Back in 2013, Allie Brosh published Hyperbole and a Half named after the blog she kept (and has finally updated with a new post!). I pre-ordered the last book and bought it as a Christmas present for pretty much every single person my husband and I knew that year (now our own copy seems to have mysteriously gone missing – which distresses me). Allie’s blog (we are clearly on first-name basis, and would be great friends if we ever met) and her book meant a lot to me, frequently made me laugh until I gasped and allowed me to lose many hours on the internet, just reading her older entries. So many of her posts and drawings are now memes.
Then, suddenly, Allie just seemed to vanish entirely from the internet. She stopped updating her blog. Her rumoured second book failed to appear and no one really knew what had happened to her. Because of her honest portrayal of depression and anxiety, there was every possibility that something serious was to blame for her complete disappearance from the web. Until earlier this year, when suddenly this book, Solutions and Other Problems had a cover and a confirmed publishing date and I think I genuinely screamed with joy – because it meant that no matter what else had happened, Allie was alive and had completed another book and was ready to share her thoughts with the world again.
You’d best believe I pre-ordered this the very second I saw the news. I feared that with the usual Covid-delays, my book wouldn’t make it here in time for the release day, but I was wrong. Even if this book had been a series of blank pages with the occasional gibberish scrawled on them, I would have happily paid for the book, because I’m so relieved and happy that Allie is OK (in a manner of speaking) and ready to engage with the internet again. She posted one chapter of the new book on her blog. If this doesn’t make you laugh like a loon until your stomach hurts, then maybe her way of telling stories isn’t for you.
Full review here.