Thank you to Random House Publishing Group- Ballantine Books for providing me with an advanced copy of Laurie Notaro's latest book, Housebroken: Admissions of an Untidy Life, in exchange for an honest review.
PLOT- Laurie Notaro is back with a collection of humorous non-fiction musings from her life.
LIKE- Laurie Notaro holds a special place in my heart. I discovered her books in the last weeks of my mom's life. I read them aloud to my mom while she was dying of cancer in the hospital and we laughed, a lot. We temporarily forgot where we were and what was happening. Notaro's humor rescued me during one of the worst times of my life and gave me some precious final bonding moments with my mom. I love Laurie Notaro for these memories. That said, I was thrilled to review her latest collection.
As with her previous books, Housebroken: Admissions of an Untidy Life, is hilarious. I'm somewhat shy and non-confrontational, so I love when Notaro says what is on her mind in a way that I wish I would. She stands up for herself to hipsters who dare buy the last eggs at the farmer's market and to people who try to obstruct the removal of the ginormous pile of fall leaves in her yard. She's snarky and just so darn funny. As a bonus, this collection includes many mouth-watering Italian recipes from her family.
All of this is fabulous, but there is one chapter that spoke directly to my current frame of mind. In "Where is Home", Notaro compares her current home in Eugene, Oregon to her former home in Phoenix, Arizona. Although she has been in Oregon for over twenty years, Arizona is where her heart lives. The chapter begins with Notaro seeing people shooting heroin just feet from a farmers market. Just three weeks ago, I moved to Portland, Oregon, and I've witnessed the same shocking things, at a local farmer's market, that happens to be feet from the entrance to my apartment building. I read this chapter thinking that it was suddenly going to turn into a "The Neverending Story" moment. Seriously, she is writing about my current life! Creepy. But what got me in the gut was the end of the chapter, when Notaro admits to feeling like Phoenix is home. Reading her words gave me the insight to accept this new adventure in Oregon, but also to allow my heart to stay in California. I'd been feeling very low about the move and this was exactly what I needed to read. I don't know how she does it, but more than any other author, Notaro seems to be around just when I need her and says the right things.
DISLIKE- Absolutely nothing.
RECOMMEND- 100%! Housebroken: Admissions of an Untidy Life is another marvelous collection by a gifted writer. If you make any of Notaro's recipes, please invite me over for dinner!