“Hilarious...[Nugent] documents her journey to feminism while skewering misogynist tropes and delivering some painful truths.”—Publishers Weekly (starred review)
“Feminist” is not a four-letter word, but Alida Nugent resisted it for a long time. She feared the “scarlet F” being thrust upon her for refusing to laugh at misogynistic jokes at parties; she withered under the judgmental gaze of store clerks when buying Plan B, and she swore that she was “not like other girls.” But eventually, like so many of us, she discovered that feminism is an empowering identity to take on. It’s okay to criticize beauty standards but still love dark lipstick, investing in female friendships is the most rewarding thing ever, and no woman should feel pressured to eat an “unseasoned chicken breast the size of a deck of playing cards” as every sad dinner for the rest of eternity.
With sincerity, intelligence, and wit, Nugent invites readers in to her most private moments of personal growth. From struggling with an eating disorder for most of her teen years to embracing all aspects of her biracial identity, she tackles tough topics with honest vulnerability making it a perfect gift for teens and young adults. Smartly-written, unapologetic, and laugh-out-loud funny, You Don’t Have to Like Me is perfect for readers of Roxane Gay, Rebecca Solnit, and Sloane Crosley.
In this series of entertaining essays, popular blogger and author Nugent (Don't Worry, It Gets Worse) documents her journey to feminism while skewering misogynist tropes and delivering some painful truths. Using her own experiences to expand on larger issues, Nugent bravely confides the details of her battle with bulimia and society's ever-shifting idea of the perfect body. In an essay appropriately titled "I Am Exactly like Other Girls," she admits her own patriarchal complicity in formerly identifying herself as a "guy's girl." A missed period and a pregnancy test spark commentary on sexual shame. More jovial moments are dedicated to the power of female friendships ("the salted caramel... of the relationship world"), the bacchanalia of girls'-night-out wine benders, and learning to love her looks with help from an unflattering $15 lipstick. Nugent expresses hope for the future, declaring, "The next generation of girls is going to have a coat of arms: a giant, cocked eyebrow and the word NO.' " These essays are largely aimed at this younger generation, with Nugent playing the hip older sister providing make-up tips, a sex ed lesson that is both hilarious and instructive, and a quasi-advice column about appropriate feminist behavior but readers of all ages will be charmed.