Title: It Gets Worse: A Collection of Essays
Author: Shane Dawson
My Rating: ★★★★
Summary: “In this new collection of original personal essays, Shane goes even deeper, sharing never-before-revealed stories from his life, giving readers a no-holds-barred look at moments both bizarre and relatable, from cultlike Christian after-school activities, dressing in drag, and losing his virginity, to hiring a psychic, clashing with celebrities, and coming to terms with his bisexuality. Every step of the way, Shane maintains his signature brand of humor, proving that even the toughest breaks can be funny when you learn to laugh at yourself.
It Gets Worse is an inspiring, intelligent, and brutally honest collection of true stories by a YouTube sensation who has become one of the freshest new voices out there.”
I have said this in many a book review, but It Gets Worse is a fast read that took me a long time to finish because of school. But if you want a funny, quick memoir to read, this is the book for you. (Or I Hate Myselfie, Shane’s other book, which I reviewed last year. You can see that here).
Like I mentioned, It Gets Worse is funny. Really funny. I often don’t actually laugh out loud when I read, but I did reading this book. (And I Hate Myselfie). Just a few examples of how funny this book is:
“I’d watch my mom brutally kill my dad if it meant I could watch cartoons in HD.”p.39
“I’m the opposite of a party animal. I’m a funeral person.”p.97
Part of the humor in Shane’s writing is exaggeration. The dialogue he writes was clearly enhanced to be as funny as it is. I think this may bother some people (I know it did in I Hate Myselfie), but for me it makes sense. He’s a comedian. Comedians exaggerate all the time, at least to some extent. For example: were these really conversations John Mulaney had with people who work at dEltA aIRliNeS? No, but it’s hilarious.
This review sounds pretty similar to my review of I Hate Myselfie. To be fair, they are written very similarly. So here is another thing I said in my other review: some of Shane’s jokes rubbed me the wrong way. But I still loved it. Much less with his current content, but Shane, like any good comedian, likes to push the boundaries. Sometimes he goes too far for me, but I find him hilarious. Having been a fan for a few years, I am used to this and love his content a lot (even his old, far more boundary-crossing content). I’m mostly putting this in so people are aware his humor often offends people. (This is entirely fair, he has definitely done things that were not okay that he has since apologized for). However, his sense of comedy did change some between the two books, and It Gets Worse features less shocking, offensive comedy than I Hate Myselfie.
In addition to the laugh-out-loud moments, this book features some sad, heartfelt moments too. Shane wrote some chapters that are very personal, like his struggle with bulimia and coming out as bi. Even the funnier chapters had real lessons or meaningful moments in them. (Often immediately followed by a joke). These moments are what makes both of his memoirs so impactful.
Lastly, reading this book made me feel so proud of Shane. He is fully himself here. When I Hate Myselfie was published, he was still closeted and came out as bi only months later. I remember watching his coming out video a few years ago, and now I get to watch videos of him and his boyfriend. Seeing Shane, someone who I have watched for a while now, live his life authentically is beautiful.
Thanks for reading!👑🐷