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    Witty but real

    I am not even sure where to start on my review other than I LOVED this book.  It made me laugh, but there were also some parts that were poignant, such as, when Lincee wrote about her marriage and its failure.  I was truly amazed to read her story and enjoyed every minute...I did not want the book to end. I have followed I Hate Green Beans for a few years after being turned on to it by a friend.  I thought the title of her blog was hysterical because I love green beans!  I don't remember if I knew why she didn't like that green vegetable, but I learned why in her book - an evil diet.  Then as I was reading her profile (way back when), I learned that we attended the same high school.  Not at the same time mind you!  But I felt a kinship when she spoke about her time in high school and what she experienced being on the Belles (drill team).  While I was a band geek, I also participated in the Flag Corps, so I could commiserate about those weigh ins!  While I might not be able to relate to everything she wrote about, I could feel her emotions - from angst to frustration to happiness - in each story she told.  She made me feel like I was sitting right next to her in each event in her life. Lincee even puts her faith out there for all to see.  Her Christian beliefs helped guide her through the tougher times in life and kept her grounded despite any situation.  And trust me when I say there are lots of situations that would test any of us.  She shares various bible verses that helped her in situations when she needed support.  I appreciated her humility in admitting when she needed that extra assistance to get through. For Lincee to put her life out there for anyone and everyone to read, it shows a courage that many do not possess.  Her honesty, quick wit, and fluid writing will entertain readers and if they enjoy it as much as I did, they will not want to put the book down.  Not all may be able to relate, but I am willing to bet that there is at least one story or situation that will seem familiar - even if it is the insecurity that many of us feel as a woman. We give this 5 paws up!  We'd give more but our scale is only 5.
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    Try a new genre. You'll like this one!

    I know what you are thinking, I never read memoirs. It’s true, I prefer to read fiction. But sometimes, you have to take a shot at something different. I tried Why I Hate Green Beans. And like trying anything new, I didn’t hate it! I actually enjoyed myself! To start, I’m impressed by Ms. Ray’s courage at putting her life out there in a book for us to read, flaws and all. I don’t think that I’d have the fearlessness to do the same. I’d also like to point out that I actually LOVE green beans. They are one of my favorite vegetables. But I can totally understand why Ms. Ray hates them. If I were in her situation, I’d probably hate them as well. Here are some of the aspects of the book that I liked: 1) There are many helpful key information boxes throughout the book. From tips about skinny jeans to tips on dating gleaned from years of watching and recapping The Bachelor, Ms. Ray cuts to the chase and tells her reader what is important. Here are two examples of key information boxes that I love: “If your plunging neckline is so deep it looks like your exposed sternum is being prepped for heart surgery, button up.” and “If I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a thousand times, leggings are not pants.” I totally agree with BOTH of these quotes. 2) The humor in Why I Hate Green Beans is on almost every page. As you can see from the above quotes, the sarcasm is strong with Ms. Ray. And I love a good sarcastic book. 3) Ms. Ray clearly put all of her emotions on the pages of this book. My two favorite chapters are the ones where Ms. Ray has hit rock bottom. I know, I’m weird. But reading those bared emotions really struck a cord with me. 4) The book flows chronologically. This is a very logical decision that works well for me as a reader. The novel starts when Ms. Ray was a teenager and followers through to her life til now. We see her mature while following the natural progression of life. 5) The writing style is very conversational. Ms. Ray parlays her skills as a blogger and recapper into a style that is easy, and, more importantly, enjoyable, to read. We all have the vegetables we don’t like (GROSS EGGPLANT!). Similarly, there are some aspects of the novel that I didn’t like: 1) I found teenage Lincee really bothersome. I wanted to skip these chapters. I really didn’t click with Lincee til she was in college and more self-confident. Once we moved past the troubled teen years, I was more interested in Ms. Ray’s story. 2) Ms. Ray repeatedly reminds us that she is an extrovert\introvert. I’m not disputing that extrovert\introvert people exist. Just that I really couldn’t figure out what this has to do with anything else in the book. I really enjoyed this memoir. And as an avid EW reader, I’ll be actively looking for Ms. Ray’s work on the website and checking out her blog in the future. Don’t be afraid to try a new book genre and check out Why I Hate Green Beans for yourself!

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