Wednesday, January 20, 2021

Book Review: Share Your Stuff. I'll Go First.: 10 Questions to Take Your Friendships to the Next Level, by Laura Tremaine

*Disclosure: I received a copy of this book from NetGalley. The opinions expressed here, however, are my own.

I envision you reading this book by sharing it with a best friend or partner or with your group of girlfriends over margaritas, going through the chapters together and answering them from a place of truth. The things you've never talked about as well as the stories you've trotted out so many times you've memorized the punch lines. 

Let these questions spark conversations. Sharing is contagious, so I'm hoping that sharing my stuff with lead you to share yours. Our time on earth is short, and building connections with one another makes every season better. I want you to share your stuff. I'll go first.

I started this blog in 2009, when I graduated from college, and I started my then-film blog (now Yes/No Detroit) in 2010. One of the bloggers I first started following during that period was Laura Tremaine, who had a blog called Hollywood Housewife. I've kept up with Laura through Twitter and her Facebook page, and although the blog was shuttered in 2015, she now has a podcast and still has an enewsletter to which I subscribe. Therefore, I was excited to see that she now has written a book. 

Official synopsis:
Book Review: Share Your Stuff. I'll Go First.: 10 Questions to Take Your Friendships to the Next Level, by Laura Tremaine
Part memoir and part guidebook,
Share Your Stuff. I'll Go First. is the invitation you've been waiting for to show up with your whole self and discover the intimate, meaningful relationships you long for.

In spite of the hyper-connected culture we live in today, women still feel shamed for oversharing and being publicly vulnerable. And no matter how many friends we seem to have, many of us are still desperately lonely.

Laura Tremaine says it's time for something better. Openness and vulnerability are the foundation for human growth and healthy relationships, and it all starts when we share our stuff, the nitty-gritty daily details about ourselves with others. Laura has led the way in her personal life with her popular blog and podcast, and now with lighthearted self-awareness, a sensitivity to the important things in life, and compelling storytelling, Laura gives you the tools to build and deepen the conversations happening in your life.

Laura's stories about her childhood in Oklahoma, her complicated shifts in faith and friendships, and her marriage to a Hollywood movie director will prompt you to identify the beautiful narrative and pivotal milestones of your own life. Each chapter offers intriguing and reflective questions that will reveal unique details and stories you've never thought to tell and will guide you into cultivating the authentic connection with others that only comes from sharing yourself.

This is probably not an unbiased review—this book comes off as 75% memoir and 25% a help/advice book, and I loved the memoir sections. Some of the memoir parts were things I had heard before, either through the author's Twitter or blog, and some were new to me: like how she met her husband (Jeff Tremaine, director of jackass: the movie and other films) and why she decided to move to L.A. from her native Oklahoma. 

I don't usually read a lot of nonfiction, but I do enjoy memoirs, and I really enjoyed this one. I've always enjoyed reading Laura's work online, and reading a book of hers was no different; she's a talented writer, and it made for easy reading. 

4.5 out of 5 stars. 

{click here to pre-order; will be in stores/online on February 2, 2021}

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