November 29th, 2020


Solutions and Other Problems, by Allie Brosh

I read Brosh's first book, Hyperbole and a Half, back in January. Solutions and Other Problems was released a month or two ago, and I decided (a) not to wait six years before buying it and (b) not to wait six years before reading it, either. I did wait a month or two. I don't read a lot.

Like her first book, it's a quick read; I started and finished it yesterday. It is considerably grimmer than Hyperbole and a Half, and still features some of the "Brosh beating up on herself to a painful degree." The universe beats up on her a lot in this one. Holy crap. So content notes for nihilism, depression, suicide, divorce, and physical illness. She does make some of this stuff funny but some of the essays are just straight-up serious (with a big SERIOUSNESS STARTS HERE flag, and she means it).

The book also includes some strikingly lovely illustrations by Brosh, in addition to her familiar stick-figure-inspired cartoon characters.

I am glad that I read it; it's well-written, moving, and engaging. I recommend it, but have to note that it is not anything like the crying-laughing-funny that Hyperbole and a Half is. Some of the essays are funny, and some are funny and also painful, and the serious one is just deeply tragic and sad. I did not cry from laughter from the book, but I did cry. This entry was originally posted at Please comment there using OpenID.