Ugh. Every time I picked this thing up, all I could think was “ugh.” This book has thrown a wrench in my theory that graphic novels are the “crack cocaine of books.” This book gave me no fix, no fun, no emotion, just ugh. Maybe I’m not intelligent enough to follow all of Bechdel’s droll remarks and comparisons of her and her father’s lives to works of literature that I have not read. A lot of the time I felt like I was taking the critical reading section of the SATs the way she was throwing around big, uncommon words (and sometimes their dictionary definitions). It just came across as extremely pretentious and too-highbrow-for-you. The combination of the highfalutin vocabulary, prolonged excerpts from plays, and my complete lack of any connection to the characters bored me to no end. I really wanted to just give up on it and return it to the library about a third of the way through, but I hate giving up on books and I really hoped that the story would end up pulling me in eventually. I usually really like memoirs, especially quirky ones like I thought this one would be. A girl who grows up in a funeral home with a distant, closet homosexual father? Yes, please – sounds interesting! But in order for me to enjoy a memoir, I need to feel something
for at least one character. It can be love, hate, pity, whatever, but without that I’m indifferent. I think there has to be some give and take when reading books and I cared about this as much as I felt it cared about me – not a damn bit. Giving it one star feels too mean because I didn’t absolutely hate it, but I definitely didn’t like it. The illustrations were the only redeeming factor so I’ll give it 2 stars.