In this collection of essays, West extolls the world-changing magic of truth, urging readers to reckon with dark lies in the heart of the American mythos, and unpacking the complicated, and sometimes tragic, politics of not being a white man in the twenty-first century. From the author of the New York Times-bestselling memoir and now Hulu TV series Shrill.
... covers much of the same territory, but, here, West is more overtly political and angrier. The result is bracing: The essays consider such varied topics as Grumpy Cat, climate change and the on-screen depiction of abortion. But they cohere as a unit, bound by West’s humor, outrage and — in the end — hope ... West isn’t satisfied sticking to politics. Too much of her best writing is about pop culture, after all ... a bit uneven, with throwaway rants about such trivialities as pockets in dresses (West, shockingly, is against them). And some readers will be put off by the dedicated and enthusiastic swearing ... But even the weakest essays have searingly smart lines in them, and the best among them are brilliant. Most thrilling of all is the overarching tone of swashbuckling courage: West knows what she wants to say, and she really doesn’t care what you think ... In the end, the book is a stirring manifesto for honesty.
... less personal than polemical. When she’s good, she’s very, very good — bracingly original, biting and funny — and when she’s not, the reader still finds brilliant nuggets ... The essays in which West deconstructs cultural icons — such as Adam Sandler or Joan Rivers — who are not touchstones for me, were less effective. Yet even these pieces contain incisive, memorable passages ... Unapologetic, salty, tired of making nice, West gives us another refreshingly nervy essay collection. While not as poignant or funny as her first book, this one is fueled instead by a righteous anger. Let the witches come.
... a manifesto for the post-Obama, pre-impeachment-investigation, #MeToo era ... The problem is, West’s 'you' feels heavily focused on white, cisgender men while overlooking the fact that white women can be just as invested in white supremacy as their male counterparts. She draws a clear line between men and women when, in reality, both parties can be guilty of harmful perspectives regardless of where they fall on the political spectrum ... West never connects the dots to the bigger picture, where white women have been overrepresented in media since time immemorial while people of color — irrespective of size or intellect — are still fighting for visibility and freedom from menial, poverty-stricken or criminal roles (or all of the above) ... But West herself willfully ignores the ways that prejudice against the L.G.B.T. community intersects with so many other kinds of oppression — or else, just as damning, she simply doesn’t see it ... a fiery book from an admirable author, but a witch hunt has to cover all the angles if it hopes to have a real and lasting impact.