Shrill by Lindy West ~ An Audiobook Review in Tweets

Cover of Shrill
Shrill by Lindy West

Published by: Hachette Books

Published on: May 17, 2016

Page Count: 272

Genre: Non-Fiction

My Reading Format: Audiobook review copy provided by the publisher for consideration

Audiobook Published by: Hachette Audio

Narrator: Lindy West

Audiobook Length: 6 hours 9 minutes

Available Formats: Hardcover, eBook, and Audiobook

Summary from the Publisher:

Coming of age in a culture that demands women be as small, quiet, and compliant as possible–like a porcelain dove that will also have sex with you–writer and humorist Lindy West quickly discovered that she was anything but.

From a painfully shy childhood in which she tried, unsuccessfully, to hide her big body and even bigger opinions; to her public war with stand-up comedians over rape jokes; to her struggle to convince herself, and then the world, that fat people have value; to her accidental activism and never-ending battle royale with Internet trolls, Lindy narrates her life with a blend of humor and pathos that manages to make a trip to the abortion clinic funny and wring tears out of a story about diarrhea.

With inimitable good humor, vulnerability, and boundless charm, Lindy boldly shares how to survive in a world where not all stories are created equal and not all bodies are treated with equal respect, and how to weather hatred, loneliness, harassment, and loss, and walk away laughing. Shrill provocatively dissects what it means to become self-aware the hard way, to go from wanting to be silent and invisible to earning a living defending the silenced in all caps.

My Review

Okay, so this won’t be an entire view in tweets. Here are a few brief thoughts on the audiobook:

  • There was something very powerful about listening to Lindy West narrate this book. That she was able to write about some of the abuse she’s experienced is one thing. To hear her read about it out loud gave me chills. She didn’t let the shame intended by others have any power over her. I need to be much more like her in that way.
  • The chapter about riding on airplanes is spot on.
  • There were some sections that were more meaningful to me than others. I don’t agree with her 100% of the time. I am not as comfortable with her more vulgar turns of phrase, but I am glad to have read this book. She puts herself out there and I appreciate her openness and honesty.

The tweets below sum up better than anything else the way this book has impacted my life:

Tweet 1

Tweet 2

Tweet 3

Tweet 4

Tweet 5

I still have a lot of work to do, but I don’t think I’m alone in that. Life is all about learning and growing. I do make it my life’s mission to learn to love myself each and every day, regardless of any societal expectation. If I can’t love myself today, there will always be something that will prevent me from doing so tomorrow, regardless of what the scale says. Oh, and one other thing I learned just yesterday: I’ve been punishing myself for my post-pregnancy weight gain by not getting my wedding rings resized. I say punished even though in my head I was using them as motivation to lose weight. Allison will be 12 in October for crying out loud. I was briefly able to wear them after boot camp, but as I have regained some of that weight, they’ve become too tight. Well, Emma, who is slim and 13, tried them on. They were too small for her tiny fingers! If a skinny teenager can’t wear my rings, what in the world have I been holding myself back for? Ridiculous! I’ll be heading to the jewelers on Saturday. I love my wedding rings and there’s no reason to deprive myself of them.


  • At 2016.07.12 07:54, Sarah's Book Shelves said:

    Good for you and I’m glad this book resonated with you for the most part!

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    • At 2016.07.12 20:48, Jennifer said:

      Thank you so much!

      • At 2016.07.12 08:00, bermudaonion (Kathy) said:

        I love this post. As an older woman, I keep my arms covered and now I’m thinking I do it just for me.

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        • At 2016.07.12 20:48, Jennifer said:

          Wear sleeveless tops. You can’t imagine how good it feels. ?

          • At 2016.07.12 08:40, Karen White said:

            Reading your tweets I think you need to turn them into a book! Your personal growth over the past year has been inspiring and I know it would be to others.

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            • At 2016.07.12 20:50, Jennifer said:

              Aww! Thank you so much, Karen. I need to give that some thought. I’ve got a ways to go, but everyone has to start somewhere. Helping others would be icing on the cake.

              • At 2016.07.12 09:23, Word Lily said:

                I’m glad to see you’re becoming more and more accepting of who you are. It’s hard to (let alone move forward) without that. It’s an ongoing process, I think.

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                • At 2016.07.12 20:55, Jennifer said:

                  Thank you and yes, it’s ongoing. I’m learning to give myself the grace for that.

                  • At 2016.07.12 10:15, Michelle said:

                    I LOVE your reactions to this book and it makes me want to read it as well. I know I really struggle with body image as well. I too have stopped wearing my wedding rings because they no longer fit, and I use them as incentive to lose that weight. Then, I have my husband and my son, who are constantly hounding me to get back in shape and lose weight because of the history of heart issues and high cholesterol that runs in my family. I feel like I am being torn in two some days because I want to love myself but cannot help but see myself through their (disgusted) eyes. Perhaps this is something we all need to read…

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                    • At 2016.07.12 20:54, Jennifer said:

                      Michelle, if my experience is anything like yours, your family loves you for who you are and are not unhappy when they look you. Health is a concern for us all. I need to figure out how I’m going to work that in myself. Get your rings resized. You deserve it. You are beautiful and I’m so thankful that you are my blogging friend. ??

                      • At 2016.08.14 22:07, Tina Porubsly said:

                        I just read your review/tweets from Shrill. You inspired me not only to read the book but to feel better about myself. I gained a lot of weight due to medications and always feel I have to justify my weight gain to people. I workout & try to live a healthy lifestyle. I totally relate to the comment about living for when I am skinny. Reality dawned when I read that comment. I tell others to live in the moment but stopped doing it myself. Time to turn a new leaf. My sincerest thanks to you!

                        • At 2016.08.14 22:24, Jennifer said:

                          Tina, I am so happy to have played a small part in your revelation. I’ve had my ups and downs even from posting this, so remember that self acceptance is a marathon, not a sprint. We’ll get there and be thankful for the journey. Don’t ever feel like you have to explain yourself or your body to anyone. I was the same way about my c section. If someone feels the need to judge us, they are the ones who have explaining to do. Enjoy the journey!

                          (Required, will not be published)

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