With Let's Pretend This Never Happened, Jenny Lawson expands on the persona she's honed on her popular website The Bloggess while crafting a narrative that's entirely accessible to new readers, with a flair for exaggeration for comic effect that will induce laughing and cringing in equal measure. While some of the material in the book may be familiar to Lawson's online readers--such as "And That's Why You Should Learn to Pick Your Battles," the story of her purchase of a giant sheet-metal chicken--much of it consists of stories she hasn't shared before. Readers will learn about Lawson's rural West Texas childhood, with her dad's taxidermy shop in the back yard; how she met and married the famously long-suffering Victor; her rather unlikely career in human resources with a faith-based organization; and her ultimate decision that her daughter deserved a crazy country childhood, too... complete with taxidermied animals.
Lawson has written openly and honestly on her blog about her nearly-crippling social anxiety and sense of inappropriateness. In Let's Pretend This Never Happened, she elaborates on the ways that the Internet has helped her deal with that; the chapter "Making Friends with Girls" is certain to connect with her core audience, but will resonate with anyone who's struggled with fitting in (which means just about everyone). This condition probably means that Lawson would never have had a career in stand-up comedy, but the stage's loss is the literary world's gain. --Florinda Pendley Vasquez, blogger at The 3 R's Blog: Reading, 'Riting, and Randomness