The Book of Awesome by Neil PasrichaThe Book of Awesome is actually not that awesome. Some blog-to-book stories have been very successful and some blogs sell a lot of funny merchandise, but The Book of Awesome doesn’t stand up.

Based on, Neil Pasricha started the blog to celebrate the little things in life. While this is theoretically a great idea — everyone needs to think positive and take joy in the little things — it just doesn’t work as a book. To start, even though the blog touts over 10 million hits, Neil hasn’t even reached #1 of his “awesome” list; the blog counts down from 1000 and (as the time of this review) is on #452.

And the book… I picked it up during a gathering of bookish folks for Books on the Radio. Yes, we may have ridiculed the book more than necessary, but it still isn’t all that “awesome”. I started flipping through it and reading the chapter titles out, and AnnMarie would declare “awesome” or “stupid” or “gross” and we’d move onto the next one. I have to say it was great for a laugh and a conversation starter, but I wouldn’t have ever paid $28.50 for this book.

  • When someone offers to toss your dirty clothes in with their load of laundry” — No, that’s just gross, unless you’re dating. I wouldn’t even touch a roommates laundry, much less let someone touch mine!
  • Sneaking under someone else’s umbrella” — If someone did that to me, I’d elbow them in the face. Is a black eye awesome?
  • Blowing out all the candles on your first try” — Maybe if you’re 3 years old.
  • Old folks who sit on their porch and wave at you when you walk by” — No, that’s creepy. There is this guy that sits at my bus stop all day and when the sun gets too high, he transfers to the other side of the street and sits on the wall of someone else’s garden.
  • Wearing sandals when you shouldn’t be wearing sandals” — Who the hell gets to say what you should wear? If you wanna freeze your toes off, go for it.
  • The pushoff” — This is actually is talking about learning to ride your bike alone for the first time. I thought we were taking joy in simple pleasures in life, not reliving childhood memories.
  • Really, really old Tupperware” — This one describes the ‘burping seal’, but did you know that after a certain period of time plastics start leeching harsh chemicals into your food.
  • Scraping all the lint off an overflowing lint trap” — No, that’s just good housekeeping, and safe so it doesn’t catch on fire.

I don’t often give a book this bad a review. If you see it in the bookstore, have a flip through and see if you find it “awesome”, “heart-warming” or leave you “looking for new joys”. [quotes from reviews].

Now, I mentioned book-to-blog stories and blog merch. Here is some of the stuff out there:

Soon we’re going to look at some books and think, “What came first? The Book or the Blog?”