While most people have probably heard of Sue Perkins due to her long-running stint on “The Great British Bake-off” which is now a show I’m now adding to my Netflix and Chill schedule, I first fell in love with Sue’s fantastic wit and delightful humor on “The Supersizers Eat…” If you haven’t seen “The Supersizers Eat…” on Hulu, go there right now and binge watch the season. It’s totally worth your Netflix and Chill time. Sue and restaurant critic, Giles Coren, dress in period costumes and explore different decades of British food history and it’s awesome. Watch it. Now. You’ll thank me.
Faintingviolet (i.e. roommate) and I LOVE “The Supersizers,” being history lovers and foodies.We watch reruns of the show after a bad day at work, and the sight of Giles and Sue stomaching their way through a calf’s head always cheers us up (yes, we’re aware that we’re deranged). Faintingviolet loves the show so much that she bought Sue’s memoir to get more Perkins time. Since it arrived around the same time as her backlog of library books, I totally snagged Spectacles off the kitchen table and absconded with it to my room (i.e. Faintingviolet said I could read it first).
I wasn’t sure what to expect from this book since I’m not normally a memoir reader, and the first few chapters were a little bit of a rocky start for me while I got used to Sue’s conversational writing style. But by the time I got to the chapter about her dog, Pickles, I was hooked.
In true comedic style, Sue is able to see the humor in everything, dutifully analyzing the world around her with a wit and observation that makes you laugh while also deeply probing you to question the way you see the world.
Humor aside, Sue gets real and there were several sections of her book that left me in tears. Sue doesn’t shy away from the bad parts of herself or the bad times of her life, unabashedly exposing the most raw and intimate parts of her maturation experience in order for us to see who she truly is, and how those experiences shaped her. She chronicles pets, parents, disastrous performances, coming out, and the difficulty of relationships with so much time on the road. Sue’s tone is self-deprecating and cynical while also being warm, inviting and down-to-earth. I actually found myself reading the book in Sue’s voice, that’s how strongly she comes through the page.
This book made me want to sit in a tea shop with her, discussing her favorite novel and the possible culinary history of our scones and PG Tips. I loved spending time in Sue’s world, and I recommend this book to anyone who loves memoirs.