Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Something New

Something New is the latest book by Lucy Knisley, whose memoir Relish was one of my favorite books of 2013. Like all of her works I have read, this book is also autobiographical, an account of her relationship with her husband-to-be John as well as their unique wedding. It is full of her trademark personality: original, quirky, nerdy, and funny. I love how she is very honest and unassuming about herself and her life, and her voice comes through so strongly its palpable.
What's also excellent about this book is that it is not just a personal tale, but it also explores questions about why people get married, why certain customs exist, and how marriages typically play out. Also, there are a few places where she explains strange wedding customs or gives other interesting or amusing factoids. It works very well not just as a story about marriage but also a commentary on marriage as an institution.
I am not going to lie. I loved this book. And after reading it, I want to hang out with her and her husband, and I am sort of bummed that I do not know them at all. And perhaps my favorite bits are where she includes actual photographs of the events, which highlight the moments she captures so well in her storytelling.This book is at once intimate and universal, while also being entertaining and funny. It's utterly heartwarming in the best sense of the word.

All of the reviews I have read about this book have been positive.  Oliver Sava praised "the clean, expressive style that makes Knisley’s work so rich and engaging." Kirkus Reviews called it "a visual and emotional achievement." Publishers Weekly stated that Knisley "has a knack for presenting a highly precise type of whimsy that stops just shy of precious overkill."

Something New was published by First Second, and they have a preview and much more available here.

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