. The best part of this book is that the author shows us some of her shining mistakes, which many of us have done (or in the process of doing), but looking back on them in hindsight with humility, but also trying to learn the lesson, you know? The concept of not being so hard and judging ourselves, but also giving others the same grace, because life is rough on us all. I also really loved the nostalgia and love for the 90's in this book! I'm a 1982 baby, but I tell my kids all of the time that the 90's were the BEST time to grow up. I will forever be grateful that that's when me real growing up happened, because it definitely shaped me as a person. 

Honestly, this might be my top nonfiction book of the year. I really like memoirs anyways, but this one just really stuck with me. I could relate to the stories, and the author, and it encouraged me to look at the mistakes I've made and stop dwelling them. The other perk was that each essay isn't very long, so if you like a book with short chapters because you only get short spans of reading time, this is great for you. Needless to say, I flew through this one. The perk of my husband snoring outrageously loud is that I am getting a lot of reading in, so there's that. 

Thank you to TLC Book Tours and Thomas Nelson Publishing for sending me a copy of this and letting me jump onto this tour! 
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