Book Review: Year of Yes


I will continue to apologize for not being around much. I swear that I’m trying to compose real posts, but I just can’t seem to string real words together to make it eloquent and lovely. Yet again I am back with  yet another book review. I think I may do a series review later this week because if you aren’t watching this show you probably should tune in. Back to the real reason for this post. I recently picked up Shonda Rhimes book Year of Yes , it was the first read of the year for the Paper & Glam Book Club, which I’m going to try my best to keep up with this year.

When I began this book I knew that Shonda Rhimes was the brilliant powerhouse that created the amazing TGIT lineup that included Grey’s Anatomy, Scandal, How to Get Away with Murder and The Catch. Not only did she own Thursday Nights, she had reimagined the world of tv to include well-rounded real world characters and people that we would want and despise to have in our real life. Her commencement speech at Dartmouth was the thing legends are made of. The quote below even ended up in my planner:

Who you are today…that’s who you are. Be brave. Be amazing. Be worthy. And every single time you get the chance? Stand up in front of people. Let them see you. Speak. Be heard. Go ahead and have the dry mouth. Let your heart beat so, so fast. Watch everything move in slow motion. So what. You what? You pass out, you die, you poop? No. (And this is really the only lesson you’ll ever need to know.) You take it in. You breathe this rare air. You feel alive. You are yourself. You are truly finally always yourself. Thank you. Good Luck.
-Dartmouth Commencement Speech June 8, 2014

Overall, I thought the book was amazing and brilliant. Her writer prose was like talking to a best friend, no huge words no fluffy imagery just you and your friend chatting about anything and everything. Sometimes this sort of prose can detract from the story, but I think in this case it worked. It was very real. I loved how she let us into the stories and narrative of her life. How she let us live chapter by chapter through 18 months or so of her life.

I can’t imagine doing a full year of yes in my own life, but I think I can do big things in small ways to let ourselves stand in the sun and shine. I loved how Shonda is relatable and quotable throughout the book and how she includes the text from several of her speeches. I’ve included another quote from one of her speeches below.

The fear of being alone, the desire to not be alone, the attempts we make to find our person, to keep our person, to convince our person to not leave us alone, the joy of being with our person and thus no longer alone, the devastation of being left alone.-Human Right Campaign Speech March 14, 2015

I hope that you will take the chance to read this book and perhaps shine a bit more in your own life. What have you been reading lately?

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