Review: It’s Okay to Laugh (Crying is Cool Too) (Nora McInerny)

Disclaimer: All thoughts and opinions are simply my own honest ones and I have not been asked to write this review. Not everyone may agree with my thoughts and that’s okay! I hope you enjoy reading about mine.

Rating: 4 Stars

The memoir of a young thirty-something who marries a man after he’s diagnosed with terminal brain cancer. The book follows her through their meeting, dating, diagnosis, and his passing. She has lost her father, husband, and miscarried her second child all in a short time and her outlook on everything is unimaginably real.

Review (Spoilers)
This book was beautiful. It was honestly so poignant and raw and honest that it was such a compelling read. McInerny did an incredible job at somehow making the dark subject matter actually rather hilarious. I laughed out loud while reading this in line at the bank. That’s how funny it was. I find it so rare that books are genuinely funny (I think it’s incredibly difficult to convey laugh-out-loud humour a lot of the time, since there’s no use of verbal tone or physical body language) but this book did it – all while discussing her husband’s brain tumour.

If that sounds awful, trust me, it’s not. At least not the way McInerny wrote it. The title of this book was spot on. I laughed and cried while reading it and she brought humour to an incredibly painful situation, which I think sometimes can make things easier to bare. Realistically I’m sure her husband wanted her to be happy and find joy in the world, even after he passed and she clearly has – which is wonderful.

While some might pass judgement on how “quickly” she began dating again (and I’ll admit I was a smidge shocked while reading it) I cannot being to fathom what her life was like during such a difficult time and therefore, I simply can’t say what she should or should not be doing with her life now. I always believe that everyone is entitled to live their life the best way for them and that’s what she seems to be doing.

I will say, however, I was shocked to read that she had started writing the book within months of her husband’s passing. I think that takes immense strength to literally pull up every emotion while the wound is still raw, and to do it with some humour, makes her seem (to me at least) to be a strong person.

The only thing I didn’t really enjoy about the book was the jumping around in the timeline. While that works well for some books I just didn’t feel like it did for this one and since the chapters were so short each bit of out of order information we got simply didn’t seem like enough.

Overall, though, I would recommend this book to anyone who wants to laugh and cry all at once, especially anyone interested in a dry, sarcastic type of humour. A+

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