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Books, You Guys!

I read a lot of everything. Mostly fantasy and sci-fi, or speculative fiction or Slipstream or New Weird or whatever we're calling it now, some comics, some literary fiction, mysteries, la dee da. And...well. I do like a kissin' book.
Kick Me: Adventures in Adolescence - Paul Feig Anyone who's seen an episode of Freaks and Geeks should know what to expect from Paul Feig's memoir Kick Me: Adventures in Adolescence. And maybe that's the problem.Feig is certainly good at self-deprecation, and equally as good at getting to the heart of all of the things that make being a teenager so horribly difficult. Many of short essays that comprise the book hit so close to home that I found myself wincing- who hasn't been terrified of taking their clothes off in the locker room, or can't relate to hours spent agonizing over how best to start conversations with the opposite sex? They're familiar stories, almost comforting in parts- if only for the reassurance that someone else has been there too.But the challenge to telling a familiar story is to make it fresh, and this is where I felt Kick Me fell short. There were quite a few moments that lacked impact simply because I was expecting them, often from the very first sentence of the essay.The humor seemed to suffer from the same issue. A lot of the jokes seemed like I had heard them before- on Freaks and Geeks. There were plenty of turns of phrase and situation that made me chuckle, but very few had me laughing out loud- and a couple even had me rolling my eyes, I'm sad to report.The sections of the book that really shone all seemed to come from Feig's childhood, rather than his adolescence, and I can't help but think that maybe that's a function of having heard too much about his teenage years already. I'd love to see Feig take on some different subject matter; perhaps it would bring some of the life to his writing that Kick Me seemed to lack.It's an entertaining book, but ultimately forgettable. Pick it up if you're looking for something light to read on an airplane or in the bathroom. But if you're looking for gut wrenching, laugh-out-loud tales of teenage woe, watch Freaks and Geeks and give Kick Me a pass.