Book Review: Survival of the Thickest

I knew Michelle Buteau from her cohosting VH1 Morning Buzz with Nick Lachey and thought she was pretty funny, so I wanted to check out her book.  It was kind of what I expected – a lot of pop culture references – most of which I got even though I am under 38 😉   It was definitely interesting to hear about her life growing up and being light skinned.  Her Dad is from Haiti and her Mom is from Jamaica.

The book seemed to bounce around a bit on the timeline which confused me at times and I also could have gone without her reminding us about how big her tits were every other chapter (despite having gotten a reduction.)  But Michelle is funny and that came through for sure when reading this – it was easy to hear her voice coming through as I read along.  Though a comedian, she did touch on some tougher topics like 9/11/01 and dealing with IVF and miscarriages and I thought she wrote about these topics well.  That may be why she was considering journalism before she went into comedy. She has a skill for both.

I received a free e-copy of this book in order to write this review, I was not otherwise compensated.

About the Book

From the stand-up comedian, actress, and host beloved for her cheeky swagger, unique voice, and unapologetic frankness comes a book of comedic essays for fans of Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me by Mindy Kaling and We’re Going to Need More Wine by Gabrielle Union.

If you’ve watched television or movies in the past year, you’ve seen Michelle Buteau. With scene-stealing roles in Always Be My Maybe, First Wives Club, Someone Great, Russian Doll, and Tales of the City; a reality TV show and breakthrough stand-up specials, including her headlining show Welcome to Buteaupia on Netflix, and two podcasts (Late Night Whenever and Adulting), Michelle’s star is on the rise. You’d be forgiven for thinking the road to success—or adulthood or financial stability or self-acceptance or marriage or motherhood—has been easy; but you’d be wrong.

Now, in Survival of the Thickest, Michelle reflects on growing up Caribbean, Catholic, and thick in New Jersey, going to college in Miami (where everyone smells like pineapple), her many friendship and dating disasters, working as a newsroom editor during 9/11, getting started in standup opening for male strippers, marrying into her husband’s Dutch family, IVF and surrogacy, motherhood, chosen family, and what it feels like to have a full heart, tight jeans, and stardom finally in her grasp.

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